Alexandra Chang demonstrates taking a screenshot on the Nokia phone. Photo: Ariel Zambelich/Wired

There are now almost as many mobile phones as there are people in the world, and using a phone is an ordinary everyday activity for nearly everyone. For every three seconds spent online, two are through a mobile device, which suggests people prefer to be mobile than being weighed down by a computer that may limit their movements. It also means that with the extra time spent on phones or other devices, businesses should follow the trend and adapt to staying in touch with their target markets by making use of every opportunity available. So, what enhancements and developments can be made by your business to join the mobile revolution?

Make your website mobile responsive

In this day and age, a company website may be the first encounter your new clients will have, as well as being a useful point of reference for existing clients. This means it needs to be appealing, user-friendly, and continually updated to maintain that ‘wow’ factor. It’s also essential that your website is fully responsive, so it can flexibly adapt to any mobile device, of which there are now a variety. The open-source frontend web development framework Bootstrap accounts for five different screen sizes, though less structured web design may recognise a wider range. Mark Zuckerberg said his company’s biggest mistake was assuming an app could reach anyone with any device, while the truth is more often that a cross-platform toolkit may be required to handle the different output devices.

With the increasing demands of websites and mobile responsiveness, many companies may find their in-house IT department is under pressure to create manageable and cost-effective solutions. Finding a company providing stellar IT support services may be a wise answer in creating the highest performance in mobile technology without pushing employees to their limits.

Get a mobile app

As far back as 2012, 72% of smartphone users said in a Google survey they wanted websites that could be accessed through a mobile device, and the majority of those surveyed would go back to the search results if this option wasn’t provided.

There are several ways your business will benefit by setting up a mobile app – and with improvements in mobile app development, this is now an option for companies of all sizes. First of all, with the hours that people now spend on their phones (almost three hours a day for the average American), and as 87% spend their mobile time on apps in the US, this means an app for your business will lead to significantly increased exposure, improve your customer engagement, and build your brand recognition. Depending on the nature of your business, mobile apps may present a method to implement a loyalty program that will make that extra difference in building a loyal customer base. An app will also give you the chance to receive more information about your customers and to market directly to your clients.

All in all, having the ability to offer an app to your customers presents numerous strategies to an organisation that would otherwise be time-consuming and costly, so those with the means to do so (which is most of us) should implement a mobile app without delay.

Monetise your app

An extra point that shouldn’t be ignored when it comes to mobile apps is that they are potential sources of income, perhaps as additional earnings to your main business.

Advertising through a mobile app is an excellent opportunity to earn money due to the amount of time people spend on their phones, and also because as the vast majority of downloaded apps are free (95% of Google Play apps in 2018), consumers are less willing to pay for ones without adverts. Most of the money spent on mobile advertising – which amounted to $40 billion last year – is through mobile apps. This is an industry that’s growing, so it could be a fruitful investment.

Email marketing is another way of engaging your customers, which will lead to more business in the future. A good way of collecting email addresses for your list is by building a subscription form into your app, which prompts users to submit their personal information like their name and email address.

Offering your customers the chance to make in-app purchases is a way of providing products or services with the utmost of convenience and speed to both producer and consumer. This will make your app more complex in build, however, and will require the use of a payment system such as Braintree.

With a great deal more time and attention spent on mobile devices than in previous decades, making use of mobile technology is a tactic all businesses should be orienting towards if they haven’t already. The extra opportunities available to businesses from a market that’s increasingly mobile could mean that those that fail to develop new strategies for the mobile generation could find themselves going nowhere.