Mobile Apps: Why Delaying Can Be So Costly

Mobile Apps: Why Delaying Can Be So Costly

Launching a commerce-enabled mobile app is a strategic business move that can significantly impact your bottom line. And yet many companies put off building an app. In this post, we will examine the two main reasons apps are delayed. We will point out the potential opportunity losses related to this delay. And we will highlight some of the reasons a mobile app should be viewed as an essential new sales channel, rather than a discretionary nice-to-have.

Several months ago, there were concerns about an impending recession. This led many companies to cut discretionary spending and postpone planned technical projects, including the launching of apps. Many retailers and wholesalers want an app but have been hesitant, waiting for improved market conditions.  Others have delayed offering an app because they are considering re-platforming to another eCommerce vendor. They don’t want to start an app project and then have to reconfigure it.

Why Shouldn’t I be Hesitant?

The recent market performance suggests a shift is underway. In May 2023, the Nasdaq 100, considered the global tech benchmark, recorded an impressive 8.4 percent increase. This marks its most robust May performance since 2005. Year-to-date, the Nasdaq 100 has outperformed the broader US benchmark, the S&P 500, delivering a return of 31 percent compared to a 9.5 percent increase in the S&P 500. The positive jobs report from May signaled to investors that the long-anticipated recession may no longer be imminent for the economy or, at the very least, pushed off until 2024. Companies delaying technical projects might want to seize this moment of relief.

While it may be tempting to put off an app when considering a re-platform to a new eCommerce vendor, the reality is that a typical eCommerce re-platform is a heavy lift and takes 9-12 months, at a minimum. The lost opportunity costs of not offering an app during this delay can be significant. Most custom app development companies, including Unbound, can reconfigure a launched app to integrate with a new eCommerce platform fairly easily. Often, the re-platform takes far longer than expected and this only adds to the lost opportunity impact of not having an app during the interim.

Here are some factors to consider regarding the changing consumer environment, the advantages of offering an app, and the negative impacts of not having one.

A Shift in Consumer Behavior.

Consumer behavior has undergone a significant shift towards mobile-centric experiences and the demand for mobile apps continues to grow rapidly. According to Statista, global mobile app revenues are projected to reach $935.2 billion in 2023. With a growing number of consumers preferring to shop via mobile apps, delaying your app launch means continuing to miss out on taking full advantage of this trend. Mobile app development should be seen as an essential channel for sales rather than discretionary spending, as it aligns with the changing behaviors and preferences of most target audiences.

Early Market Entry.

Being an early entrant in the market provides significant advantages. Research from CB Insights reveals that approximately 70% of startups fail due to premature scaling or late market entry. By launching your app, you can establish your brand presence, capture market share, and build a loyal user base before competitors enter the space. A first-mover advantage can be instrumental in securing a strong market position.

Iterative Development and User Feedback.

Launching an app allows you to gather valuable user feedback and insights. The iterative development process enables you to refine and enhance your app based on real user experiences. By listening to early adopters, you can identify areas for improvement, address pain points, and deliver a more polished and user-centric app.  Delaying the launch means delaying this crucial feedback loop, hindering your app’s potential for long-term growth and success.

Capitalizing on Trends.

The mobile app landscape is dynamic, with trends evolving rapidly. By launching your app promptly, you have the opportunity to capitalize on emerging trends and market shifts. Scanning and Augmented Reality are good examples. Staying ahead of the curve allows you to align your app with changing user preferences, technologies, and market demands. Waiting might result in missed opportunities as trends shift or competitors gain traction.

Sales Potential and Customer Reach.

A commerce-enabled mobile app opens up new avenues for sales and expands your customer reach. According to eMarketer, US mobile e-commerce sales are projected to reach $510 billion in 2023 and jump to $710 billion by 2025. According to JP Morgan, apps make up 54% of all completed mobile commerce transactions. By delaying your app launch, you risk missing out on capturing a significant share of the mobile commerce market and the associated sales opportunities.

Competitive Advantage.

In today’s fast-paced digital world, competition is fierce. Launching a mobile app expeditiously can give you a competitive advantage by differentiating your brand and providing unique value to the most-valuable slice of your target audience, not to mention your sales reps. Delaying your app’s launch could allow competitors to establish themselves, making it more challenging to stand out and capture user attention.

Customer Engagement and Higher Conversions.

Mobile apps offer convenience and personalized experiences that can significantly enhance customer engagement and drive sales. Studies have shown that customers spend more time on mobile apps compared to mobile websites, resulting in increased opportunities for product discovery, repeat purchases, and 2-6X higher conversion rates.

Mobile apps have become indispensable for both retail and wholesale online businesses, offering increased sales opportunities, more personalization, deeper customer engagement, loyalty program integration, and valuable data-driven insights that allow you to evolve the app as you go. By launching a custom mobile app, you can fully leverage the immense potential of mobile eCommerce, gain a competitive edge, foster customer loyalty, and drive incremental revenue growth.

Remember, every day you delay your app launch is a missed opportunity. You’ll need to wait to connect with customers, generate sales, and establish your presence in the mobile-driven marketplace. Adding a B2C or B2B mobile app is an essential new sales channel. Doing so positions your business for success in the (increasingly mobile) digital age. And remember, we can reconfigure your app to your new eCommerce platform. You can avoid the need to wait until after you re-platform.

Unbound Commerce makes the process easy and the first step is a free Needs Assessment call, at no obligation. We promise, no sales pitch! We specialize in customer service and have built and launched over 600 mobile solutions for our customers. Contact us today!

NAVIGATING UNCERTAIN TIMES: The case for Custom Mobile E-commerce Apps

NAVIGATING UNCERTAIN TIMES: The Case for Custom Mobile E-commerce Apps

What uncertain times would make me want to use custom mobile apps? The recent Silicon Valley Bank default debacle made headlines and created widespread anxiety about potential contagion. Subsequently, Signature Bank and First Republic Bank faced similar issues, undermining confidence in the banking system. Credit Suisse’s financial state of affairs was also concerning, as they had to borrow a significant amount of money, 54 billion USD, to ensure they could meet the requirements of their depositors in case of any unforeseen events. The situation has heightened fears of contagion and created a challenging environment for the banking industry.

If such large banks were to default, it could have far-reaching spillover effects, potentially damaging confidence in the global banking system. Although a consortium of large banks in the US has provided support to the struggling regional banks, this situation raises concerns about the management of banks and the effectiveness of regulatory oversight. It underscores the need for robust risk management practices and regulatory frameworks that can anticipate and address systemic risks in the banking industry.

How It Unfolded

Regional banks prospered during a period of low interest rates in the United States but did not anticipate the forthcoming era of high-interest rates, which resulted in significant cash flow strain. During the pandemic and the subsequent years, these banks received large deposits and were flush with funds. They invested these funds in long-term treasury bonds, which offered higher yields. The pandemic led to governments infusing liquidity into the market, resulting in inflation becoming more entrenched rather than transitory. Consequently, the central bank was forced to sharply increase interest rates, adversely affecting these regional banks.

Most banks are now facing losses in the billions of dollars due to the erosion in bond values caused by the high-interest rate environment. SVB, for instance, reported a loss of approximately $2 billion to meet the cash requirements of their depositors by selling bonds that had decreased in value. The banks’ disclosures resulted in depositors lining up to withdraw their investments, putting further strain on their already precarious liquidity.

Macroeconomic Impact

This banking fiasco can have significant implications for the overall economy of the United States. The banking system is the backbone of any economy and any issues faced by it can lead to a lack of confidence among investors and consumers. The situation can lead to a decline in investments and can adversely impact the stock market. This could in turn affect overall economic growth. Due to the sudden increase in interest rates to fight inflation, the value of investments has eroded.

This situation can lead to a liquidity crunch and a decrease in lending activity by banks, which can impact businesses and consumers. However, this situation can also lead to opportunities for businesses that provide alternative financing options, such as fintech companies.

A Strong Case for Custom Mobile App?

In such a challenging environment, efficiency and cost-effectiveness are the keys to tide over uncertain times, staying above the competition. Hence business needs to undertake a cost-benefit analysis of undertaking a Custom mobile e-commerce app. While generic “click to create” framed mobile apps may be cheaper and quicker to develop, they may not offer any value in such a challenging environment due to the lack of customization and functionality that a custom app can provide. Some of the benefits of custom mobile apps far outweigh the costs. With mobile commerce growing by the day makes a  strong case for custom mobile app development.

1. Personalization and Customer Experience.

Custom mobile e-commerce apps can provide a  seamless customer experience that leads to higher engagement, loyalty, and sales. According to a study by Salesforce, 76% of consumers expect companies to understand their needs and expectations. Custom mobile apps can meet those expectations by offering tailor-made recommendations, relevant promotions, and a smoother checkout process.

2. Faster Load Times and Improved Performance.

Custom mobile e-commerce apps can be optimized for faster load times. That is crucial for retaining customers and reducing bounce rates. According to Google, 53% of mobile users abandon sites that take longer than three seconds to load. Custom apps can also offer improved performance. This includes smoother navigation and better search functionality, leading to higher conversion rates.

3. Competitive Advantage.

Custom mobile e-commerce apps can provide a competitive advantage over rivals who rely on generic plugins or third-party solutions. According to a survey by Clutch, 62% of small businesses that invested in a custom mobile app saw an increase in sales. By offering a more seamless and personalized customer experience, custom apps can help businesses differentiate themselves from the competition.

4. Data Collection and Analytics.

Custom mobile e-commerce apps can provide valuable insights into customer behavior, preferences, and trends. By analyzing this data, businesses can make more informed decisions about product development, marketing strategies, and customer engagement. According to a survey by Statista, 82% of marketers believe that data analysis is important for their overall marketing strategy.

5. Revenue Generation.

Custom mobile e-commerce apps can generate more revenue by increasing conversion rates, reducing abandoned carts, and offering targeted promotions. According to a recent study, mobile commerce sales in the US are expected to reach $432 billion by 2022. That’s up from $207 billion in 2018. This presents a significant opportunity for businesses to tap into this growing market and increase their revenue. By offering a more seamless and personalized customer experience, custom apps can help businesses capture a larger share of this growing market. The revenue growth will eventually reduce the cost per order over the years.

Ultimately, the decision to invest in a custom mobile e-commerce app will depend on a business’s specific needs and goals. Overall, custom mobile e-commerce apps offer a range of benefits that can help businesses thrive in a challenging economic environment. By providing a more personalized and seamless customer experience, businesses can drive more revenue, reduce lost opportunities, and gain a competitive advantage.

Unbound Commerce has been the industry’s No.1 provider of B2C and B2B mobile app solutions for mid-market retailers since 2008. Unbound’s unique low-IT hybrid technical approach allows current e-commerce operations to be leveraged and cost-effectively extended into custom-built mobile apps. Unbound Commerce is a certified-level partner of Big Commerce and has delivered over 600 mobile solutions across multiple verticals.

Unbound Commerce makes the process easy and the first step is a free Needs Assessment call, at no obligation. We promise, no sales pitch! We specialize in customer service and have built and launched over 600 mobile solutions for our customers. Contact us today!