It’s 2017. Now more than ever, mobile apps are in every aspect of our lives. Does your New Year Resolution for your small-to-medium sized business include improving your digital presence?
50% of small businesses are looking to develop mobile apps in 2017. Let’s walk you through what that means. The mobile app environment is changing. Every day, consumers are getting smarter and smarter, challenging businesses and app developers to quickly adapt to the changing digital landscape.
Mobile App Trends for 2017
It’s time to carve out your own digital and technical niche. Chances are your competitors are doing it, so now its time for you to follow the upcoming mobile app trends for small business.
Location Based Apps
These apps will look at location, time, temperature, or activity level to give the user a customized experience.
If you have brick-and-mortar store, you can now offer customers deals based on location and vicinity to your business. Technology is improving when it comes to location-based trackers, so you can now offer real time deals based on the user’s location alone.
Target has been experimenting with this technology by setting up beacons in their stores. These beacons communicate with customer’s devices once the user has opted-in. Geo-fencing is also improving. Snapchat has created a custom feel to locations with location filters, giving companies an opportunity to advertise based on a very specific location. Millennial users are quickly adapting to this method of advertising, as long as it is done in a tasteful way. Geo-targeting, once considered an invasion of privacy, has been adopted by millennials as the new-normal.
Augmented Reality Apps
Augmented Reality apps are looking to whimsically merge the lens of real-life with CGI overlays on live video. The unprecedented success of Pokemon Go was able break through to the general population with the highly engaging experience of augmented reality.
Augmented reality apps are not only used for playful purposes, but the app Word Lens shows how these apps can be educational. Word Lens, recently acquired by Google, allows users to point their camera at a sign written in a Spanish, and the app will overlay an English translation on top of it.
The boundaries of Augmented Reality are being explored, and it will be interesting to see how designers are able to tastefully combine reality with CGI images.
Android Instant Apps
Android Instant apps give the user the ability to use apps without downloading them. Instead, they are able to instantly use apps without the lengthy install times. There is a movement for apps to be built lighter, so they take up less space on the user’s device.
This new technology developed by Google allows users to only download fragments of the app or game, while streaming the rest of the content.
Artificial Intelligence Apps
In December, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg released a playful video showing new Artificial Intelligence technology being developed, called Jarvis. Although the commercial was just a teaser and did not represent the real app, it presented a utopian view on how it could function.
Jarvis serves as your alarm, secretary, weatherman, and as an all around life organizer.
In 2017, Artificial Intelligence will seep into every aspect of our lives. You are probably familiar with e-commerce recommendations predicting specific items based on your browsing behavior and previous purchases.
Search Engines are also incorporating this artificial intelligence technology with paid ad placements.
“With health and diet apps, we are attaching more of our daily lives to sensors to collect data,” said Jesse Curry, Director of Development Services at Haneke Design. “There is a huge convergence of individual sensors and data. We are starting to get a technical perspective that did not exist previously.”
The Internet of Things sounds like a complicated idea to wrap your head around. But essentially, it connects everyday objects, like your phone, to control a greater aspect of our daily lives.
For example, the Nest App, allows users to control their temperature of their home all through an mobile app. Users are expecting solutions to quotidian problems, not matter how small.
Jesse Curry predicts that there will be a combination between these multiple apps that improve our lives, into just one interface to simplify the user experience.
Cars have come out with accompanying apps to remote start, which can be a life changer if you live in a cold climate. If you ever lived up North, you would have to run out in your pajamas to start your car and let it warm up. With remote access, you can start your car in the comfort of your home, greatly improving those first few minutes of your day.
Combining artificial intelligence with the Internet of Things will allow developers to further predict and personalize digital experiences.
Increased Cyber Security
Developers have always tried to be security-minded. But as more information is stored on the cloud, it is more accessible worldwide. We now house private details like bank account information, credit card numbers, and daily movements of us and our children are at risk for hackers to gain access.
As we move into 2017, securing our personal information will become more secure by default. The increase of web applications being built with https secure end-to-end encryption, makes it more difficult for hackers to snoop on the transmission of personal information.
Experiential Marketing Apps
App revenue will soar to $77 billion in 2017, with 268 million mobile app downloads. Because consumers are becoming so over-saturated by traditional advertisement, ads are less and less effective.
Instead, companies are using mobile apps to connect with customers. Studies show that users gain more quality engagement with branded mobile apps, and their attention is held for longer amounts of time.
Another important aspect of a branded mobile app, is that people are more likely create content and organically share it out to their friends. This is a win-win for marketers, because this engagement drives highly qualified referrals to the business.
Examples of this experiential marketing include sites like Jib Jab and Elf Yourself, that have a sharing built-in. Auto-tune apps and games offer similar interactive experiences, where people share it out. The content “happens” to be branded, without it looking like a blatant advertisement.
Person-to-Person Economy Apps
With the success of mobile apps like Venmo, a digital wallet that lets you make and share payments with friends, the person-to-person relationship is being facilitated through technology. Users are looking for new and interesting ways to transform their daily interactions to make their lives easier.
These apps fall into the “Uber for X” which are changing the nature of human interaction. Facebook Marketplace has gained decent traction in the past year, and will continue to offer users a more timely way to buy and sell items.
The New Year is an exciting time for your business, and now is the chance to stay ahead of the curve to grow your revenue and surpass your business goals.
With mobile apps you can
- Increase sales
- Drive engagement
- Build brand loyalty
See our infographic below!