Last week we posted an article about the mobile revolution, including a study that reported on the current trend that smartphones and tablets are quickly replacing PC’s for digital reign. As noted in the post, the most relevant aspect of this fact for the busy OD would be the details about how people are using their mobile devices.
One of the novelties of mobile is the development of mobile apps, which have taken the tech world by storm. Because of the popularity and nearly instant success of certain apps, many people think that this is the way to go. Our clients are frequently asking us about which apps they should use, which they should buy and yes, even which apps they should develop. While many apps are quite useful and can make life a lot easier, to some of the more app crazy folk out there we would like to say, “Stick to your day job!” We certainly would not recommend leaving your ophthalmoscope to delve into the world of app development, at least not yet. While certain apps seem to be all the rage, research shows that very few consumers (as low as 4%) actually prefer branded apps to other means of online search.
According to a study published last month by Nielsen, when combining mobile web and app usage over five months (which happened to be pre-holiday, prime shopping months), the top five retailers’ sites- Amazon, Best Buy, eBay, Target and Walmart – reached 60 percent of smartphone users in the US! Still, studies showed that mobile shoppers prefer mobile web to store-specific apps. According to another recent study published by Zmags, not only do only 4 percent of “connected consumers” choose smartphone or tablet apps as their preferred platform, but 87 percent prefer shopping via retailers’ and brands’ mobile sites and websites.
This means that the majority of mobile users are still using their devices to search for and visit websites even when it comes to shopping, so while apps may be fun, it’s important to recognize that mobile friendly websites are the way to go. Ultimately, your focus right now should be on making sure that all of the mobile users out there can just as easily find your website on their smart device as they can on their PC. FYI- for all of you with ECP websites, making our sites mobile friendly is currently a major focus of the EyeCarePro web development team.
In the meantime, if you have a smartphone or tablet have some fun with the apps out there! Here is a recent article from Review of Optometry with some recommendations for some great apps for ODs. If you know of any other useful apps out there, please share!