The app market and app development industry are already huge and they’re getting bigger and bigger every year. Regardless of your business type, what products or services you sell and what your business model is, if you don’t already have a mobile app for your clients and customers, it’s time to think about that. According to research in 2015, mobile devices exceeded the number of personal computers. An average user spends around one hour per day using mobile apps, and uses around 2 dozen apps in a month.
Another report revealed that around 46% of people spend money on mobile apps. In 2016, the world’s population was 7.3 billion and there were around 10 billion active mobile devices, that is roughly 1.4 devices per person. Out of the 46% of paying users, around half of them say they’d spent $5 or less for an app, and interestingly around 17% of those paying users have spent more than $20 on a single app.
The top 5 mobile app categories are social platforms, entertainment apps, communication, productivity/utility and shopping apps. From a developer’s point of view, things are getting better and better. Back in 2013, the average developer salary in USA was between $92,750 and $133,500. In 2014, this rose to $100,000 – $144,000. As the app market and app development industry continues to grow, unfortunately, it doesn’t mean things are getting easier for developers.
We now have better development tools, knowledge bases and online resources readily available, but the margin for error has been drastically reduced. Developers can’t possibly send a buggy app into the market and expect it to be successful. Individual/freelance developers can often experience even more challenges because of their limited resources. We outlined a few up and coming trends that you can easily adopt and be a part of this $77 billion industry in 2017.
LBS (Location Based Services)
The idea behind LBS isn’t new and beacon technology has been penetrating the app development industry for quite some time. In 2017, more and more businesses are going to adopt location-based services for their users, in order to provide real-time information, data and deals to their customers. This often helps businesses to personalize their contents based on the user’s location and preferences.
The Rise of Small Businesses
Small businesses are starting to realize the importance of mobile apps for their business. The phenomenon is quite similar to something we experienced a few years ago when businesses realized the importance of a web presence (via their websites and social media). In some particular regions of the world, where small businesses are the backbone of the economy, the importance of mobile apps is paramount.
VR and AR
Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality are growing day-by-day and are going to revolutionize the world in 2017. Almost every major consumer electronics manufacturer including Samsung, LG, Sony and HTC is working on an implementation of these technologies in everyday life. Although the market penetration rate is lower than expected, according to a report of Digi-Capital, AR and VR may account to a $120 billion industry by 2020.
How Can Developers Get A Piece of the $77 Billion Industry?
The importance and position of mobile apps in the world is pretty obvious. Every popular mobile operating system like iOS, Android and Windows Phone offer app stores, so let’s see how developers can build and market their apps, and get more downloads.
App Store Optimization
The idea behind app store optimization is quite similar to SEO and as is as important too. A significantly large percentage of app users come directly from app store searches; some other methods are words of mouth, blogs, ads and social media. Make sure you’re using the right keywords to describe your app, use a catchy description to explain the basics and use realistic and interesting screenshots to give users a real vision of your app.
Good reviews are important to build a good reputation, however, a psychological phenomenon is in action here. Most people don’t often get in the habit of visiting the app store to leave a good review for an app they like. Instead they’re more motivated to leave a bad review if they don’t like the app. Bad reviews can often come by frustrated users from slow, unresponsive apps that crash. Tools like Bugfender can help developers to monitor their app’s usage, and easily replicate any issues users may be experiencing, resulting in an efficient, stable and enjoyable experience.
Most businesses create at least one (some even 5-6) landing pages for their main website. Creating a landing page for an app is also important and can be very beneficial. The landing page must be simple and visually appealing with some reviews, basics features, screenshots and a brief video if possible. The purpose of landing page is to show the app features in a little more details than the app store can.
This is a no brainer; using social media for app marketing and promotion is one of the best marketing strategies you can use. It is easily available, it is easy to use and most importantly it is free. If you are going with paid ads, that’s even better. You can specifically target demographics like age group, gender, location and others.