Mobile App Developers Face Stiff Market Competition
Gone are the days when people rely on personal desktop computers for information, social networking, entertainment, and recreation. Since the advent of mobile technology, when pagers and regular phones were replaced by smart phones, people from all over the world have started spending most of their time using mobile phones. Data shows that in 2012, out of the estimated 7.1 billion people in the world, at least 6.8 billion were mobile subscribers from different parts of the globe. This is a huge increase from the 5.4 billion mobile subscribers recorded in 2010. This just shows that these days, people prefer mobile phones for effective communication.
Smartphones Are More Popular Than Ever Around the World
From this data, 1.08 billion people choose to use smart phones instead of regular phones. At least 91.4 million smart phone users are from the United States. However, it has been noted that users do not rely on these phones for communication alone. In fact, the increase in sales of smartphones can be attributed to how effective they are at providing information, recreation, and entertainment via the thousands of mobile applications available in popular online markets such as the Android Market and the Apple App store. Data shows that 89% of smartphone users do not leave their phones at home and that they use them throughout the entire day.
Research shows that downloading mobile applications is one of the most popular activities among smartphone users. This is probably the reason why competition in the mobile application market has tightened among app developers. In 2011, it was recorded that revenues from mobile apps reached $8.5 billion and, according to analysts, it may increase to $46 billion by 2016. And as the competition gets tougher and more exciting, it becomes more challenging for mobile app developers to create better and more interesting apps that will entice mobile users and sustain the performance of already popular apps in the market. The question now is, how will mobile app developers hang on despite much bigger and more intense competition in the market?
How to Develop an Outstanding Mobile App That Sells
For those who are looking for some tips with regards to app marketing, here is a rundown of what mobile app developers should keep in mind when coming up with a marketable and profitable mobile application:
- The Interests of Your Target Market – Mobile users have different interests based on their age. At least 62% of smart phone users are between the ages of 25 and 34. This age group downloads mobile apps daily and app developers can consider this to be their starting point when thinking of new apps to develop. People age 25 to 34 range from single professionals to young moms and dads. On the other hand, 54% of smart phone users come from the age range 18-24, which shows some teenagers and early working men and women are also into downloading apps. It is important to take note of the age ranges and determine their possible likes and dislikes to guide the developers in what apps to develop.
- Feedback From Your Target Market – App developers should always be mindful of what their target market has to say. Feedback is the best source of inspiration when coming up with new apps to develop. Through feedback, the app developer will be guided in their approach and able to attract the interest of loyal clients.
- Willingness to Buy – App developers should keep in mind that not all app downloaders are willing to purchase apps. In fact, most of the highly downloaded apps in the market today can be downloaded for free. In the Apple App Store, most of the top 400 mobile apps for iPad and iPhone showed significant increase in their market performance upon price drop by developers. This shows that the market prefers free-to-download apps more than apps that cost money to download. However, app developers can still charge a small price for some of their premium apps. The price should be determined by the ability of the target market to buy.
- Market Visibility – An app should be well-known and visible so that it can create and sustain buzz in the market. It should be the consistent talk of the town and therefore the app developers should be creative in devising ways to make their apps popular. One way is through App Search Optimization (ASO). It is quite similar to Search Engine Optimization (SEO), except that with ASO, the name of the app and some details typically associated with it will be used as keywords in publicity articles to attract attention online. Screenshots of the app can also be used. This is why it is important that an app should have its own theme, color and tagline.
- Competitor Performance – It is always recommended that app developers should monitor the performance of the competition in the market. Check their strengths and weaknesses and concentrate on what they’ve been lacking. Their weaknesses can be a good guide for the improvement of your apps. Check on what their customers have been saying and asking for and try to include improvements in your future apps. Tight monitoring of the market competition is an effective tool in determining which apps are the most popular with customers.
Make Your Mobile App Unique
During these days when there are already tens of thousands of mobile apps to choose from, app developers need to be able to come up with apps that stand out among the rest. Always remember that at first glance, while scrolling down the list of apps in the market, the user should already be hooked by its name, look, color, interface, description, and feedback. The overall marketing identity of the app should be excellent for it to attract more customers and to ensure good performance in the market. By following these tips, app developers are guaranteed to see improvement in the performance of their apps in the market after implementing these techniques.