Mobile App Development

Design an awesome mobile experience for enterprise

18th November 2017

In today’s lightning paced business world, getting mobile right is now simply par for the course. But for many businesses, getting into mobile is tough. Getting it right is even harder. If you’re serious about developing an awesome mobile experience for your customers, staff and stakeholders, you need to minimise commercial and technical risk. Mobility is about enhancing the performance of your business by delivering against your plan and key success measures. If you’ve got a clear handle on your business goals and KPI’s, you’re in a great place when it comes to mobile design and development. Today we’re exploring how to design an awesome mobile experience for enterprise that your users and stakeholders will love.

How to recruit mobile talent

Enterprise mobility is the future – in fact, it’s happening already. Studies have highlighted a shift away from revenue generated by games, towards business apps within the app store. If you’re a big company looking to get into mobile right now, the rewards can be extremely lucrative. Mobile has the capability to transform your business, but only if you do the right things and design an outstanding, value-add experience for your users.

It’s essential to remember (especially if you’re a software business) that mobile is a different animal when compared to traditional app development. It requires different thinking and expertise, and a savvy development team – often sourced externally. Of course, you couldrecruit your own team of mobile developers or use a build, operate, transfer (BOT) development model. Whatever route you decide to take, make sure you have solid guidance and expertise, preferably someone who has been through the mobile development journey already. This will help you to minimise risk and plan your project accordingly. It’ll save you time, money and stress.

Adopting the right mobile technologies

There are two routes you can consider when it comes to mobilising your company. The first option is to create a mobile responsive website. The other option is to develop a mobile app. Making the right choice about which path to take will depend on your business goals and requirements. For instance, if your business goals are to increase employee productivity, or to roll-out a new product or service, this will greatly influence your decision when it comes to defining the correct approach. It’s absolutely essential that you start with the end in mind and establish a coherent and measurable set of objectives. Once you’ve thought about why you’re building your app, you can start to plan your mobile project in detail based on your requirements. Whatever you decide to do, whilst it’s important to make the right choices for the right reasons, there’s also an emphasis on agility and getting something into the market as quickly as possible. It’s better to get something done and adapt it post-launch, than to be bound by procrastination and fear of the unknown.

If you’re thinking about developing a mobile website, there are a bunch of factors you should consider in relation to the goals of your project and your key measures of success. HTML5 is great because it enables you to adopt a ‘one size fits all’ approach in terms of device accessibility. You can develop a single code base that enables your site to be viewed across a vast array of device and browser types. It’s basically a website that can be accessed by site visitors by responding to different device shapes and sizes at any time. This can be a great way to operate if you’re working to a tight budget and need to get something to market fast.

A native mobile app is a bespoke piece of software that can be created for a specific set of device types and downloaded from an app store marketplace. This sounds obvious but getting the basics right is important. Developing native mobile apps for iOS, Android and other platforms can require significant development time depending upon the scope of your project and requires a wider range of technical expertise and leadership. Mobile expertise and thinking tends to be harder to access as high quality developers are in high demand and tight supply. Generally speaking native apps provide a more consistent and immersive UX for mobile users. If you’re serious about getting into mobile it’s important to get a grip of the essentials. Discussing your requirements with an experienced agency can be a great way to align your KPI’s with a cohesive mobile strategy.

Continuous data driven analysis and development

Thinking about native app development is a great place to start if you’re extending or replacing an existing piece of desktop software. If you’re a software development manager trying to mobilise your business, developing a mobile experience is a smart move. Native apps give you more control over your UI/UX and tend to provide a better experience for your users. However developing killer apps is a long game. Mobile is not a hit and run job. Developing a native app is just the first step in your company’s mobile journey. We recently explored what it takes to plan effectively for enterprise mobility and discussed the importance of establishing your key measures of success. Once you’ve thought about planning, design, development and launch, it;s essential to have a measurement mechanism or some form of analytics that enables you to optimise your app to perfection.

Today’s best mobile apps deploy sophisticated onboarding techniques to keep users ‘plugged-in’ and engaged. Mobile app onboarding is the single most important weapon you have when it comes to extending the duration and usefulness of your users mobile experience. We call this process ‘RFM’ scoring whereby you launch your app into the app store and tweak it to success by analysing the recency, frequency and monetisation (if applicable) of your users behaviour and interactions with the software. There is a serious misconception that mobile is about development and design. The truth is that great mobile experiences are nurtured based on user feedback and relentless data driven development cycles. Great apps aren’t born straight out of the app store marketplace, they’re optimised and tuned to success using ongoing analysis and measurement against your KPI’s.

The beauty of mobile is it’s versatility. especially for big brands and businesses. In the past decade mobile has radically transformed our business lives and will continue to do so for many more years. Mobile can act as a central point of engagement for everyone in your company. Your staff, customers and organisational stakeholders can all benefit from a well designed enterprise mobility initiative. Mobile is about doing the same things your company has always done but faster and more efficiently.

Designing an awesome mobile experience takes time. You need to start with your key measures of success and business requirements. Once you have a clear idea of these aims and objectives, you can start thinking about how you get your mobile initiative off the ground in the fastest possible time scale. Build, operate, transfer can be a great way to kick start your mobility journey. Once you’ve engaged the right expertise you need to think about which technologies you’re going to use. Launching your app is just the first stage of the journey. Mobile success is based on relentless analysis and optimisation. Making sure users stick around requires a detailed and cohesive onboarding strategy. Talking to an experienced agency will help you to clarify your thinking around mobile. Great developers understand that mobile is more than just developing a single product iteration. Awesome mobile apps always blend a seamless UI/UX with sophisticated analytics and continuous data driven development cycles.

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