Mobile App Development

The astonishing ROI of mobile

18th August 2015

You needn’t worry about the cost of developing a mobile app. It’s not a question of cost. It’s a question of value. It’s something our customers ask about all the time so we thought it was only appropriate to crunch some of the numbers and explore the astonishing ROI of mobile apps. It’s a tough subject to address, but it’s now time to crunch the data and the numbers speak for themselves. We all understand the potency of mobile. It’s the ultimate megatrend. No other technological trend has grown so quickly and in such a profound manner. There’s no doubt about it, investing in mobile is likely to be one of the most critical decisions your company ever decides to make. The ROI of enterprise app development is phenomenal and it’s time to start thinking about mobile in terms of the value it can unlock for your company, rather than the cost.

“It took radio 38 years to reach 50 million people, it took Instagram a matter of months”

Taking the leap into the world of mobile could be the smartest thing your company ever does. That’s how important mobile is in the context of the modern business landscape. In today’s lightning paced business environment, mobile can provide the crucial difference between success and failure. If your business has spent years investing in desktop/web apps and IT infrastructure, mobile is now the final piece of the enterprise jigsaw. Mobile is the missing component that serves to unlock years (possibly decades) worth of carefully considered investment.

First of all you have to consider the cost of developing, marketing and optimising app. This is a serious investment and not something to be taken lightly. But if you’re uncertain about the ROI of mobile and reluctant to invest, looking at the numbers might rapidly accelerate your decision making. We estimate, having worked on dozens of successful enterprise mobility projects, that mobile apps deliver more than a 500% ROI of development and roll-out costs in less than a year. This is an astonishing ROI that is unsurpassed by other legacy technologies. This means that many of our customers actually manage to recoup their mobile investments in less than a three month time frame. If you have any doubt about the efficacy of mobile from an ROI perspective, we’re absolutely certain this information will help to crystalise your thought process.

But calculating the ROI of mobile hasn’t always been this straightforward. Less than a decade ago, this phenomenal data wasn’t available. Mobile early adopters in enterprise were forced to take a huge leap of faith into the unknown. Instead of taking a huge risk, most enterprises were forced to make a decision based on gut instinct but decided the potential risk was too high. Some early adopters were able to buck the trend and capitalise heavily on the mobile revolution in it’s earliest form and those companies are now reaping the rewards. But if you’re late to the mobile party, don’t worry there’s still plenty of time to capitalise.

But the reality is that most businesses have been extremely cautious when it comes to investing scarce resource into what has previously been regarded as an unknown quantity. The focus within large companies has been built around security and perception of cost rather than potential value. In turn, this has restricted many businesses ability to move fast and innovate. With the benefit of hindsight, it’s understandable why so many large companies have been reluctant to get into the mobile game. There has been huge uncertainty about which platforms to use, the fragmentation of devices, the tension between native development and HTML5 and many other unknown factors to consider. But things today are different. The mobile landscape has solidified and based on historic examples and case studies, it’s much easier to make smart decisions about investing in mobile. Adopting a mobility initiative is easier now because the ROI speaks for itself.

These are real world business challenges that Waracle understand. Our approach to mobile has helped many businesses to focus on leveraging mobile to unlock value. We always start with the end in mind. That’s largely a case of identifying each new customers business goals and objectives. Once we have an understanding of what you’re trying to do, we then work to ensure that every element of your mobile project fits neatly with your goals. It’s about lining up your strategic priorities and creating a business case for mobile based on planned ROI. In order to deliver a positive ROI, we constantly analyse your app data and optimise the performance of the software. This is a process that we’ve previously covered in another blog about developing an MVP. Being so close to this process across multiple industry sectors has given us a great insight into the mobile landscape and how it’s rapidly evolved.

Generally speaking, based on our own internal analysis, the ROI of developing mobile technology for our customers is incredibly compelling. In some cases, we’ve actually had customers develop a mobile initiative and experience a 500% ROI within less than 12 months of deployment and launch. This means that those customers are able to recoup their mobile capability investment in less than 3 months. If you compare these numbers with other sectors and industries, the statistics make for phenomenal reading. But when you dig a little bit deeper, it’s actually no great surprise that mobile technology has experienced such a staggering growth trajectory. Most of your employees are already bringing smartphones, tablets and sensors to the office. They’re technology savvy consumers and are fully versed in using all of the latest gadgets. If you combine this with the availability of processors, networking equipment and your internal systems, mobile represents the final piece of the jigsaw – an app ties everything together.

Mobile is about tying together disparate components from within your business. An app enables you to connect the dots and deliver value with incredible efficiency and speed. For some of our customers, mobile is now the core delivery mechanism for what they do. It’s not just a case of reeling off impressive stats on the topic of mobile ROI, apps enable your business to add to the overall bottom line. Mobile should be core to your business. Given the incredibly positive ROI of mobile, it’s now up to many companies to think carefully about the future of their business and the impact mobile is likely to have. Mobile requires serious investment. But the returns are simply phenomenal. For most enterprises it’s a question of how to invest more in mobile. As long as the returns remain as strong and utterly compelling as they are now (and predicted to be for many years to come) it’s important to create a justifiable business case for deeper investment in mobile.

Mobile is about unlocking the true potency of your workforce. It’s about making people more productive and giving them the ability to perform tasks with far greater speed and efficiency. It’s about improving the quality of your processes, having the ability to minimise errors and provide better quality outcomes to tasks. If your CFO needs convincing, mobile is great for the bottom line too – it increases sales revenue whilst reducing costs and infrastructure expenditure. Mobile is about phenomenal ROI, but it’s also about gaining strategic advantage over your competition, helping to increase market share and providing more value for new and existing customers.

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