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The Commoditization of the App Market (Guest Post)

How App Developers Can Bring Value For Their Clients

Seems like everyday there is a new mobile app platform being announced. Heck,  as I’m writing this article announced an angel round (amount undisclosed) from Kliener Perkins. These platforms promise their subscribers that they can build a native app for iOS or Android in two hours,  or other outlandish claims.

So lets’ add Yapp… to the already crowded category of web app builders. Other companies include:  Seattle Clouds, Bizness Apps, Snappii, and Conduit Mobile just to name a few.  Then there are the mobile website conversion platforms : Duda Mobile, Mobezzo, Unity Mobile and others that are converting standard sites into mobile optimized sites.

So with the proliferation of so many platforms,  what’s a hungry,  eager mobile solutions developer to do?  Well in the famous words of Zig Ziglar,  “….show the value of your solution”

While these platforms may allow for small businesses to publish a native app or mobile website in as little as 2 hours for $49.99 per month,  what they are missing is the strategy, branding and support expertise that you, as a mobile solutions professional, bring to the table.

Let’s take for example a restaurant. As you know, if you are  focusing on providing restaurants with digital solutions i.e.  website, SEO, Email Marketing etc.  the restauranteurs really need to see the ROI before they sign off on any new type of marketing initiative.

That’s where you come in!  Give them data points!  On my website  I list articles that I feel are relevant to the industries I sell to : Fashion, Health and Fitness and Restaurants.   So in the case where I have a prospective client who is unsure of the ROI of a mobile solution,  and why they should select me over the DIY methods,  I refer the articles about other endemic companies that have done what they are attempting to do.  They are non-biased articles,  some talking about the advantages of a mobile site over native app,  or others about how to kick start a mobile strategy.  Do they read them all?  Probably not,  but they are data points I’m providing hopefully establishing that level of trust as a mobile solutions provider.  Platforms aren’t doing that!

Sticking with the restaurant theme…. let’s say they choose to do a native app because they’re really excited about the idea of push notifications.  We all know that getting the app publish is just one tiny little element of a mobile strategy.  After the the app has been published you need to get users to download and use it.  Well….. platforms aren’t going to do that either!

Finally,  what these platform solutions won’t give your clients is the thing I think they need most : Support!  Again,  using the example of a restauranteur,  these folks are busy doing many tasks like: selling entrees, filling up their restaurants with patrons and ensuring they have enough ingredients to make pizza crusts. The last thing they’re worrying about is uploading a new QR code to their mobile app.  Again….this is where you come in!  As a mobile solutions provider for your clients,  you’re there to support them,  add features, add content and make sure the app and or mobile website is operating properly!  You guessed it…. Platforms aren’t going to do this either!  Sure, some of the platform companies have great support options,  but they are in the business of volume,  and with volume comes longer response times.  By having a dedicated mobile solutions professional,  your clients get quick responses to their issues,  and if you’re really good,  you are preventing problems before they even occur!

So the next time one of your clients (or a prospective client)  mentions trying one of these DIY platforms,  do yourself a favor and bullet point the following.

  • Strategy
  • Branding
  • and Support!

To a business owner who considers more than just the bottom line when making decisions for their business,  they will value these three things that you,  as a mobile solutions professional bring to the table!

APPy Selling !

About The Author

John Haden is Director of APPiness at Troo Mobile, a mobile solutions provider from Orange County, California. Troo Mobile have produced apps across multiple platforms and various mobile websites.

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