Is Your Mobile App User Friendly?

By Brett Relander | Small Business

As more and more businesses scramble to catch-up to the smart phone and tablet revolution, (and let’s face it, many businesses are way behind) the need for a simple, user friendly and straightforward guide to getting a good app to represent your business is critical. In the virtual smartphone and tablet landscape, you need to claim your turf before your completion monopolizes the space.

Is Your Mobile App User Friendly? image mobileapps for small business 400x264 300x198Is Your Mobile App User Friendly?

Here is a list of how to ensure your mobile app is user friendly.

Consistent Performance

A successful app is one that does not crash and uses the least possible amount of power and CPU. If a user is having problems with their phone or tablet, they will likely delete the apps that are causing the issues. Make sure yours isn’t one of them.

It Should Have a Fast Response

A mobile app should load fast since users want their information quickly. One that takes too long to process will be replaced by another app. According to KISSmetrics, the general rule is that an app should take no more than 3 seconds to load as 40% of users abandon apps that take longer resulting in deletion of the app. However, you do have another option if you have a complex mobile app. You can use a loading page that shows the continuing activity while it is loading. Not ideal, but it at least assures users that something is going on rather than having them assume it is unresponsive.

It Should Be Free of Ads

While this may not be a deal breaker, it can influence the amount of time the user spends on your app. Annoying banners displaying across the screen can deter people from using the app. Another issue is that the smaller smart phones make it easier for a user to accidentally click on those ads. This not only takes them away from your app, which is where you want them to be, but it can irritate them and make them choose to delete the entire app. That’s not to say that ads on your apps are always inappropriate. But weigh benefits versus costs very carefully.

Make it Usable

Your app should have value to the user by helping them do something or giving them important information. Decide upfront what you want your app to do before you begin designing it. Don’t try to have it do too much, especially if this is your first app. Instead, opt for a clean app that does one or two things well and you will appeal to a wider audience.

Some of the tasks a user friendly mobile app can handle include the following:

  • Social messaging

  • Photo sharing

  • Mobile payment

  • Location

  • Voice chatting

  • Games

It Should Connect With Social Media

You want users to be able to spread the word about your app and therefore, your company. The easiest way to do that is to connect your app with social media such as Facebook or Twitter. This makes it easy for users to share information from your app with their friends and community. The end result is word of mouth marketing leading to some of those friends downloading your app, too.

Ask Your Customers

The best way to create the ideal mobile app is to ask those you want to use it.  You can pose a question on Twitter, Facebook, or your website and ask visitors what they would most like to see in a mobile app.  You will probably get a variety of responses, but the ones who know your business best will tend to say similar things. This can get you started in the right direction while putting your customers first and valuing their input.

Finally, you need an experienced mobile app developer to create the best app for your business. They should be able to tell you what won’t work as well as what will and guide you in the right direction to create an app that everyone will want to use.  Be sure to ask for references and download apps they have previously developed before hiring.

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