Why Do I Need an App if I Already Have a Website?

Connor Keppel

Lets all take the time to welcome Emma Farrell to the Phorest Team… WELCOME! Emma takes us through the difference and advantages of having an app instead of just browsing a website on a mobile.

Websites, Social Media, Smartphones and now Apps…. it seems every time we get used to one new technological advancement another MUST HAVE comes sneaking round the corner. It’s hard to keep up isn’t it? Especially when the latest thing seems nothing more than a mimic of the last…with bells on.

So I totally understand if you feel like smashing the screen when I say… Websites alone just don’t cut it any more, you gotta’ get an App….. hang on, hang on it’s not all bad allow me to explain….

First, what actually is an App anyway?

While smartphone Apps are the next big thing ‘Application software’, or ‘App’s for short have actually been around since the early 90’s and refer to all the computer software that causes a computer to perform useful tasks.

The smartphone era has simply embraced and marketed the word. In short the App we’re on about is an interactive specialized programme specific to a particular theme,topic or business downloaded onto a mobile device.

So why can’t people just go to my website on my smartphone?

Kind of, but no…..Of course you are not entirely cut off from the world of hand-held internet users if you do not have an App they can of course access your website. So why bother with an App at all? There are several advantages of having an App over a mobile website, the most prevalent being that Apps are made specifically for interaction – view our pricelist, send an enquiry, and most importantly MAKE AN APPOINTMENT!

Apps unlike mobile websites are built to embrace the native functionality or the hardware of the device (Apple app store for Iphones, Android market for Android smartphones etc…).

Also unlike a live website which needs internet access to display information, an App has the ability to download the content so it can be accessed even when there is no internet connection, later updating content when it is next ‘synced’ to the internet.

So how will this benefit my business?

A recent study shows that outside of calls and texts, 82% or peoples’ time on a smartphone is spent on apps, where’s only 18% is spent browsing; and with 46 million Apps being downloaded from the Apple App store every day the stats really speak for themselves….

As regards your salon and how an interactive App can work for you, think of it like a live and open appointment book that everyone has access to 24 hours a day – you could come in one morning and have 5 extra appointments booked over night!

It will also capture contact information through bookings for marketing purposes, along with credit card details which can help deter the dreaded no shows.

Think brand awareness – your logo on the screen of something that’s never out of most peoples hands, and there for all their friends to see.

Everyone is impatient these days and having an App on your home screen makes booking appointments a lot less hassle then searching and comparing with other salons on the web.

So, in conclusion while I’m not for one second suggesting we dump the websites altogether, quite the contrary,as your App will in fact complement your website, it does seem these ‘Apps’ are the new MUST HAVE that we simply must have if we’re to stay ahead of the game.

Emma works in the training department of Phorest and specializes in Facebook, online and app training. If you have questions for Emma about this post or online and social media in general, email emma.farrell@phorest.com or leave a comment below. Many thanks for reading!

Interested in getting a branded app for your salon? Talk to Phorest today.

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