The Truth About Mobile Apps for Auto Dealers
Many of you already have websites which are (hopefully) integrated with your offline advertising channels (radio, TV, billboard, newspaper, magazines, direct mail), and you probably generate a substantial part of your traffic and leads through this channel.
What if I were to tell you that Google has made a game changing, strategic move that could reduce your online leads, traffic, and profits considerably within the next two to five years if you do not pay attention to the implications of that move?
Google spent $12.5 billion last year to acquire Motorola Mobility, and this acquisition was so strategically important that Google spent more than 41 percent of its available cash for the deal. Now, why would Google bet almost half its cash reserves to make this deal? Is this acquisition telling you something about the future of the internet that will have a profound impact on your business if you ignore it? Note that, Google almost owns the internet today, but was willing to bet nearly half of its cash reserves to get into the mobile app design solutions playing field!
To understand why, consider these facts:
The whole world is going mobile
- There are 5.2 billion mobile phones worldwide and growing rapidly.
- There are 1.1 billion smart phones worldwide and growing rapidly.
- About 80 percent of US households have mobile phones.
- In the US, about 25 percent of mobile web users are mobile only!
- A whopping 10 percent of Google’s page views are mobile.
- About 83 percent of people go online to find a business
The bottom line is mobile apps are now replacing websites. And if you are not thinking about or taking steps today to integrate your existing websites with mobile, you will slowly find yourself out of business!
So what do you do?
Fortunately for the small to medium sized business person, there is still time to act, even though the window is closing fast. There are a few, affordable, scalable, and functionally powerful cross platform mobile app solutions on the market for you.
What features must you look for in your mobile app design solution?
- Your app must have cross platform capability—It must work on iPhones, iPpads, Android, Windows, Blackberry, and if you can afford it, Kindle and Nook.
- Push notification—This feature allows you to send unlimited offers and coupons to all your customers who have downloaded your app (at no additional charge).
And by the way, the open rate on push notifications is 97 percent within five minutes, vs. only four percent for emails and even lower for newsletters.
- GPS direction—One tap by your customer and directions to your business are displayed.
- Quick Response (QR) coupons—Can be used to download your apps and also as a “frequent buyer” card similar to the paper cards used by coffee shops.
- Tap to call—One tap, and the device calls your business, no more fumbling to find a phone number and dial.
- Tap to email—For your newsletter, etc.
- Mobile appointment scheduling/reminders—For parts and repairs, this feature should integrate with your existing platform.
- Simple, inexpensive, complete integration—Your app must be capable of handling the existing functionality and features on your website, and must be scalable to handle future changes. You must not accept high cost or ongoing code changes.
Your current and future customers comprise the majority of the ‘un-tethered” consumers. Whoever is in their pockets (via smart phone app), will command their attention, loyalty and dollars.
Michael Ofori is president of MVO & Associates, LLC, a multi-media advertising agency and can be reached at 978-631-0363 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Click here for more information about how you can take advantage of this mobile app design solution.