CRM Reading Lounge: CRM & General Articles

How To Plan and Execute Your Mobile Strategy for your Small Business - Hilary Smith

For most small businesses, having an effective mobile strategy is no longer a luxury, it is now mandatory. With more and more people using their mobile devices to purchase services and/or goods, it is crucial for a small business’ survival to have an effective mobile strategy. According to statista, 2.53 billion people owned a smartphone in 2018, and that number is projected to be 2.71 billion in the year 2019. This number has increased every year since the first year this data was collected in the year 2014. Based off these numbers, it is easy to see why implementing an effective mobile strategy is extremely important. A good mobile strategy is critical for all businesses, but even more so for small businesses because they are already at a disadvantage when competing with bigger companies. Below are the four most important steps you need to take in order to execute an effective mobile strategy for your small business.

Step 1: Define Your Target Audience

Before you can come up with any type of business strategy, you first need to be able to define your target audience. If you don’t know who you are selling to, it is going to be impossible for you to market your goods or services effectively. When talking about a mobile strategy specifically, one of the first things you should do is make sure that you only have relevant information on your app or website. This is because according to Time magazine, the average person spends 15 seconds or less on a webpage. Therefore, your mobile web page or app not only needs to contain relevant information that pertains to your target audience, but it also needs to be able to be found by a consumer quickly and easily as well. Failing to do so could end up in you missing out on a potential sale.

Step 2: Create an App or a Mobile Site

Although the ideal situation would be to have an app and a mobile site, the reality is that most small businesses do not possess the resources to have and properly maintain both, so you, therefore, have to make a decision. The most important thing you should know before making a final decision is the differences between the two. Mobile apps are applications that you install on your mobile device, and a mobile site is basically the same exact thing as a regular website except designed for a smaller handheld display interface. Generally speaking, mobile apps are geared more towards people who are already customers, whereas mobile sites are geared more towards people who may be learning about your business for the first time. Mobile apps are easy to navigate and provide quicker information than a mobile site would. If your small business is already fairly popular within your community, I would personally recommend choosing a mobile app. However, if your business is new or not that popular within your community yet, then I would recommend creating a mobile site as opposed to a mobile app.

Step 3: Use Social Media to Your Advantage

It’s no secret that social media is more popular than ever before and plays a crucial role in businesses overall success. Most people engage in activities on social media via mobile phone as opposed to a desktop computer. According to statista, there were over 2.6 billion people on social media in the year 2018, and this number is projected to reach over 2.75 billion by the year 2019. Because of how popular social media is in today’s society, it would be wise for business owners to incorporate it into their mobile marketing strategies. Some of the ways you can do this is by sharing positive reviews written about your business on all of your social media platforms, paying for ads on prominent social media websites such as Twitter or Facebook, and by creating engaging content for social media users to read on your social media profiles and pages. That last one is very important when considering the fact that a recent study has shown approximately 71% of people will actually make a purchase after reading referrals on social media. Most social media websites are free to use and provide an excellent opportunity for businesses to promote themselves without spending any money.

Step 4: Send Out Properly Timed Alerts

According to a study conducted by the pew research center, 67 percent of all cell phone owners check their phone even if there is no reason to. With those many people checking their phones out of sheer boredom, it would be a smart idea to send out timely alerts and notifications to your audience. You can send your audience things like coupons, discounts, or any important information about your business that your audience will find useful. Although this strategy is a great idea, it can backfire rather quickly if you do not implement it correctly. In order to be successful using this strategy, you need to make sure that when you are sending something to your audience, it is at an appropriate time of the day. If you send out an alert at an inappropriate time of the day, not only is it highly possible that your audience will not read it, but it can also annoy your audience as well. Sending out alerts to your audience early in the morning is not ideal because generally speaking, most people are getting ready for work, or are in a bad mood as soon as they wake up and thus, will likely ignore your alert. Sending out alerts late at night is also a bad idea because most people are trying to sleep, or are out doing things. Therefore, the best time to send out alerts is in the afternoon. Knowing the location of your audience is the best way to prevent yourself from making this mistake. You also don’t want to send out too many alerts in a short period of time. This has the potential to annoy your audience as well.

In summary, mobile devices are becoming increasingly popular in today’s society, and they are only going to increase in popularity as time passes. Therefore, implementing an effective mobile strategy is no longer something you have the option to do if you so choose. It is now something that you have to do if you want to stay in business. Following the guidelines above will help you and your business stay relevant in the new age of technology.