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Understanding how your mobile app can work with a user’s smartphone

14th May 2024

5-minutes read

If you want to enhance customer engagement or streamline business operations, a bespoke mobile app is worth considering. And did you realise that your app can work with a user’s smartphone to provide the functionality that will help make your mobile app a success?

There are various features on a smartphone that can be accessed and used to improve the productivity of your mobile app.

Push notifications: how you can enhance user engagement

Push notifications provide a means for you to connect directly with your user’s phone. A push notification is an instant alert that pops up on the phone’s screen for a few seconds, typically to announce details of an offer, update or news. And by virtue of their immediacy and timeliness, they encourage your user to feel engaged with your app and, by extension, your business.

If your app is customer-facing, push notifications tailored to the interests and behaviours of your users can significantly enhance engagement rates. This personalised approach fosters loyalty and encourages repeat app usage. Moreover, strategically timed push notifications can act as gentle reminders for customers to complete purchases or explore new services, subtly nudging their journey towards your desired action. This method, when used judiciously, transforms the way businesses communicate, making it more direct, immediate, and effective.

For apps that focus more on business processes (and are used internally by staff), the push notification reminds the user of the next step to take in the process or alerts them of a state change in an important business entity.

For you as the business owner, this translates into providing an improved customer service experience.

Camera: adding advanced functionality

The camera on a user’s smartphone is a powerful tool that can enhance the capabilities of your mobile app. Integrating camera functionality into your mobile app allows for innovative features such as barcode recognition, which might be a key component of an internal app in a product business.

Similarly, the camera can be used for scanning QR codes and this functionality can simplify the processes such as adding loyalty cards to a digital wallet, checking into locations, or accessing detailed product information. For you as the business owner, this translates into providing an improved customer service experience.

And of course, you could use the phone’s camera for taking both images and videos, which might be an important aspect of your app’s functionality.

Location services: providing personalised information and geo-tracking

Harnessing the power of location services on smartphones unlocks opportunities for delivering content that resonates on a personal level. When integrated with your mobile app, this technology enables you to craft offers, alerts and content specifically designed to appeal to users based on their current or frequently-visited locations.

If you run a customer-facing app, this capability helps you to draw customers closer to your business, culminating in greater app engagement or online transactions.

Imagine the impact of sending a bespoke offer to a customer who frequently visits your area but has yet to step into your shop. Or the convenience of alerting them about a nearby event your business is participating in, creating an immediate connection between their location and your offering. This level of personalisation not only elevates the customer experience but also enhances the efficacy of your marketing efforts by ensuring that the right messages reach the right people at the right time.

Internal business apps can access the same location functionality in order to verify a deliver driver’s whereabouts, for instance, or track the movement of a product throughout its warehouse journey.

Mobile wallets: delivering simpler online payments

Mobile wallet integration presents an opportunity for enhancing the checkout process within your mobile app. This feature allows customers to store their payment details in a secure environment, facilitating swift and seamless transactions with just a few taps on their smartphone.

Such convenience not only elevates the user experience but also plays a crucial role in mitigating shopping basket abandonment. The implementation of mobile wallet technology paves the way for a smoother, more efficient payment journey, encouraging repeat purchases and fostering a sense of loyalty among users.

By adopting mobile wallet capabilities, you're not only streamlining the payment process but also aligning your app with the modern consumer's expectation for quick, hassle-free shopping experiences. This integration signifies a significant step towards modernising your operations and ensuring that your business remains competitive and appealing in the eyes of your customers.

Nearby devices: finding, connecting to and interacting with other technology

Technologies such as Bluetooth and NFC (Near Field Communication) open up opportunities for your mobile app to interact with nearby devices. By using these technologies, your app can discover and establish connections with devices in close proximity, leading to a range of innovative functionalities and services.

For example, a retail app may use NFC to allow customers to check out by simply tapping their smartphone against a payment terminal, speeding up the payment process and improving the shopping experience.

Similarly, a business app could use Bluetooth to facilitate the seamless exchange of digital business cards at networking events, making it easier to share contact information.

Additionally, incorporating the ability to locate and connect with nearby devices can enable your app to offer location-based services, such as guiding users directly to products within a store or providing interactive experiences at business events or conferences.

This feature not only enhances the user experience but also improves operational efficiency, providing a creative way for small business owners to engage their audience while simplifying various business processes.

Wondering how your business mobile app could make best use of a smartphone's technology? Call Jeremy on 01332 331332 for a chat!

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Jeremy Flight

Jeremy Flight

Technical Director

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