If you’ve found yourself wondering why it appears that everyone seems to have their own mobile app these days, it’s because you’re practically right. And anyone who hasn’t already claimed their own dedicated chunk of the mobile app space is probably in the process of doing so at this very moment.

Chances are, you haven’t met an app developer this year who is out of work. Indeed, the market for app development is beyond red hot. A recent Gartner report, in fact, estimates that more than eight billion mobile applications will be downloaded this year. That amounts to better than six billion dollars spent in the app stores of the digital world.

As a result of the mobile app explosion, more business owners and entrepreneurs are beginning to ask the same question: “Is a mobile app right for me?” In the not-so distant past, the answer to that question (for most) was a resounding “no,” but only because of the exorbitant cost of app building at the time. Now, with the booming demand for apps and the ease with which they are created by scores of developers in no short supply, it’s never been easier or more affordable to claim that aforementioned chunk of the mobile app space.

But since everyone in mobile marketing and mobile app development has a service to sell these days, it can be an arduous undertaking to say the least for many business owners to assess which options across the mobile marketing landscape are best suited for their particular objectives.

So is a mobile app right for you? Most mobile marketing gurus suggest evaluating your needs closely to determine the best use of your digital marketing dollars.

  • For starters, is your product/service tailored toward a very specific audience? If so, an app may be most helpful, as mobile websites have much broader appeal and often consume a great deal of time and effort to maintain.
  • If your end goal, however, is to drive sales, facilitate brand awareness, and build product/service loyalty, a mobile app may fall short in delivering the fresh content, product information, and other search-centric features that are frequently much easier to facilitate in a mobile website than via a mobile application. In addition, the potential for advertising revenue from a mobile website is also much higher – at least for the time being – than it is from a mobile application.
  • How much are you willing to spend? There are adequate mobile web design tools readily available at low cost to business owners looking to establish some foothold in the mobile space. And while the cost of having an app built is now substantially lower than it once was, the resources for doing it yourself with regard to mobile app development are not yet as advanced as they likely will be in the future.

In the final analysis, it’s very difficult for anyone endeavoring to harness the power of mobile to go wrong with either option. So long as the mobile platform is professionally and skillfully embraced in some capacity, there are virtually no promotional or sales goals out of reach.