I get a lot of queries from my prospects who ask me whether they should build a mobile application or their mobile website (responsive website) is alone sufficient for their businesses.
I always explain them under which scenario they must consider to create a mobile app and when they should stay with a mobile website only.
So, I thought to write a blog post and explain the major differences between a mobile app and a mobile website so that you can understand it in a better way and decide which one is better for you.
#1 Traffic vs Engagement
If we talk about a mobile app, it’s more helpful for your business to engage your customers however when it comes to the traffic, website always wins the race, if it’s optimized for search engines & marketed properly.
The reason being, most of the online users still go to search engines like Google to find out their required services or products and therefore, there are always higher chances that your website will get higher amount of traffic as compared to your mobile apps.
You can connect with your users or customers through features like push notifications and can always inform them about new updates.
#2 Development Cost
The development cost of a mobile app is always expensive than a website.
One of the major reasons for high development cost of a mobile application is that it requires 2 different platforms to be built upon.
You need a separate app that can run on Android devices and at the same time you want it to run on iOS devices too.
So, the effort required to build a mobile apps is more than creating a website.
You may also need to hire a separate app developer for your Android app and separate one for iOS too.
A website can be developed by a single website designer and the effort required to build a website is comparatively lower which is why it’s inexpensive too.
#3 Maintenance Cost
Similar to the effort & cost involved in developing a mobile app, it’s maintenance is expensive than a website.
If you need a new feature to be added in your mobile app, you may have to pay few hundreds of dollars and sometimes even few thousands of dollars to incorporate those features.
However in case of a website design, especially WordPress websites, there are several plugins available either free of cost or at a nominal price that you can install and add new features to your website.
Talking about the mobile app maintenance, you may need to retain two app developers to take care of your Android & iOS app.
Again, since a website is more exposed to search engines and social media networks, it always have higher chances than a mobile app to get wider coverage.
So, if your objective is to reach maximum number of users, you can rely upon a website.
Even if you need more users for your mobile apps, you can build a landing webpage for your application and promote it on search engines or social networks.
Needless to mention, mobile apps are more trending than a website. If you really want to show your customers that your business is always up-to-date and modern, you must build a mobile app.
A website is no more a fancy thing. It’s rather a necessity. If you look around, I am sure more than 80% of your competitors must have a website but less than 50% of your competitors will have a mobile app. Isn’t it?
If you are unsure whether you must build a mobile app for your business of you must live with a mobile website for, think about your requirements (as explained above) and you will definitely get an answer.