Mobile Apps vs Mobile Websites

56 replies
Are the need for Mobile Apps dying?
Well I say no, because no matter how much you might like to have an app on your phone that gets you information directly from the servers on the net,
They still depend on information that is available online, as in if there was a way you would be able to download an app with all of the data on your phone then that would be great, but you see everytime you want to check for Weather news or sports news from your favourite app, you will end up accessing information that is stored in the Apps server online.
And what of those phones that cant run apps, I mean the simple phones that are not running on either, iOs Android or windows 8, are there any catchy apps for such phones?

That is the main reason I will still continue my Mobile Website development services because I think the two need to compliment each other.
Your thoughts?
#apps #mobile #mobile website design #mobile websites #websites
  • Profile picture of the author Minista
    Because of so many devices, and the market is getting segmented more and more, if your application is not working 100% local, I think A web application take less resources to develop and maintain.

    A web application will work on all devices. It's almost impossible to code a native application that will work on all mobile devices.
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    • Profile picture of the author pamojafusion
      Originally Posted by Minista View Post

      Because of so many devices, and the market is getting segmented more and more, if your application is not working 100% local, I think A web application take less resources to develop and maintain.

      A web application will work on all devices. It's almost impossible to code a native application that will work on all mobile devices.
      A web application is much better than a native app that will have to be downloaded to one spefic Mobile os
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  • Profile picture of the author John Ayling
    I find that is it much quicker to deploy a mobile web site than an app - and pretty much with the same functionality. ROI is key here.
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    • Profile picture of the author shoopt
      I agree with you john
      Mobile websites are quick to build, they are cheap and even does not consumes space on your device but still mobile apps have their own importance. Both mobile applications and websites are profitable to businesses in their own way and hence development companies are indulging in providing services of building both mobile apps and websites.
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  • Profile picture of the author chiwawa
    In my humble opinion, i think building mobile websites are much more easier than mobile apps. Although both of them are profitable in their own respective ways, mobile websites are cheaper to build and deploy.
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    • Profile picture of the author polinate
      In practice, I've found mobile websites are much easier to sell to a small business than an app and still leaves you room to upsell to an app later.
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  • Profile picture of the author UZMarketing
    Mobile apps, as expensive as they are happen to be quite "trendy". It's as if it's the next "cool" thing to do. We have a client who absolutely insisted on a mobile app, rather than a mobile website, and was not complaining about the $50,000 price tag. We got him to see the light, and just get a responsive website, since it serves essentially the same purpose.

    So mobile app or website?
    App to be cool
    Web to be economical.
    $0.02
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  • Profile picture of the author deofel
    Mobile apps are the future. It might be expensive but can give you good return in the long run.
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    • Profile picture of the author rsschomp
      Originally Posted by deofel View Post

      Mobile apps are the future. It might be expensive but can give you good return in the long run.
      Could you expand a bit on "good return in the long run?" ... It would be interesting to compare the differences between long term benefits of an app vs a responsive site / mobile enabled site.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mwind076
    There were 2 other threads here that discuss this:
    http://www.warriorforum.com/mobile-m...ile-sites.html
    http://www.warriorforum.com/mobile-m...e-website.html

    On one of them, this was my comment:

    My opinion is as an appointment setter for those of you selling mobile apps AND mobile websites. I've now been calling on this market for about 2-3 years and it's way different.

    Mobile Apps:
    - Help retain existing customers and keep them loyal, interested and up to date on coupons, events, etc.
    - Are not effective in branding yourself or creating new business, people search for sites, not apps (unless they know what they are looking for).
    - Are only effective to a smaller portion of customers (ages 16-45), this varies, but is something that should be considered based on your demographic. Older customers, even with a phone, do not do many "apps" (they search for a website).
    - Are best as an add on, never as a first option for a client that has no site/no mobile site.
    - Are not essential for every business owner
    - Are not as easily navigated by the client (to update themselves)

    Mobile Websites:
    - Help garner new customers and keep existing ones
    - Are essential to the technology we all use
    - Are easily sold to customers that have a website only (it's an easy upgrade if they saw the importance of a normal website)
    - Are easily navigated and updated by the client (some people don't want to pay you to maintain it)


    As you can see there is a clear winner here, and yes there are exceptions. However, this isn't from someone selling both or either, I am generally unbiased. Except for this, I prefer dealing with those of you selling mobile websites, because it's MUCH easier for me to get you in front of a business owner for an appointment! More appointments means more business!
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  • Mobile Apps are cool for the reason they can have WAY more into them. All your content, info, videos, social channels, pictures, all right in one place.
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  • Profile picture of the author TimPiazza
    If you are doing something unique, a mobile app is great. But if you are simply providing content that could just as easily be coded with HTML 5, the only advantage a mobile app has over a web app is "push notifications".

    Personally, I don't think "push" is so hot. I turn it off for most apps because I don't want my phone interrupting me all of the time. On the other hand, SMS can serve the same function as "push" and it's a whole heck of a lot easier to get eyeballs on your content.

    If you can do it with web, that's the way to go.
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  • Profile picture of the author tanveerhabib
    hmm nice i will try mobile marketing now. if its allowed here in our country.
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  • Profile picture of the author ARealBiz
    Mobile websites are not just much easier to build, but also have much more benefits for your business with mobile optimized websites than with a mobile apps.

    For most businesses, mobile websites should be first, mobile apps should be 2nd.
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  • Profile picture of the author fiverrfreak
    Mobile sites are much more easier to build, manage and sell and has more benefits for your business but mobile apps takes time and selling or promoting it is difficult.
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    • Profile picture of the author goldfortune
      I cannot see much difference in the benefits between mobile websites and mobile apps. If your an mobile consultant both need to be employed to help local business owners.
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      • Profile picture of the author fredric22
        Personally, I favor the apps as they are provide better U.I. Also, why trouble yourself for going to a webpage, when a app can bring it to your screen.



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  • Profile picture of the author xunixan
    mobile is getting bigger and bigger everyday and both mobile sites and apps aren't too hard to make. my analytics has shown a large upward trend in an increase of mobile traffic since even just the beginning of this year.
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  • Profile picture of the author ratna
    IMHO, I think we will need to deploy both (mobile site and mobile app) to be able to reach more audience.

    I like the idea of mobile site because it is easier to create and to update. However it is lacking the capability for function such as push-notification (which can be very effective especially in are marketing locally).
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  • Profile picture of the author eternalsongbird
    I have found mobile apps are more difficult to sell than mobile websites.
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  • Profile picture of the author vulcanscripts
    At the end of the day I care more about the traffic. An icon on a users mobile phone is much more likely to generate that. The technical aspects and costs aside; the process of downloading and installing an app is like placing your brand in someone's pocket. Sure as hell beats becoming "just another" bookmark lost in a long list of other bookmarks. Obviously you still need to look at the demographics to ensure that having one is actually viable or not.
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  • Profile picture of the author ronboyartesti
    Yes of course, it is much quicker to deploy a mobile web site than an app. so gotta go with mobile website.
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  • Profile picture of the author AlexCurtis
    Mobile Websites designed with HTML5 can give you the best of both worlds that gives you the advantages of both a native and web based app. Basically a Hybrid approach with the features benefits of a Native App but also has links to the web and API's to back-end databases if needed. Most of the time this is not required for simple mobile website for most small businesses, if you are developing a Enterprise App for a specific propose it may be different. Only if their is a specific requirement that calls for a custom developed Application I would not go through the effort of taking the extra time and resources to build a App for a specific mobile OS.
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  • Profile picture of the author wasel
    I think mobile apps is the way to go. Especially if you are seeing the business already spending tons of money on print advertising. Mobile apps are much cheaper. It will bring loyalty for their customers. It is cool for the business to have their icon on the smartphones.
    I have been focussing on mobile apps now ever since some wsos start appearing on the apps builder.
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  • Profile picture of the author ivewon
    Local businesses prefer the ease and mobile web apps and the fact that they are cross platform. You can implement them quickly and there are no app stores to fool with or worry with acceptance etc.

    Using texting over push notifications seems to work much better possibly because people are conditioned to receiving text messages.

    Businesses really like being able to text message their best customers and it is easy to share a mobile app via text message, QR code, shortcode via text or simply using mobile detection redirect script.

    If a pizza place has too much sausage on hand and maybe Tuesday is their slowest night. They can simply text their best customers on Tuesday night that they have a special on sausage pizzas from now til close and if you buy 3 you get one free or another promotion.

    If a local pizza place has native apps for each platform they have the delays while waiting on approvals, updates to the software from time to time and other headaches where a mobile app can be created, customized, shared, promoted and actually used in the same day.
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    • Profile picture of the author Stardustpoint
      my views after 3 years of mobile vs apps sales.

      Mobile sites are fine - they should be a no brainer. If you do not have a flipper on the web that shoots mobile devices to mobile site and desktops to normal sites your in trouble.

      Apps - Apps are really hard to deal with. They can cost and who in the heck is going to an app store to download your business app? No one.

      Apps are made to appeal to many on many mobile devices.
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  • Profile picture of the author Aweinerws
    I think mobile apps are more specific and have exact information and function in a given direction. For the same need, if a user accesses a mobile site, it is more time consuming as to find the necessary section from where information needs to be extracted. It is easier to use mobile apps as most platforms today, serve similar apps serving the same need.
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    • Profile picture of the author Stardustpoint
      This is what I see - A major shift from Desktop to Mobile. Look at your Adsense revenue from 2008 to now. It show a drop off on Video and a transition to Mobile where video is less but iPads are converting now...on video and more...

      I think that you really need to blend it all together - 40% Desktop - 30% Mobile - 20% ipad - 10% all others.

      In the future, you will see a reversal 30% Desk - 40% mobile - 25% iPad - 5% other.

      Eventually we will be at 40% PADS -40% Mobile 15% desk - 5% other.

      This is what you need to be rigging for.

      The transition point for us is GAMING> That is important transition.
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  • Profile picture of the author WillR
    Originally Posted by MobiDev View Post

    When it comes to deciding whether to build a native app or a mobile website, the most appropriate choice really depends on your end goals. If you are developing an interactive tool, an app is probably going to be your best option. But if your goal is to offer mobile-friendly content to the widest possible audience, then a mobile website is probably the way to go. Here is the comparison of mobile websites and native apps Native App vs. Mobile Web App: A Quick Comparison , http://mashable.com/2012/06/06/mobil...p-infographic/
    Can you please stop spamming the forum with content you have copied from other sites.
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  • Profile picture of the author imobile
    Honestly the vast majority of apps you see in the app stores could have been built with HTML5, CSS3, and good ole javascript. In only extreme cases do you have to go native for an mobile app (i.e angry birds, lost winds, CSRracing, etc.) essentially games. But most businesses can get by with just a mobile site. I'm currently building a birthday experience app that will be built on nothing more than web standards, the only thing I would need to use is PhoneGap to wrap it and get access to native app ability. (i.e camera, address book.)
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  • Profile picture of the author networkempire
    Mobile app development is getting cheaper. So these days you can have both, an app and a mobile site
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  • Profile picture of the author DanielMob
    As I see it - the key here is monetizing - I believe both models can monetize well but I'll give the advantage to mobile-web.
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  • Profile picture of the author Appopolis
    Mobile apps are flourishing...
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  • Are the need for Mobile Apps dying?
    Definitely not. With the emergence of Android in the smartphone arena and its application-making SDK, mobile apps are flourishing, and the demand of people for useful mobile apps are just skyrocketing.
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  • Profile picture of the author MobiDev
    Well, it depends on what goals you want to achieve. If you need a mobile-friendly website copy that works on all the devices, then you should probably choose mobile website. But if you want to add some extra features and advertise your brand worldwide through the application stores, you may develop a native app. Some companies develop both. Generally speaking, a mobile website should be considered your first step in developing a mobile web presence, and the app is useful for a specific purpose that cannot be effectively accomplished via web browsers. Here is how they are compared Native App vs. Mobile Web App: A Quick Comparison
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  • Profile picture of the author davidfrankk
    Are you kidding? Mobile devices are becoming more and more popular everyday. People are looking to do more and more with them.
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  • Profile picture of the author jusunamas
    I said definetly Mobile app. More perspective
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  • Profile picture of the author networkempire
    Mobile apps have some good advantages like:
    * A mobile app will always remain your first choice for gaming and entertainment purpose
    * A mobile app will help you do complex calculation very effectively.
    * Once you have downloaded an app and installed in your mobile device; there is no requirement of internet connection to access over the app. However for a mobile website, you need to have an internet connection.
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    • Profile picture of the author mak25
      Originally Posted by networkempire View Post

      However for a mobile website, you need to have an internet connection.
      This my friend is a bunch of BS.

      With mobile and the 3G/4G service, mobile internet is ALWAYS on.

      Your misinformation is geared to you selling your WSO, no?

      Shame on you.
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      • Profile picture of the author ar
        I really think it all depends on what your goal is. I work with a lot of local businesses and a simple mobile website is more than enough for a business like let's say...a cleaning company. A map of the location, click to call, an some company info.

        But for a realtors however, it would be very beneficial for them to have maybe a mobile app. You can setup an app to update their listings or have an IDX search which, in my opinion, would be best served as an app than a mobile site. Doing a hybrid would be another option.

        As a business that offers mobile marketing services, I'd rather do mobile websites just because it's a lot easier and quicker for me to setup.
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  • Profile picture of the author twisters
    Before you can evaluate the benefits of a mobile website vs. an app it’s important to understand the key differences between the two. Both apps and mobile websites are accessed on a handheld devices such as smartphones (e.g. iPhone, Android and Blackberry) and tablets.
    A mobile website is similar to any other website in that it consists of browser-based HTML pages that are linked together and accessed over the Internet (for mobile typically WiFi or 3G or 4G networks). The obvious characteristic that distinguishes a mobile website from a standard website is the fact that it is designed for the smaller handheld display and touch-screen interface.
    Like any website, mobile websites can display text content, data, images and video. They can also access mobile-specific features such as click-to-call (to dial a phone number) or location-based mapping.
    Apps are actual applications that are downloaded and installed on your mobile device, rather than being rendered within a browser. Users visit device-specific portals such as Apple’s App Store, Android Market, or Blackberry App World in order to find and download apps for a given operating system. The app may pull content and data from the Internet, in similar fashion to a website, or it may download the content so that it can be accessed without an Internet connection.
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  • Profile picture of the author SeoHitmen
    it really depends on the type of site mobile apps dont work well for some niches mobile websites are better cause there is no download
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  • Profile picture of the author srodoks
    mobile apps might be expensive but can give u good return in the long run
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  • Profile picture of the author DownlineMarketer
    This is not a either or question. It should be BOTH! We use a platform that creates all three types (IOS, Android and HTML5) for small businesses. Very affordable and easy to use. Please PM me if you want more info or visit our website at Delta App Designs | Mobile Applications for Your Business to see sample apps.
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  • Profile picture of the author srodoks
    i've found mobile apps are more difficult to sell than mobile website
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  • Personally I feel that mobile websites are much better suited to small/medium business owners as people search search engines alot more than they search app stores. The costs are very different aswell because you can create a lovely mobile website for less than $1000 but mobile apps are generally alot more expensive. Saying that they are both in their infancy just now but I have had alot more success with mobile websites when creating them for businesses
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  • Profile picture of the author chempez
    It depends on your goals..

    found this good article about it mobile app vs mobile site
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  • Profile picture of the author tiRo
    I find that mobile websites are better than mobile apps.
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  • Profile picture of the author arunmehtaindia
    This depends on what you are attempting to achieve. If you sustain something that only does one function to a limited audience or provides some entertainment such as an interactive game, then the mobile app is a better option. But if you want to provide mobile friendly content to the widest audience, then a mobile website is better.
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  • Profile picture of the author TeganSpruce
    If you want to reach a mobile audience you have to have a mobile friendly site! It shouldn't be a question of 'app or website' it should be a question of 'app and website or just website'.

    Apps definitely aren't dying but you should consider exactly why you want an app and what your app would offer. If you want one just because, don't do it. If you're going to create an app that adds nothing unique or beneficial to the app store(s), don't do it.

    With HTML5, CSS3, and JS now widely accepted by most smartphones, mobile websites can do most of the same actions as a native app, anyway!

    Funnily enough I wrote a blog post on mobile web versus native apps just last week. It's scary how this is still such a massive debate when mobile web traffic is so high and hybrid apps give the best of both worlds...
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    • Profile picture of the author amcg
      If you want to reach a mobile audience you have to have a mobile friendly site! It shouldn't be a question of 'app or website' it should be a question of 'app and website or just website'.
      This. All websites should be mobile by default, by mobile, we mean responsive design. Apps are obviously a big and growing way people access information but unless you have the resources to do both, always choose mobile friendly site first.
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  • Profile picture of the author goriggs
    Both apps and mobile sites have their pros and cons. For me, I like apps that are useful, that actually do something. If it's just informational that doesn't require much updating with new content, I would most likely delete it to free up space for more necessary files. I usually just bookmark sites on my phone's browser for easy access, verses downloading certain apps.
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    • Profile picture of the author kaystar
      Originally Posted by goriggs View Post

      Both apps and mobile sites have their pros and cons. For me, I like apps that are useful, that actually do something. If it's just informational that doesn't require much updating with new content, I would most likely delete it to free up space for more necessary files. I usually just bookmark sites on my phone's browser for easy access, verses downloading certain apps.
      I think mobile websites that closely resemble the business owners main website are by far and away better for the customer, having an optimised mobile site also increases rankings in google and can be changed and updated easily as required.
      Mobile Web Made Simple!
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