How to Convert a Web Experience to a Mobile Application

Mobile app development: converting web experience to mobile

Despite the significant role mobile technologies play in today’s business world, an online presence of many companies is stil limited to a website or a web app. However, businesses realise that there is no chance of reaching out to new customers and retaining existing users without a mobile application, distributed via the App Store and Google Play. Magora frequently works with companies that wish to develop a native app as an extension to their web experience. We’ve made a list of tips to help you convert your web experience to a mobile app.

Be Loyal to Your Roots

The design of your native app should correspond with the existing website. Make an outline of the styling guidelines and follow them closely. A uniform design is essential for building your corporate identity and recognition among users. If you are going for a major design change, make sure that the app is updated as well.

Know Your Users

You already know your website’s audience. Are these people going to install your app too or will you have to attract an entirely different audience? You can find out which demographics you are missing or what is lacking in a current user experience by analysing your existing website.  

Google Analytics or any similar tool will let you know what devices and platforms your audience uses to access your website. It will also provide you with information about how your users interact with your site. Such tools can give you an idea of the potential functionality you will want to build into your future app.

Think of the Use Cases

A mobile app differs from a web experience not only in terms of the device, but also in terms of time and location, as well as the intentions your users have when accessing it. For example, a user compiles a shopping list on your website. It is most likely they do it during their work break or at free time at home. The needs and expectations of this user are absolutely different from those of someone who uses a similar shopping app at a crowded supermarket, hurrying to get home to their family.

That is exactly why you should think of the specific usage cases for your application. Will your customers access it in public places? Will they have an internet connection? Will they spend a lot of time using your app or use it only for simple tasks? By considering all this, you will be able to provide your users with a pleasant experience according to their location, needs and time.

Define Your Goals

Before building an app, you need to set the objectives you want to accomplish. Sometimes it is hard to concentrate on one core concept - after all, mobile technologies open up so many exciting opportunities. But let’s look at it another way - do you really need an app to achieve your targets? Are you sure that a mobile-friendly website won’t suffice? If the answer is yes, you are moving in the right direction. The best strategy to start with your app is to choose a core functionality and stick to it. You will be able to add new features with time via updates, so it is better to start small and evolve stage by stage. This strategy is also beneficial in terms of your app’s budget - you can invest a small sum of money into a key feature and then use the profit to finance the updates. Be precise when defining your goals and make sure that your app is focused on reaching them.

Hone Your App Features

As we have already said, you should focus on the core features based on your objectives and use cases. Some businesses even develop a number of stand-alone apps with their unique functionality which create so-called “app constellations”.

Given that your app’s features will depend on the functionality of mobile devices, you should ask yourself these questions:

  • Will the app use notifications?
  • Will it work offline to enable the users to save their info and make orders or requests without an internet connection?
  • Will it use a camera or the user’s photos?
  • Does it need access to contacts and a calendar?
  • Will it track the user’s location to provide more targeted and relevant information?

It is unlikely that your web experience incorporates all these features. Although, the fact that you can include them in your mobile app does not mean you should. Always remember that you only need the features that align with your goals. There is no point in developing an application for the sake of your brand’s good looks - there are various monetisation strategies we have already written about that will make your app a steady source of income.

Converting your web experience to a mobile application is not simply duplicating your website on a different platform. It is a way to improve how your users interact with your business and to attract an entirely new audience. A mobile app offers a high-speed, user-friendly and ad-free experience, which cannot be attained by a website. If you are not sure how to transform your website or web app to a mobile application, you are welcome to contact the Magora experts, who are always willing to give you professional advice.
August 09, 2016
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