Digital Marketing: Mobile App vs. Mobile Web
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Jun 30

Mobile app vs mobile web

With the growth of mobile enabled consumers it is common to question if you should be focusing your efforts on mobile app or mobile web? You may be asking yourself, where does the user spend the most time? In general, people are spending increasing amounts of time on the iOS and Android devices, with an average of 2 hours and 42 minutes per day. Over time, how people have used this time has changed.

Nowadays, only 22 minutes per day are spent in the browser, with user’s time focused on application. The chart below from Flurry indicates how users spend their time on devices. The majority of their time is spent on gaming and Facebook. Highlights of this chart are that 86% of time is spent in apps, and 14% of time is spent in the browser. Much of the time, when browsing the web, users will have the option to purchase the app; thus mobile websites are pushing people to download their application.

Thus, it may appear that advertising on the mobile app is more beneficial to your business than advertising on mobile web. However, there is no “better” advertising method. Which channel you choose to advertise on depends on your overall campaign goals. App users are divided into three categories: preinstalled app users, app installers, and app buyers. Mobile web users use Safari, Firefox, or Chrome to access the web. If getting sales and conversions is your top goal, conversions are more likely to happen on the mobile web, as mobile apps lack shopping capabilities. According to Business Insider, 51% of consumers prefer shopping on the mobile web vs. using a smartphone app and 82% of smartphone shoppers use their mobile browser to search for products in store. In addition, the website was developed before the app, making it have a higher conversion rate. If your goal is driving average order value, then the app route may be more prevalent in your advertising plan. For every one-dollar spent on the mobile web, three dollars are spent through apps. Another thing to keep in mind, though, is that mobile internet users use both web and mobile channels.

While it may appear that people use apps more than the mobile web, this does not necessarily mean that you should only be advertising through the mobile app, as the mobile web can also mean more conversions for your business. Finding the right balance between the two will ensure that you’re maximizing your potential reach and consumers are still engaging with your brand via multiple channels.

About The Author

Megan Sullivan-Jenks is director of marketing & communications at Choozle – Easy Digital Advertising®. A self-proclaimed tinkerer, Megan's a problem solver for marketing and advertising strategies and execution. From nonprofits to consumer goods and software, she's an expert at creating online and offline marketing & communications strategies that are engaging and results-driven. Outside of the office, Megan rolls up her sleeves to enjoy all things DIY like sewing and woodworking.