Mobile Apps are very popular amongst consumers worldwide, and brands in all industries are taking advantage of this trend by building their own brand apps. More than half of the consumers are using brand, product or store apps according to an article by eMarketer. This also means that when consumers are using a branded mobile app, their intention of purchasing is also higher. For tourism this is great news! It is crucial in today’s competition to gain a competitive advantage and brands now have the chance to do so by providing travellers with a great branded mobile app, which increases an organisation’s chance of selling their products and services (eMarketer August 2013).
IMPACT OF BRANDED APPS
Undoubtedly, branded mobile apps have an impact on consumers. For 52% of consumers a branded app used on a phone, tablet or computer meant that there was an increased interest in buying from the brand. Although it is not impacting on all consumers, it still increases the probability of some of the consumers purchasing from the organisation. As mobile apps are a big trend in tourism at the moment, this is certainly a positive statistic, indicating the importance for brands to have a great branded mobile app.
USAGE OF BRANDED APPS
The reasoning behind the usage of branded apps can be quite different between consumers. 43% of consumers are using branded apps mainly to keep informed about the brand, product or service. 41% of consumers use branded apps to get discounts and coupons and 38% feel it is easier and quicker to use an app than going to their site or a social media page. This is quite interesting as tools that can facilitate consumers only came fourth in the reasoning with 35%.
However, in general when comparing consumers’ interest in following a brand through an app or website or social media, it became clear that social media is still seen as the most important source of information for 55%. This is not a big surprise as for many brands, social media channels are essential tools to spread the word and send out engaging marketing messages. In Asia Pacific as a region, however, things are slightly different as 62% of consumers in the region preferred mobile apps. In China and South Korea a similar preference is the case, as 60% of Chines and 59% of South Koreans prefer branded mobile apps over social media or websites. This development indicates that mobile conversions are a big factor in some regions in the world. Branded mobile apps are therefore still an important investment to consider and certainly worth looking into for any organisation in the tourism industry who has not done so yet.
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