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Mobile Apps or Mobile Web?

Mobile apps get a lot of attention, but are they a better option for a real estate agent or brokerage than a robust mobile website?
In today’s real estate world of “Mobile First,” the mobile website strategy is the clear winner. Google just made that very clear with Mobilegeddon.

Here’s why the average agent and brokerage needs a 100-percent mobile website.
Apps available from Apple’s App Store or Google Play are loaded with ongoing development costs beyond the app’s first deployment: It will need to be resubmitted for review and approved before each update is available for consumers.

Next, you must invest time, energy and money in promoting your app to get consumers to download it, because let’s face it, few will find your specific app in the store.

Then the real hurdle comes: Consumers need to actually use your app, and this is where most apps fall short.

Take out your own smartphone and count the number of apps on your phone. Now count how many you actually use. Most of us use very few apps regularly, and because the average homebuyer becomes active once every seven years, the chances of holding onto your app is pretty low.

Consumer’s Won’t Download at the Curb
The biggest impediment to the success of a mobile app is the fact that a consumer who is ready to buy a home typically won’t be downloading your app when they are standing in front of your listing. An app simply can use too much data and takes too much time to download.

Moreover, integrating with your MLS’s IDX feed, your mobile website provides consumers fresh content without being a data hog for their mobile contract. Some apps use so much data to stay current that a “free” real estate app can cost a bundle in data usage.

Mobile sites also win in terms of lead generation and lead nurturing. It’s incredibly expensive and often cumbersome for an app to integrate properly with an agent’s CRM. However, CRM integration with an IDX-driven mobile website is easier to develop, deploy, maintain and update than a native mobile app.

Plus, mobile websites can accept the transfer of identity (phone number and name) from text and phone inquiries. Your app, can’t. This approach makes a mobile website strategy a potential goldmine.

That’s a huge advantage of mobile websites: You get the ability to not only track customer behavior on your mobile website, but to follow and track their behavior around the web. Again, more information you won’t get from a mobile app.

Finally, here’s the most important thing to remember for developing the right mobile strategy: Not everyone can build a 100-percent mobile website. In fact, most website providers fail miserably at mobile website development and often push an app strategy.

At VoicePad, we’ve spent more than a decade building and perfecting the most comprehensive mobile-first strategy.

See for yourself what a full-featured mobile site can look like here: Text “agents” to 502-653-8127.

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