In early 2014 it finally happened. The number of global mobile internet users caught up with, and subsequently overtook, the number of global desktop internet users.
Today, people spend more time looking at their smartphone screens than they do any other device other than a TV.
While this event was not exactly a game changer, it did confirm the fact that more and more people are using their mobile devices to access information. Back in 2010, the average person spent 0.4 hours per day looking at a smartphone screen. This doubled in 2011 and continues to grow rapidly. Today, people spend more time looking at their smartphone screens than they do any other device other than a TV. The age of the smartphone truly is no longer coming, it’s here.
With levels of potential exposure going through the roof for apps on mobile devices, the answer is clear: Your insurance agency cannot afford to be without a mobile app for customers. However, knowing where to start on your journey to mobile platform success is tricky.
Every big journey begins with a single step. Here are three starting points on which to build your successful mobile strategy.
What’s the Problem?
Innovation in business comes from finding new solutions to old problems and discovering new pathways to facilitate development, growth, and progress. This is a great starting point for your insurance app campaign, and one that will help you quickly form an idea about the direction you want to go with your mobile strategy.
Get your team together and think of problems that people face concerning their insurance. At this stage focus only on problems. Finding solutions can wait for the moment.
- Maybe your team feels your quote system has an ease of access problem that needs to be streamlined to make it more intuitive for users?
- Maybe you worry your customers are not able to quickly and easily view the fine print of their insurance policy?
If you approach the problem in the correct way, those are problems that can be efficiently addressed with an app.
One example of a problem is trust. Even today, despite us apparently living in the age of the smartphone, fears regarding trust and security play a major part in peoples’ willingness to use mobile apps.
…less than a quarter of app users blindly trust all apps they come into contact with…
A study published by Statista showed that less than a quarter of app users blindly trust all apps they come into contact with. This illustrates that security is still a major concern amongst savvy mobile app consumers. Build your brand to highlight the trustworthiness and highly-secure aspects of your insurance app. This solves the problem and represents the first step for your app on the road to success.
What Do Your Customers Want?
There is an old cliché that often gets trotted out during development meetings and business seminars, and it goes like this: a successful business must fulfill a need that customers didn’t even know they had yet. This, alas, is just not true.
While very occasionally this approach might work, usually it pays to place some faith in the people who are going to be using your app: your customers. Get your development team together and flesh out a strategy for sampling the views of your consumer base. The insight you gain could prove instrumental as you plan the structure of your app.
Here are a few tips you can use when reaching out to the public:
- Open-ended answers are more useful than multiple choice. If you’re asking your market sample multiple choice questions, you are funneling their answers into a framework that you have already created. Ask open-ended questions and get some genuinely useful answers.
- Utilize social media. Unsolicited feedback is often the most useful. Social media platforms are crawling with unsolicited feedback, so take a look at your firm’s social media accounts and see what you can find.
- Choose the right sample. Tailor your market research to make it relevant to the demographic you are aiming to gain as clients. This is particularly important if you are dealing with very specific insurance types – for example, travel insurance for backpackers – which are probably aimed at similarly specific age ranges. Choose the right sample to survey to get results that can actually help you in decision making.
What Do You Want to Achieve?
If your app is ever going to get off the ground, you need clarify its purpose. So far in this article, we’ve talked about solving problems and gauging the wants and needs of your customer base, but what about you?
What do you want?
Development work on an app should not begin until a clear goal and set of objectives have been outlined. Your team needs to be able to produce a clear workflow that displays the structure of your app and presents a step-by-step breakdown of each stage of the customer’s experience when they use it.
By crystallizing the focus of your strategy drive in this way, you are structuring your approach and creating a clearly defined roadmap to success in the mobile marketplace.