January 22, 2017

Nearly Half of All Small Businesses Will Have A Mobile App by 2017


It has taken a while, but small businesses are finally realizing the potential of mobile apps to gain more customers and increase sales.

According to a new survey by B2B research company Clutch, nearly 50 percent of small businesses will have mobile app by 2017. That’s impressive considering only 20 percent of small businesses have mobile apps today.

“Three years ago, a small business might see 10 percent of its total traffic coming from mobile, but right now it’s closer to 70 percent. Within the next couple of years, a shift to a mobile app or a mobile-friendly site will become obvious,” says Viktor Marohnic, CEO of the app builder Shoutem.

Small Businesses Will Have A Mobile App by 2017

mobile app adoption trends 2016

The survey has found that the majority of small businesses are building apps to increase sales (55 percent), improve customer experience (50 percent) and become competitive in a specific market (50 percent).

Marohnic explains, “A good mobile app can facilitate quick checkout for a purchase, leading to an increase in sales. Customer experience amounts to simply browsing through an inventory, seeing what’s available. An app can definitely improve that experience, compared to a mobile website, where the user has to login again every time they use it, provide payment details, and so on.”

Marhonic also adds that consumer-facing industries such as restaurants, churches, small event organizers, car dealers, and stores are the obvious adopters of mobile apps for small business. According to him, these businesses want to build loyalty programs and keep their customers informed.

The survey findings support Marhonic’s assertion as it has been revealed that small businesses consider customer loyalty features (21 percent) as the most valuable feature of their current mobile app.

Should You Opt for a Mobile App for Your Business?

The big question now is whether or not you should go for a mobile app for your small business?

Before you consider the option, you should know that apps are no longer a mere branding exercise for small businesses. From simplifying online purchases to providing easy-to-access information, apps provide several benefits for small business owners.

It’s worth noting that for the business owners, there are various sophisticated software tools and app builders that are making their lives easier. These easy-to-use and affordable tools can get businesses started and help leverage the potential of apps.

Founded in 2012, Clutch is a Washington DC based research firm. For the study, Clutch surveyed 352 owners or managers in the United States and asked if their small businesses will have a mobile app by 2017.

Market Image via Shutterstock, Chart Image via Clutch 2016 Survey Data

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Shubhomita Bose


Shubhomita Bose Shubhomita Bose is a Staff Writer for Small Business Trends. She covers key studies and surveys about the small business market, along with general small business news. She draws on 8 years of experience in copywriting, marketing and communications, having worked extensively on creating content for small and medium sized enterprises.

6 Reactions

  1. Gail Gardner

    I find this statistic astonishing. Are smartphone users really going to be willing to download and install an app from every small business they ever visit? Do smartphones have an unlimited capacity to host these apps? And who is developing all these apps and where are the downloads being hosted?

    If you have a post that answers those questions, please do share it with me – if not here, then by sending it to @GrowMap on Twitter. Thank you.

  2. You would only download apps from businesses whose products or services are of benefit to you. So you don’t need an unlimited capacity. You might have a couple of your fav restaurants for ordering food and making reservations. Your hair salon, mortgage broker, gymnasium. the kind of businesses you use every day. These businesses that you already use will be able to give you the customer a much better experience, which in turn makes you a more loyal customer and increases their revenue

  3. I run an mobile app development consultancy, and I think that I’ve seen an uptick in small businesses going for mobile apps. However, most apps we’re working on are internal tools meant to improve a process, rather than an external-facing tool that customers interact with.

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