More than 50% of real estate leads are coming from mobile phones right now, and that number is expected to grow. We cite that statistic all the time to emphasize the importance of having a website optimized for mobile search. But have you ever thought about adding mobile apps to your online brand? There are pluses and minuses to doing so. In this post we’ll take a look at some of the things to consider before investing in a new mobile app.
Visibility: Millions of people visit Google Play and the iTunes store every single day. Many of them search for a mobile real estate app in their region. Being in the app store will give you just one more channel to make your brand visible. The backlink from the online store will help your SEO, and iTunes promotes new apps for the first day or two. So most of your downloads will come within the first couple of weeks.
Push Notifications: If you’ve ever downloaded an app, you’ve probably noticed its little messages pop up on your phone screen. These are a direct line of communication into the hands of your leads. If you do it poorly, you can do more harm than good. But if you send relevant information, you can create lasting loyalty.
Cost: There’s a steep up-front cost to run an app, and there are smaller monthly fees that must be paid to companies that host it in the app stores. App development can cost anywhere from $500 to $30,000, and hosting is usually below $200 per month.
Visibility: Yeah, it’s a pro, but it’s also a con. If you’re pushing for that extra edge, gambling on the chance that your next big sale is coming from your app, then it’s probably worth it. But you will also likely be surprised how few people will download your app. Unless your concept is extremely useful to a broad spectrum of mobile users and you invest heavily in marketing it ($10,000+), then you probably won’t crack a few hundred downloads.
In that case you might be better off investing a smaller amount of money developing your mobile site. We can help you with that. Google search rankings care more about mobile-friendly real estate websites than it does about mobile apps. If you have any questions about which mobile strategy is right for your real estate business, send an email to email@example.com or call us 24/7 at 305-705-5000.