More than half of mobile device users worldwide said they regularly used brand, product or store apps, according to a February 2013 study.
And when a consumer uses a branded mobile app, it may be indicative of higher purchase intent.
Of those who regularly used at least one branded app on a phone or tablet, 52% said the app made them more interested in buying from that company. In the US, however, that figure went down by 10 percentage points, with those who said they were more interested in buying slipping to 42%. US women and those between ages 18 and 34 were the most likely to say a brand app would make them more inclined to purchase.
While many see consumer engagement with brands’ mobile offerings as simply a way to get discounts and deals, the greatest percentage of worldwide respondents (43%) actually said they used branded mobile apps to keep informed about the brand, product, store or company. But getting discounts and coupons came in close behind, cited by 41%. Ease of use was also important; 38% said mobile apps were easier and quicker to use than going to a mobile site or social media page.
Still, more consumers overall expressed interest in following a brand on social media rather than having the brand’s mobile app, at 55% vs. 45%. Consumers in Asia-Pacific countries, including Japan (62%), China (60%) and South Korea (59%), were the most likely to prefer apps over social brand connections.
Regardless of the country, however, given the potential upside in terms of conversions, there is plenty of incentive for companies to invest in mobile apps.