Building a mobile app? Users needed to be engaged and fast

A new study has shed some light on the extent of betting via mobile devices, and revealed some illuminating stats on how important it is for businesses to get their mobile apps right.

As you’re probably aware, the World Cup kicks off later today, and AppDynamics’ research showed that there’ll be quite a few bets placed online by tablet and smartphone users – indeed 30 per cent of owners of mobile hardware said they would be putting money on a favourite team. In general terms, 48 per cent said they expected to use a mobile app to have a flutter on something.

On a broader level, the App Attention Span study (which AppDynamics conducted in partnership with the Institute of Management Studies at Goldsmiths, University of London) also revealed a number of interesting statistics about apps. For starters, the prevalence of apps crashing; 46 per cent of those surveyed said they had experienced a mobile app lock up in the past 12 months. That’s not too bad, really, seeing as you can expect something to crash in a period of a year, generally speaking (though not nearly as much on mobiles as computers, granted).

The study also noted that people’s attention spans for apps which are performing badly are decreasing – and warned that businesses whose apps are causing issues or downtime for customers could be walking a thin line. Just a few seconds of downtime can have a “severe impact” on revenue, the report cautioned.

Dr Chris Brauer, Director of Innovation, IMS at Goldsmiths, University of London, commented: “Users experience a lot of negative emotions and frustrations when trying to complete some digital tasks and apps or web pages are slow to load. Our attention span demands have adapted dramatically to the available technologies.”

And demands for slick app performance are only going to increase on both sides of the Atlantic, according to the study. 48 per cent of UK respondents admitted that their expectations of app performance were increasing over time, and 65 per cent of those in the US. Almost half of all those surveyed said they were less tolerant of problems with apps (or websites) than they used to be.

On a more positive note, when firms get their apps right, they get rewarded – as a third of those surveyed said they’d spend more money with a company with a good quality mobile app.

Jyoti Bansal, founder and CEO of AppDynamics, commented: “In so many ways, for so many businesses, success is now defined by software, as customers expect seamless performance and reliability from all digital services. Tellingly, our study shows that over a quarter of UK respondents (27 per cent) and two in ten (19 per cent) US respondents believe they are more loyal to an app than a brand.”

He continued: “The bottom line is that organisations must deliver a reliable, consistent mobile experience to grow and protect increasingly important mobile device revenue streams and customer interactions, even under the most demanding situations. Key to this is having the necessary depth of application intelligence in real time so that any problems can be anticipated or rapidly solved.”