It may seem as though only a few internationally-known tech brands offer most of the functionality you could ever want as a normal, everyday person, but of course, that isn’t true. Just think of the growth of challenger banks for instance, those that run entirely from apps and have no physical locations to visit.
It seems that the playing field is wider than ever. Yet it’s also true that for the most part, companies looking to stake their own claim into the market can find it difficult to penetrate depending on the tastes or capabilities of their possible audience.
Let’s flip this around, then, and discuss from the consumer point of view. What is it that we find appealing about trying a new app, a new service, a new justification for moving away from the biggest names towards a firm more focused, niche, and with a more direct service offering? In this post, we’ll discuss that, so that brands looking to cater to us may feel more informed and understand exactly what it is we’d like to see more of:
If your product cannot be understood, interacted with, appreciated and even managed in an accessible manner, then consumers will most likely find one that can. This isn’t to say that you need the flashiest animations or the prettiest art, but you do need to find a way to translate information regarding how to use an app, how to navigate its menus, and how to utilize various features of your software without worry.
Anything less can cause those otherwise interested to feel as though you have nothing to offer. This can be a problem. Ideally, you should limit exactly how much time we have to find something. Simple search bars that bring up results based on keywords can work. It’s also true that small tutorials to introduce a new user into your specific design principles can help.
However, the language you use to showcase this path needs to be simple as well. Keeping this in mind can help you retain a sense of competence regarding how and when you manage your accessibility, and to what degree this bears fruit.
Consumers are more security-aware than ever. They’ve seen large businesses suffer data leaks, and they may have encountered fraud regarding their own accounts at one point or another. They know how to set complex passwords, and they also see the importance of biometric logins such as fingerprints or face readers in the smartphones they utilize.
It can be helpful, then, to make sure that you give them the provisions to protect their account. A basic 2FA requirement is essential, and your app may look somewhat outdated without it. This is essential if you expect consumers to register their card details with you for easier checkout processing.
Security measures should be recommended upon first login, and the value of setting this up should be communicated. Also, don’t be afraid to make this a simple process, clearly marked as part of the account information. Lightly remind them not to share their password with anyone, and that members of your team will never ask for it. It’s little details like that which help us wish to continue using your app.
Utility is of course one of the most important features of any service and product – namely, what can be done in-app, and does it justify its use? Think of Amazon’s mobile app, which provides almost all of the functionalities the desktop provides, so that users can seamlessly shop, set delivery addresses, change account information, manage their subscriptions and devices all from one device.
As more and more people use smartphones as their main approach to interfacing with the internet, it’s not hard to see how these standards are more important than ever. So – what utility will you provide? Can your app serve as a substitute or a supplement? Is it your main platform, or is there a desktop component? What will it take to sign up?
For instance, in the Fintech space, the aforementioned challenger banks can set up a brand new account using a passport scan, a selfie and a video of you turning your head side to side. Add some personal information any registration expects and voila, you have your new digital bank account.
It’s also worth considering what sign up options you push as part of your overall signup. Do you push your premium subscription straight away? How much will the app cost to use? Does monetization get in the way of functionality? As consumers, we look for transparency, competence, and clarity. We get turned off by hidden accruing charges, techniques to make us spend more than we want to, and interjected advertisements.
Functionality matters when it comes to modern tech apps. We care about that more than almost anything else. Despite most people’s relatively humble technical knowledge, we can tell if an app has gone through rigorous automated QA testing or if it’s been pushed out the door without testing these behaviors and bug-squashing as appropriate.
Look to the App or Play store, and see apps that have enjoyed mild success but have negative reviews. Almost all of them will mention bugs to some degree, as there’s nothing that can make our time feel wasted, our information less secure, and our frustration grow as much as an app not behaving how it’s been intended to, or how we’ve been sold on it. It’s not hard to see how that can serve as a true point of contention for many.
Finally – yes, aesthetics do matter, but you don’t have to have the best graphic designers or UI/UX interface experts to make a good app. Just make it readable, legible, avoid the temptation to make the space busy, and keep each design ideal tied to those virtues. This way, even if an app has nothing to praise in terms of its visuals, it may not have anything to complain about either. We tend to appreciate that.
With this advice, we believe your tech startup or approach will be more capable of developing its own coherent development strategy, appealing to their ultimate market more readily.