A hand holds a smartphone displaying apps representing whether to choose apps or website for your platform

As a business owner, especially a new entrepreneur, you’re faced with the dilemma of choosing between an app or a website early on, sometimes a combination of both if you’re lucky. How do you know which one is best for your business?

Both an app and a website have several benefits and downsides, more so with apps being more specialised for individual business niches and models. To help remove the confusion regarding both apps and websites, we’ll be discussing which is more important, helping you save money and grow your business.

What is your business?

Firstly, let’s get a better understanding of your business. For example, if you run a small takeaway, an app is likely a waste of money, especially since you can list your restaurant on other apps for free. On the other hand, a website increases organic traffic via search engines such as Google, driving more traffic to your site.

Analyse your business and weigh up the pros and cons of each. For some businesses, the choice will be easier than others. However, there is usually a clear divide between which one to choose.

What are the benefits of a website?

Nowadays, most businesses have a website, it’s common practice. A website allows you to connect with your customers and increases exposure and footfall to your store if you run a shop or restaurant.

Effective local SEO (search engine optimisation) is much easier to achieve than broad SEO. Therefore, if you run a local business and don’t have a website yet, you’re doing your business a huge disservice.

Other benefits of a website include:

  • Customers can find you more easily
  • Greater opportunities for further growth
  • Connect more easily with customers

Let’s go into the benefits in more detail below.

Customers can easily find you

When you have a website, customers can easily find you, and that’s around the clock, 24/7. A quick search of your shop or business name should bring up your website via Google. However, if not, your full domain will do the trick.

If customers can find you easily, this increases your brand awareness and appeal as a business. For example, it will allow them to ask questions, find exactly where you’re located, and generally increases traffic to your business.

Opportunities for further growth

Secondly, when you have a website, you set your business up to grow further. For instance, if you currently sell products physically, later down the line you could use your website to ship products to different towns, cities or even countries.

When you have a website, the opportunities for growth are endless – you set yourself and your business up for success.

Easily connect with your customers

Finally, you can easily connect with your customers with a website. Not only do they know where to find you, but you can gather email addresses to keep them up-to-date on your business, perhaps announcing new products or changes using the website.

This is invaluable, allowing you direct access to your consumers – a marketing tool like no other.

What are the benefits of an app?

Now that we’ve discussed the benefits of a website, let’s discuss the alternative. An app allows for a slightly different experience than a website, providing a downloadable platform for users to connect with your business.

There are many different types of apps including games, calendars, restaurant orders, and more. Most likely, as a business, you’ll be choosing something more formal, something to connect your customer with you directly.

Benefits of having an app as a business are listed below:

  • Develop an even better connection with your customers
  • Communication is even more simplified
  • Brand awareness is increased

Let’s have a look at these pros in more detail below.

A better connection with your customers

When you have an app, you unlock the ability to develop a closer and even more meaningful connection with your customers. This allows you to generate trust with them, most likely to evolve into further sales and leads.

An app is more personal than a website, especially since you can tailor the experience to an individual user. If your business is heavily user-based, then you should consider an app.

Communication is simplified

An app allows you to simplify communication further than a website. A website contains a whole lot of information, whereas an app contains the basics. This allows you to convey your point exactly, simplifying communication.

Furthermore, you can also open up new ways for customers to contact you, including in-app support for that personal touch.

Increased brand awareness

Finally, when you have an app, your brand awareness is given a boost. This is because you’ve entered a new market and a new space. Also, if you’re a relatively small business, you’ll be competing with others who do not have an app, giving you the upper hand and allowing you to appear more professional.

The bottom line

Choosing between an app or a website is a difficult choice, especially if you’re just starting out. However, if you don’t yet have a website, we recommend creating one first, as it’s the most important part of a successful business.

Once you have a website set up, even if it’s just a simple one, then consider whether or not an app is worth exploring for your business. Often, the development of an app makes more sense as your business grows, providing new avenues to promote your product and business.