In 5 years, you'll be reading this on your cell phone!

It is  predicted that viewing websites on a mobile phone will surpass viewing websites on a computer within the next five years!
So, as mobile internet use skyrockets, it’s becoming a case of when and what – not if - your business will need a ‘cell phone friendly’ version of its website.

As you begin considering a mobile solution for your website, you need to decide whether to develop a mobile-optimized website or instead create an app (application) - which will work on platforms such as the iPhone, Android phones, and the upcoming Windows Phone 7.

Let’s weigh the pros and cons for you:

Need and Usage Level
If your customers’ use of your normal website leans toward heavy usage (high repeat visits, with low times in between visits) then an app might suit you best. Repeated interaction means your customers are likely to prefer just to download an application, rather than going to your website often.  Apps also tend to be best for companies where the product is a service.
If your website is geared toward just one or a few visits, with the aim being an end-sale, then a mobile-optimized website is a better and much less expensive option for you. If your customers only really need to look up your phone number, location or some basic information like inclusions or prices, a mobile website will do the job well. Location-based businesses such as tourism accommodations and attractions, retailers and restaurants are generally better-off running with a mobile version of their website, rather than an App.
A mobile website will work across platforms, while an app developed for the iPhone won't work on the Android and vice versa. If you want to reach a broader audience with an app, you'll have to expend the resources to develop an app for each of the most popular platforms.
If your content is mostly text and images (information), a mobile website is your best bet.


Once your customer downloads your application, it is accessible anytime, and that little icon on their phone will be a constant reminder of your business. However, your mobile Web presence will show up in search engines, whereas an Application will not.
Your Budget
In most cases, it is much more cost-effective to create a mobile version of your website
You should estimate to pay approximately 80% of the cost of building your regular website.
Applications can cost upwards of $35,000 to $50,000 on each platform, depending on the scope of the function and design of the App. Updating your App will also be more expensive than updating your mobile website
For most small businesses, it makes sense to go with a mobile website initially, and then perhaps  develop an application in future years, if needed. Mobile websites are becoming more app-like, and your website company can design and develop an App-like, engaging using interface. As technologies advance, a sophisticated website company will be able to create a mobile website for you that acts and looks very like an App, but still enjoys all the benefits of a mobile website.  
For more advice on mobile websites, contact the ReserveGroup website design and development team

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