Image credit: DSW & Kari Geha Photography

How to Build the Right Mobile App for Magento Sites

Ever since businesses started giving app-specific discounts, everyone chooses to install these apps on their phones. As a company, you benefit when you have a permanent space on your customers’ phones.
By Maulik Shah | EnvZone Guest
on December 12, 2019 | 7 min read
Image credit: DSW & Kari Geha Photography

I am sure you have heard that the importance of online has shifted from the web to phones. So much so that web pages now act like apps, a concept called Progressive web apps. This year’s Google I/O app was a PWA for phones. While such apps are specific to one-time usage or a limited use case, there are certain apps that we do keep on our phones. Most of us have shopping apps, and quite often, there is more than one of these.

Ever since businesses started giving app-specific discounts, everyone chooses to install these apps on their phones. As a company, you benefit when you have a permanent space on your customers’ phones.

But of course, bringing an app to life is not as easy as it sounds. There are so many details to look into, not to mention the expense of that project.

This is where app-building tools come into play, and we are going to talk about websites that are on Magento for the purpose of this article. There are app builders for a Magento mobile app that you can easily use to get apps for both iOS and Android, without much hassle. However, not all app builders are equal. You need something that can give you the perfect app from the splash screen to the ‘thank you’ note after checkout.

Let’s take a look at all the features that the apt app builder will have to give you an optimal Magento 2 mobile app:

Theme selection

The first thing that a customer notices is how your store looks and how it is in terms of user interaction. In order for the app to connect with your store and brand, it will have to use the same design elements as your webstore. While the colors should be the exact same, you can make slight changes in the font because the fonts that are readable on the computer may not be readable on the phone.

A color picker tool in the app builder extension allows you to pick the exact color for use in the mobile app for Magento.

Layout options

A mobile app has the screen space of something similar to your hand. You need a layout that attracts a customer enough for them to make the purchase, while they hold your store in their hands. This brings the UI of the app to the forefront. If the right information is available including pricing and product variants, then your customer can easily get the right products.

It will be easier for you if you can simply upload certain images and products that you want to display on the home screen and the extension can take care of the display.

This way, with very little effort from your side, your app will always have a dynamic home screen layout.

Synchronization

This is an obvious feature, but I must mention it since it is easy to forget. Your app and your web store have to work in sync.

Therefore, you need to have an app that syncs with your web store immediately in order for your users to get a seamless experience.

This way, if they began shopping on their computer and had to leave for work, their cart should update on their phones to continue shopping from work before their necessary item goes out of stock.

Language ease

Your mobile app will have to be in more than one language. Therefore, you need to have an extension that supports multiple languages as well as Right to Left orientation as certain languages are in that alignment.

With an app that is more inclusive of languages and people, it gives you the ability to expand your business all over the world without the added expense of making separate apps for multiple languages.

Search tool

Every good e-commerce app needs a good search tool. Now you may think ‘what is so difficult about search’. You type in a few words and that’s all! However, there are newer, more inclusive tools that enhance the basic search tool: Search by voice, and Search by barcode scanner.

The way that these can come in handy in yourMagento 2 mobile app is that if someone were to not be able to type words in, they will still be able to speak their search query and get the product they want.

A barcode scanner in the search tool works for when you want an exact product that you can scan. The app can scan a barcode and show related products making the process hassle-free.

User profile management

Users should have a dedicated profile management option in order to manipulate their wish lists, contact details, passwords and even track orders.

The ease of use of such a feature means your support team will have to deal with that much lesser when it comes to customer queries.

Multi-platform

One of the most irritating things for users is when an app is unavailable for their operating system. If you were building your app from scratch, you would have the issue of coding for two separate apps and of having to fund this development. However, you can pick an app builder than builds this Magento mobile appin both the Google Play Store and the App Store, for Android and iOS respectively. Since these are the two major operating systems in the world, it will help you reach a significant audience.

Product showcase

The app’s theme can be perfect, it can be on the right platform, it can have the best way to search for products, but none of this will work if customers cannot see the products properly. This is where the product layout comes into play. Each product page should have high-resolution images, the product descriptions as well as product variants if any.

This is especially important considering the screen size of the phone and the attention-grabbing ability of other apps on a phone.

A few other things that a mobile app for Magento should have are:

  • Single page checkout: When there are multiple steps to checkout, it increases cart abandonment.
  • Push Notification: This feature is one of the most important reasons for having a mobile app. You can use this to notify customers about their order status or prompt them about an abandoned cart. You can even use a push notification to upsell and cross-sell items on the basis of their previous purchases.
  • Order tracking: Customers should also be able to track their orders quickly from this app so that they know when to expect them. People generally like to know where their items are a day after ordering them.

Conclusion

These are the features you Magento app should have. And if you are looking to get an app builder to make the process easy, keep an eye out for security and make sure to buy one that is for Magneto 2 and fulfills all of these requirements.

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