It was bound to happen – with consumers cooped up inside, many have become disenfranchised with the idea of downloading another new app. An estimated 2 million apps on Apple’s app store alone, customers have little else to turn to for a shopping experience and want to keep their options limited to the apps they’ve already committed to. With the arrival of the App Clip update with iOS 14, there appears to be a light at the end of the tunnel for brands looking to make their mark in the increasing demand for digital commerce. How can brands use this feature and could it effectively solve app burnout?
The update of Apple’s App Clips allow for a user to preview features of a third party app without having to commit to downloading it. When the feature isn’t in use, the clip disappears – without taking up any valuable screen space or data. The idea of no upfront commitment is a pleasing one for the consumer but could also work in the favour of a brand to keep costs down and spend less time developing apps which may not be fully utilised. The customer relationship with fashion apps is extremely strained. Over the last few years, there has been a wave of encouragement for smaller brands to have an app to show for themselves with very few proving to be compelling. On average, there has been a 25% growth year-over-year for purchasing through apps (according to reports by App Annie), leading to a 32% increase for retail and apparel. With the potential there and consumers remaining digital sitting ducks, how can brands navigate this in the right way?
In short, there’s a huge amount of potential tucked into this new feature. It’s released at a time when increased mobile usage has crossed paths with consumer fatigue, providing an almost risk-free way for brands to increase their conversions. The aim of the game will be to show a consumer that what you have to offer is worthwhile and ideal to commit to, demonstrating value to entice them on-board long-term. As an easy entry point into the app experience, extra value could appeal to consumers to purchase more frequently. The tool is seen as especially ideal to fashion brands, lending itself to the better functionality of websites – a user can quickly access ratings and reviews, or even check out through their phone whilst in a store for a COVID-friendly approach. As momentum is likely to build over the coming months, the opportunity looks to provide a gateway to more incentives and features, from location-based services to personalised alerts, wishlists and loyalty schemes. While App Clips can introduce users to an app experience, it will remain up to a brand to prove their worth, uniqueness and longevity in the battle for digital space.
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