Bugs are Affecting the App’s PerformanceWeb apps have fewer moving parts (just the browser, mainly), so maintaining them tends to be easier than native or hybrid apps. Still, issues do arise that impact performance. As performance drops, usage rates suffer. Malfunctioning apps are potential security risks, too. Web apps rely on the supporting website; if there are problems with the site there will be problems with the app. Make sure components are kept up to date and plan regular maintenance updates to address any ongoing issues. These routine updates have the added benefit of reassuring users that the app is safe. The average app should receive small bug fixes or feature tweaks 2-3 times a month.
Customers Have Been Requesting a New FeatureCustomer feedback is a valuable tool. It offers direct insight into the app’s performance and helps detect issues while they’re still small. App owners can’t answer every feature request, but when many users have same request it highlights an opportunity to fulfill an unmet need. Most apps add minor or major features around once a month. When adding new features, be sure they fit within the app’s scope. Web apps are highly useful but have a narrow focus. If a feature lies outside a web app’s capabilities it may be better to release it in another way, such as a hybrid app.
New Tools Become AvailableWeb app technology is always advancing. What isn’t possible today might become possible tomorrow. For example, the web apps of today have much better offline functionality and access to device hardware than their predecessors. Those are two areas where they used to fall well short of downloadable apps. While they still can’t match the power of a native app, they still provide a great user experience for a lot of enterprise purposes. Look at the business value of new tools. If something can significantly improve user experience, consider adding the feature. Data science tools fall under this category; new chances to draw insight are invaluable to both the company and users.
Retention Rates Begin FallingApp updates are more than a technical necessity. They’re also a marketing tool. When bounce rates rise and time on site falls, updates can rekindle excitement about the platform. Consider this: web apps are competing with every other web and native app a customer uses. Releasing new features or touching up the interface gives users something new to check out. Major updates can also serve as a “relaunch” to win back users after a setback.
The Design Looks OutdatedVisual appeal is disproportionately important to users. 75% of consumers judge a company on its digital presence, including apps. That first impression sets the stage for how the company as a whole is seen, so it’s critical to present a current, vibrant appearance. What exactly makes a web app look “outdated”?
- The design no longer matches company branding
- The app uses old or out of style design choices
- Overused stock photos and visual assets are featured
Final ThoughtsThe key factor in determining whether a web app needs to be updated is whether it’s still delivering satisfactory results. Apps are investments; they should be providing a healthy return on that investment. Don’t make excuses for a failing app, either. Updating web apps is fairly painless and doing so regularly prevents issues from ballooning out of control down the road.
Does your web app need an update? Set up a free consultation to explore how Concepta can add the features your business requires- or even build a new app entirely!