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Communication apps are most popular for business

How many business apps do you have on your smart phone or tablet? If you are like other small business owners, mobile apps are becoming increasingly important in running your business. A survey conducted earlier this year among its small business customers by eVoice, a virtual phone system for small businesses, found that more than 1 in 4 survey respondents (27%) have between 6-10 business apps on their mobile device; nearly half (44%) have between 1 and 5.

Still despite their growing use of apps, small business owners want value not volume. Thirty-seven percent of small business respondents reported knowing within one week whether or not a business app is useful, and the number one reason they will delete an app from their mobile device is that the app doesn’t work or perform as claimed.

Most popular apps for business

  • Nearly 50% of small businesses surveyed report communication apps are the most important type of app to their business.
  • Productivity apps and education/reference apps rank second and third, respectively.
  • 55% of small business surveyed report they turn to entertainment apps like YouTube, Hulu and Netflix when they need a break from work.

When it comes to paying for an app, 39% of small business owners say they are more likely to pay for a business app after using the freemium version. Furthermore, nearly 19% of small businesses would consider paying for a business app, nearly 11% of SMBs surveyed would very likely pay for a business app, and only 4% report that they will never pay for a business app at all.

“Must have” criteria

For an app to be considered a “must have, survey respondents indicated the following:

  • Apps may be deleted if they crash or don’t integrate with business processes or protocols.
  • 47% of respondents say that they always download updates.
  • The number one reason small businesses delete an app from their mobile device is because the app doesn’t work or do what they thought it would.
  • 37% surveyed report knowing within one week whether or not a business app is right for them, and more than one-fourth of respondents will skip downloading an update if it takes too long.

Apps support flexible working

As more and more small businesses embrace flexible working, mobile devices and apps will continue to have an important impact. To ensure that employees get the most from apps and that your small business data remains secure when employees access company information remotely, establish a policy on device and app use. It should include:

  • Acceptable mobile devices, operating systems and device management agents.
  • The types of apps that can reside on employee-owned mobile devices that can be used to access company data and which apps need to be blocked from use during the workday.
  • A requirement for passwords for devices and apps and ensure. Ensure the appropriate level of password complexity and that employees change passwords at specified intervals or points in time.

Find out more about the use of mobile devices and the range of available apps for business by downloading How to get the most from Apps and Devices for your business.


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