Report: Small Businesses Saving Billions of Hours and Dollars with Mobile Apps

Michael Essany Headshot by Michael Essany on June 23, 2011

In December 2010, analysts from research firm IDC projected that 25 billion mobile apps will be sold in 2011, a figure that more recent projections suggest may be reached well ahead of this year’s end. Although the expansive scope of the mobile app industry is difficult to comprehend, it’s considerably easier to understand why small businesses are continuing to drive this nascent industry’s expansion by embracing the potential of mobile apps to an unprecedented degree.

Apart from the obvious promotional and branding advantages that come with having your company’s mobile app on your customer’s smartphone, the latent benefits of producing a mobile app are among the most attractive, according to the findings of The Small Business & Entrepreneurship (SBE) Council. The Council recently tapped research firm TechnoMetrica to explore the almost difficult-to-believe growth in mobile app development and why companies with fewer than two dozen employees are among its biggest drivers.

SBOs Express Overwhelming Satisfaction with Mobile Apps

Writing an executive summary for the May 2011 “Saving Time and Money with Mobile Apps” report, Karen Kerrigan, President & CEO of SBE, along with Raymond J. Keating, the organization’s chief economist, observed that mobile apps save small business owners significant time each week. “Of the small businesses that participated in the TechnoMetrica survey and use mobile apps,” the executive summary reveals, “78 percent believe their company’s use of mobile apps saves time for the owner. In fact, on a weekly basis, these small business owners estimate that they save an average of 5.6 hours (a median of 4.0 hours) due to their firm’s use of mobile apps.”

In addition to saving time for the business owners, mobile apps are increasingly demonstrating their ability to save employees time as well. 75 percent of small businesses using mobile apps report saving substantial sums of employee time. “Small businesses estimate that an average of 11.33 employee hours – and a median of 5.0 hours – are saved on a weekly basis,” the report suggests.

Of course, where there’s time saved, there’s also money saved. And lots of it. If all employer firms with fewer than 20 workers took advantage of mobile apps, the report hypothesizes, the estimated 2.34 billion employee hours saved would amount to an estimated $56.9 billion in potential savings on a yearly basis.

Mobile Apps Prove Time Equals Money

Without question, one of the biggest quandaries facing small business owners in the U.S. today is striking a winning balance between focusing on sales growth and managing administrative tasks. Yet again, mobile apps for small businesses are showing promising signs for simplifying this perpetual challenge. Nearly half of all survey respondents believe that they have been able to spend more time focusing on revenue growth as a result of their mobile apps. And an even higher percentage believe that their companies are also more competitive now due to them.

Is a mobile app right for you and your small business? To learn more about this growing industry, check out the “Saving Time and Money with Mobile Apps” report from the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council by clicking here.