The 4-1-1 on Web Apps for Business
If your business doesn’t yet use a web application (or two) to manage internal processes or communicate with customers, what’s holding you back? For many, it’s simply a lack of understanding of what a web app entails and how powerful it can be for a business’s success. In this blog post, we’ll share a basic overview of the types of web applications available for businesses and how companies in different industries can benefit from the investment.
Let’s start with a general overview of what a web application can be. All web apps that are used in commercial and manufacturing activities can be divided into two categories:
- Software that performs internal, local tasks: these are apps used by the business’s team to improve operations, leading to an increase in sales, an increase in efficiency, simplified workflows for collecting, processing, and use of information. When developing such internal products, it is general practice to put functionality and business logic first, and design at the bottom of the priority list.
- Software that is aimed at the external audience: These products are for use by customers (and potential customers) and work to promote and further the development of the brand, increase the loyalty of the customer base, etc. When developing such products, design is usually high up on the priorities list, as the business aims to stand out and keep being attractive to its clients.
In either case, in order to create an effective web app that is in line with the company’s objectives for investing in the technology, it is important to do some homework before development begins:
- Define the needs of the company
- Establish the aims of creating and introducing a new product
- Study business processes and organizational structure to identify how the new product will improve either or both
- Formulate a general approach to the technical requirements
What Are the Most Common Types of Web Apps for Businesses?
Depending on a business’s particular goals and context, here are some of the most common types of web apps an organization may want to develop.
A corporate portal is an internal application—a multi-functional web service that allows the organization to conveniently end effectively optimize business processes.
- Improvement of the quality of customer service
- Increase in efficiency of employees’ work
- Stabilization and improvement of communication between departments
- Convenient and productive interactions with subcontractors
- Increase in employees’ mobility
- Remote work with documentation
- Streamlining PR activities of various types of complexity
CRM (Customer Relationship Management)
This is a powerful tool that enables businesses to automate their relationships with clients, which effectively solves the task of successful control, planning, and development of any client-oriented business.
- Integrity and safekeeping of the client database
- Detailed insights into sales analytics
- Increase in sales volume
- Effective optimization of employee work
- Decreased paper documentation
ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning)
From our experience, ERP solutions are usually ordered by larger organizations that are looking to open the door to new opportunities for business.
- Standardization of reporting and information systems used in different divisions
- Improvement of interaction between divisions
- Control and synchronization of processes
- Integration with local subcontractors
Systems of Electronic Commerce
Thanks to e-commerce systems, producers and suppliers of goods and services can offer their products to clients online, accept and process orders, manage the status of orders, etc.
- Detailed information on each client’s orders
- Swift introduction of a new product to the market
- Decreased costs of order processing
- Improved timing and costs of delivery to the client
Advantages of Web Applications
With web apps, it is possible to work from any device connected to the internet, anywhere in the world.
Web apps generally work on all operating systems (Windows, Mac, Linux) and any browser (Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Opera, FireFox, etc.). They even work on mobile devices as well as desktops, laptops, and tablets without requiring any special app downloads. (Unlike mobile apps, which need to be installed on the phone or other device, they do not take up a lot of memory.
It is easier to introduce changes and updates to a web application than to a mobile app, as upgrading to the newest version only requires refreshing the page.
User information is stored in the cloud, which means that even if the user’s device is damaged or the user logs on from a different device than usual, their data is still safe and available.
To sum up, here are the main advantages of web apps:
- Web apps do not need to be installed on the users’ phones or other devices.
- The user only needs a browser and internet to work with a web app.
- Development of web apps is usually cheaper than development of mobile apps with similar scope of functionality.
- Web apps are updated automatically.
A disadvantage of a web app is that it needs internet to work, and if a user is at a location where internet is unstable, their work might become problematic; or if internet is expensive, the use might become expensive.
What Types of Client-Oriented Businesses Benefit from Web Apps?
It goes without saying that web apps might not be the ideal solution for any and all types of business. Having said this, there are industries in which web apps truly help organizations take their business to the next level. Let us take a look at some of the most common examples that we have come across in our experience.
- Production. Introducing automation can significantly cut expenses.
- Healthcare. Web apps can come in handy when talking about data exchange and convenience for clients.
- Food service. Restaurants can benefit from web apps that enable them to provide better service, including cases when the business has multiple locations.
- Tourism. This industry certainly benefits from the ability to make reservations, book services and coordinate multiple activities in multiple locations.
- Vehicle maintenance. Multiple processes in vehicle service stations, car washes, and other maintenance-focused businesses can be automated and made more convenient for staff and clients alike. This includes booking, service accounting, and introduction of loyalty programs.
- Beauty salons. Establishments in this booming industry can be successfully automated, from online booking of services to keeping track of consumables.
- Fitness centers, sport clubs. Both clients and businesses can benefit from cost-effective solutions for streamlining schedules, pricing, booking of classes, logging accomplishments.
If you think your business could benefit from a web application, Syberry’s experts would be delighted to speak with you. Contact us today.