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Enhancing Smart Products With High-Feature Mobile Apps

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Image by Alex Robinson
Posted 7 Oct 2021 | Business, Design

Smart lights. Smart thermostats. Smart home security devices. The world is on a smart path. Research from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers indicates that nearly 7 in 10 Americans own at least one smart product for their homes. In time, that figure is expected to grow significantly; according to IHS Markit, at least 125 billion IoT devices will be talking to each other by 2030.

While organizations in every industry will find ways to incorporate this technology into their operations, consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies are especially poised to do so. Businesses that want to capitalize on IoT innovation have the opportunity to advance their branding, marketing, and sales through IoT app development. Mobile apps bring people into the IoT mix, enabling buyers to have more individualized relationships with the items they purchase.

Baby product creator Evenflo is a great example. The company offers a unique IoT mobile app that “speaks” to its smart car seats. Parents and caretakers can use the app to track the car’s temperature and make sure the car seat harness is appropriately buckled — add-ons designed to transform the connection between Evenflo and its loyal customer base by improving child safety and promoting peace of mind.

Evenflo is far from the only CPG company using IoT and smart products to offer unparalleled mobile user experiences. Oral-B’s popular app differentiates its Bluetooth-enabled toothbrushes from the competition. The devices also send users alerts when it’s time to replace their toothbrush heads, giving users better outcomes while improving Oral-B’s sales figures by encouraging a quicker replacement cadence.

Mobile App Development: Progress and Possibilities

Ultimately, CPG apps enhance the user experience and connect users even more deeply with brands. How can others in the CPG market replicate these successes when using IoT apps to connect people and products? It all starts with boosting app functionality.

  • Effortless onboarding — Mobile apps need to be easy to download and deploy. Simplifying interfaces, or even gamifying them to a degree, can increase use. The simpler it is for even nontechnical people to learn how to connect with their smart devices through an app, the better they’ll feel about coming back to it again and again.
  • Intuitive interactions — After the onboarding phase, consumers need to feel that every touchpoint makes sense. They want a high degree of comfort and confidence when navigating apps, so app developers should design their apps based on early and ongoing target audience testing, which we always recommend.
  • Heavy personalization — Often, the key difference between a successful or unsuccessful IoT product with a mobile app is personalization. Design your app in a way that’s tailored to users, and you’ll see significantly increased app engagement.
  • Reliable updates — Outdated apps become clunky and cause users to lose interest. Staying on top of over-the-air firmware updates has to be part of ongoing maintenance to keep the app and product connection relevant.
  • Thoughtful integrations — Consumers with existing home-based smart devices have the option to connect all of their IoT products. For this reason, CPG manufacturers should consider ways to integrate their apps with Siri, Google Fit, Nest, and other platforms.
  • Thorough back-end data collection — A key benefit for CPG mobile app makers is the opportunity to aggregate and analyze vast amounts of data. This makes data collection and analysis in IoT a must. Without a doubt, data can be used as a springboard for continual optimization and ROI tracking.

CPG companies of all sizes are exploring ways to get involved in the IoT world. Through app development, they might supercharge their profits and gain more leverage in their verticals. And that’s not just smart: It’s genius.

Are you interested in developing a mobile user experience to augment your IoT products? Read more here.