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What is a Super App and Benefits It Provides

Victoria Puzhevich
Published: November 17, 2022

Moving to digital marketing urges brands to become highly adaptive to quickly changing business environments and customer demands. Those companies that provide only a certain type of service quickly lose their ground in favor of large platforms that have all kinds of products and services in one catalog. It’s much easier to find a present on the Amazon platform rather than to search for gift shops on Google.

Platform-based business models are gaining traction today. 7 out of 10 global companies prefer building their apps as multi-purpose platforms also known as Super Apps to keep the dominant position in the market. In this article, we’ll explain what a Super App is, how super app platforms can benefit various businesses that operate online, and provide some examples of already existing and successful super applications.

What Are Super Apps?

A Super App was first defined by Mike Lazaridis – a co-founder of the BlackBerry company in 2010.

Mike Lazaridis basically meant that people will use a suite of interconnected applications united under one umbrella of a Super App and developed by one company. These apps should provide various services for people’s daily needs from purchasing groceries to paying bills, to finding the nearest restaurant.

While the BlackBerry company was trying to create its own Super App, the company lost its major competition for the core market to iPhone and eventually withdrew from the industry. So, the world has never seen a Super App from BlackBerry. Nevertheless, the idea of Super Apps was picked up by other companies and today they continue to develop effectively and gain market share. The most prominent Super Apps examples include AliPay, WeChat, Grab app, and others.

But, what is a super app’s mission and what does it look like today? As there are more and more services provided digitally, the significance of mobile apps is growing. This happens because mobile phones are the most popular gadgets used for quick Internet access. Meanwhile, smartphone users utilize ⅓ of the installed apps daily, using from 9 to 10 apps per day and 30 per month. Bundling all these digital services into one handy application with a clear and user-friendly interface is a win-win strategy both for businesses and users. And that’s what the Eastern markets are already doing. The most rapidly developing Super App markets include South America and Eastern Asia today. Meanwhile,  Western businesses are only considering the development of such services.

What Makes an App a Super App?

A Super App is more than just a convenient mobile app. It provides a wider range of diverse services and represents a more complex ecosystem of various functionalities. The difference is particularly visible when it comes to the technical side of the issue.

What can be found in a Super App and what to consider when developing it?

Interaction Between Services

Super Apps include several service channels with numerous customers moving between them. From a technical view, all these channels should have equal operating speed and effectiveness for the users to enjoy their experience. Therefore, when building a super app, software engineers should ensure that all the transitions between screens are smooth, there are no crucial errors appearing when using several services, the application maintains its performance high even with low-speed internet or low battery, and much more.

Usage of Common Components

UI/UX consistency is a crucial element for Super Apps. While the services provided by Super Apps should be diverse and cover as many user needs as possible, the overall visual design as well as the user experience should remain consistent across all the apps included in the bundle.

Another UI/UX feature related to the Super App development is the integration of common pages. These pages could be used for pooling data from different services or performing actions for several services on one page. For example, a common page with all the enlisted orders the users have picked from various channels, a common checkout page for various services, the total bill for the provided services, and more.

Data Sharing Between Services

Data management in Super Apps also differs from conventional mobile apps. Once a user logs into the Super App, their personal data such as ID, delivery address, and more should be quickly accessible in each service in the app. Moreover, the data of the previous sessions and actions of the user should also be distributed across the services to ensure a smooth user performance in them.

Security Consistency Across the Entire App

Apart from providing convenient access across so many services, Super Apps also become the major holders of sensitive user data at one place. Moreover, ensuring strong security in such apps becomes a more complicated process in comparison to conventional mobile apps. That’s because Super Apps involve multiple customer journeys and complex features and operations.

Benefits of Super Apps

The desire of companies to build a new digital service is often driven by the intention to enhance their customers’ experience. However, Super Apps can offer more than just improved customer satisfaction.

There are a wide range of reasons why Super Apps are becoming more and more popular among companies.

  • Wider audience reach – with Super Apps, businesses can offer their services to more diversified audiences. There are many more chances that a potential user will find a range of services in a Super App rather than in a niche-specific app.
  • High customer engagement – it’s easy to increase the length of user sessions as well as the customer retention rate with the help of Super Apps. That’s because these apps provide more touchpoints for effective interaction with customers and keeping them engaged.
  • Increase in the number of revenue sources – businesses can simply expand the number of services they provide as well as attract more users and virtually zero customer acquisition costs.
  • Strong brand positioning – when a company develops an entire suite of products and services under one umbrella and provides them in one app, it adds to brand recognition and credibility.
  • Cost reduction – when building a Super App, a company invests in its future development and significantly reduces its future expenses. It’s much easier to brand a particular service and add it to the already existing solution than building several separate apps and fitting all of them into one brand.

What Is the Future of Super Apps?

Super Apps are attracting more and more attention and their future prospects seem to be bright. The reasons to provide such positive forecasts are based on two tendencies – the growth of the digital population and the human desire to simplify things.

The number of internet and mobile users is growing year by year. In December 2021, the internet users worldwide reached 4.95 bln people whereas in July 2022 the figure climbed to 5.03 bln. Given this, in 2019, smartphone users downloaded 200 bln mobile applications and in 2021, the number has grown to 230 bln. If you compare the number of Internet users and the number of downloaded apps it becomes clear that each netizen uses at least 2 mobile applications for their daily needs, and in reality many more.

At the same time, the desire to simplify online activities comes hand in hand with intensive digitization and constantly growing customer demands. Mobile app users simply want to perform their routine operations quickly, smoothly, and in one app – and all that Super Apps can offer to their users. Businesses, in their turn, don’t have much choice but follow the trends set by their customers to stay competitive in the market. The bright side of all this is that businesses can also gain much from Super Apps development. These points we’ve already discussed in the section above.

Conclusion

Super Apps are a new notion for the Western world. Meanwhile, in South America and Asia, online businesses and Internet users already widely use these kinds of apps for their daily needs. It’s expected that Super Apps will gain much popularity in Europe and the US in the near future. That’s mainly because they offer many advantages to companies and their customers.

With Super Apps, companies make a one-time investment into a Super App solution and avoid any further substantial spending on product development. Apart from that, they can significantly expand their customer base, providing their users with all the needed services and outstanding experiences in one app.

If you’re also considering building a Super App, we’re ready to help you with that. Our highly-qualified tech specialists have 20+ years of experience in creating all types of apps for various platforms, including super apps. Don’t hesitate to contact us and start building your Super App today.

Source: scand.com