We are all waiting for Apple’s next software update - iOS 14 that’s scheduled to arrive later this year. Every software update has features that excite us, and this update has a feature called App Clips.
App Store is home to more than 2 million apps today, so it’s more than likely that your app will be lost and you may have to resort to App Store Search ads, App Store Optimisation, traditional SEO and digital advertising in an effort to acquire new users. App Clips is an effort by Apple that allows mobile app developers to introduce their app to users, just small parts of the app on demand when required.
What are App Clips?
“There is an app for that” - this is probably the most used line in this era. Well, there is an app for almost everything. But finding that app when you most need it - now that’s a challenge. And App Clips help solve just that.
An App Clip is a small part of the actual app that performs a specific task and will appear as soon as you need it, like when you are ordering a coffee or renting a scooter and disappear from your iPhone, along with all the data once you are done using it.
App Clips are small in size - under 10MB - launch within seconds without having to find or download the app from the App Store. App Clips are basically snippets or clips of an app that focus on the part of the app you need, like the parking payment page.
How Do App Clips Work?
There are multiple ways to access an App Clip, you can do it via either a link, an NFC tag or one of Apple's custom QR codes. You can open up these clips from iMessage, Safari or Apple Maps, or just scan one with your phone's camera or the NFC reader if you come across the NFC or QR code versions.
An App Clip card will appear at the bottom of your iPhone with the option to "Open" the App Clip. As each App Clip is associated with a specific task, that task will also be mentioned next to the Open button along with the name of the app (in case you want to download the app).
For example, if you wanted to rent a scooter through Spin, there will be a scannable code on each scooter which will take you to the Spin App Clip, with "Tap Open to unlock this scooter and ride". That’s how simple things can get.
Why do we Need App Clips?
When Apple introduced this App Clip feature to the world, they demoed it with ordering coffee, renting Spin electric scooters and shopping on Etsy. Spin’s senior product designer, Josh Head even confirmed it will be placing App Clip Codes on their scooters while others said they are excited to explore this opportunity.
The pandemic has encouraged us to adopt behaviour where the minimal contact with touchscreens, POS terminals and other human beings is encouraged. And App Clips kind of support that.
Say for eg. if a customer is waiting in line to place a food or drink order doesn’t want to bother downloading the restaurant’s app to browse a menu and pay — they’ll just speak their order at the counter or they could just tap, browse, place order, pay and be on their way.
How Will App Clips Help You Acquire More Customers?
We believe that App Clips adoption help to accomplish one or both of these:
● Increase visibility of your App ( App Marketing )
● Provide convenience or functionality to customers
There Can Never Be Enough Visibility
Every movie has a trailer, and now every or almost every app can have an App Clips. With so many apps on the app store to choose from, it’s difficult to even get a customer to know about your app.
● App Clips will allow new users to preview and try out your App, if you actually provide value, you are in.
● If your app size is huge and users may not want to wait for the app to download completely, they can get a sneak peek through the app clip.
● For paid apps, you can upload an App Clip (obviously free) for your customers to try. Displaying a specific core and unique feature of your app can help gain new customers.
● App Clip can send notifications for up to 8 hours to users ( without use approval ). You can leverage this and convince your users to install your app.
Everyone Strives for More Convenience For Their Customers
App Clip can be used in multiple ways. They can be used to serve your customer’s needs immediately on premise. For eg:
● Skipping the queue
● Ordering and paying at a restaurant
● Purchasing movie tickets
App Clips also have use cases that help enhance a business. Users gain from this as they don’t need to download your app for each and everything.For eg:
● Get info about a business
● Provide value with App Clips and get users to download native app
What I feel About App Clips
When I look at QR codes, I don’t necessarily want to scan and use them unless it’s compulsory. And Apple realises that most of us look at ‘download the app’ also in the same way. No one wants to download another app, add account details, link credit cards, get emails and alerts and notifications, it’s irritating!
I can totally understand it’s difficult to promote an App Clip rather than your full-fledged app and agree to using Apple Pay and Sign In with Apple, but if anyone can overcome this barrier it’s Apple. At the moment this is all the information available around App Clips, I will definitely update this blog once we know more..!!
Do tell me what you think about App Clips and if you would use them!