Mobile app, the next big thing in consumer tech space: Aliasger Motiwala
Mobile app, the next big thing in consumer tech space: Aliasger Motiwala

Since the very beginning, SMBs (small media business) in India has never shown huge contribution to retail turnovers. Low IT awareness amongst these SMBs is considered to be one of the biggest reasons behind this back-lag. The growing need of synergy between a business and digitisation has now kept these SMBs on the radar.

With a mission to enhance digital experience and align the business models of these SMBs, Plobal App has come up with its DIY (do-it-yourself) mobile development platform that aims to enable digital capabilities for small medium businesses in the country.

Talking more about the usability and potential of the app, Aliasger Motiwalla, Co-Founder & Head of Sales & Partnerships, Plobal Apps converses with Retailer Media and explains how he plans to revolutionise the mobile app space in India.

Talk to us about Plobal App and the journey so far?
Plobal Apps is a two year old start up that was started with the vision of revolutionizing the m-commerce space and tapping the highly potent app market in India. The concept revolves around Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Apps.
We provide app development services to various verticals likerestaurants, hotels, real estate, e-commerce and lifestyle businesses.
With our DIY platform, we not only want to provide native apps to SMBs but also provide them with integrated tech solutions (both marketing and business integrations) that assist them to increase their sales, customer satisfaction and enable them to be more competitive overall.
Plobal Apps also has a channel partnership program available to enable advertising, digital marketing and social media agencies, website and mobile app development companies to create fully native apps on both iOS and Android Platforms for their clients using our platform.

Talk to us about the DIY (Do It Yourself) concept in detail and how successful it has been?
The DIY App industry is evolving at a high rate today, as it has made the app building process simpler and effortless.
The SMB's lack in knowledge of building apps and are not sure of what to expect and hence hesitate to invest in apps as the entire app building process is expensive and time consuming. DIY apps are more attractive for SMBs as the process of building an app is simple and affordable.
So far the DIY App space has been extremely successful abroad. As far as India is concerned, we are still at a developing stage. Below are a few global highlights from the DIY app industry.

Don’t you think every startup wouldn’t know their mobile needs and thus DIY can be an issue?
We do not expect every SMB to know their exact requirements and hence as a platform, we are category focused. If a SMB chooses a category / industry, we recommend the relevant features to the business owner to choose from which are directly relevant only to that category / industry.
We have done extensive research in the respective verticals we are present in over the last 2 years and understand the business requirements. Also based on continuous feedback from our existing customers and new requests, our platform keeps evolving with new features that add value to the overall business for the SMBs.

How do you provide assistant to SMBs from different segments and regions with different requirements? 
We provide Free consultation to all businesses which are not clear about their mobile app requirements and recommended features relevant to their respective sectors.
As a platform, we provide 24x7 support (both technical and sales support) to all our customers in case of any query.

What potential you see in tier II and III cities of the country? Is there a need for such a platform?
Mobile App development by SMBs is majorly a consumer driven trend in India, as we already have over 250 million mobile internet users in India.
We see this trend picking up in tier 2 and tier 3 cities in the next couple of years with the expected increase in smartphones and mobile internet penetration.

What segments you think needs mobile apps the most and why?
Mobile app has become the next big thing in the consumer technology space. There has been a terrific response from sectors like hospitality, real estate, entertainment and ecommerce for mobile applications.
The reasons for SMB’s to opt for a mobile app have been varied. A study shows that 76% feel appshelp in increasing customer service, experience and brand loyalty, while 37% believe apps increase sales. The rest 35% create apps to be more competitive and remaining 5-7% creates it for other reasons.

Share with us, your expansion plans?
We are growing rapidly as a platform and are looking at developing 3000+ mobile apps by December 2016 across E-Commerce and Hospitality sectors.
We have signed up strategic partnerships with leading platforms in the US & European Markets. By the end of 2017, our target is to cross 10,000 Apps across various sectors and geographies.

Will such a service be only limited to SMBs as big giants have their own technology department?
The technology is not confined by the size of the company. This totally depends on the objective and requirement of the business.
If larger businesses would want their app to be integrated with their current systems (CRM,ERPetc), they would prefer to develop their app with an in-house team.However, we have seen a few large businesses use our platform to test the market before launching their final product.

What keeps Plobal App a step ahead from its competitors?
At Plobal Apps we are not focused only on building a mobile app for our customers but also on providing integrated tech solutions (both business and marketing integrations) to help SMBs increase sales and customer satisfaction. We also enable SMB’s to be more competitive overall.
Plobal Apps has one of the best in class UI / UX which makes the experience of building apps effortless and simple for the business owners.
Our vision is to not just remain a technology solution provider to a business but to actually partner with the business to solve their problems, gives us a tremendous edge over our competition.

With technology deployment becoming easy day by day, where do you see the future of app development platforms 3-5 years down the line?
There has been an increase in mobile apps importance globally. With developments at Google with regards to better SEO Ranking for businesses with Mobile Apps, providing users with app streaming options without actually downloading the app, the acceptance for apps in the minds of businesses and consumers is bound to rise. There have been reports suggesting that around 85% of mobile users prefer using apps than mobile sites. Seeing the trends, we feel SMBs will have to move towards and adopt a mobile strategy for their business and hence DIY App platforms would only grow from here and onwards.

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