How to Convert Your VTEX Into a Mobile App

With the increasing number of people shopping on their smartphones, it's very important for businesses to optimize their online stores for mobile devices. This includes transforming your VTEX store into a mobile app.

While creating a custom native app can be an expensive venture, there's a cost-effective alternative available: utilizing a mobile app builder. By doing this, you can easily build a fully-functional and high-quality mobile app that integrates seamlessly with your existing VTEX store.

Read on to find out how you can convert your VTEX store into a mobile app and reap the benefits of mobile ecommerce.

Why You Need a Mobile App

With a rise from slightly above 52% in a five-year period, the mobile category accounted for more than 72% of the total ecommerce market share in 2022.

This aligns with the overall trend of mobile internet usage, which increasingly favors mobile each year. Currently, mobile holds a market share of over 50% compared to desktop and tablet.

Moreover, 15% of Americans today rely solely on smartphones as their means of accessing the internet. This signifies the future of ecommerce, where customers are not just mobile-first but mobile-only.

While optimizing your site for mobile is a good starting point, that alone is no longer enough. Apps deliver a superior user experience on mobile devices, leading to improvements in several key metrics, including:

  • Higher conversion rates
  • Increased average order value
  • More products viewed per session

Additional data highligting the many benefits of mobile apps indicates that users of ecommerce mobile apps are twice as likely to return to the store within 30 days compared to those using mobile browsers.

It helps that apps offer the advantage of utilizing mobile push notifications, which consistently lead to higher engagement from consumers when it comes to opting-in, opening notifications and clicking on content.

Overall, apps provide a valuable tool for nurturing loyal, repeat customers, and a VTEX mobile app has the power to bring significant benefits to your business.

Can You Create Mobile Apps for VTEX?

If you're thinking about launching a mobile app for your VTEX store, it's important to note that the platform itself doesn't provide this capability. VTEX is primarily designed for webstores. However, there are alternative solutions you can explore to make a mobile app:

  1. Use a third-party VTEX mobile app builder that can facilitate the process for you.
  2. Consider leveraging technology-enabled assistance to convert your VTEX store into a mobile application.
  3. Engage a team of skilled engineers who specialize in developing apps for both Android and iOS platforms. They can help you create mobile apps and establish a connection with your VTEX shop.

Can I Turn My VTEX Store into an App?

You can turn your VTEX store into a mobile app using one of the methods mentioned above.

In most cases, it's advisable for most store owners to disregard the third option of hiring developers to build native apps. The primary reason is that developing mobile apps from scratch can be quite expensive. It typically costs anywhere between $30,000 to $150,000 to build a native app. And that's just for one operating system! You'll need to multiply this cost by two to launch apps for both Android and iOS (which is recommended).

App development is a time-consuming, extensive, and costly process, especially when your developers need to build an API and connect the back end of your apps to your VTEX store.

Considering the financial aspect, it's highly likely that you don't have the necessary budget for this, and that's not even taking into account the annual expenses to keep your app up and running.

The Recurring Cost of Having an App

Most individuals fail to consider the recurring expenses that arise when launching an app. The ongoing maintenance and upkeep, including OS updates, VTEX updates, bug fixes, implementing new features, and making improvements, typically amount to approximately 15-20% of the initial cost each year.

In fact, these costs can potentially be even higher. During the app launch at Rainbow Apparel, VP of Marketing David Cost found that the annual expense could reach up to a million dollars, saying:

"If we had unlimited time and resources, we would likely opt for a custom native app. However, the annual maintenance cost alone would range from half a million to a million dollars."

For the sake of being conservative, let's assume that building apps for both mobile platforms costs $150,000. Based on this estimation, the low-end estimate for updates and maintenance still amounts to $30,000 per year.

For most store owners, this expenditure is excessive. Not to mention the added complexity and challenges of managing multiple platforms instead of solely focusing on one website. This significantly amplifies the workload whenever modifications to the site are required, needlessly complicating their workflow.

The Best Way to Turn Your VTEX Store into an App

To transform your VTEX store into a mobile app, consider using a mobile app builder.

By utilizing a VTEX mobile app builder, you can convert your existing VTEX website into a mobile app that mimics the functionality of a native app. This mobile app can be easily downloaded and installed on users' mobile devices.

With the right app builder, you can obtain a mobile app that provides a similar experience to a native app, but at a lower cost and with less hoops to jump through. However, it's important to choose a reputable option that is capable of building professional mobile apps suitable for high-traffic and in line with your brand reputation.

How to Convert VTEX to App

If you're a major company with large funds at your disposal, such as Zara, Amazon or Nike, you might be able to hire people to create your shopping app from scratch.

If you're not in that position, MobiLoud is undoubtedly the best solution for building an app. It's a simple, cost-effective, and fast option. Additionally, maintaining your apps is much more affordable and manageable in the long run.

Here's a breakdown of the process, step-by-step.

Step One: Preview Your App or Get a Free Consultation

Start in one of two ways:

  1. You can generate a free preview of your site as an app using the MobiLoud builder.
  3. Or, you may also choose to chat with one of our app experts in a free consultation call. They will discuss your project and provide a summary of the process.

MobiLoud App Builder

Either way, you'll quickly realize that most of the app creation work has already been done, assuming your site is already optimized for mobile devices.

If you need assistance with optimizing your site, don't hesitate to let us know. We're here to ensure the entire process goes smoothly for you.

Step Two: Work With Our Team to Build Your App

If you're all set to start the building process, sign up to MobiLoud. Our plans include a money-back guarantee within the first 60 days, and there's no need to commit for the long haul.

Once you're on board, our team will collaborate with you to configure and design your app. Just remember that most of the work has already been done, so there's no need to start from scratch. You'll only need to make a few adjustments to ensure your app looks and feels like a native one.

Once you're satisfied with the design, we'll fully take over and build your mobile app. We handle all the technical aspects, so you won't have to worry about coding.

If you'd rather have our team manage the entire process from start to finish, we're more than happy to do so. Our full-service package includes all the necessary steps for configuring, designing, and publishing your app, allowing you to take a hands-off approach.

Step Three: Prepare for Launch

After your app has been created, it's time to get ready for its public release. Implementing an effective launch plan is essential for driving app downloads.

You'll have access to various assets that will support your app's launch, including materials for app store descriptions, announcements for your website and email subscribers, press releases, and more. Furthermore, you can take advantage of additional features at no extra expense, such as smart app banners and exclusive app discounts, to encourage your existing customers to use the app for their shopping needs.

Step Four: Launch and Submit Your Apps to the App Stores

Ultimately, we'll launch your apps on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.

The process of submitting apps to these stores can be tricky, especially when you're new to app ownership. But rest assured, we have extensive experience and knowledge in this area and you won't have to worry about a thing.

Our team takes care of the entire app submission process with Apple and Google. We provide a 100% app approval guarantee and handle multiple submissions if necessary. Additionally, we offer recommendations and implement any required changes on your behalf.

Once your app listings are live, you can officially start watching the downloads roll in and enjoy having your own VTEX mobile app!

Wrapping Up – Why You Should Use MobiLoud to Convert Your VTEX Store into a Mobile App

Mobile isn't going anywhere. The majority of your current revenue probably comes from mobile devices. If not, it likely will soon.

Your VTEX store needs more than just a mobile-optimized website. To fully capitalize on the revenue potential of your mobile users, it's crucial to offer your own branded VTEX app.

Today, transforming a VTEX store into a mobile app is easier than ever when you follow the right steps. Instead of investing tons of cash in mobile developers, MobiLoud offers an accessible and straightforward solution.

Let's revisit the key benefits of using MobiLoud's VTEX app builder:

  • It costs only a fraction of what custom app development would cost.
  • You can launch professional, high-quality apps in less than two weeks.
  • Your apps will retain all the features that make your website exceptional, from product collections to payment gateways, plug-ins, tools, themes, and more.
  • Everything remains synced across the web, Android, and iOS platforms. Any changes you make on your site will immediately reflect in your apps.
  • You can rest assured that we'll handle the app submission process and guarantee approval.
  • Our team will guide you every step of the way, taking care of all the heavy lifting so you can focus on your business.

This simple, zero-code app builder enables you to launch your own shopping apps and position your brand in the app stores alongside your industry's biggest names.

Contact us now to learn more about how we can help you launch an app for your VTEX store. Book a free, personalized demo, and one of our app specialists will walk you through the entire process.

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