Filemaker launches easier app making platform for small businesses

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It is no longer sufficient to only have a web presence as online audiences continue to drift to mobile. Having a smartphone app is now a vital marketing tool for most small businesses from beauty spas and salons to cornershop cafés. Mobile apps increase engagement between businesses and consumers and can be used to for a number of tasks including transactions, bookings, promotions and announcements. Yet traditionally businesses, particularly small to medium businesses, have been locked out of building custom business apps because they either lack the digital skills or funds to do it.

Apple’s platform FileMaker has launched a new version aimed towards the non-digital savvy business owner looking to build a customer business app without having to acquire coding or programming skills.   

“Platforms like FileMaker have enabled custom app development to come a long way in the last few years alone. It’s now an affordable choice for startups and small businesses, that not only fits your specific business needs but also gives you a competitive edge,” explained David Head, ​Consulting Engineer at FileMaker.

By removing technical skills barriers, the platform hopes to empower businesses to become more efficient and facilitate access to more streamlined technology. Businesses looking to create a custom app are met with a flexible, integrated system.

Ann Monroe from FileMaker said, “This new release represents our ongoing effort to simplify the development and deployment of custom apps that work seamlessly across mobile devices, PCs and the web.”

The FileMaker platform provides​ software that simplifies and accelerates the development, deployment and management of custom apps, without any coding or programming skills required. FileMaker 15 now supports even more native iOS features such as Touch ID, 3D Touch support and iBeacons. ​It​ also supports cloud-based file sharing and app extensions. Now a customer who has developed a custom quoting app with FileMaker can capture a signature on the iPad via the touch screen and then automatically upload that contract to iCloud — allowing ​the rest of the company ​to​ ​instantly a​ccess the document.

“FileMaker 15 makes it even simpler for startups, work groups and small businesses to create and use custom apps. With FileMaker 15, we have added a new set of starter solutions which cover the most popular use-cases. These starter solutions empower novice citizen developers to immediately begin building their own custom app,” said David Head.

FileMaker helped major Aussie alcohol importer South Trade International deploy a custom app to manage their sales and marketing activities and subsequently cut down reporting time by a day a week, enabled 40 percent off its staff to work remotely, halved the time of monthly sales meeting, and increased sales call rates by 10 percent nationally.

“The FileMaker app is incredibly important to our business. We now have insights into each of our customer’s purchasing behaviour, which allows us to provide strategic counsel and advice — something our customers really value,” said James Johnstone, Brand Manager at South Trade International.

“The fact that it’s available on mobile devices also means we have access to the information whenever we need it. This allows us to make fast, informed decisions, which ultimately improves our ability to service our customers.”

 

Photo source: techcrunch.com

Chloe Potvin
Chloe Potvin is a contributing small business writer for Kochie's Business Builders.