The global pet care market size will be worth a whopping $202.6 billion by the year 2015, and technology or pet tech alone will be a large chunk of this. Market research from IDTechEx supports this trend, stating that the worldwide pet wearables market will be worth $2.6 billion right this year in 2019.
In fact, the GPS based pet wearable market was already recorded worth $180 in the United States in 2015, a number that is only going up as we speak.
Going by the data from Wakefield Research, 69% of millennials are likely to use technology to keep track of their pets. Further, increasing numbers of people rely on apps and wearables to monitor their pet’s fitness and activity level, their nutrition, playtime, immunization schedule, vet appointments and a bevy of everyday requirements.
As you can sense, there is a huge industry right here waiting for quality app developers to dive into. There’s undoubtedly big money to be made in pet care app development. This is not to say that the opportunity is free of competition though. There are already major players bringing out intuitive new apps to help make pets’ and their owner’s lives easier. There is however, plenty of room for innovation and growth.
Pets love consistency, and that is what makes this a lucrative opportunity. If you can create an app that truly fills a gap in pet care, and helps pet owners find sustainable long-term value in your app, you are likely to have a large base of loyal users, because once they and their pets get comfortable with your app, they’re very likely to stick around.
What you need though, is to be really creative and useful. You need to sniff a real problem out, and then find a way to solve it better than anyone else. If you’re up to the challenge, here are a few basic steps and best practices that will help you find your way to a truly profitable pet care app that keeps your customers and their furry friends happy.
Sniff Out a Real Problem, and Find an Innovative Solution
If you’re a pet owner yourself, you probably have enough homework notes on this subject. If you aren’t, it would help to spend a lot of time with a friend who is. Of course, there is always social media, market research, surveys and expert insights that could bring you your big idea, but some good first-hand experience is always valuable.
There are a few kinds of apps that can be created – apps directly for the pet owner, apps for vets and apps for businesses that sell pet products.
Apps for the pet owner could aim at providing services that help make the management of pets easier. They could be apps that:
- Help them connect with the best vet in their area
- Help them keep track of the pet’s vaccinations, vet appointments, grooming schedules etc.
- Help them connect with pet sitters, dog walkers and other services that involve volunteers
- Help them connect to smart devices to remote monitor pets, track their position, dispense treats or even talk to pets while away, through a microphone and a speaker
Apps for vets and pet businesses could include:
- Branded apps that vets or businesses could use to attract, engage and educate pet owners about their services.
- Apps that vets can use to keep pet health records and send reminders to the pet owners, helping them stay loyal to the vet.
- Apps that help pet care businesses like pet supplies, boarding and grooming and other services manage their customers better to increase loyalty. They could do this by apps like scheduled pet food delivery, scheduled grooming appointments management, reminders and confirmations, apps for better marketing, and a lot more.
There are plenty of other ideas you could come up with yourself, but the above is a general overview you could use as a starting point, and think about what you can make better with your app. There are some super creative apps out there like Puppr that helps you teach your dog new tricks no matter what the age, and Finding Rover, that is a new kind of pet finder app that uses high quality facial recognition for pets. It lets you upload a lost pet’s photo and scan it across the lost and found database to detect a match and find your pet.
The trick is to spot a problem, of which there are plenty, and invest all your creativity into thinking how you can solve that problem with innovative tech.
Pay Unparalleled Attention to Design
It is key to remember that the very same users who will be using the pet care app you develop, are also using other highly successful apps like Uber, Airbnb, Facebook and more on a daily basis. So in terms of the user experience you can offer, you are effectively competing with every other app that the user is using for himself on a daily basis. It might sound akin to comparing apples and oranges, but that’s just how high user expectations are.
So pay a great deal of attention to how you design your app, and stop at nothing less than the best. Design thinking is an intrinsic part of every app’s success. When it comes to pet care apps, users can be a little more emotional and their desire to pamper their pets can translate to apps that are extremely well designed, as they’d settle for nothing but the prettiest best. So be sure to design your apps with pet friendly colors, lots of delightful images, easy access and smooth interfaces. Ensure that the app makes the user feel that she is doing something great for her pets every time she uses it.
A lot of things are similar between pet care apps and our own apps. Pets need healthy food like us, they need exercise like us and they need plenty of love, just like us. However, that still doesn’t put a ‘Tinder for Pets’ somewhere close on the radar yet. (Or does it?)
What it does do is reinforce the need for innovative solutions for pet owners’ unique needs. For more reasons than one, pet care industry is the best place to grow your business in 2019. So if you are an innovative thinker waiting to make a difference with tech, a super useful, tactile and creative pet care app might be just what you need.