The iOne Studios Platform Team is pleased to announce two new features that will be sure to help you up your game for site users on iPhones. … and they are… the  “Smart App Banner,” and “Save to Home” features. These two features should result in:

  1. More app downloads and usage
  2. More return visitors who have bookmarked the site to their phone’s home screen!

Smart App Banners

A Smart App Banner is a native iOS banner that appears above your mobile wordpress site when you have programmed an iOS Native App to be associated with your site’s Brand.   Users trust them because they are integrated into the OS, and they are smart enough to know if you have or haven’t already downloaded the app.  If you have downloaded the app, the banner says “Open” and if you haven’t, it says “Install.” Here’s how you set up a Smart App Banner. First, find your app’s appstore ID within the iTunes App Store.  In this case, I set up 92 Q-Jams (Baltimore) to promote their streaming Q-Jams app.   I went to the App store and clicked on “copy link” to grab the link.

Screen Shot 2013-06-11 at 4.11.41 PM

I then pasted the link into TextEdit to find the 9-digit AppStore ID.

Screen Shot 2013-06-11 at 4.12.52 PM

With my AppStore ID, I navigated in the admin to get to Settings > Site Features, and scrolled down to the area with new Social config value options at the bottom. (note:  you will likely need to be an administrator to fulfil this part of the setup)

Screen Shot 2013-06-12 at 1.21.15 PM

I entered the iTunes App ID into the field, saved the settings, and voila!   Any visitor to 92Q.com from an iPhone will get prompted to download the 92Q app from the iTunes App Store.

smartbanner

Save to Home

“Save to Home” is a feature where users of iPhones will get prompted to bookmark the site or site page so that it saves on their home screen and looks like any App icon.   It “simulates” the app experience by using a graphical bookmark shortcut. Here’s how to set it up. 1.   Be sure that you have an iTouch icon set up for your brand.   You can do this in the admin at Appearance > Theme Options > Images tab.  Scroll down til you see “Apple Touch icon” and use the image selector to set it to a 1:1 aspect ratio image with minimum size of 114×114 (note:  larger is likely better, given Retina display devices). Screen Shot 2013-06-12 at 1.35.52 PM

2.  Navigate in the admin to Settings > Site Features, and scroll down to the area for Mobile settings.

Screen Shot 2013-06-12 at 1.34.51 PM

Enter in your “Add2Home” text.  This is the text that appears in the bubble tooltip to the end user.  Note the formatting characters and code characters for the icons.

For 92Q my text was:

  • “[i]Save Q-Jams to your iPhone![/i] Tap [icon] and then [b]Add to Home Screen[/b]”

Then lastly, don’t forget to give your site a “Site Shortname”.   It should be a shortened version of your site name that is less than 12 characters.  This is the value that will show up under the app icon on the user’s phone home screen.

Save settings. And voila!   Your next visitor will see the “Save to Home” dialog when they next visit your site.   When they see it, they can follow the directions to save an “app icon” to their iPhone’s home screen.

Screen Shot 2013-06-12 at 3.46.55 PM

Conclusion

We expect that these two features will result in:

  1. More app downloads and usage
  2. More return visitors who have bookmarked the site to their phone’s home screen!

They should!

Leave a Reply