How To Test Mobile Websites With Google Chrome

Here is a quick video on how to test how your mobile site or App looks by using a Chrome web inspector web tools.  This will simulate iPads, iPhones, Android Phones and it will also simulate network speed.  For example, you could test how your hybrid App will load on a Samsung Galaxy on a 3G network.

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Jeremy Callahan The App Man

Twitter: @jeremycallahan

Jeremy Callahan is a Mobile Commerce Expert, App Developer and Founder at Flip Shop Marketing

Helping People Make Decisions

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Quite often, and I’m sure this happens to you as well. Friends and family will ask me for advice or my opinion about how they should handle an issue. Like me, your first reaction is usually to offer problem-solving advice. But I want to challenge you to take a different approach that will really help the person who is asking.

You see, when someone is asking this question, what they are really saying is… “I value your thoughts, I suck at making decisions, and no matter what you tell me I’m not going to listen and end up doing nothing anyways”. Look people that are good at making decisions don’t ask for opinions. They’ve made a decision and they are telling you what they are going to do, right or wrong!

Lets pretend the question is… “I’m thinking about getting back together with my ex, do you think that is a good idea”?

I’m sure someone you know has asked you this very question recently. I’m telling you right now you are in a trap. This person already knows you so they know how you feel about what they are asking. Lucky for you, I know the way out of this trap.

First realize that the person asking is struggling with their thoughts. Their mind functions exactly like every other mind in the universe. They are weighing the pro vs. cons and still cannot decide. Every person on the planet is guilty of doing that… Everyone!

Now that you know the nature of the question you can provide some knowledge to really help them. My standard answer to any question is the question: “If you were in a rock band… what instrument would you play?” At this point I get confused looks like what the hell is he talking about. Then in a few seconds I see people’s look go from “What kind of an answer is that” to “Oh shit… I see what you are saying”.

That question cuts to your core about how you see your life in this very moment. It forces the person to think about who they want to be. You have planted a seed in their mind that has forced them to evaluate themselves and determine what they really want in life.

A band is a great metaphor… Maybe at that moment they feel like they are playing bass and keep the beat in the background.   Perhaps they are most happy in this situation. Or perhaps they feel like they have been keeping the beat going while suppressing their own talent. We have all been in a position where we feel held back

So the next time you are having a hard time making a decision or someone asks your opinion ask: “If you were in a rock band… what instrument would you play?”

I don’t know about you but I’m the Lead Singer in my life! I do know that you are creative and dreams. I’m not asking you if you are going towards those dreams yet. I’m asking you if you have really sat with yourself and determined what you want? What do YOU want? What is best for YOU?

In order to know what you want… You have to look within yourself. Trust me, the answer is you if you are brave enough to look.

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Jeremy Callahan The App Man

Twitter: @jeremycallahan

Jeremy Callahan is a Mobile Commerce Expert, App Developer and Founder at Flip Shop Marketing


The Importance of Your App Being in Both App Stores

The Importance of Being in Both App Stores

You may be shocked to learn that 80% of mobile phones in the world today are Androids. This is an important fact to consider before building an App. You may have strong feeling that Apple is far superior to Android but that has zero relevance to your Apps success.

It simply is not good enough to only have your App in one App Store!

Android remained the world’s most widely used smartphone operating system with 80.7 percent market share, while iOS recorded 17.7 percent market share.*

It’s obvious that you will want to be in both App stores. Most companies take the path of having two separate development teams to build the exact same App for each platform. Before you make this massive mistake I want you to ask one simple question:

Is your App nothing more than a website on a phone?

Did you know that over 85% of the Apps on a users phone are nothing more than websites? Look at your phone right now and prove me wrong. Go down the list… Facebook, Yelp, Your Bank, Instagram, Youtube… I think you understand what I am saying right?

If your App falls into this category then I want you to take a look at this post I wrote about Hybrid vs. Native App programming. In short it says that if your App is nothing more than a website you need to choose a hybrid App development approach and use HTML/CSS/JavaScript. By doing this, you can use the same code base to be in both App stores.

If you have a game like Angry Birds or live car tracking like Uber you are going to need programmers for iOS and Android. Otherwise, make the smart decision and go with hybrid.

But regardless of your development approach you 100% must be in both App stores. It is the fastest way to double your App installs, usage and ultimately your profits.

Take a moment to consider how you will launch your App? You will likely run a press release, Facebook & social media posts, emails, advertisements, etc. Now what if the Huffington Post picks up your press release and posts a national article about how great you are? Consider that if your App is only in iTunes only 20% of the people reading that article could install your App.

That right there would be a massive missed opportunity! Launching successfully is a combination of development and marketing. If you fail to develop for both platforms then you have sold yourself short.

The other important takeaway is that you need to time both of your App store releases to be simultaneous. Once you submit to Apple it can take up to 7 days to get approval. Google Play takes about 3 hours. So always be mindful that whether you are developing one or two code bases that you will need to manage the process so that you can launch at the same time.


Jeremy Callahan The App Man

Jeremy Callahan

Twitter @jeremycallahan

App Store Optimization Basics

App Store Optimization (ASO) is slightly different than SEO because the only things that you can optimize to increase your App store visibility is your App title, keywords and description. In SEO you could rank for different keywords to various pages to your site. In the App store you only have one page that traffic flows to.

App Discovery Statistics

Did you know that over 60% of your App installs come from people searching the App store? Right now people are searching for “Dog Collars” on Goggle Play and iTunes. Obviously if you are the first App that appears in the search results you are going to get a ton of free traffic and installs. Free traffic and installs are amazing, so you need to work out a strategy now to rank up.

Researching Keywords

The first thing to do is to research keywords that are related to you App. You can either do this yourself or use Fivrr. Fivrr is an outsourcing site where people post their services starting at $5. So for $5 you can get someone to do keyword research for words that you want to focus on.

Whether you do this yourself or outsource it you want to make sure you use Mobile Action, App Annie or Sensor Tower. These three websites have tools that allow you search what keywords other Apps similar to yours are using. So if you are in the pet’s space, you can put in your competitors App and see how they rank for various words. With a paid version of these sites you can run keyword comparisons and they will also suggest different keywords to go after.

The other option is to use the Google Keyword tool. Although the results are not App related, you will still be able to get monthly search volumes for keywords. They also have a suggestion tool so if you search pets, it will return up to 100 other keywords with the search volume for each word. In the image below you can see some of the suggestions returned when I searched for “pets”.

aso Keyword Research

I believe the best research approach is to go to Google and find the search volumes. Once you have targeted some words, then go over to Fivrr and find someone to research those terms using Sensor Tower, App Annie or Mobile Action.

Once you have completed your keyword research you will need to decide on an App name, keywords and create a description.

There is one key point I cannot hammer home enough. Do NOT use the same keywords in your title as you do in the keywords section. For instance, lets say your App is called “Dog It” which is for purchasing dog products. First, the maximum an App title can be is 50 characters in iTunes and 30 in Google Play.

So a better name than “Dog It” would be “Dog It – Purchase Discount Pet Products”. By using the full character space you have now added the keywords: dog, purchase, discount, pet and products. As I mentioned before you do NOT want to repeat these in the keyword section!

The keyword section is 100 characters maximum and you need to use this wisely. The rules are simple… comma delimited, no spaces and no repeating (hammering, hammering). Here is an example. Since your title has the word dog and pet lets put in the plural of those two:


That is the process of naming your App and finding keywords! A word of caution… you should try to never re-name your App after it is published. Apple for one frowns upon this and I have been rejected when I re-subimitted my App. I think they automatically reject Apps that submit name changes. I was able to get it through after emailing them, but that process took and extra few days.

You can changed your keywords at anytime. Any good ASO person would tell you that you need to constantly be monitoring how your ranking for each keyword using an ASO tools (Mobile Action, et al). Once your App is live you can take full advantage of these tools by comparing your App to any competitors that you set.

The only remaining piece is the description of your App. These can be 4000 characters. I would suggest that you find out the top ranking Apps similar to yours and then go onto iTunes or Google Play and check out their descriptions. I am NOT telling you to copy them. I am asking you look at how long they are and their keyword density. Since you know their keywords from Sensor Tower you can now see how they use those words in their description, keywords and titles. Then it’s either time to write your own or get back on Fivrr and use someone there.

Now you have a plan for App Store Optimization


Jeremy Callahan The App Man

Jeremy Callahan

Twitter @jeremycallahan

Effective Pre-Launch Mobile App Marketing Strategy

Before you go out and spend money on building your App. The first step is to determine if there is a market for what you are going to build. I know you have a unique and great idea but how do you really know if people will use your App. And an even better question is if they do use it… How will they find it in the App store?  Simply put you need a mobile app marketing strategy.

You are going to have to market it through both free and paid channels. So let me give you some ideas to see if there is a market and second drum up interest before launching. In other words… Getting emails you can market to later.

Effective Pre Launch App Marketing Plan

The first thing to do is to create a one-page web page. I use Launch Rock for this (   This is a very simple online drag and drop tool that allows you to create pages that capture user emails. They have a free version and a $5 per month version. The main thing you must convey is that by submitting their email they will be notified when you launch.

Once you have your page setup you need to start marketing everyone you know and get feedback and support. Pull every email you have from Gmail, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. Then use a service like Mail Chimp to send blast emails to these people. I recommend using Mail Chimp because you can setup campaigns and track who opened their emails. Then a few days later you can re-send the email to the people who did not open the first email.

Do not be afraid to beat your friends and family over the head with your emails and App idea. Trust me when I tell you that everyone you know is interested in what you are doing. They are! I know a guy who is a painter that I haven’t seen in years. The other night I ran into him and I said, “Shit, I just had my apartment painted and I didn’t think of you”.   I didn’t think of him because I haven’t seen or heard from him in 5 years. But I would much rather of hired him. So make sure everyone you know knows what you are doing.

Every time I have bulk emailed my friends with my new endeavors I get great responses. They just may say “I don’t know anyone who can help right now but if I do I’ll send them your way”.   The hidden benefit is that you will re-connect with your old friends. The idea is that you want people to know about you and what you are doing.

The next step is setting up an auto responder campaign. This is a series of emails that you will send over a given period of time. After a user submits their email you can plan a strategy to get the involved in your App. This could be “sneak peaks” of the App. Or you could ask users to take surveys about certain features you might roll out first. Get creative! Ask people to sign-up to help you beta test the App.

Now that you have a landing page you can start promoting it on your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and any other social media pages you have.

You can also start running some ad’s to your landing page and see if you can get email conversions.  I recommend running ads on Bing or Yahoo simply because you get the same amount of hits for 1/3 of the price on Google. Plus, at this point it’s likely you do not have any images, headlines or copy. By using a lower cost engine you can refine your ads.

Generally you want a method to capture a users email and then continue to engage them through the App launch. If you are struggling to get users at this stage then you might want to pivot to another idea or refine your message. This step is critical because it will frame your market and get you to create App marketing materials like copy, headlines and images.

Jeremy Callahan The App Man


Jeremy Callahan

Twitter @jeremycallahan

The Unconventional Guide to App Building – Part 1

Step 1 – The Foundation

The steps to App building are similar to building a home. If you were building a home the first thing you’d consider is how much home can I build with my budget. In the startup world, we call this the MVP

Minimum Viable Product: So when we talk about product development, I want you to think what are the minimum features that are needed to get this to market so we can get user feedback. Our goal is to get this in front of people and find out how well it works. Then we can make additions and adjustments in the next version.

There are two parts to the foundation

One is the Name, logo, design and URL. At this point I’m sure you at least have a name in mind. Make sure to search the iStore and Android Marketplace to verify that the name is available. If you do not find an app with that name, it is available. For the web URL you can go to Godaddy and run a search.

To reserve the name you will need to create a developer account in the iStore and Android market place and register a new App with that name. This does not mean you have to publish an App. It just means that you have created the initial App landing page. This is the page people see when they search for you in iTunes. Once you have the App registered you have 180 days to publish your App or the name will be lost.

Choosing a Keyword Friendly Name

Names in iTunes can be 255 characters and making the most of this is important for keyword purposes. For instance your app might be to find dog walkers in your neighborhood and called: Dog Walkers

But you have 255 characters so a better name would be: Dog Walkers – Find licensed pet sitters, walkers and trainers in your neighborhood. Now when people search for ‘pet sitters’ your App comes up in the search.

The second step to the foundation is design!

The first step is to create a style guide. The style guide is simply a logo, headings, colors, buttons, icons, etc that will be in the App. You can do a Google image search for “Mobile App Style Guide” and see examples of what you are looking to build. It is similar to the image below:

How to Build Apps Style Guide

To create the guide I recommend going on Fivrr and searching for “App Style Guides”. This will return a list of people who will create them for you for as little as $5.

Fivrr is a site where people work for $5 per project. Well actually $5 is just the starting point. For a decent style guide you are looking at around $30 – $50 per request. Fivrr is great for design because you can get several designs for a small investment

The best way to use Fivrr is to find three to four people and then purchase their services. Once you have the results you can pick and choose elements you like and combine those into a final style guide.

People always seem to get paranoid here thinking the designers will steal their idea. If you fall into that category I’d suggest working with us or a designer you feel you can trust. Use a designer you know or someone who you can meet with in person before they start working.

Keep in mind that the reason for the style guide is so you have something to hand off to the developers you hire. This guide will be used for the App and your website (assuming you also need a website).

And it is important that you have a brand identity that you can use from business cards, email templates or anything else with your brand on it. So take some action right now and find a good designer and have them create a style guide for you.

My final thought on design is a visualization exercise. Once you have your style guide I want you to print it out in high quality and as large as possible. Then pin that on your office or bedroom wall… Somewhere you will see it everyday

This will get emotionally involved in your App and seeing a design daily will keep you moving towards your goal!

The App Man Jeremy Callahan

Twitter: @jeremycallahan

Jeremy Callahan is a Mobile Commerce Expert, App Developer and Founder at Flip Shop Marketing

BS Facts About Hybrid or Native Apps Everyone Thinks Are True

Let me ask you a question… Of all the Apps right now on your phone, how many do nothing more than a regular website?  That right there is the answer to any debate on whether you should make your App with Hybrid or Native technologies. If you are really just making a website for a phone then you are wasting your time and money if you do not go hybrid.

Native vs. Hybrid Mobile Apps


For definition purposes hybrid is programmed in HTML/CSS/JavaScript and using one code base that you can publish into both App stores. Native means we have to program it separately for iOS and Android but we will have better access to the phone features like the accelerometer.

I will also tell you that I have programmed both hybrid and native Apps since 2011. The majority of the Apps are hybrid because I always take the smartest approach, which usually is based on what is the easiest to build and maintain. Plus as I stated before, 90% of the Apps on your phone are just glorified websites.

The Performance Lag. This is worth considering. Hybrid essentially takes the code and runs it inside a browser on your phone. Even though it looks like and App, it is running in a browser. Thus, if you need to call a core phone function (like geolocation, compass, accelerometer) that will cause a lag. Now this lag is a millisecond. Not a big deal if you are showing a map of restaurant locations near a person. But this can be a huge factor if you are Uber and showing where a car is in real time on a map.

The Facebook Effect. Zuckerberg isn’t any smarter than you or me. He is just a guy that hit a grand slam in his first at bat. In the early days of FB they went with a hybrid mobile approach. But they had to reverse course from a hybrid because in 2011 HTML5 had no way of scrolling content on a phone effectively. Since scrolling is a major part of FB they scrapped their approach and went native. Mark then made a few comments that HTML5 wasn’t ready. Group think prevailed and any CTO who made a mobile decision had to choose native because “that’s what Facebook is doing”.

A Real Life Example. I am leading a team right now rebuilding a website, iPhone and Android App for one of the largest corporations in the world (sorry can’t disclose but you’ve saw/used their products today). We have one backend team that is handling all the web service calls and then three separate teams for Web, iPhone and Android. All three teams are rebuilding the registration, login and shopping pages and calling the same backend web services. We get into situations where the Android team has something working and then the web team requests a backend change that breaks their code.

In addition to that, the user experience is different across devices. Hence, we have a design team that makes comps for all three environments. But all three sites do exactly the same thing! There is absolutely no reason (programmatically) that we should not be on a hybrid platform. All three are just glorified websites.

I get the inner workings of how decisions are made. And selling people on one code base being used for three platforms seems like pie in the sky type of stuff. But its not! You are all being sold a bullshit concept that you have to have three separate code bases for the same thing. Let that sink in…

If you are a developer, project manager, CTO… whatever. You need to wake up right now and challenge the status quo. Ask a simple question “Is our App just a glorified website”? If the answer is “Yes” then choosing anything other than hybrid is a major mistake.

Jeremy Callahan The App Man

Jeremy Callahan

Twitter @jeremycallahan

5 Ideas for A Kick-Ass Mobile App

Retailers and brands are putting too much importance on their return on investment and not enough on their Apps importance on the shoppers journey and overall brand experience. If you truly want a kick-ass mobile App check out these 5 ideas to put you above the competition.

  1. Reward Loyalty! Do you know who your most loyal customers are? And if so, how are you rewarding them for engaging through your App? Here are two ideas…Sears just rolled out a rewards program where in-store shoppers to find “Pets” similar to Pokémon Go. They have teamed up with “The Life of Pets” movie and made an in-store game where users are rewarded for finding and capturing “pets” while in the store.

    Flip Shop Marketing has an App that allows retailers to put in product image designs of concept products. The idea is that if you have 1000’s of potential products like Shoes or dresses you can reward your customers from Swiping through and liking or passing on product designs. Brands can then offer a discount or cash reward for customers who swipe through 100, 200, 300… products. Not only are user rewarded but brands can use this data to determine what their existing customers actually want and which designs to invest in.

  1. Personalization! Make no mistake about it personalization is here to stay. Eventually everyone will have personalized education and a diet specific to their DNA structure. Imagine how much longer we will all live and intelligent we will be!

    Having said all that… you likely do not have a diet or education brand. But regardless you need to know every action a user takes on your website and App. Every single product they looked at, add to their cart, bought or did not buy. Are you tracking this on an individual basis? Are you linking users from your website to your App via their email? You cannot have personalization without data. So first things first tighten up your data gathering. And if you have data start thinking of how you can leverage it in your App!

  1. Image Size and Quality! Gone are the days of small crappy images people. List views or even Pinterest style layouts are not taking advantage of the entire screen space. If there is an image on your site it should be the entire width and height of the device. Plus in every survey under the sun related to mobile, user want bigger images. Weather its news, products, event venues, people want a large visual image. Here is an entire article if you don’t believe me: Size Does Matter!


  1. No Top Navigation! That’s right you heard me… you do not need a banner across the top of your app with the App name and navigation. It’s a complete waste of space. Does Snap Chat have a top navigation bar? Nope, and you shouldn’t either. Users are expecting things to happen when they swipe in an App. For instance, Swiping down on Snap Chat revels the settings menu.


  1. Fast Purchasing! If you have an “Add to Cart” button on your App you suck! You are copying everyone else and using a method that was designed for desktop websites. This is mobile baby and if you use the term “Path to Purchase” you are setting the industry back. There is no “path”… the user should click “Buy Now” and be taken to a confirmation screen.

    Make no mistake about it, the reason Uber is so successful is that you never have to pay when you get to your location. Every time you take an Uber it’s like a free ride (until you get an email or bank statement). And this is exactly how buying anything on mobile should be. If you have the users Credit Card make the sale now!

    Jeremy Callahan

    Jeremy Callahan is an Expert in Mobile Commerce & App Development

Find A Way!

I wanted to post about a great saying “Find A Way”. I’ll never forget how I first heard this saying… It was 1990 and I came back to schoolJeremy Callahan - Find A Way from Christmas break and I see the whole baseball team walking around with these stupid shirts that said “Find A Way” on them.

I had no idea what the hell was going on so I asked and the response was “Find A Way to win”. I was impressed! Think about it for a minute… This saying has no room for excuses; it’s a one-way ticket. No matter how big the problem is or what forces you are up against you can either retreat or Find A Way to Win!

Jeremy Callahan - Find A Way

Coach Gary Dreher

The brainchild behind this saying was Gary Dreher our high school baseball coach who was hell of a guy. I didn’t play baseball but he loved me because I worked at the Valley Hi Country Club and used to let him play golf in the afternoon after all the members had left.

I’m not sure how coach came up with this idea but it was genius! If you are down 2 -0 in the last inning… “Find A Way”. When I was failing his Algebra course “Find A Way Callahan” is what he said. I found a way alright… Free Golf!  That year the team went on to be ranked #1 in the state of California. And I’ll bet that every guy on that team still lives by that saying!

Years later when I was coaching my daughter’s soccer team that wasn’t so great I adopted the saying! The girls totally bought in and we went on to win the championship. In fact years later when I was telling her friend Samantha about something that wasn’t going my way she fired back “Find A Way Jeremy”. Bam… I was right back to being focused!

So today I’m giving back. I’m putting it out there to help motivate you. No matter how big the problem is or what forces you are up against stop making excuses.

Let me give you a brief summary of how the human mind operates. In short it wants to do the easiest, most un-painful things. For instance, deep in your mind you believe it is less painful to overeat than it is to diet. Because going on a diet is painful and causes you discomfort. But don’t be fooled… You are going to feel like shit for over eating.

The problem is that in your mind you equate more pain to dieting than felling bad inside. That’s because your brain (subconscious to be exact) is programmed to take the easy way out. You may not have a dieting issue but whatever issues you have it’s the same principals that are holding you back.

In everything you’ve accomplished in your life the starting point was you found a way to make a decision to change. So today, right now, I challenge you to “Find A Way” to get past whatever is holding you back!

Be Excellent!

Jeremy Callahan The App Man

Contact Me!

Twitter: @jeremycallahan

Jeremy Callahan is a Mobile Commerce Expert, App Developer and Founder at Flip Shop Marketing

Yesterday You Said Tomorrow

Jeremy Callahan

What is holding you back?

I’m going to quit smoking, I’m going to loose some weight, I’m going to start exercising… WHATEVER it is… Let this saying sink in for a moment. I love this saying. I first heard it from my friend Chris Messenger.

It’s too easy to say that the source of your “tomorrow” item is procrastination. It’s very likely your source is DECISION. Think about it, anytime you are unmotivated, depressed or lazy, 9 out of 10 times it is because you haven’t made a decision to commit to do something.

Take for instance “Tomorrow I’m going to start dieting”. What decision have you really made? I’d hate to break it to you but your decision is weak. Tomorrow… are you kidding me? A decision is right now and instant.

You see, a strong decision leads to strong action. Tomorrow isn’t a strong decision… RIGHT NOW is a strong decision and commitment. So what are you willing to commit to right now, TODAY?

And I want you to stop lying to yourself that tomorrow you will actually commit and start whatever it is you are stalling on. You aren’t going to do shit and you know it! You are going to make the same old bullshit excuses and get no closer to something that would make you a better person and improve your life. Because tomorrow you are going to say “I’ll do that tomorrow”.

Which is why I love the saying “Yesterday you said tomorrow”. I’m 100% sure everyone around me hates hearing that statement out of my mouth. But if someone says “tomorrow” to me the next thing out of my mouth is “Yesterday you said tomorrow”.

Look you and everyone else on the planet has the same amount of time in a day, week and a year. Have you ever wondered why some people get more done in that timespan then others? It’s actually a simple answer… Productive people make a decision to get shit done! They make decisions quickly and they rarely change those decision.

Another aspect of people that get more done than others is that they have no problem doing things that they hate doing. Nobody likes making cold calls, dieting, going to bed early, etc. But successful people have developed an inner strength to do things that others are not willing to do on a regular basis. And therefore they reach greater levels of success.

If you want to change your career then make a decision that you are committed to that and do not give in when things get tough. If you get to the gym and don’t feel like being there then that is a trigger that you should work out harder than you normally do.
But whatever you do, do not say “tomorrow”. Everything starts with a decision. So I am asking you to make one right now to being better than you were yesterday.

Have an Excellent Day!

Jeremy Callahan The App Man

Twitter: @jeremycallahan

Jeremy Callahan is a Mobile Commerce Expert, App Developer and Founder at Flip Shop Marketing