It turns out that our recent Mobile Monday theme of Foursquare for businesses was timed excellently, because Foursquare just released a "Foursquare for Business" app for iPhone and Android. The app is meant to be a companion app to the Foursquare Merchant Platform, and will allow business managers to do much of what they can do on the platform, on the go.
Several of Foursquare's new features and recent changes have made it apparent that Foursquare wants to encourage businesses to be more involved in their presences on the network.
While this app is still missing a lot of key features, offers nothing for Foursquare Brand Pages, and is limited to US-based merchants, it's certainly a step in the right direction. This is only Foursquare's second app and is still very new, but as more merchants get involved, more features are sure to follow.
Here's a rundown of the different parts of the Merchant Platform, and what your capabilities are for those features within the app:
You can access your venue's analytics through the app, such as:
- Total number of check-ins
- Total number of 'Likes'
- Number of check-ins on a given day
- Top customers from the past 60 days, including how many times they've checked in during that time frame
Being able to access more data about your venue's customers is another new addition to the app that is targeted towards businesses. In addition to top customers, managers can see all users that have visited your venue for the day, instead of just seeing users from the past three hours.
Creating Local Updates on the fly may be the most useful feature of the Foursquare for business app. You never know when something worthy of an update will happen, and there's not always time to run back to a computer if you're trying to run a business.
Within the app, you can create an update for one venue at a time, attach a picture, and share the update with Facebook and Twitter. Nothing was said in Foursquare's blog post or Support thread about attaching specials to Local Updates through the app.
While you will be able to turn specials on and off within the app, they will still need to be created via the Merchant Dashboard at foursquare.com. You can see which specials are active and inactive, and how many people have viewed and unlocked active specials.
What's Still Missing
As we said earlier, this is only Foursquare's second app, and the first one targeted to businesses. It's also only been out for six days. Foursquare is sure to add on more features as the app grows up. Some of the missing features we'd like to see are:
- The ability to create new specials in the app
- Attaching a special to a Local Update
- Features for Foursquare brand pages, or a separate app for pages
- The ability to manage more than one venue at a time (The app does let you manage multiple venues, but only one at a time. You need to go to the website to push a single update out to more than one venue.)
- The option to promote a Local Update
Have you tried out the app yet? Tell us what you think of it, and if you think any other features need to be added, below in the comments!