Things to Consider Before Developing a Mobile App

Developing a Mobile App?

Hey there! App development requires some serious thought these days. You need to succeed in a crowded marketplace if you are going to make a big enough splash to earn anything. Still, the upside is tremendous. If your business has a successful niche, and you’ve pretty much decided that a mobile app is right for you, take these points into consideration before making that final commitment. Once you answer each of the following questions, you’ll feel more confident and be ready to find the perfect app developers.

What Are Your App’s Goals?

What is it you want the app to accomplish? Are you out to make a profit? Increase your business revenue? Or are you looking to build brand recognition and loyalty? Maybe you’re after customer adoption and retention.

These are all separate and distinct goals, and each has a different impact on the functionality and design of your app. It is crucial to nail down exactly what your app is expected to achieve once it is released into the public space.

Who is Your Audience?

Who — exactly — do you expect to use this app? What do they get out of it? It’s fine to have your own goals, but if you don’t satisfy your target audience’s desires, it will fail. I can’t have that. Take the time to identify your ideal user. Find out the demographics of your user base. This info may already be part of your business, and if so, great. But if you don’t have this data then you really need to spend time getting it. Your app success depends on it.

What’s It Going to Cost?

Is your budget realistic? You may not have exact numbers yet, but you must have a ballpark figure to give your potential developers. Have you checked it out against industry standards? Have you factored in development costs and ongoing support, updates, revisions, bug fixes, new releases, plus the other things that occur during the lifecycle of a mobile app? Are you prepared for the long haul?

Who is Your Competition?

There are other mobile apps out there like the one you want to make, guaranteed. They already own the market you want. How much of that market share can you take from them? What will you offer their users that is better, faster, more intuitive, more creative, more fun, or more innovative than their app? You need to distinguish yourself in the marketplace by being the first with a new feature or being cheaper, or simply being in a class by yourself. Figure this out before you design your app.

Who is Going To Design The App?

Do you have professionals lined up to develop the app? Or will you do it yourself? If you are well-versed in UI, UX, graphic production, interactive design, HTML5, CSS3, as well as Android, Windows and iOS programming, then maybe you can do it yourself. Some people can. But I suggest you stick with the professionals. There is little room in today’s marketplace for hobbyists or even highly talented amateurs. Let’s discuss this further.

Who Will Be On My Team?

There are six basic choices for app development services:

⁃ In-house developers

⁃ Freelancers

⁃ Small businesses

⁃ Large Corporations

⁃ National

⁃ International

In-House Developers

If you have your own developers, you pretty much know your limits, your budget, your scheduling, the whole shebang. But there are strong arguments to be made for using an outside app development service. And those arguments are the same as listed above: you know your limits, your scheduling, etc., etc. Projects can get bogged down in many ways when done in-house. I don’t have to list those, do we?

Freelancers

Freelancers are flexible, capable, and willing to work hard. They have a higher cost-per-hour than in-house developers. They also tend to lack the ability to stay with a project over an extended period of time. If the lifecycle of a successful app is measured in years, the cost and availability of a freelance team can be a problem. But if what you want is a focused development team for a particular project with a clear endpoint, freelancers can be your best bet.

Small Businesses

Small businesses are ideal for small or middle-sized projects that span a longer time period than freelancers typically hang around. Small businesses are established in their communities, have regular offices and office hours, and can be reached during the business day because there is office staff available to take calls. The entire development team is usually under the same roof, so there is ample communication between your app’s team members and management when it is required. The costs can be contained, even though there is more overhead, because the staff is often on salary rather than charging per hour. Your app may be in development at the same time as other apps, though, slowing delivery time. If you factor this in, you’re good to go.

Large Corporations

Big businesses handle big, expensive, commercial accounts. You’ll know if you fall into this category, you’ll have the money to pay for it, and you probably won’t accept anything less. There’s not much I can tell you here that you don’t already know. Long term support, big, flashy rollouts, multi-version updates, multi-platform releases, extra long development times, these are all hallmarks of large corporation app development.

National or International

If you choose an app developer in your own country, you have no language issues, no problems with time zones or currency, no tax problems. But the internet brings everyone closer now. There are app development services around the world. Translation services are available for a fee, and some companies offer these services for free, especially to English. Some countries offer extremely low prices for development and design, and the quality varies from poor to great. You must do your homework to determine if that particular developer is right for your needs.

You’re Ready. Go.

If you’ve made it this far, you’ve experienced a good primer on what to consider when you want to make a mobile app. There’s a lot to think about, but it’s all necessary. Hopefully, you haven’t been discouraged, I’m quite sure you can do it. App development is hard work if you’re going to do it right, but the payoff is fantastic. Choose your app development service thoughtfully and enjoy your well-earned success.