There’s no getting away from the fact that developing an app can be an expensive process, and that’s without taking into account the ongoing maintenance and development required to keep it at the top of its game. In the world of software, nothing stands still for long: apps that were built three years ago could be redundant thanks to changes to operating systems, and failing to keep abreast of recent changes could mean you miss out on potential customers.
Before you kick off an app development project, there are a few things that you should think about. Below, we’ve rounded up some of the biggest considerations to ensure you build an app that not only makes sense for your business and users but will drive consistent results.
Choosing the right platforms
Perhaps one of the most important things to consider when starting on an app development project is choosing the right platform for your needs. Android and iOS are the two dominant operating systems, and although there have been times where iOS or Android have been more popular in the UK, the latest 2021 data suggests they’re now neck and neck. Although you might decide to launch on both platforms at the same time, that effectively means you’ll need to build two apps for your business, doubling development costs and slowing down the process. On the other hand, you might follow the lead of some firms and launch exclusively on one platform first, such as iOS, so you can begin to build an audience, test out your ideas and generate revenue, and then funnel that back into app development for an Android app.
It’s also worth thinking about the benefits of a web app over a native app. As consumers use other web-enabled devices like their tablets, smartwatches, laptops, and even smart fridges, a progressive web app (PWA) could prove more cost-effective than developing software for different platforms. It’s effectively a website that can be accessed from virtually any device.
Finding the right app developer
Once you’ve decided that there’s a need for a new app like yours, the next consideration to make is finding the right app development company for the job. If you’re building an app for iOS and Android, you’ll need to work with a team that’s fluent in two coding languages and build the infrastructure behind the scenes to cope with demand for your features. At Zudu, we offer Android and iOS app development for both enterprise and consumer-focused apps.
When thinking about your app development project, remember that you’ll need to find a full stack web developer who can build the API and the server infrastructure to handle user data, and a designer to ensure your app and corresponding branding and marketing look the part. Other roles you need to think about include an app development QA tester and a project manager to meet deadlines – a full-service agency can handle everything under one roof.
Understanding the competition
Something else that you should think about when developing your app is the competition. It’s wise to spend some time before you commission an app to see what your rivals are doing and ask yourself whether they’re doing it better than you. In a competitive landscape, it’s vital that your app offers something different and has a hook – if it’s “just another Uber” or “just another Amazon”, the chances are that potential customers won’t be interested. We recommend spending some time speaking to your ideal customer base to find out their current pain points and challenges. Identify similar products across the market and look for ways you can do things differently – and better. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel, but with 1 in 4 users abandoning mobile apps are just one use, your product needs to stand out.
Knowing how to promote it
And that brings us to our next point: promotion. As we’ve already touched upon, you need to think about how you’re going to spread the word about your application when it launches, or you’ll end up with an app that nobody’s using. Marketing should begin as soon as your app development kicks off – it’s a good idea to launch a landing page to collect email addresses and social media channels so you can build hype and get people excited about your product.
There are lots of other pre- and post-launch marketing strategies to consider adding into the mix, too. You could start a blog to update users on your development journey and let them have their say, use teasers to generate interest, and pitch your new app to tech blogs. Beta testing can also generate interest from your customer base, and applying to app awards can give you a boost right out of the gate. Giveaways, press releases, and guerrilla marketing can all be leveraged to get more eyeballs on your app, as can freebies and extended trials.
The truth is that starting development on your own app can be an incredibly exciting time, and though it’s natural to want to dive in head-first and launch as soon as you can, it’s worth considering the points we’ve raised above first. The more organised you are, and the more information and data you have on your potential users and customers, the easier it’ll be to build an app that actually solves problems and boosts your chances of success. To find out more about how the team at Zudu could help you, give us a call on 01382 690080.