The app development process begins with a lot of planning, as a company hiring an app developer needs to have a good idea of what they’re hoping to accomplish. Once you get into the nitty-gritty of development, you will need to consider many elements, such as whether you’re planning on developing for one platform or multiple and how you plan to monetize your app.
In short, there’s a lot that goes into developing an app. To stay organized, it helps to follow an app development checklist so you can be sure you’re covering all the important elements.
Define Your Goals for the App
First, you need to define your business goals and how the app will help you reach them. You should create a plan that identifies the must-have features of your app, as well as what supplementary features you think will resonate with users.
In addition, conduct research on your intended audience and your industry. You want to make sure there’s a gap in the market for an app such as yours. Consider any competitors so you don’t create an app that mimics the functionalities of another app in the industry.
Set a Budget and Timeline
There are several mobile app pricing tiers, so you will need to carefully consider your app development budget. Talk with your developer to discover what it will cost to make your app and see if it falls within your budget. If your budget is limited, stick to the core functionalities for the app and focus on any supplementary features later on.
Timeline goes hand in hand with budget. You will need to communicate your deadlines with your developer, while keeping in mind that a more flexible schedule could reduce development costs. If you require a quick turnaround, your developer may need to charge more in order to make everything happen in a shorter amount of time.
Find a Way to Monetize the App
When choosing what functionalities to add to your app, you’ll need to find a way to monetize it. Your monetization strategy will depend on your industry. If you’re in the retail industry, for instance, you could add a subscription service that offers shipping discounts.
In-app purchases can be effective, as they allow users to download the app for free and then decide whether to buy things that will enhance the app experience. Other options include in-app advertising or simply having app users pay to download. Whatever model you select, choose your monetization strategy wisely and make sure it will not detract from the user experience.
Choose Between a Hybrid and Native App
You will need to decide if you want to develop for iOS, Android, or both. Native apps, which are only developed for one operating system, sound more affordable at first. However, if you do decide to expand, you’ll have to create a completely new app for different operating systems and devices, which will cost you more in the long run.
Hybrid app development is often a better choice, as your developer can simultaneously create an app that will work well for both Android and iOS. This will allow you to cast a wider net and reach more users. Whichever path you choose, this is a decision you should make early in the development process.
Make Security a Priority
This may seem like a no-brainer, but there are plenty of apps that are vulnerable to security threats. Investing in security measures is essential with all the new ways that cybercriminals are seeking to exploit app vulnerabilities, in order to steal data. Your users should be able to trust the safety of your app, as a security breach could have a major impact on your business’ reputation and legacy.
The right developer can implement all-encompassing security protocols and practices to protect your app. By mitigating risk early on, you’ll be able to develop an app that has a very low chance of being breached.
Extensive App Testing
App testing goes hand in hand with implementing security measures since you’ll need to simulate ways that threats could affect your app and how you will thwart them. However, app testing goes beyond testing for security, as functionality flaws and design bugs will also detract from the user experience.
Your user interface needs to be rock-solid, with every button and transition working well for every operating system and device you are developing for. Test internally as well as externally with users who are unfamiliar with your app. By allowing them to navigate the app in a real-world setting, you’ll gain a deeper understanding of what’s working and what isn’t.
Market Your App
Of course, you need to make sure people will find your app, so put some time into creating a mobile marketing strategy. You should be promoting the app before it is available in app stores and planning marketing activities and promotions around your release date. Mobile app checklists help clients plan ahead, even beyond development, and are effective reminders for post-launch tasks as well.
Adding incentives for product reviews and ratings can provide cheap marketing for your app, as positive reviews help build your reputation. There are lots of marketing strategies to consider, though, from affiliate marketing to social advertising to creating a website designed to promote your app. The right marketing plan will increase app installs while also constantly engaging your users in order to expand your customer conversion and retention rates.
Using an App Development Checklist
There’s plenty that goes into developing a solid app, but it’s ultimately a matter of understanding your industry, your users, and the best ways to represent your brand. And, of course, all the planning in the world won’t help if you hire a subpar developer. That’s why it’s critical to select a high-quality, skilled development team to bring your app idea to life.
Here at 7T, we specialize in custom mobile app development for a variety of industries. We take a “business first” approach, working to craft an application that will meet your unique needs. In addition, we provide services in a range of emerging technologies, including blockchain, augmented reality, virtual reality, artificial intelligence and natural language processing.
7T is headquartered in Dallas, but we also work with clients in Austin, Houston, and across the United States. If you’re ready to discuss your app development project, please contact us today.