As the demand for iPhone, iPad, and Android, mobile applications continue to exponentially grow; more companies are diverting their focus and investments towards mobile initiatives. Based on our experience in mobile app design and development, in this post, we’ll highlight five to do’s before you start your mobile application development.
Make a Business Case:
If you have an idea that could be made into a mobile application, first research if another mobile application with the same or similar idea already exists. With millions of applications developed to date, there’s a good chance an app for similar idea already exist. If your idea does exist, determine if you can differentiate your app by features, or significant changes to the user experience. Determine if there is sufficient demand or real need for the mobile application. When validating your concept, ensure the application is a good fit for your business, you will recoup your upfront development time & costs within your desired timeframe, and your idea will provide value to its intended end users.
Identify Target Audience:
Whether you are developing a mobile application for use by your business, other businesses, or consumers, you should have a good understanding of your target end user. This will help you make critical design, platform, and technology decisions that will support and align with your target audience. For example, if you are considering a global target market, your mobile application may need to be multi-lingual requiring that your platform supports the languages for your market segment.
Chose Mobile Platform:
With client applications, you may need to develop several versions of the client that will work on the same or different platforms. Each client platform has its own unique set of development requirements, configurations and if applicable, approval processes. Before beginning your application development, research this, and then select the most appropriate platform that aligns with your mobile application’s use, distribution channel, and business objectives. If you are developing the application for multiple platforms, architect the application’s design structure so it can easily be repurposed with minimal development effort and cost. It can get quite costly and time intensive to maintain, update, and recertify multiple versions of the same application. Most importantly, determine if you really need to develop a platform specific client mobile application, or instead can you create a mobile website/web version that can run on any internet enabled device.
Have a Delivery Plan:
When there are thousands of businesses trying to tap into the booming mobile application market, competition is fierce. If you did your due diligence and made your go/no go decision, what’s next? Realistically plan your entire development time line broken in to milestones, ensure you have contingencies in place for unforeseen setbacks, and manage each milestone to completion. With a quality product and targeted marketing, even if there is competition, you can still be successful. Not having a delivery plan and shifting timeline could result in to significant delays in product launch affecting overall success of your app.
Decide on Product Pricing:
Like any other product, you need to make sure the price for your mobile application will match demand. First determine your desired gross margin based on total cost of ownership for building, launching, and maintaining your application. Do a price comparison analysis to other similar mobile applications. Set your price based on gross margin, the results of the competitive price comparison, and your application’s unique value proposition. Lastly, as part of your initial launch, consider offering your mobile application for free or at a discounted price. This will help you attract interest, provide insight into your target market’s price sensitivity, and get you valuable feedback from your end users.
After the initial launch, it is important to keep marketing the application and improve its visibility to your target audience. Without the marketing efforts, your application may get buried under the stack of thousands of others, limiting your revenue potential. Marketing your application on social media sites, search engines, and extending the free launch promotion should help increase its consumer base. As end users try your product, they will continue to provide feedback that can help you prioritize future enhancements, improve the mobile application’s technical performance, or help create a better user experience. It is imperative that your initial app development budget includes budget for marketing. A typical app has 35% budgeted towards technology and 65% towards marketing, administration, and support.
In summary, the five to do’s before you start your mobile application development are:
- Make a Business case – Is there sufficient demand?
- Identify Target Audience – Who is your target market?
- Chose Mobile Platform – What’s the best mobile platform for initial launch?
- Have a Delivery Plan – When do you want to go to market?
- Decide on Product Pricing – What’s your unique value proposition?
Invonto’s mobile application development team has many years of experience in iOS and Android mobile app development. We have built mobile apps for Transamerica, America’s Got Talent, Party Rental Ltd, and several other companies. We can help you build an amazing mobile app for your business. If you are not sure what your next steps should be or if you are unsure of the feasibility of your ideas, contact us to setup a free initial consultation for discussing your mobile application development project.