Sitting down to developing a mobile app is a big step toward moving into the mobile market. Working with a mobile app development company is your best bet to come out with a great app concept with a sure path to launch. Here are some questions that are important to ask yourself and your mobile app development partners.
1. Do you want Android or iOS?
Smartphones are dominated by iOS and Android operating systems. Android has the most abundant user-base by a huge margin, but iOS apps have much higher average revenue generation. Ideally you want to be on both, and you might even throw Windows into the mix, but for most new apps it is a good idea to start with one and expand from there. Once you’ve worked out how the app works on one platform, its just a matter of replicating that on other platforms and making the necessary app design tweaks to fit the operating system.
2. What’s your niche?
Apps are most successful when they target a specific niche of customers. Trying to attract everyone is likely to end up attracting no one. You can expand your reach over time, but when you are first making an app you need to have a target market to base your decisions around, so that you can focus on how to design an app for that audience.
3. What’s your monetization strategy?
Are you going to follow the trends of the app market with free downloads and in-app purchases? Can a non-free app work? Or do you have a more unique plan for monetization? Some apps even willfully avoid monetization in order to prioritize user acquisition, which is fine—but it needs to be deliberate. Monetization is important, even for visionary entrepreneurs who are more interested in changing the world; you need money to return what was invested in development and expand from there. How you monetize will be unique to your business model, and there is a lot of flexibility there. The only advice I would give is that free apps have a clear advantage in today’s market, since “free” encourages people to download risk-free.
4. What are your design goals?
Mobile app design is exceptionally important. Design encompasses the aesthetics, the information architecture, the modes of interaction, and more. Before embarking on the app design, you should create a list of what goals you want to fulfil, so that when the right designs come across your desk, you’ll be able to recognize them.
Here are a few things to think about, and of course any good mobile app development companies can help out here:
– Do you have existing business ventures which the app is related to? Be sure to design the branding of the app to connect them visually.
– Try to arrange the flow of the app so that users accomplish their goals in as few steps as possible.
5. What are the infrastructure and back-end costs?
Some apps make significant use of cloud services, or server hosting to facilitate logins, storage, notifications, and other functions. You may also need to pay for a license for a third-party API or SDK that enables a key functionality. The prices may even increase as you gain users and your back-end demands scale up. Even Apple charges an annual $99 fee for your developer account, on top of their 30% revenue share. It’s important to understand these costs before you start.
6. Can you implement any social media integration?
Social media is an easy way to growth hack your app, and several big social sites have developed APIs and SDKs which make it easy to tie your app to social media. Would your users find value in easily sharing from the app to their social accounts? Can you log-in through a social account to speed the onboarding process and take advantage of existing social networks? Simple interactions like these can be very valuable.
7. What are your growth goals?
The point of any startup or mobile business expansion is to drive growth. There are many different ways you can measure growth with a mobile app. To name a few:
App store ranking
You should determine which goals you prioritize, because it will inform the design process and help give the project a clear direction. It will also help you know what kind of analytics you want access to for measuring your success.
8. What is your release process & schedule?
You may or may not have a specific launch window you are aiming for, but regardless you should have a plan for how the launch will proceed. You’ll need to prepare the app store page, which means having an icon, title, description, screenshots, and details about the app. If you’re launching on iTunes you’ll need to await approval from Apple before you can go live. Will the mobile app development company you work with be able to supply assets or help you go live? Launching is already stressful enough by nature, so make sure you get the answers you need to avoid any potential problems.
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