Software development for startups
We have two main kinds of clients: those who want to create a mobile app startup from scratch and those who already have a fast-growing company but want to extend their “sphere of influence” to the world of mobile. Both entrepreneurs are on the right track: the world is getting more and more mobile with every year, and the “mobile-first” approach is the key market trend. So how to be successful in the app development and expansion of the target audience?
What makes an app successful
We are going to review the main components of the application success to understand what actually makes an app successful.
1. The market
The first thing to do before starting a software development process is to carry out a full market analysis, identify competitors and the niche in which your product (application or service) will feel as comfortable as possible. Thus, releasing an Instagram alternative, there always lies a risk that it might not make a hit if the product does not have fundamental differences from the original one.
Mobile (smartphone) OS market share in 2009 – 2017 globally by Statista
For the first quarter of 2017, the most popular mobile platform is Android with 86% of the market share and then iOS with its almost 14%. However, the revenue is not only about the market share, so let’s look at the CPI (Cost Per Install) and compare these two platforms.
Average Android / iOS CPI globally in February 2017, USD by Statista
This graph clearly shows that the iOS platform has almost two times higher cost per install despite the fact that its market share is almost four times smaller compared to Android. The question “which platform to choose” is the matter of budget in many cases and the matter of “app spreading” in particular.
2. The audience
Next, you need to decide on the audience youк mobile app startup will target and make a complete analysis from the country of residence to the age and gender of those people. Additionally, you need to keep in mind that developing a paid app, target audience and the price of the item must be selected in such a way that your clients have the opportunity to buy the product that you are offering. And still, it’s worth mentioning some aspects separately:
- Time. For example, the time that users spend on interacting with their smartphones. Most people use their devices all day long and this gives an excellent opportunity to help users ease routine tasks. For example, a barcode scanner will help avoid problems when buying products for people allergic or sensitive to certain components;
- Geolocation and targeted content. This option will help provide the most relevant content to users by defining their requests and location;
- Notifications. Accurate and meaningful notifications will help customers stay informed about the company’s news. Moreover, you can send news about discounts and promotions currently taking place, remind users about certain tasks, notify about the news within the app.
3. The platform
Next point is something really worth thinking about – a platform which you are planning to run your application on. This question is largely derived from the previous ones because it was designed for an understanding of the product market and its target audience. What is the difference? A native application is developed for a specific hardware and software platform (Android or iOS) and has its own features and limitations, but you can work offline and use most of the device’s functions.
Mobile apps number in different stores in March, 2017 by Statista
4. Native or cross-platform app
This subsection is closely connected with the previous paragraph but addresses a global problem: if a mobile app startup wants to reach as many users as possible, the option is obvious – you need to make an application for all the popular platforms. And there are two options: either develop the application for each platform separately or create a cross-platform one. The first option is more expensive and takes more time, but the quality of the final product would be a benefit.
Either developing cross-platform (in most cases) or native application (fewer cases), you may face with the following design and usability problems:
- Navigation, intuitive user flow or whatever it might be named. When creating a native app, developers are using official guides and platform standards which vary, so building native-like feeling on all devices is a big problem. For inexperienced people, of course;
- Design. The same as navigation elements and ease of use – Android apps are different from iOS ones, use different approaches and design standards which may cause different issues. Either in development and usage;
- Operation speed. Cross-platform applications may work fast and give a great user experience, today developers have a vast number of instruments and frameworks. But still, it’s a question of optimization and different hardware usage approaches, native apps are built to work fast on a particular device.
The best option in app development for mobile app startups is undoubtedly outsourcing. It is much more advantageous since you do not have to spend a dramatic number of funds on search, recruitment, and salaries for new employees. Simply hire a “ready-made” professionals who know their business. After the app reaches success, it is possible to spend a large amount of money and open an in-house development team, however, most startups continue with outsourcing and the dedicated development team they have already worked with for a while by this point.
Read also: Infographic: Outsourcing to Ukraine
How to make a successful mobile app startup
In this uncomplicated way, we have tried to convey the baosic information which is often hard to find for the “young-gun” startups wishing to develop an app and win the larger audience. For any questions, do not hesitate to contact us.