Everything is an app now. We see new apps every year pushing boundaries further and maybe even making our life, but now they are changing industries.
Apps got more complex over the years, and they offer more for the ever demanding users. Just think about it, we can now watch live TV on our mobile phone while on the move, in the always-connected world even distances get smaller every year. No doubt you had a though and said, hmm this would be a nice app, right?
Only very few entrepreneurs go through the process of building an app. From my experience, I can share some ideas with you that would help you get the job done faster, better and cheaper.
1. Always focus on the user
You would be amazed at how many clients come to us with a great idea that is built just around profits, completely forgetting the users. Yes, some of those startup app ideas can grow very fast and can generate a lot of interest and therefore investment. Never build your app idea around profits, always focus on users, always!
2. Have a plan
Yes, have an idea of how you think your app can generate profits but always focus on rule number one. It’s easy to get lost in possible ways to make money with your app, even tempting. But if you have no users using your app, then profits are still zero no matter how elaborate it is.
I usually say to my clients about this at the very beginning, focus on the people and profits will come. It’s possible that after you have launched your new app, you can discover other possible revenues you have not even though of yet. Remember how long it took Facebook and Twitter figure out how to make money from their business, by then they had massive userbase already. My advice here is that if you have something great, don’t let your idea be spoiled by greed for profits. Have a plan, yes, but your priority should be happy users.
3. Choose a scalable platform
A bit tricky because some companies that build apps will not touch a cloud hosting platform and you would need to hire another company to do that, and there can be friction. Empire Elements will architect the cloud hosting platform for you, design and prototype your app, build and deliver it to the store. What’s important here is the scaling part, but what does it mean? Simple, your cloud platform needs to be able to cope with the rapid and relentless accumulation of users. That poses specific challenges of course but with a robust architecture from the very beginning, you will be saved huge headaches later. Plan how you want to grow your app and architect the solution around it. We like to use AWS which offers services that are integrated nicely together. That would be perhaps infinitely scalable S3 storage and global CloudFront network, serverless API Gateway, mobile user Cognito service and even no-SQL database. You need to have a plan of what happens when you have thousands of users, ten thousand, hundred thousand of users using your app daily, what happens then?
4. Hire an expert, professional
Everyone is an expert nowadays. You can hire a lonely wolf app developer or an international agency with offices on three continents. The choice is yours but always consider experience and skill. That is very easy to verify really, and you can see the work they did and decide to give a call to their clients and get their feedback directly. When building anything digital, the skill is what matters the most. It could be a difference between success and failure.
Working with a professional app building agency means that you have a team of experts available to your disposal. You can bounce ideas, you can discuss what works and what doesn’t, and they would help you make better business ideas. They would help you save money and make more while focusing on the user. I know we do this for every client.
5. Be realistic
Don’t just pile on features, think of the user as per my point number one. You need to be realistic. What can we build within our budget that will have the most impact? Start with core functionality and then decide when and how you add new features. Creating an Airbnb app business for £5,000 is just not realistic. Set your practical requirements from a Minimum Viable Product and take it from there. Launch the app, keep expanding, keep getting new customers and keep building.
Well and here you have it. These are the top five tips to watch out for when you are starting new app development. Let me know if you find it useful and even if you don’t! Which other tips would you give?
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It usually starts with: "I've got this crazy idea!"