It is predicted that by 2023 mobile apps will have generated 935 billion US dollars. It’s safe to say that making a computer or mobile app in 2021 is a safe bet for success.
On average we use only 9 apps per day. The question arises, how to make make your app successful and what is thse difference between the apps that make it and those that don’t? Thankfully, most of the guesswork is eliminated through tried and tested methods which we will explore in this article.
Creating an application for a computer or mobile requires software. If you are not well-versed in software development, consider outsourcing the development to an IT company. Many IT companies can design and build software from the ground up. Although software development is a choice when it comes to app development, it’s useful to familiarise yourself with the basic stages of software development:
- The concept (software idea)
- Designing the interface (coding and designing the UI)
- Developing a prototype of the software (rolling out a practise version)
- Testing (is the software working as intended and are there any problems?)
- Deploying and distributing the product ( rolling out a final working version of the software for use)
- Maintenance and application support (24/7 monitoring of the software and updating any bugs)
A successful app combines the market, product, and user in order to stand out from the crowd. Alongside these core factors, an app must be accessible, unique, and perform well to become a success. Instagram, WhatsApp, and Facebook are all successful examples of businesses that focus on these factors.
A high-quality app has these features:
- Targets a USP (Unique Selling Point)
- Runs as intended and to a high standard
- Easy for the user to use
- Looks visually appealing and streamlined
- Gets the user’s attention
- Provides a useful service to make the user’s life easier
An application is categorised into two main uses. Use for customers (consumer-use) or use in a business (business-use). Prior to developing your app, the sector your app will be used in must be decided. Let’s look at how to make your app successful in each category:
- Focus on keeping the user engaged
- Offers hassle-free payment options
- Protects user and business data
- Look nice and appeal to the target audience
- Have an easily navigated UI
- Offers a helpdesk or customer service support
Before you take your concept to creation it’s important to know what demographic you are targeting and whether your app will be used on the business-end or consumer-end of things.
Now we know what features a top-tier app should have, let’s explore some tips:
1. Know Your Target Audience
It may sound obvious but do you know who you are making the app for? The best way to make your app optimised to a target audience is through research. Target audience research can be done in many ways, especially with the use of the internet. Use polls, statistics, trends, forums, and even consider making a prototype app to send to your target demographic to receive feedback.
Use this feedback to optimise your app. Streamline it so the intended users have a smoother experience. This will also help you focus on one particular gap in the market or narrow down your users which is vital for making a relevant app.
2. Define The Scope
Once you have an idea and have done your research, find out what will be the core function of your app. Will it be a social media platform or dating site? Is it going to be gaming-focused or an educational tool?
Avoid overthinking about every feature and function you plan to use as this will create confusion and cause you to lose sight of the core function. Instead, focus on the main purpose it will provide your users and what value it will provide them.
3. Third-Party Integrations
To power-pack your app and boost its credibility, use third-party integrations.
Instead of making an app that exclusively provides locations of nearby restaurants, use integrations to make your services richer, like adding menus to each restaurant when clicking on each option or even delivery routes and times.
Here is where you can take your app to the next level and make it cover many functions. It’s tempting to go mad and integrate as much as you can but stay focused on the core function and try and enhance that.
Research and many online forums provide more details for those looking to use this feature.
4. Get The Marketing Right
The fight for the bottom of the brainstem is ever more present nowadays and it’s hard to compete with the big apps out there right now.
Advertisement is as equally important as the app itself and marketing should be started long before your app is ready to be rolled out. Sometimes the advertising can be more memorable than the app itself so allocate a significant portion of your schedule to max out on your marketing efforts.
Remember the app prototype we mentioned earlier? This is a great tool to get reviews and testimonials which you can use when marketing your app.
Look online for marketing agencies that align with the goals of your app and set aside a budget for online ads.
5. Choose Transparent and Intuitive Design
It is very important to help potential customers find the product they want and buy it without confusing users with the help.
This means that you must eliminate any complications and additional choices on the way of the customer to pay for your product, allowing him to browse the categories of interest to him and find the right product. To do this, you must understand how people use smartphones and use knowledge of this logic to create a structured user interface.
You must understand that your application is limited by the screen size of the mobile device, and that is why the user interface must be consistent, have a clear layout and intuitive navigation. Every element of the user interface, including buttons, menus, and content, must be well organized and properly positioned.
Don’t make your customers think too much while they are using the app. Ensure smooth and unimpeded browsing and navigation by applying the following guidelines:
- Avoid overly complex designs, a lot of text and animation.
- Use simple, minimalistic or monochrome schemes that are easy and quick to understand.
- Pay attention to and shade to highlight different sections of your application
- Use one font so your application doesn’t look cluttered and unprofessional.
All of these will contribute to improving the usability of your application, which is critical to the effectiveness of your mobile application.
6. Choose a Reliable Mobile Hosting Provider
You want your e-commerce app to run smoothly, without delays or glitches, and be secure, scalable, and fast.
All of this happens in the backend of the application, that is, on the server side, so this part of the process should work perfectly. Hosting the back-end of a mobile application is a complex and resource-intensive task. In other words, you must be an expert in server programming, big data, and database management.
If you have no experience or just don’t want to spend too much time and effort on solving this problem, then you better choose a reliable MBaaS provider and entrust him with the management of this part of your mobile application.
This way, you can focus on the interface while shortening the development cycle, easily integrating your app with various social media platforms, having access to better backup options, and removing the hassle of managing your own backend infrastructure.
The most popular apps on the market are updated frequently. Sometimes as often as weekly.
Building, marketing, and maintenance are the three core pillars of to make your app successful. Bugs will cause you to lose your user base. Not nurturing your app will result in it not being able to keep up with platform updates like IOS or Android, making the app slow.
Make sure your updates don’t take up too much data space on your users’ devices.
Gone are the days of needing a software engineering qualification and pockets full of cash to make an app. An app can be constructed from the ground up without much industry knowledge. The heavy lifting can be done by a developer and the marketing can be outsourced to a specialized team.
For most entrepreneurs and small businesses, the idea is the most pivotal part of app creation as well as communication with your team and the specialists you have hired.
Remember, the project doesn’t end when the app hits the shelves, the journey has only just begun and maintenance should be held to as high a standard as possible.