Whether you are a business looking for a new marketing avenue or you want to create a game, developing an app is a temptation for many in the modern world. Considering the fact that individuals spend 52 percent of their time on mobile apps when using digital media, there’s good reason why joining the app creation world is something to pursue.
That said, caution has to be taken before you go down this route. There are various pitfalls that might result in your app building experience to be, well, not so fruitful overall. With that in mind, read on for 8 vital tips on how to make an app successfully.
When deciding on developing an app, one of the first things to decide is how to actually create it. Will you do it all by yourself? Perhaps you will have an in-house team to take care of things? Or maybe you will enlist the help of a specialist outsourcing team?
Well, there are various benefits and drawbacks to going with any of the above options. Although budget, resources and time will be the main aspects that dictate what choice to make. If you are hoping to create the best app possible – which should be the aim – outsourcing is perhaps the best bet. An expert app building firm will have the experience, skills, and tools to deliver a professional product.
Another thing to do before developing is to define your target audience. It might seem obvious, yet plenty forget to know their audience – even though it should decide what type of branding you will use for the app. For instance, will the app have a corporate style or something more casual and fun?
When choosing the audience, you should also make a note of what mobile device they use. Producing an app for various devices – which means optimizing for different screen sizes and usability requirements – is a costly procedure, so try and only focus on one main handset to start with.
Research is an integral part of producing an app of real value. Firstly, you have to try and select an idea that is original (or at least offers a different twist) when compared to the competition.
In addition to this, you need to see what others do great/bad with their apps and learn from that when developing your own work. Send out questions to potential customers as to what they’re looking for in an app would also be advantageous.
When building an app, there’s always that temptation to cram in as many features as possible. For example, you might have been using an innovative feature included in another app and thought ‘I want to include that in my work’.
It is important that you only choose features that have a place amongst your app. The last thing you want to do is stuff your app with unnecessary features, and muddle up the message you aim to send with the app.
As a result, only pick the features that you deem to be truly necessary. Always keep in mind the saying ‘less is more’.
Sticking with the theme of simplifying elements of your app, it is also recommended that you keep the functionality of your app streamlined and easy to use. Creating something that is confusing and difficult to navigate is going to result in a user giving up on your app almost immediately – which isn’t exactly the result you are looking to achieve.
So again, having a user-friendly app is one of the most important aspects to consider. Understand the functionality and benefits that smartphones/tablets bring to the table, and build the interface around that.
Once you’ve produced a sleek app and it currently resides on app stores, the job is done, right? Well, the answer to that question is a big fat ‘no’.
In fact, staying stagnant with your app is not advised. Regardless if you’ve developed a game or shopping portal, regular updates and improvements are something that will keep users coming back. Take a game in this instance – the core of the app might have great gameplay mechanics and an engrossing story, but there should always be scope to add new levels or gaming mechanics. Not only does this add value to those that have already downloaded your app, but it will look much more complete and enticing for newcomers.
Staying on this topic, you should also send out frequent notifications when you have added the likes of new features or products to the app. Staying connected this way will help to keep consumers coming back to your app.
Criticism about the app might hurt your feelings at first. After all, you will no doubt have plunged plenty of time, money and resources into crafting said app. However, it is essential that you take on board any constructive criticism that you may receive. The comments might sting at first, but they will also assist with knowing how your app can be improved.
For example, it might be pointed out that a certain portion of your app is clunky to use. You can then take this feedback, eliminate the issue, and provide a better overall experience with the app as a result.
For any app to succeed, some form of a marketing campaign is required to ensure that people know that it exists. After all, it has been reported that 2.8 million apps are available to download for Android users alone. So it’s fair to say that the market is flooded with apps, which can make it difficult to rise above the competition.
With that in mind, making use of promotional tools such as social media and relevant blogs are recommended. Sharing regular news and updates about your app via the likes of Twitter/Facebook will help get the word out organically, while you could also submit your app to review sites in the hope they’ll feature your work.