So you’ve reached the conclusion that your business needs a mobile app, but are lost when it comes to execution, right? You don’t need to be a developer or even have a development team to have your own mobile app, but that’s where it gets tricky. There are hundreds of software development companies so how do you pick the right one? You don’t want to waste your money or time on an agency that will give you bad results in the end.
When you decide on app development, there are two main concerns every business owner faces and those are, setting a budget and finding the best software company. We put together a list of tips to help you with your research in finding your mobile app development company in California.
Top 8 Tips on Finding the Right Company:
1. Check their portfolio:
Every experienced development agency would have a portfolio with their previous work displayed on their website. Go through their portfolio and take a deeper look at the apps they’ve developed, maybe even download them on your phone to get a better feel of the experience.
You can also ask the agency if they’ve ever developed an app similar to yours or in your category to see how they did with it. Checking out their other work will give you an idea of what your app will be like when turned into reality.
2. Check the reviews & ratings online:
The best way to ensure a certain company is qualified is by looking into its reviews and ratings online. Two popular software review websites are clutch.co and capterra.com where you see customer reviews and previous projects they worked on. Clutch has over 6000 software companies; each has a profile with the company info like the hourly rate, employees, portfolio and more.
You can filter by industry, platform, US locations, or global locations. As for Capterra, it has over 700 software categories to choose from with profiles for each company. Customer reviews will give you a better idea on who you’re dealing with and help you narrow down your options.
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3. Establish Clear Communication:
Having quick access to the agency and ensuring they understand your requirements through clear communication is vital for app development. Choose an agency that is known for promptness and gets back to you quickly on your inquiries or problems. Do they meet the deadline? Are they easy to set a meeting with? Are they clear about pricing? You don’t want any surprises and that is why it is important that you and the company are on the right page.
In order to avoid wasted time or misunderstandings, be sure to openly communicate all your ideas, features, and needs from the start. You can even request for an NDA to ensure your privacy and ideas are protected. Neglecting to mention an aspect can lead to costs being added later on and consequently, it’ll take longer to do. When the agency has a full picture of from the start, you’ll seldom face problems in the development process. In most cases, it is easier to communicate with a local company than freelancers or companies overseas because they usually have a direct communication channel.
With overseas companies or freelancers, there can be a language barrier, different time zones, or other factors that get in the way of communication.
4. Ask for a Proposal:
When you discuss your ideas with the company and you’ve explained your requirements, ask the agency to send you a proposal. Odds are, you’ve communicated with multiple agencies to find the best one, and a detailed proposal can settle which company you go with.
This proposal should consist of a timeline, app features, ideas the company may have, overall cost, and anything else needed. When you choose your favorite proposal, you can use it to apply for grants or funding, send to investors, or show your team.
5. Set your budget:
When you decide to develop an app, you need to have a budget for the project. When your budget is set, you’ll need to find a company that can get the job done within that budget. Development companies will be able to give you an idea of cost beforehand; you can request a free quote.
Transparency in cost is very important for a business owner, make sure you’re getting the whole cost from the start to avoid any expense surprises.
6. Make sure they’re certified:
Most development agencies usually have their certificates or awards on display on their website, whether it’s on the homepage or the About Us page. Ensuring you’re dealing with a certified company gives you a boost of encouragement to move forward.
Feel free to ask about their development and designer teams, their qualifications, proof of certification, and anything else you need. A reputable company will easily be able to answer all your questions.
7. Technical support & maintenance:
You don’t just need a company to develop your app; you need one that will provide you full support and are able to maintain your app’s efficiency. This is something many forget to inquire when searching for a company. Does the company have a direct support line? Will the app need further maintenance? Is there an additional cost for updates or maintenance?
These are all questions you need to ask before going into anything, again, you don’t want to be surprised by additional costs down the line.
8. End-to-end services:
You need to understand exactly what you need before contacting companies. Do you have design that needs execution? Do you already have an app that needs fixing? Do you need both design and development?
Some offshore companies don’t do both, design and development and may even outsource certain services. Make sure to ask if the company outsources any service or is it all in-house services. Outsourcing can lead to lower quality and doesn’t guarantee a polished finish. Find an agency that offers end-to-end services and doesn’t leave anything unattended or outsourced. This includes the whole process from design to the product launch.
And finally, compare your options:
In the end, you’ll have a set of a few companies that you’ve narrowed down. When comparing them, these 8 factors are going to help you decide on the right fit. Review each option carefully in terms of cost, communication, and quality and you’ll have an obvious choice.