Building your first mobile app can be both challenging and rewarding. Expect to learn a lot, and to make many unexpected mistakes. Have you ever asked yourself why you want to build a mobile app? Do you want to ride the wave of other app millionaires, or have you found the solution to a problem? The answer to these questions will be helpful in figuring out whether your app will climb the charts to success. Of course, there’s also a science behind mobile app development. This includes development, the cost of building an app, marketing, optimization and promotion. Continue reading to learn more.
Build your app
When you’re ready to get started, it’s truly important to define your goal. This should be the starting point for every new project. What is the purpose of your mobile app? What will it do? What are its defining features? What issues will it solve? How will it make your users’ lives easier?
Next, you want to create a sketch of your future app. This helps to conceptualize how you want it to look. Plus, when working with others, it helps to get everyone on the same page. After that, you must do your research. Some questions to ask include:
- Are other apps doing the same thing?
- What are your apps technical requirements?
- How should you monetize and market your app?
Lay out the features
At this stage, you should have an idea for an app that people would want to use. You want to detail all of the features which will make your app stand out. Be as detailed as possible. Include how you intend for the user to navigate the app. This helps to further define your expectations.
Create a storyboard
Use an online prototype tool to convey your ideas. Prototype tools let you drag and drop all of your placeholders and graphics in one place. You can also add functionalities and review your app. The storyboard gives you a visual representation of how users will navigate through your app. In addition, you should start examining features you can remove. Take features out that are just “nice to have.” These can always be added later as an update. It also helps to ensure you get your app to market much more quickly.
Test your prototype and get feedback
You don’t want to start development until you are sure people will like and use your app. Ask friends, family and colleagues to review your prototype. Give them access to take your app on a test run. Then, ask for their honest feedback. Moreover, ask them to share any flaws or dead-end links. You might ask a few to play with the app in front of you.
This helps you to understand their actions and how they adapt to the flow and layout. You want a concrete idea and prototype before the development process. Once you start designing, it’s much more difficult to go back and make modifications. Now, it’s time to get your app developed and loaded into the major app stores such as Google Play, the Apple app store and Windows.
Well, it’s time to start marketing. Apps don’t get downloaded without some publicity and optimization. The best form of publicity for your app is reviews, press coverage, third-party endorsements and word-of-mouth. People don’t trust advertisements as much as they do reviews. You can start by offering free versions of your app to beta testers in exchange for a review. There are billions of downloaded apps, a marketing strategy is critical.
If you think keywords are just for websites, think again. Users will look up a specific keyword when searching for apps. If your app is a children’s game called Cat Playground, the right keyword would not be cat or even playground. It should be something relevant such as children’s game or educational game.
Yet, having a keyword in your name helps your app get found. You also need keywords in your description. You can look at your main competitors to see how they use keywords, then see how they rank in the market. As a result, you can determine under which category to place your app.
Marketing after launch
Congratulations, your app is now ready to be downloaded. But, not so fast. People aren’t just going to download your app en masse. Some marketing needs to be involved. Canvas social media with screenshots of reviews for your app. Ask influencers to review your app on their sites. Add links to your app on your website. Create a Facebook page with ads for your app. You must continually promote your app until it takes off like wildfire.
The app market is a place which continues to offer successful business opportunities. It’s simply a matter of creating an app people want to use and having the right marketing strategy.