So you have a planned to create an app. That’s great news! The bad news is that this is where the hard part begins. It’s called planning.
A well-planned app that caters to your vision and also offers value to others will attain popularity naturally. An app that you have created with a good intentions, but without any planning, may fail miserably. So is there a magic way to make your app successful? You bet there is. No matter what app you create, there are some things you MUST be clear about at the very beginning.
These are the golden questions you need know first and foremost:
1) What is the purpose of the app?
You need to have a reason for creating this app. What will it do and what will be its purpose? What value will it offer to the end user? Is there a real need for this app?
Ask yourself if anyone will benefit from the app. How will it help them? Will it help them to achieve anything or will it assist them in some way?
2) Understand your target users?
Who is the target audience of your app? Are they students? Are they businessmen?
3) Are there similar apps?
You will need to do research to see if there are similar existing apps. How is your app going to differ from a similar existing app? What exactly it is going to do differently? Is the similar existing app popular? How many downloads does the existing app have? What do people say about the existing on the App Review page?
4) What is your monetization strategy?
Are you planning to make it a free app and offer in-app purchases? Or display banners to earn money that way? Or will you charge per download? Or will the app require a monthly membership fee?
5) And last but certainly not least, what is your budget?
Remember — creating an app is not just about the development or coding of the product. There should be an equal investment of time and money allocated for marketing and promoting the app. So, planning your budget beforehand is crucial.
When the groundwork for developing the app is done:
- You know what the purpose is for creating the app
- You have an estimated budget for the creation of the app
This is a crucial stage. Now, you have an idea as to the direction in which you are headed.
Now that the base work is done, we can move onto the nitty-gritties: the questions you need to answer in order to make your app stands out amongst the crowd. You need to put yourself in the user’s shoes here, because the more user-friendly your app is, the more popular it will be.
So let us examine some of the main things to consider here:
1) What will the features of your app be?
It’s an intelligent thing to begin with an app offering basic functionalities, because you can always update your app later on with more features. Moreover, it is likely that you will be able to get better feedback from users or focus groups, which you can then implement to get better results. Ideally, you should plan on starting with a few core features and keep other features for up-gradation later on. This way, you will be saving on your budget as well.
2) Will your app be designed for mobile phones only or tablets as well?
This will require that you have good knowledge about your target users, their requirements and the technology they use. While mobile phone apps will assure you a much wider audience, the tablet has a select but dedicated customer base. The main agenda for your research into customer habits should be what your target customers use.
3) Should your app support different languages?
This again depends on your customer base. If you are targeting a worldwide audience where the majority of users are English speaking, then one language would be enough. But if you are targeting people from different regions where English is not the native language, it would be a good idea to introduce other languages as well. Again, the app you are designing could be very region-centric, catering to a specific need, and then developing it in only one language will suffice.
4) How important is integration with other social networks?
We know social networking can do wonders, so why not leverage it’s power to promote your app? Integrating the app with Twitter and Facebook could help garner a lot of attention. Social media platforms act as an excellent advertisement and marketing tool for your product as well.
5) How should you style the app?
Now let’s use a simple example: before Apple’s iOS, there were many other operating systems and mobile apps, such as Blackberry OS, Palm OS, Windows CE, and Symbian. But look at the competition now – Apple has surpassed the others and is an unchallenged leader now. Believe it or not, a large part of Apple’s success depended on the look of iOS – it definitely looked better than other operating systems. Remember, there are over a million apps in the market and new ones are coming out every day – the competition is fierce. The only way you don’t get lost in this is by standing out. Users usually first notice how an app looks, in fact, that aspect is a deciding factor in whether or not the user will be downloading it or not.
6) How should you promote or market the app?
Like any other product, app promotion needs careful planning. We cannot deny the importance of marketing, but we also cannot forget the fact that for small companies, it’s hard to allocate an amount of money to go into development, marketing, and promoting. Unfortunately, foregoing marketing and promotion is not an option, and we should remember that planning for marketing should be done simultaneously with app creation. It should not be left until the last minute.
7) And finally, why should you have a focus group?
The focus group will be responsible for reviewing the initial version and the final version of the wireframe. As they will not be directly involved with creating the product, they will be able to provide more insightful feedback. As an outside party, they will provide an objective point of view and will be better equipped to point out potential problems with the app that the target user may have.
So now that you have a plan in place, why wait any longer to get started on your app? Someone else could snag your million-dollar app idea before you get to it! So contact us at Earthlandia today – we specialize in mobile app development for Apple, Android, and Windows phones, and even offer image recognition, augmented reality support, and low battery consumption for your app!
The Earthlandia Team