How Much Does It Cost to Build an App? What You Need to Know
As the App Store reached a height of over 2 million apps in 2018, the cost of developing an app has caused everyone and their grandmother to make one.
However, that doesn't mean that many of those apps are destined to succeed or even be worth downloading. When you're looking into how much does it cost to build an app, you're going to find that it's less than you think.
Here are five things to consider to ensure that you build your app better than the other brands in your industry.
1. Do You Need To Hire a Team?
When you set out to build an app, you need to figure out who you need to help you. While you might think that the greatest apps were created by the Mark Zuckerbergs and Steve Jobs' of the world, but you'd be wrong. Behind every one of these so-called tech giants was a whole team of people fixing bugs, scaling the database, and designing the interface.
If you don't already have someone to handle the database, someone to communicate with it from the front end, and a designer, you need to start hiring. There are plenty of people out there excited to work for a startup trying to build the next great app. There are even more people willing to get on board with an established company that's looking to take their bite of the app pie.
If you don't have a team, you need to get hiring. If you do, you need to start figuring out who is going to handle what. Assigning work to each member of your team is essential to get the ball rolling.
Even if you're going to use an app making tool and feel like you can scale production down, you should at least hire consultants.
2. What Kind of Tech Do You Need?
Start by making a list of your must-have features. It'll be sure to be longer than a few things and once you've finally gotten that out of the way, you can make a second list. Turn your first list into the nice-to-have features list and make a new list with the three features you need to have in order to release the product.
With each of these features comes a set of languages, dependencies, and technology requirements. Make sure that the people on your app development team know how to make use of that technology if it's required. If they can't, then you need to find new people to add to your team or adjust your expectations.
You need to consider the material costs of technology as well. Even if you're going to use an app building tool, you probably have to buy a subscription. If they're going to host your app and its requisite data, you need to pay them a fee.
If you're hosting things on your own, you should pay someone to store a backup on the cloud in case there are issues.
3. Time is Money
When you're putting together a team to build your application, even if it's just you, you need to remember that it's going to take some serious hours. You'll need to consider the time it takes to research, plan, develop, test, and incorporate feedback for your application. Much like any other kind of project, there are several drafts and iterations to go through.
While you're busy working on your app, you won't be able to do the other work important to keeping the lights on at your company. Time is money and the time you're spending on building your app is going to come out of your budget, one way or the other. If you want to ensure that you build your app efficiently, do plenty of planning up front.
If you can't afford to give up the time that it takes your team to build the app, then you need to find another way to build your app. You could hire a remote team or outsource it where there's cheaper labor. You might have trouble communicating and getting your app to exact specifications in that case, however.
4. Customer Service and Support Costs Too
Once you release your app, you need to keep your customers happy. After your app is out there in the wild, you'll find out there are all kinds of bugs that you would have never predicted. Your application is going to have security issues and problems interacting with other apps.
That's just a fact of life.
So when you start getting your lines flooded with calls, emails, and chat support requests, you need to have a plan in place. You need to allocate a budget for managing this, figure out whether you're going to have 24/7 support or not, and decide who is your point person. They're going to be the one to determine what your move is when you have to deal with a problem with your app.
5. Promotion and Marketing Matter
Once your app is finished, you need to tell the world. Just putting it on the app store will have it quickly buried under thousands of other apps that work similarly. You need to get the word out so that your customer base starts using your app.
You also need to ensure that you start biting into the market of your competitors. Your app needs to be compatible with products made by other companies and allow customers to engage with it on their own terms.
You need to have a clear idea about what makes your app different than what else is out there and let your customers know.
Still Asking How Much Does it Cost To Build an App?
If you're still wondering how much does it cost to build an app, you'll find that it's much less than you anticipated. The cost of building an app has never been cheaper thanks to the many tools and supply of talent on the market.
If you're going to outfit your team with phones to stay in touch and keep productivity up, check out our guide for pricing info.