Is Your Budget Realistic for Mobile App Development?
“Problems” are important for the growth of humanity. Correction: identification of problems is a necessity for the growth of humanity. If we don’t recognize a need for change, then the same old systems, processes, and malpractices will keep on existing and eventually, evolution will stop. That’s where philosophy and science coincide. Businesses run on philosophy and science too. Top management’s vision, mission, and values drive the systems, processes, and culture of the organization. Does your organizational culture encourage the continuous quest for “problems”? If yes, then congratulations, you are still growing as a business. With problems come solutions. Sometimes, we don’t even realize that there was a problem before the introduction of a beautiful solution. For example, the cab aggregation apps have made the intra-city commute a cakewalk, or the digital wallet apps have made our monetary transactions so hassle-free. One who noticed that the existing systems need a solution and acted on it became a change champion. Similarly, you can be a change champion for your business too. A brilliant idea, which can be shaped by a mobile app development agency, can always take your business to newer heights.
But, there are some crucial steps which have to be followed before jumping into the world of data and codes of the apps. And the most important step is fixing a budget for the solution. The “cost-benefit analysis” is the mantra for success in business. And sometimes in the attempt of minimizing the costs and maximizing the benefits, we set a very unrealistic budget for the mobile app development. This article will take you through various financial aspects of mobile app development so that you can come out with a realistic budget for your solution:
The biggest factor in the determination of the cost of the app development is a requirement of the business. Mostly the budgets are estimated unrealistically because the clients are not clear what exactly they want. Therefore, it is very important to list out all the functions and features which the app is supposed to have. Along with that, use your network and get in touch with as many developers as you can. Understand the process and get a rough idea about the key parameters for fixing the budget for the solution. After getting a basic idea, you should be able to draw out a table, as shown below:
This table will keep you on track during the complete development process while working with enterprise mobility solutions. As shown in the above example, the high complexity of the solution may force you to spend some extra bucks for the solution, whereas the timeline and budget once fixed, cannot be changed easily. This process will give a direction to your thought process while fixing on the money to be invested.
2. Process of development
Before coming out with a fixed amount, you need to have some basic idea about the development process. If you know what you are getting into, you will be more confident with your numbers. Basic development process will involve the following stages:
|Stage||Name||What happens in this?|
|1||Research and Wire-framing||After you have a concept or a list of features of the projected solution you have to give it a shape in the form of a document or presentation. This concept has to be shared with the vendors. In this stage the vendor will analyze your requirements narrows down the technical requirements and tasks and will prepare a prototype (UX).|
|2||App Design||Once the development agency is on board; they come up with a design for your app. Various tools like Invision and Adobe Experience Design etc.can be used to provide you an almost real look of the app. It can go through various iterations until finalized by you. Remember the design and style is an important part of the branding of your business.|
|3||Back-end development||This stage generally gets started in parallel to the ongoing design stage. It is also necessary to give the back end development a head-start on front end development by a couple of weeks.|
|4||Front-end development||As soon as the design is finalized; the developers will get on with the front end development. The front end development should be divided into milestones. Hence; the collaborated approach of client and vendor is necessary to monitor the timely completion of the milestones.|
|5||Support and Maintenance||Although the testing is generally done through out the process of development but it is necessary for the business to be assured of the quality of the product. For this; the mobile application development services provide after-launch support and maintenance for a certain amount of time. This is very important for business satisfaction.|
3. The team
Mobility service providers give you a final number as the total cost in their quotes. It is on the basis of the team, which is going to be involved by the mobile application development company for the whole process. The amount is proposed on the basis of the total count of human resources involved and their respective efforts in the whole process.
Generally, the development team for a medium level complex solution will include the following members in a team:
– Mobile developers
– Backend developers
– Web Developer (For administrative part of the app)
– Lead Engineer
– Support (for after-launch maintenance)
Mobile app and custom web development companies also charge on the basis of the work experience of the team involved. The more experienced team you will be having on board, the smoother your journey will be during the whole development process. It becomes easier to work with the experienced team and make them understand the solution better. Hence, your budget needs to consider this aspect of the team, as well.
4. Type of solution
The type of solution and technology required to accomplish the desired app are also major drivers of the cost. The typical features of any app can be divided into the following categories:
a) User Authentication Apps:
These apps are complex because user authentication is followed by data collection, data storage, and analysis. These features also support data syncing across devices and push notifications. Hence, these features can increase costs.
b) Social Networking Apps:
If your idea is revolving around the development of a social media platform, then it requires the capability of handling a lot of data right from the start. The success of social media apps is dependent only on the number of active users. Hence, big data analytics and high capacity data servers are required for your app.
c) Ecommerce Apps:
Do you want to take your business online? Or do you want to start your business on a digital platform? In any case, such a solution will require integration with digital payment systems. For example, mobile app development companies in India will help you integrate with the popular digital wallets like Paytm, BHIM UPI and Freecharge, etc. as well as the credit/debit/net-banking payment services with popular partner banks in India.
d) Gaming Apps:
Needless to say, this type of app will have high graphic requirements. The development will involve high design cost as the aesthetics are extremely necessary to attract users. Also, gaming apps need a lot of work on the user experience, which may involve a lot of iterations. Hence, it is a long-term project, and the budget flexibility should be high in these types of solutions.
e) IoT based Apps:
The hardware-dependent apps which involve the cutting edge technologies like the Internet of Things and Smart devices need some experts on board. Therefore, these solutions need deep pockets to be implemented. But if you are confident about your solution and believe that money invested in the app can give high returns, then it is definitely worth taking the risk.
5. Correct Outsourcing
No matter how much time you spend on your research, analysis, and bench-marking, etc., the final numbers will be decided only after conversations between you and the development companies. Therefore, you have to find a company which can be trusted, can build long term relationships and provide you an app in the best possible price.
It does not matter whether you outsource the mobile app development in India or China or your home country as long as the company can deliver. Go through their previous work and their current projects. Match your requirements and capabilities. If you find them reliable enough, then you can also make some adjustments in your budget.
The budgeting for app development is very similar to fixing a budget for monthly household expenses.
- First, you need to analyze your requirements properly.
- Second, understand the cost areas related to the solutions.
- Third, prepare a list with optimum prices.
- Fourth, negotiate with the providers. And finally, fix a budget and stick to it.
It is not as simple as it sounds especially if you don’t know the language of computers and data systems. That’s why coming to a realistic budget will take a significant effort from your side. Once you are confident enough about your estimations, consider outsourcing to India and just find the right company to do the mobile app development for you. All the best.
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