By A. Rumyantsev, on October 30
How Business Can Develop a Mobile App: Methods and Cost
The number of people that surf the Internet via mobile devices is rising year-by-year, while the market is getting more and more competitive. The share of mobile phone website traffic was 52.2% in 2018, and the figure is expected to keep rising further this year. Meanwhile, the global mobile traffic hiked to 28.56 exabytes per month in 2019 (19.01 a year before).
To maintain grounds in the business environment, practically every business launches mobile apps for different purposes. By 2019, the segment of mobile applications has become a real goldmine. Considering forecasts, the worldwide mobile app revenue is likely to reach $461.7 billion this year.

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A mobile app, what kind of a nut is it?

A mobile application is a program that is created for use at mobile devices, like smartphones and tablets. Applications can be downloaded in the stores (Google Play or App Store) or on developers' official websites. The stores check every application that is received for listing, so the downloads can be considered safe.
Getting back to basics, everything began with simple mobile applications that were created to provide users with an easy way to access their email accounts from mobile devices. However, more and more areas including the Internet, social networks, editors, games, videos, business, financial, have been grabbed shortly.
All the programs are developed for the current major platforms – Android or iOS.

Types of mobile applications

Speaking about mobile apps for business, the whole amount of applications can be divided into two groups. The first one is created to cover the company's internal needs, while the second one is aimed at sales, marketing, client communication and attraction of new customers.
As for internal applications, we can group them in line with their focus as follows:
  • business process optimization and automatization (i.e. Cisco Webex);
  • in-house performance boost, which includes solutions for corporate communication, file sharing, tracking, task management (i.e. Asana, Trello, Google Drive, Evernote, Slack).
At the same time, the second category may cover applications for the company's online services like catalogs, banking, finance, trading, logistics (i.e. USAA Banking, BB&T, OmniFocus, EasyStock, Nimble, Freshsales).

What are the advantages of mobile applications?

The use of mobile applications can be a good way to boost the business figures of the company.

Higher sales

Businesses can improve the situation with sales and customer demand making use of push-notifications about discounts, rewards, and other promos. Once customers receive such a notice, they can resume interest in your services and products, and eventually, make orders.

Customer data

A mobile application is a useful tool for collecting information about customers. For example, it is possible to get details about purchases, customer preferences, average spending, buying frequency.

Marketing

Since people now mainly use mobile devices rather than desktops, different promotion campaigns will be an extra driver for demand, while a search history can help to form ads for every client.

Communication

With built-in opportunities to comment or share in social networks, customers will be able to write a review or rate the services that the company offers.

Customer capture

If a business offers a useful and effective application, its users will naturally advise it to their friends, colleagues.

Ways to develop a mobile application: development companies, freelancers and online services

Freelancers

When you choose to deal with a freelancer, it is necessary to understand that a freelancer will be an individual rather than a company. In fact, freelance is a quite popular type of cooperation in the IT segment. One of the key characteristics of the freelance is that such activities have no legal background. With the current amount of existing platforms for freelancers, almost everyone that has at least basic skills can start offering development services.
As a result, high-quality and 100% guarantees can be received not often. However, there are really talented freelancers that create top-grade products, but the price for their work will be also high enough.
Advantages
Cheap development
no taxes, administrative expenses, and social package.
Fliexible schedule
Freelancer can spend unlimited time for a project, and manages the time for his/her own.
Disadvantages
Low quality
Freelancers usually middle-level experts. It is possible to find a skilled freelancer but the price will be practically the same as companies offer.
Lack of guarantees
A freelancer can leave the project, stop answering, disappear or find a job and become unable to keep working on your project. You will hardly keep cooperating with the freelancer in a year after the launch of the application. You have to legal means to press on a developer.
Limited experience
It is hard to find a freelancer that has built a huge amount of apps, unlike development companies that have wider expertise and a bigger workload.

Software Development Company

Another way that you can follow is to turn to a development company. Such companies usually provide a wide range of services covering different areas of expertise. The cooperation with a professional team will be more expensive, but the output often worth it.
Advantages
Consulting
A development company always stays tuned and is ready to help you with both costs, schedule of the project and after-release services (promotion, monetization).
High quality
The vast experience and a team of skilled experts that solve problems jointly help to achieve the top-quality of the application.
Design
You will receive numerous samples and variants of the design for future applications.
Support
As a rule, a development company provides support for its products after the launch.
Wide range of services
Development of an application for different platforms, screens at once.
Guarantees
Every company sets a high value on its image. Every project is backed by documentation and a contract.
Disadvantages
High price
Software development companies are usually more expensive compared to freelancers. However, you need to take into account the diversity of skills and qualifications of team members. Also you can seek for offshore software development provider.
Working schedule
Every company has working hours. Although critical issues can be settled at any time, general questions must be discussed within the schedule.

On-line Services

One more way to create a mobile application is online services or so-called constructors. This path is usually taken by a startup or young company that either sees no sense in spending money on mobile applications or not have enough money to engage professional developers.
In that case, such companies use online constructors, which is quite similar to website development at open-source platforms.
Advantages
  • Low price
  • Fast development time
  • No programming
  • Many patterns
Disadvantages
  • Restrained design and development opportunities
  • Slow work
  • Access can be blocked without explanation
  • Extra costs for additional features
  • Monthly/yearly payment packages
  • A limited number of downloads with expansion for an extra cost
DS01 believes that the development of the business mobile application is a highly responsible task and must be done by development domain experts. Our team is ready to provide you with full-scale development of an advanced and unique application with all features that require your business.

How much may a new mobile application cost?

One of the key questions for every business that considers the development of its mobile application is the price. According to the market data, it was spent about $75.7 billion on mobile applications in 2017, while the 2018 figures are coming closer to the $100 billion marks. However, we should take into account that not every application brings fruits, and thus it will be a more reasonable step to charges experts with this task and get a competitive and unique solution. DS01 knows how to deliver best-in-class applications for numerous industries within budget meeting deadlines.

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The cost of an application depends on several factors.
The first one is a team of developers. The price for development directly depends on the country where the members of the team live. Another factor is features with which the cost will rise in line with the amount of the work that should be done (e.g. comparability, management elements, supported devices, security, localization).
As a rule, the client usually gets initial figures and then can decide whether the price is acceptable or not. If everything is fine, the parties sign a contract to specify all details of the further cooperation – exact price, schedule, description of the final product.
Here is information about the average price for development of an application by countries:
  • North America - $50-250/working hour
  • Australia – $35-150/working hour
  • Western Europe/UK – $30-175/working hour
  • India – $10-80/working hour
  • South America – $20-110/working hour
  • South America – $20-110/working hour
  • SE Asia – $50-100/working hour
Notably, the USA and Canada are considered to be the most expensive region for mobile development.
According to the market statistics, the average price for an application varies depending on the complexity. For example:
  • Simple application can be built for up $20,000.
  • Mid-complex application can reach $70,000.
  • Complex application exceeds $100,000.

Extra expenses

While allocating funds for application development, the business must take into account extra costs that can appear after the release. In particular, any application will naturally require updates or expansion of features, support, promotion and other activities aimed at stable growth of the product.
Moreover, a client can decide on the integration of some third-party service (APIs), which requires regular payments.
Unfortunately, such expenses are usually not included in the initial project estimate and can be offered as an additional service. As a result, you may keep under hat this fact to achieve effective budget planning.

So, what is the right way to develop a mobile application?

With a fast-developing market environment, a mobile application becomes a must-have for the business especially given the trend of skyrocketing share of mobile device usage. The ideal scenario is to get the product quickly with high-quality and acceptable price. However, it happens not very often, so a company must decide on the priorities while selecting the method of development – freelancer, a development company or online constructors. It is necessary to remember that the cost of the project will directly depend on the method as well as the level of the product's complexity.
Meantime, the team of DS01 is always ready to discuss your ideas and project concepts for further development of a solution that will fully comply with the needs of your business needs.
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