Timing Matters – A Sneak Peek Into The Mobile App Development Process


by Shishir Dubey, founder and CEO of ChromeInfotech

Mobile app development is not just about developing an app for either android or IOS. It is more than that. App development is a cumbersome process that involves a lot of micro-managed aspects to be catered to. Not only that but each of those activities must be conducted at a specific time and in a specific sequence to reach from the beginning of the app development phase to running a profitable mobile app based business.

Mobile app development is primarily divided into 9 stages right from the phase of ideation to running a successful business. Let’s have a sneak peek into the detailed stages that you have to cross for the development of your next mobile app.

  • Ideation and its validation
  • Determining the originality and genuineness of your idea
  • Sketching and Drawing
  • Researching the market and competition
  • Designing the User interface
  • Selecting the right technology partner
  • Maximizing the app performance
  • Launching your app in the market
  • Supporting your users through a well established

Let’s understand the detailed flow of each of these phases.

The mobile app development process begins with the phase of ideation. This is the first phase where you devise an idea for your future mobile app. You select a niche and frame your thoughts to create something of value. Remember your creation can only be successful if you are aiming to solve an existing problem that has not been solved before through your own innovative approach.

Then comes the next step of ideation where you validate your idea with concrete facts and figures. This is the time period when you keep your ego aside and with a clear and precise mentality, look out ways to validate your thoughts.

After successfully passing this stage, you then move on to determining the originality and genuineness of your product. Obviously you look out for existing apps in your niche who are doing similar to what you are planning to create. You then find out ways how to become a differentiator amongst all of those. This is a subjective matter and every one of us will have different approached to justify it. But at the end of the day, it’s the weightage of solution that matters not the problem you are solving.

Never skip the step of app idea validation and determining its genuineness and originality because you surely don’t want to end up finding that whatever you did it was all good for nothing.

Then you move on to the phase of sketching your thoughts where you give them a pen and paper shape. Remember this is the most important phase because not only it will help to have a clear picture of your thoughts but will set you in the correct direction. During the phase of sketching first you accumulate your thought and then give them a pen and paper shape.

But then there comes a point where you have to show your sketched out thoughts to your stakeholders. Now is the time to go for drawing your sketched out ideas. In drawing you give your sketched out thoughts an organised shape and make them tidy and clean to make your stakeholders get a better grip of the subject matter.

The phase of sketching and drawing is incomplete without proper feedback from the stakeholders. So after successful sketching and drawing, you sit down with your stakeholders and gather their thoughts and opinion to further polish out your product. Be open to criticism and accept and positive point if made by your stakeholder rather than sticking to your ego.

Now comes the most critical stage of your app development process – RESEARCHING THE MARKET AND COMPETITION.

This is quite a broad phase which comprises of a lot of micro-managed aspects. Let’s try to understand the sequence in which each of them needs to be followed.

You start by figuring out your app’s USP and then move on to figuring out your own brand story.

Then you move on to doing primary research where –

  • First you determine the need of your product in the market. In this phase you –
    • Develop a general understanding about the product you are building and the audience you will be targeting. For that,
      • You explore the market in person.
      • Look out for various online forums and social media platforms.
    • After that you take the help of Facebook ad. You create a landing page and a Facebook ad and redirect who-so-ever clicks on the ad to the landing page. You record the no of clicks to figure out your user base.
    • Then you create online surveys and make use of focus groups to frame the entire user experience of your mobile app.
  • Then, you draft your business model and plan.
    • First you draft an executive summary of your business plan.
    • Then you write down a brief about your company and business model.
    • In step 3 you access the present situation of the market to figure out whether your app deserves a place in the market or not.
    • Then you give an elaboration about your app where you define every single thing about it.
    • You then draw the hierarchy of your operational and managerial roles.
    • Now you design a sales and marketing strategy.
    • Then you figure out all the finances
    • And lastly summarise all the above points for easy referencing at later stages.
  • And lastly, you devise an optimised marketing strategy for your app.
    • You start by defining how do you want to market your mobile app?
    • Then you specify where do you want to market your app.
    • Now it’s time to choose between setting up and in-house marketing team or hiring an external marketing agency.
    • You then figure out the pre-launch pitfalls to avoid and similarly the post app launch pitfalls.

After your primary research you move on for the secondary research phase where –

  • You determine how strong is your product. Can it sustain in the long terms or not? This is the question you answer during this period. For that you do a SWOT analysis of your app and determine the –
    • Strength of your app idea.
    • Weakness it possesses.
    • What opportunities you can leverage on to grow in business.
    • And lastly the threats to your app from external market.
  • Then you figure out an optimized social media strategy to help to strengthen your online follower base. For that you –
    • First monitor your competitor’s social media handles.
    • Analyse how they are conducting themselves on social media
    • And then you devise your own social media plan to execute.

Now you have the complete market research you need to back up your entire app development phase.

After successful market research you move on to designing the app’s user interface.

  • First you design the logo of your app.
  • Then you design the UI of each of the screens present inside the app using every necessary components and UI design principles.

After successful UI design, comes the phase which takes you close to the final step. This is the phase where you select your technology partner to help you develop the app.

  • First you decide the platform for which you want to develop your app. It can be either android, iOS or both.
  • Then you decide which development methodology to follow – traditional or agile.
  • And lastly you figure out your budget to help you decide whether you want to go with a company or freelancing team.

After deciding all these you send your app into the development phase. Here the developers code the app, then test it and release the final build version

After successful beta version release, it’s time to check the app’s performance and maximize it further.

  • First you check the app’s performance from the server perspective.
  • Then you figure out the performance of your app from the cross-device and cross-platform perspective.
  • Lastly you check the network performance of your app.

The sum total of these scores helps you to devise the overall performance rating for your developed app. But the process doesn’t end out here. Now you are approaching the final stages of the app development process where you launch your app in the market.

  • First you figure out the list of every pre-launch pitfall to be taken care of.
  • Then you list out what are the post- launch pitfalls to avoid.
  • You figure out the best time to release your app in the market.
  • And lastly you release your app on the app store.

A major feat accomplished. Now just one more to go – EXCELLENT CUSTOMER SUPPORT.

After successfully launching your app in the market and spending few months, it’s time to strengthen up the customer support mechanism to facilitate the easy problem solving of the users. No app can survive without proper feedback mechanism and customer support channel. So sum up we can say that customer support is the pillar which keeps intact the entire mobile app together.

Never forget that every step in the app development has its own place, time, significance and relevance. If you miss out on any step, you will be left behind with a loophole, that might become the biggest reason of your app’s failure. So always keep in mind the big picture and give your best shot at everything you do to make your app a hit!

 

Shishir Dubey is the founder and CEO of ChromeInfotech, making mobile apps affordable and simple for small and enterprise businesses.

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