One of the main challenges our team faced in the past – was launching our own digital product. That is an application for booking and scheduling meeting room use for small and middle-sized companies. After more than a year of successful operation, we can share some tips we found important for the app development and launch. It is better to know about some of them before the product reaches the store platform.
Here is the list of 11 top things that can add value to a mobile application.
Before starting the development process, the first thing to consider is the definition of the business model of the application. The way the future app is going to get revenues from its customers can define, in some cases, the visual appearance and user flow.
Some companies prefer to offer limited functional scope on a free of charge basis. Others, like we are, grant all functionality for everyone, though limit the number of users within one company. The easiest way is to offer subscription-based payments or one-time purchases. Though, each business should choose it regarding their own intentions.
The entire idea of the future application should be bound to a single function your app offers. You do not need to spread the resources around supplementary or occasional functions at once. They can be added later after the product is tested and should expand its services in the market. Still, such giants as Instagram and TikTok have only one core function and still get the recognition without scaling up.
Defining one function helps to use the limited resources in the best way. It gives the vision for the creation of the roadmap to keep the team of developers focused on a basic task. This function should provide an opportunity for users, somehow make their life easier or better.
Clear UX and touching UI
According to numerous researches, half of the users leave the application in one month after downloading it from the store. The reasons for such behaviour can include failed high expectations, bugs, unclear UX or plain UI that was unable to touch the user. To find a bug, a user should use the app at least 10 times. To fall into the confusion pit due to poor UI or UX, they need only several seconds.
The design should consider the specific point a target audience may have. Though, additionally, the designers should count the function of the app. If it was developed to perform “a fast option to find and book a meeting room”, the big button “find” is the most obvious solution for the first screen.
Making the onboarding guide and placing in-time tips helps users to navigate around the solution in case they face it for the first time. Nevertheless, the basic flow should be as easy as possible and stay in the world of users.
Place the needs of a customer to the corner of the table and let them define the route for further development. This point is bound with the definition of the core function. The application should solve the problem of the user or make things even better – provide an opportunity for them. Users do not want a new fully automatic tool with the brand-new approach to control over the office premises. They wish to stop the constant stealing of meeting rooms by their team members and coming unprepared due to meeting schedule changes.
The users after several months of experiencing the app will help to define the sub-functions that are really needed and which can be deleted, so no one notices that.
Personal data and security
Caring about the personal data of users becomes a must for modern digital products. The users now try to pay attention to the ways the app uses their data and for what purposes. In case the honest attitude to users is not the defining point, here is another reason to think about privacy. The numerous governments adopt special regulations for data privacy, violation of which can result in the business’s actual endgame.
Before starting the development, choose the data that is necessary for app serviceability, find the legal grounds for such collection, and ensure the security of the entire system. To be true, there are more points to consider in terms of the privacy of data, though we will need a separate article only to enumerate them. In any case, responsible management of private data will help to build trust with the users if they see that their data is not misused. And trust is the resource we all lack these times.
Platform to distribute
Do not try to launch your app on every platform or kind of smartphone you know. Developing the application for each operating system will double the time and money needed for launch. In terms of Minimum Viable Product building, it is better to focus on testing a single theory before the hard launch. You can find that the idea is not worthy in the current market and shift the development flow until it is not too late.
Though, choosing the particular platform can be a challenge as well. Some of them have special requirements for the developed products or their documentation. And do not forget about the differences in interfaces of operational systems, for eg. material design vs human interface guidelines. Unpropper implementation or ignoring their requirements can result in UI or UX bugs that will be difficult to fix after launch.
Quality and focus groups tests
We do not offer you to test the application as it is quite obvious. Low quality of the code will do no good work for the success of the application. Instead, some development teams forget to test their products on focus groups, similar to the target audience of the app. Moreover, it is better to test it under the conditions it would be used in real life. In case it is the mobile solution allowing you to book a meeting room on the go right in the street, take your smartphone and check if it would be comfortable to do so. Some ideas can fail after smashing into reality.
When using test groups do not forget to get feedback from them. It would be great if it includes as many details as possible of what the person liked or not, what was the first thing they paid attention to on the screen and so on.
Roadmap with future updates
Do not forget that the launch is not the end of the road for the app, it is only the beginning. You will need to take statistics, make an analysis, and introduce changes. The definition of the particular points of the map, in some cases even with dates, helps meet the deadlines and adjust the development flow. The users will see the next steps and that gives them confidence that the application is alive, the team is still in contact. That is an additional point of trust within the users’ community.
Engagement with the application
There are many activities that can reduce the churn rate of the application, one of the simplest ones – engagement of the users, for eg. with the help of social media. Such a technique can be similar to gamification when you add the possibility for a user to share some achievements in their social profiles. Applying various daily activities can be an option as well.
The general rule is the following – the quality and effectiveness of the application that solves daily tasks will make the users come back again and again. And you would not need the application of additional tricks to get the recognition.
When the product appears on worldwide platforms, people from any country in the world can access it. Nevertheless, numerous countries or regions have their own peculiarities in terms of visual design or colour use. To avoid troubles due to lack of knowledge of some specific cases, you can launch the product for a limited number of countries. The necessity to adjust to the market is true to marketing materials as well.
Things that are common for most people can become indignant for others due to some cultural points. So, it is better to perform a soft launch for a limited audience you understand well and only then move to new markets after their thorough research.
Thinking of tomorrow
To build a successful product, a team of developers should always think of the day of tomorrow. Not only in the terms of innovation or hard-boiled techniques but also with the view of the perfection of the world. Though, that should not be simple feeling-based predictions. The evaluation of the inner and outer surroundings of the application, market trends and shifts, changes in our daily routine should find their implementation in digital products.
When users feel care and comfort staying within the application, they will build a strong community themselves even without external motivation. And the number of returning users that subsequently become brand ambassadors is the best proof of the success of any application.
Have an idea on your future mobile app that is going to drive the world for dozens of years? Contact us and we assist you with this issue.