Mobile applications have been one of the most consistent and widely used modes to promote and expand your business in the past few years. That's why p
Mobile applications have been one of the most consistent and widely used modes to promote and expand your business in the past few years. That’s why product owners look for a skilful mobile app development company to craft a well-performing and highly engaging application for their businesses. However, being a startup or an SME, you must know what it takes to implement the process of mobile app development successfully.
This article is all about the essential steps involved in mobile app development. It will help you understand the overall lifecycle of a mobile app to understand the entire development process better. So, let’s get started.
Market Research: Choosing Audience, Platform and Tech Stack
Having an excellent mobile app concept in your mind beforehand is a fantastic place to start. However, before you proceed to the designing and development stage, it is crucial to go through deep market research. It includes diving into your business goals, target audience, and your competitors’ strategies and moves. Here it would be best if you got the answers to the following questions:
What are the goals you want to accomplish through your mobile application?
Who will be your target audience?
What platform do you want your app to run over?
Which mobile app development technology and framework should you use to develop your app?
What is your overall budget, and what features can you integrate into your app as per your budget?
How will you launch and advertise your application?
Market research is a crucial step in mobile app development as it assists you in understanding and finalising the requirements that are basic but have a profound impact.
Establishing the Goals and Objectives for Your Mobile App
Now, when you know about all the primary requirements needed to develop your mobile app, you need to set its goals and objectives. At this stage, you will be able to answer the following questions:
What issue (or issues) will your mobile app resolve for your customers?
What features should it include to help accomplish the set goals and objectives of the app?
How will your mobile app attract your target audience?
Sketching and Wireframing
Till this stage, you might have developed an idea about what your app should look like, what goals it should serve and what features it must include. Apart from this, you might also know the scope of work: what portion of the work can be performed in-house and what needs to be outsourced. Now, you should start with sketching out your app (wireframing) and designing a storyboard. There are many tools available for creating wireframes for your mobile app. You can use any one of them that depicts a clear picture of the interface and functionalities of your app. Make sure you also prepare a storyboard or roadmap representing the connections between each screen of your app when users navigate through it. This stage is critical from the user experience point of view.
Defining the Backend
You will need a backend structure based on the wireframes and storyboard to support your app. For this, you need to collect ideas regarding data figures, APIs (Application Programming Interfaces), servers, data integration, and push notifications services. You need to choose the right backend technology that suits your app design, functionalities and requirements. Moreover, if there are any limitations in the backend development process, you might need to modify your wireframes or storyboard to resolve the issue.
Designing a Prototype
After you finalise a wireframe, it’s time to develop an interactive mobile app prototype. A prototype is a testing version of any final product that imitates its design and functions to evaluate the functioning, design patterns and flaws in the app’s usability. Since it is not the final product, the developer can gather feedback and identify the errors in the application. After resolving the issues and modifying the prototype, you can test it again to finalise the app design and functioning to proceed with the app development.
Developing the App
It is the stage where the actual app development process takes place. Since you have tested the prototype, you are all set to develop your mobile application. You need to gather your development team or hire app development specialists to arrange the existing storage solutions, APIs, servers for the backend support, databases, etc. Make sure to create a developers account on the respective app stores where you want to share your app. It can be a long process and takes much time. Therefore, ensure that you do it beforehand. Apart from all these, below are the things that the development stage includes:
Programming and writing codes for the application
Designing app skins or actual screens for your app
Adding UI/UX components, high graphical and textual elements, animations, etc.
Since you want your target audience to enjoy your application, it becomes crucial to consider the details related to UI, UX and app functions.
You have finally developed the app you always wanted to have for your business with interactive graphics and text matter until this stage. Now, the final step is to meticulously test your application in real-world scenarios to detect and fix the technical flaws, if any. You need to perform unit testing for every app function before completing the final testing of the entire app.
You can also introduce your app to some users so that they can share their feedback and point out specificities that you might have missed while developing the app. When you are confident that your mobile application is functioning correctly and stands out in terms of usability and appearance, you can finally prepare your app for launch.
Launching Your App
This step is not a part of the development phase and involves active participation of your marketing team for keyword research, SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and ASO (App Store Optimization). Both of these strategies are essential for the discoverability of your app. You must choose an interactive title and app description with suitable keywords to register your mobile app to several marketplaces for distribution. In addition, you will also need high-quality screenshots and a promotional video for your app.
To promote and support your app, you need a website or any landing page to get information about your business. You can also link your social media accounts or launch email campaigns to create user interest and anticipation. In order to keep track of your app, you can use any analytics tool, such as Google Analytics, to optimise the performance of your mobile app. Moreover, depending on your mobile app niche, you might need related experts and influencers to promote your app.
Keep in mind that your task is not over yet. After the launch of your app, you need to check for user reviews and feedback regularly. If there is some genuine feedback for any improvisation in the app, you must consider them and modify your app in the next update. It builds the customers’ trust and helps you get more app downloads.
This article has introduced you to the lifecycle of mobile app development and all the crucial stages you need to take care of. Be it an experienced mobile app development agency or a new one in the field, they all need to follow these fundamental processes to develop an interactive mobile application. Once you follow these guidelines correctly, you can have a robust and highly engaging application with the appearance, functions and specifications you need in it.