As app developers ourselves we know how frustrating it can be trying to launch an app, as there’s simply so much to think about. Our UK based design and development team here at Borne Digital are on hand with the top things to consider when preparing to develop and launch your app.
1) Have I Done Enough Research?
Research is hugely important both post and pre-launch. You need to determine exactly who your market is and why this app might be useful to them. Market research will give you insights into what your target users actually value in an app, as well as determining which keywords they search for browsing the app store, knowledge which will become invaluable when it comes to actually marketing the app.
It is also important to learn as much about your competition as possible. Explore their marketing strategies, not just on the App Store but on other platforms such as Twitter or Facebook. Take a look at their user feedback to see what they’re doing right, and what they could improve on. Then focus on what your product will do differently to ensure they download yours instead.
2) How Will Your App Benefit The User?
For me personally, an app is only worth downloading if it is going to make my life easier. If it doesn’t do this well, it gets deleted and cast back into the ever expanding app store to make space for Game of Thrones downloads and Justin Bieber albums.
Alternatively, you could ask yourself whether your app solves a problem. Whether it’s the problem of not knowing where to eat, what to pack or what to do on the train, a good app will help a user out in their time of need.
If the app you want to create isn’t going to benefit your user in some way then your idea needs a rethink. If you choose to work with mobile app developers they may help with your branding. At Borne Digital, we conduct workshops and branding sessions to ensure the app has a solid purpose, which is understood by all involved.
Unless you have designed an app specifically to stretch the limitations of the human brain and patience, the app should be simple to use. No one wants to sit for longer than 3 seconds trying to work out how to log in, and no one wants to spend hours trying to stop an app from posting your run times to your Facebook newsfeed (Runtastic, I’m looking at you).
At Borne, we encourage you to launch a lean, focused product. However, that’s not to say that you shouldn’t have a clear picture in your mind of how you are going to refine and build on your first version – after all, this is just the beginning of a long journey.
We recommend having a clear 6-month roadmap before you launch. Then, using real data from your users post-launch, you can decide what features to improve, add or remove.
Borne Digital’s head mobile app designer Elliot shares his words of wisdom when it comes to creating a vision for your product,
“Often you can be so focused on building an incredible “V1” product that you forget to focus on what the product will look like in 6 months. My advice is to keep a couple of game changer features in your back pocket for your second or third release, that way you keep your first users amazed with your ability to constantly evolve and give new users yet more reason to download your app versus the competition.”
4) The Price
Research has shown that users are far more likely to spend money on in-app purchases than they are to pay for the app outright and, as someone who has spent a lot of money getting to level 457 on Candy Crush, I can confirm the truth of these findings.
Unless you already have a loyal user following, or simply outstanding marketing, it is unlikely that people are going to part with much money outright, so play it safe to start out with, no matter how much you think the app is worth.
5) What About Social Media?
It’s essential to start marketing your app long before the launch date. Engage your potential users by giving them sneak peaks of the app and reach out to influential bloggers in the industry in the hope that they might show you some love.
Using Twitter, Facebook or Instagram are great ways to create a buzz around your product and make users excited for launch date. Post-launch, these platforms will allow you to make improvements and updates based on user feedback.
Encourage people to share their experience with your product on one of these platform, preferably without spamming them.
Both Facebook and Instagram also allow you to post an ad and distribute it to your target audience. It comes at a cost depending on the number of people you want to reach, but if it gets to the right people it will be worth it.