Nowadays, business and IT technologies became inseparable. Mobile applications not only facilitate management of the company but also help to increase the income. It may be a good option for startup projects as well as stable-running small businesses.
For example, If you run a small café then mobile app is a great way to tell people about events that are going to take place. If you run a small shop, then you can inform your clients about new goods available. Also, mobile apps for small business may provide entrepreneur with electronic commerce.
These are just a few reasons why your small business needs a mobile app. Now, let’s take a look at general tips of mobile app development and try answer the question “how to make an app for your small business?”.
Business app development
Introducing of a mobile apps to your business is a must for you to succeed. These applications range from large–complex systems to small, niche products. Business app development is not extremely hard today because of a great number of development tools available today for free. Therefore, you can build an application for the platform you need, like Android, iOS, or any other, no matter how complex it has to be.
But still, do not expect to create a world-leading, 100% free of any bugs application on the very first try. Also, do not think that application development is a cakewalk. It will take a lot of time and effort to develop really great product. Following are the steps you need to take into account in order to understand how to create a mobile app for your business.
Step#1 — Choose a language
If you’ve decided to develop an app for the iOS or Android – the most popular platforms at the marketplace – there is something to choose from.
Java. The most widely used programming language. Over 9 million developers use Java to develop apps. Because of its popularity, a lot of material is available to you to study the language. Android uses Java as the basis of the application. However, Android Java differs from regular Java. Android devices do not run JAR-files, but the classes are compiled into bytecode and runs on a virtual machine, called Dalvik VM. Features:
- Application may run on nearly all platforms.
- Many APIs.
- Open source libraries.
- Easy to learn and understand code of other developers.
To start developing an application for Android, it is necessary to have an Android SDK that includes libraries, development tools (like a debugger and an emulator) and source code.
Swift is a brand new language created by Apple to replace Objective C in future. It provides seamless compatibility with Objective C. Also, it is possible to use Objective C API’s in Swift projects and vice versa. Therefore, Swift can be easily integrated in the development workflow. Key features:
- iOS and OS X compatibility
- Full interoperability with Objective C
- Can be extended with dynamic libraries
- Objective C-like syntax
- Swift and Objective C files may communicate with each other
Any programming language has its advantages and disadvantages, so you need to spend some time studying more about the language to understand if it is able to meet your demands.
Step#2 — Work out a plan
When you’re trying to come up with a plan or early app prototype sketches it is necessary to start with general ideas. Do not think about how you will do this or that, just try to define main logic app will be granted with, like “In this app, person will assign a task to a certain employee”. It is a good idea to create a list of actions your software will perform. At this point, you shouldn’t care about app design or interface.
Keep the most important functions only. If you want to implement 8 features, then use just 3 or 4 of them at the very beginning. The fewer features app will have at the starting point have the easier it will be to develop an app.
Only after these steps are done you may consider implementation of UI/UX design of your mobile application. Draw the sketches and imagine how a user will go through all the screens. Is your application user-friendly? What user will see after tapping particular button on the screen and why?
Make your application protected. A user has to be sure that their data will not be stolen.
A plan facilitates the process of software development, because you know exactly what you need to do and what you should pay attention to. An application has to be protected, usable, well designed in order to perform its main functions.
Step#3 — Start developing your application
Having a plan and the general idea, you may start the actual development. You will need a certain amount of time to study the options for building an application that meets your needs. At least several months are needed to create the basic version with limited features – MVP. It is the minimum viable product – the working prototype that demonstrates how your concepts work and if the ways you have chosen are good enough for completing the task. Consider MVP as your starting point. Start adding new functions and see what works and what doesn’t. It is always good to remember that application development starts from something simple and goes to complex.
Step#4 — Further development and beta testing
After implementation of all functions you have planned it is the time to start beta testing. Beta testing is a good way to test an application on different hardware and software configurations. The application should be executed flawlessly on any device. Moreover, any important software component shouldn’t crash.
Beta testing provides you with the data about mistakes. Since beta version is available to everyone, you get large amounts of errors data and execution reports. It helps you to understand how your application works on a device and what you should fix. Beta testing can be a part of marketing strategy, as it can grab users’ attention and provide you with feedback from them.
Beta testing is the final stage of testing before the actual release, therefore you need to fix everything to provide users with the best experience possible.
After beta testing comes app release on the market. Here you analyze and gather all data including user feedback and bug cases.
Applications and evolution of your business
Software solutions, especially e-commerce ones, can greatly increase your income rates. In some cases, an application can help you to find new customers. A company that offers goods or services online needs an e-commerce application for sure to facilitate the process of buying.
Before app development you also need to consider expenses you will have to experience. However, an application may cost a lot without giving you any advantage, which is a waste of your money. To avoid making any mistakes, you need to analyze the situation and market. There are many pros and cons when it comes to the necessity of an application, because you will need to support the application, which requires money expenses too. Study actions of your competitors and work out a strategy. If you are new to mobile app development, then, most likely your budget is limited so every penny must be spent wisely.
If you still have any questions or you need to develop an application for your business, then consider checking our portfolio section. Our company has a broad experience in native mobile app development for iOS and Android. We are able to deliver high-end solutions for startups and large companies. If you want to get the maximum profit then hire us right now.