Even the greatest are bound to make mistakes at times. We learn by going through different experiences that shape us, and the art of app developing is no different. Even though you’re going to see some failures during your time as a designer, coder or marketer, here are some common mistakes in the mobile app industry that you know you can avoid.
Being the only tester for your app
When you develop and design your app, you probably consider yourself and your coworkers to be the most knowledgeable on your app. You know your creation from the inside out, so it would make sense for you to be the one to test it, so you can assess every last detail.
Surprisingly—or perhaps unsurprisingly—this is incorrect. You’ve spent so much time working on the app, you’ve become almost blind to some of its faults, in many cases. Instead, you should look to find a diverse group of potential consumers to test your app out, so not only will mistakes be more likely caught, but they can also provide valuable input about other parts of the app that they like or don’t like. A diversity of opinion will allow you to challenge your own preferences to make the best product for the masses!
Making hasty decisions about the platform
There are multiple schools of thought on whether you should start developing on Android or iOS first, or if you should even touch other platforms. Many go into the fray immediately without thinking much about this decision.
Popular notions suggest that you should always choose iOS over Android because you’re more likely to bring in a greater profit. Others argue you should develop both at once, so you can reach a great amount of people.
While these strategies have a good chance at being effective for many, you have to think harder about it than just what’s on the surface. Android can be a lucrative investment for many apps, and if you’re a developer with fewer resources on hand you might forgo designing both apps at the same time. Let go of your premonitions, and realize the pros and cons of each choice. You won’t regret it!
Having a lack of marketing
Something we can never stress enough is that you can’t have a successful app without having a good social and marketing presence, especially in today’s ultra-competitive landscape. It honestly doesn’t matter if your app is the most appealing, useful piece of software to grace the App Store since 2011. Without publicity, you will see little to no success.
Marketing and outreach need to be the focus of your app. What makes your app special, and who would be your target audience? How do you get the attention of that group—which method of advertising is going to get you the best results?
Not knowing the difference between an app and a website
Apps are fundamentally different from websites. There’s something immediate, intuitive and drastically different in the subtle designs and gestures of the way a mobile app works.
If you set out to replicate the way a website works (whether like a mobile web app or, even worse, a desktop page) you’ve already lost the battle. When you design an app, take advantage of the personalized, dynamic way an app can integrate with a phone, and what the users can do when they’re interacting with the touch screen. You want to make something intuitive and revolutionary at the same time, don’t you?
Not thinking about bringing in revenue
Much like how no marketing will cause your app to fail, not monetizing your product will do the same. A lack of money will certainly hurt or even destroy your business, so you want to think about how to bring in money, whether it’s through sponsored content, in-app advertising, surveys, a “freemium” model…the list goes on.
The most effective way of monetization for one company won’t necessarily work for another company. You’ll likely have to add your own innovation to some combination of the above strategies to find the perfect fit for you. But when you end up finding the perfect strategy, your company’s business and revenue will thank you for it.