Mobile App Development Process

Mobile App Development Process | 5280 Software LLC
Mobile App Development Process | 5280 Software LLC

In this post, we will answer the question: “What are the main steps in developing a mobile application?”.  There are over 6,000 apps released every single day.  Over 65% of online traffic in the United States is coming from mobile phones.  This trend is similar on a global scale as well.  This is leading businesses to rush to build a mobile app for their brands.  Below are the 7 steps that you can take to launch your successful app.  This post will guide you to understand the best processes to create your android or iOS app.  The mobile app development process is easy to understand in the steps below.

Step 1: Feasibility

When the idea for an app is first thought of, many times you think the idea is ingenious.  While this idea may be extraordinary, you have to conclude whether the app solves a problem or fills a void in the market.  The idea is only successful if it solves a genuine problem of the target audience.  Market research and competitor analysis is critical in this initial phase.  You need to clearly define who your typical client is going to be.

Market research should be conducted on the Google Play Store and the Apple Store.  After you have refined your idea and identified your target market for the app, you can research similar apps.  Pay attention to the number of downloads, research their features, and study these competitor app’s reviews.  It is also a good idea to download these competitor apps and see what is missing from them, how they can be improved, and determine how your app will fill the voids these other apps have.

Step 2: Scope of Work, Development Contract, Budgeting, Timeline

After you have established the feasibility of your idea, it is critical to draft a clearly defined Scope of Work.  The Scope of Work should include all the features and functionalities of the app.  Try to make this document as detailed as possible.  5280 Software LLC can help you draft this Scope of Work.  A good initial first step would be filling out our questionnaire to give us an idea of what your app idea is about.  Research is needed to figure out what kind of APIs you will need, what types of database will you need, if push notifications are needed, what types of analytics tools you might want to implement, and other technical details.  After the scope of work is drafted, it will be used in the proposal and eventually the Development Contract.

5280 Software LLC always provides a Development Contract for all projects, no matter the size or budget.  Make sure whatever team you hire does provide a clearly defined Development Contract as many firms are not honest; many will gladly take your money and never complete the project.  The Development Contract provided by 5280 Software LLC will have a fixed price for the project as well as a timeline for the development of your app. This is crucial to have this contract in place to have success in your Mobile App Development Process.

Step 3:  Design, Mockups, Wireframes

Now that you have a Development Contract signed with 5280 Software LLC and the initial payment has been made, the design phase of the project commences.  Here are the key points to remember when designing the UI/UX.

  • Visualize the exact layout of every screen in the app and where the elements (buttons, banners, icons, etc.) will be on each screen.
  • Keep your User Interface (UI) unique without compromising the user’s experience.
  • Make sure each screen is aligned with the primary objective; don’t make your user feel lost while using the app.
  • Test out different layouts of your screen.  See if changing the placement of a button or an icon makes it better functionally or aesthetically.

Now that you have the mockups complete, the next thing to do is to diagram the flow of the app.  This is called a wireframe.  This is a representation of the flow the app when a certain button of element is clicked on each screen.  Although this sounds complicated, do not worry, 5280 Software LLC will help you navigate this task.

Step 4: Development

The initial tasks of this phase are setting up developer accounts on the app stores you want to release the app as well as setting up a hosting service.  For hosting, 5280 Software LLC recommends Amazon Web Services.  AWS is free to start using and is an instantly saleable platform.  We can assist in setting up developer account and your AWS account.

The phases of development are broken down into 3 phases:

1.  The Alpha Phase is where the core functionality of the app is developed.  The functionality is minimal and there are many bugs to fix.

2.  The Beta Phase involves incorporating all the major functions and features of the app.  There is some testing during the phase.  Our internal testers as well as a few external users are needed during this phase to identify flaws in flow and functionality.

3.  The Release Phase is the final phase that comes when all the bugs have been identified and fixed after multiple rounds of testing.  At this point the app is ready for release to the market.

Step 5: Testing

No matter how great your mobile app appears to function, you can never have too many rounds of testing.  Make sure all the features and functionalities are tested at every phase of development.  At every iteration, you should perform various tests such as:

  • Usability Testing involves asking new users to test the features for navigation and ease of use.
  • Functional Testing to verify the features are working exactly the way they are required to.
  • Regression testing, as mentioned above, is where the app’s features are tested repeatedly at every iteration.
  • User Acceptance Testing is when you have targeted users test your app and provide feedback.
  • Performance Testing is done to ensure your app is fast and responsive to the tasks your app performs.
  • Device-Specific Testing involves trying the app on different devices with different OS and screen sizes.  5280 Software LLC tests on many different physical devices to make sure your app will perform well once released.

Step 6: Launch

The most critical step in the Mobile App Development Process is the launch phase.  Make sure you launch on the date advertised in your marketing campaign.  App Store Optimization is crucial to ensure a successful launch.  Every app should also have a website to showcase the app as well as provide updates to when the app will launch.  SEO is very important pre-launch to drive traffic to your app’s website to let the market know about your product.

Your app’s Website or Landing page has to be linked to via the app’s description in the app store.  We have a great article you can read about App Store Optimization.  Besides organic traffic, it is also a good idea to run paid campaigns through Facebook, Instagram, Google, and other social media platforms to reach a wider audience and induce installs of your app.  Influencers and bloggers are another way you can spread the word about your app.

Step 7: Post-Launch

Once your app is launched you still have many tasks to do.  It is important to review feedback and reviews of your app to see how you can improve it.  Always respond to reviews of your app.  Fixing bugs and releasing new versions is crucial to the long-term success of your app.

Conclusion

The Mobile App Development Process is not an easy undertaking.  It is critical to find the right company to help bring your idea to fruition.  Contact the professional developers at 5280 Software LLC today to get started.  We are involved in all the stages of your project, from ideation to deployment.  We work with small self-funded startups to established business enterprise level clients.  We are the pros at creating stunning applications for smartphones as well as custom software.  No matter how complex the requirements, we deliver quality results while keeping costs down. We are based here in the USA and ready to serve our clients through the entire life cycle of their iOS App Development or Android App Development project.