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5 Steps to Success: A Mobile App Road Map

5 Steps to Success: A Mobile App Road Map

August 29, 2014 0 Comments

Use this Mobile App Road Map

Avoid the common pitfalls of mobile app failure with careful planning.

While it should go without saying that you need to start with a great app, having a roadmap will help you to achieve that goal. 

As you begin building your first (or next) mobile app, consider the top five reasons apps fail so you can protect yours from the same fate.

Unfortunately, having a great idea for an app isn’t enough to ensure it will be successful. If you review the lists of the top apps being downloaded, it appears the formula to get your title on there is completely arbitrary. Let us help you, with our five-step road map to protect your mobile app from failure:

1. Design Your App Around Your Target Users

Understanding your users will go a long way toward creating an app that provides the experience you intend. If your app users are likely to be Web-savvy, you can make a more sophisticated user interface; if they’re novices, you need to be sure it’s as simple as possible. Nick Black, co-founder and director of Apadmi, recommends evaluating where your customers are likely to use the app and making sure you accommodate the connectivity they may (or may not) have, as well as the length of time they are likely to be engaged within the app.

2. Build Shareability into Your App

Even though app store search mechanisms are improving for all of the major stores, the best way to gain momentum is to advertise by word of mouth. Apps that engage users by making it easy for them to invite friends will be more successful than those that don’t.

Users love being social—embrace that and build on it.

3. Clearly Define—and Refine—Your App's Goals

You should easily be able to answer a number of questions regarding your app:

  • What does your app actually do?
  • Who should be using your app?
  • What are the key features of your app?
  • What sets you apart from the competition?

Every development project should begin with a peer review: look at your competitors and identify what they’re doing well and where they’re falling short. Keep in mind that simple apps are more attractive to users; too many features make an app feel overwhelming.

4. Monetize Inside Your App

Pricing is always tricky. You’ve invested lots of time and effort (and quite possibly paid capital toward development), and you are eager to recoup those costs. The problem is, it’s tough to make your money back $0.99 at a time—especially when users pass you by because your app isn’t free while competitors’ are.

This isn’t to say you shouldn’t charge users money in other ways. In-app monetization is the most effective way to get money for your efforts: users have installed your app and in many ways have become a captive audience. As long as you did your job well and the app provides the service you advertised, users will gladly invest.

5. Support Your App with Ongoing Maintenance

There is a common misconception that once you build and launch your app you can walk away and wait for the money to roll in. While that may work for a short while, if you want people to trust you with their wallets, they need to feel as if you will be there for them… not only with ongoing customer service and support, but also with updates and enhancements to the app (particularly as the mobile operating systems it runs on are upgraded).

There is no magic wand that will guarantee the success of a mobile app. But following these five simple steps will go a long way toward helping you build a profitable app store presence.

When you are ready to move your great idea to the next level and begin development, consider evaluating Progress® Rollbase® Mobile. Our low code, mobile application development platform that can help you succeed.

Michelle Tackabery

An experienced content and social media marketing professional, Michelle writes frequently about the practical applications of information technology.

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