5 questions to ask before developing an app
So, you’ve got an app idea in mind. Great! But before you start thinking about building fancy features or seeing your product in the App store, there’s five important questions we recommend you consider first.
(If you’re not sure how to approach these questions, we can help! Send us a message and we’ll talk you through our discovery workshops, which are designed to help you answer these very questions)
Is there a need for the app?
CB Insights identified that 42% of startups fail because there was no market need. If you’re developing an app for an existing market (for example, a language learning app) you’re well on your way to idea validation, and your attention should be focused on why customers should pay for your product instead of the competition.
If you’re entering a new market or solving a problem in a completely new way, it may take more time to validate the user cases and identify the personas who’ll be using your product. This could range from user surveys and polling to market scale reviews and competitor analysis (and so much more).
For more insights into this process you can read about our product development journey here.
What’s the user persona?
A user persona is a fictional outline of your app’s ideal customer. This should start from the research and validation stage where you identify exactly what your customers need from the product you’re designing. A persona contains the needs, goals, and behaviour patterns of your target audience.
We need to really understand the people, the needs and the problem that the product is intended to solve to validate whether this is even something worth developing. Not doing this step is a huge risk and more often than not leads to a lot of wasted time and money.
Read more about user personas here.
What is the monetisation strategy?
The unfortunate reality is that the majority of apps are not profitable, and a major factor in this is the lack of due diligence on how to monetise the product. Monetising an app in the App store ranges from pay to download and in-app purchases to subscriptions and purchasing products through the app.
The answer to this question is highly specific on your overall objectives, your user personas and the type of app you’re building, but it’s vital to have a clear plan (and ideally validated in research stages!) on how you will approach this, and understand from the outset the benefits of creating an app for your business.
What’s the launch plan?
Developing your app is half the battle, and more than often the easy part. You could have the greatest app in the world but if nobody knows about it then you may as well not have built it. How will you get your first 100 downloads? 1000 downloads? 1,000,000 downloads?
If you have done clear research and developed your user personas, take these into your Facebook advertising as your targeted demographic. Do you have a plan for content marketing? App store optimisation? SEO? Social media? The list goes on and on.
There is a lot you can do, but make sure your marketing works with the audience you need to target – what platforms does your persona live in and how are you going to attract their attention?
Who’s the right development team?
If you’re a non technical founder, it can be challenging to even know what to look for when thinking about how to choose an app development company or how to find an app developer. Questions you should ask include who they’ve worked with in the past and how many products have they successfully launched for other clients.
Of course, time and cost are major factors as well, but the one thing you should consider above all is the working relationship. With an app, you’re usually in it for the long-haul, with the time period ranging from three months for initial launch to years of ongoing work and maintenance.
This is why, at Appliquette, we provide you with a product manager whose job it is to work alongside you and our development team to help craft the best app experience possible.