Mobile devices have already supplanted desktop computers. Successful developers make billions of dollars selling apps at Play Market and App Store, while the share of mobile users is constantly growing all over the world.
It’s obvious that mobile app development is profitable. But what are the expenses? How long does the process of development take? What tasks does it include? What specialists can be needed? How much are they paid? Let’s try to calculate.
What does the statistics show?
According to data collected by global statistical agencies, an app development cost mainly depends on the complexity of the app. It can vary from $80,000 to $250,000. In average, the costs are distributed as follows:
- small and simple app development cost rarely exceeds $80,000;
- more complex app development cost, for example, as for a database app, ranges from $100,000 to $150,000;
- multi-feature app development cost starts from $150,000 and more.
Special attention should be paid to game apps, the development cost of those averages $100,000 – $300,000 and mainly depends on the detail and quality.
Various app development services also offer different delivery times, which can range from a week or two to ten months or more when it comes to complex corporate apps.
What features can increase the cost?
When estimating the app development cost, you should consider some key factors, such as complexity, platforms, design. Each of these factors has a significant impact on the total cost of any app. Therefore, if you have got an idea, that can interest potential users and generate income over time, first of all, you have to answer the next questions:
1. What complexities will your app have?
Complex features or the need to integrate with other platforms or services also make app development more expensive. These functions may include:
- in-app purchases and payments;
- sync data across different devices;
- social login;
- rating system;
- social integration;
- interaction with multiple devices (like IoT sensors)
- user profiles, etc.
Thus, the more additional functions are required to implement your idea, the higher the development costs will be.
2. Will your app be native or hybrid?
“Native apps” means that they are developed for one specific platform using the same programming language that was used to create the platform itself. These apps can access a phone’s features, as for example, the camera. Usually they are more fast and reliable.
Hybrid apps are developed using a combination of web and native technologies. Such apps do not have access to phone features, but they can be installed and run on different platforms. Typically, native apps development is more expensive.
3. Will your app use templates or will it have a unique design?
The appearance of the app is a very important component of marketing success. As practice shows, only thoughtful, well-executed, convenient and aesthetic products can become an integral part of the user’s daily life. On the other hand, templated designs significantly reduce development costs.
The design cost includes the expenses for visual design, UX design, branding, creating a unique logo, copywriting, etc. The higher the quality of the services and the specialists involved in the design of your app, the more expensive it will become. For example, some UX design companies can charge you tens of thousands of dollars per project. At the same time, most developer shops have their own design team.
How to reduce the cost of an app development?
The apps cost directly depends on the developer’s choice. Both experienced developer companies and freelancers who work much cheaper can be engaged, but in this case, cheaper is not necessarily better. Freelancers usually don’t have enough experience. The development process will be slow and may affect the quality of your app.
Many entrepreneurs use offshore teams. This means that the specialists involved into the development process work remotely. They can be located in China or India and keep in touch online. So, you’re not seeing the people you’ll work with.
Another way to reduce the app development cost is to involve a technical co-founder. This means that you can offer the owner of the app development agency to participate in the development in exchange for a certain share of the future profit from the app. Co-founders are paid in equity and can be a great asset.
In addition, if you are confident in the success of your own ideas, you can also start your own app development company. This option cannot be called simple or cheap, since recruiting experienced specialists is a complex and costly process. But along with a technical co-founder, this is one of the most reliable ways to build a profitable app.
Keep an eye on marketing!
Do not forget that you will have to invest in sales. According to the statistics, more than a half of all apps developed did not make enough money to recoup the investments. Most of the App Store revenue goes to one percent of monetized apps. That is why, in order to attract attention, you will need to pay for marketing, advertising and the involvement of appropriate specialists to develop a strategy to promote your app.