What does the process of developing a mobile application look like?
Successful digital tools result from strictly defined activities and synchronization of the work of many specialists. This is an extensive process in which every – even the most minor – step is crucial to the entire project’s success. Therefore, it is worth entrusting this task to professionals who have expertise in this field. So what should the whole process of creating a mobile application look like so that it will be a market success? These are specific stages, which we will present below.
1. Determining the purpose of a mobile application
Professional mobile app design begins with many steps before coding begins. One of the most important steps is to define the app’s purpose very precisely, that is, to determine what business problem it should solve.
After all, there are many business applications, some of which directly generate profit, being a source of new orders. In contrast, others focus on building brand image, creating customer loyalty, or supporting employees.
It’s essential for the client to accurately determine the purpose of their solution already at this stage. Thanks to this, the professionals will design a practical mobile application to achieve the set goals, providing the company with several benefits.
2. Accurate identification of company needs
Specialists begin the development of a mobile application by carefully studying the nature of the business, the industry, and the challenges of a particular enterprise. Action planning is closely linked to gaining knowledge of market needs. The more accurately the mobile application correlates with the assumptions of the marketing strategy, the better it will do its job, achieving long-term business goals.
3. Analysis of mobile applications in the industry
In developing mobile applications, analyzing solutions already available in the industry is necessary. It is worthwhile to study what the current trends are and which functionalities will be most important for future users. Reviewing similar programs makes it easier to design an application that will stand out from the competition.
The first three steps mentioned above are of great importance for the success of the entire project. This stage allows you to accurately identify the company’s needs, which is essential to create a practical mobile application that achieves specific goals and responds to the customer’s problems.
Therefore, a crucial stage in the design process is to conduct a product workshop, i.e., a meeting of the two parties (principal and contractor), during which they precisely define the business context of the project and the tasks and goals of the application are clarified. We describe the first minimum version of the MVP (Minimum Viable Product), i.e., an option that already makes business sense but still needs to be highly developed. It saves the client money and time – the application is brought to market quickly.
The application design starts only after completing the workshop, which also consists of many more miniature stages.
4. Prototyping by Design Thinking
The analysis results are a reasonable basis for further stages of the process. Thanks to them, the company implemented the project as a basis for creating a solution that is effective for the company and attractive to users. With such valuable knowledge in hand, one can proceed to design. This is the time for the first verification of the idea. The sooner it happens, the easier it will be to adapt the mobile application to actual market demand. From this point of view, prototyping using the Design Thinking method is very beneficial for the final result.
Among its many advantages, it is worth mentioning the inclusion of users in the development process. This approach implies the creation of an application focused on the recipient. And this is the basis for success. Very quickly – already at the initial design stage – tests are carried out on a small group of recipients, who give feedback on the new solution. This way, the company can quickly modify, avoiding radical changes only at the final stage. Such a drastic reformulation of the finished solution would generate much higher costs. On the other hand, if the decision is made to leave the application without any customization to meet the needs of its addressees, the chances of success decrease many times over.
5. User interface design
Page layout, design, colours, graphics, or animations considerably impact the positive reception of the new solution. They should be well-matched to users’ expectations, so it is essential to identify them precisely at the earlier stages of the mobile application development process.
6. Programming and continuous cooperation with the client during the development of mobile applications
An excellent mobile application addresses both the needs of its users and meets the company’s business goals. Therefore, the development of mobile applications should occur with the client’s active participation. Professionals invite the client to test the application throughout the development process so that a solution is perfectly tailored to the industry’s nature and the audience’s needs.
Intuition and experience gained in a particular sector are invaluable ingredients for creating the best solution. And these, along with the technical expertise of specialists, make it possible to create attractive and effective programs.
How can this be done in practice? In addition to a reasonable exchange of information at the stage of identifying needs, continuous cooperation is also essential. A specialist who reports on the performance of successive parts of a task cyclically thus involves the principal in the entire process. The latter gains information on the progress of the work on an ongoing basis and can immediately react and influence the final shape of the application.
Before an application is implemented and available to even a small audience, it should be verified against global assumptions. This is the next step, in which individual functionalities are tested to avoid errors, gaps, and negative user feedback. The correctness of the code is checked, as well as whether the various parts of the application work properly with each other, whether their functionality is as intended, to what extent the application is efficient, what the loading time is, and whether the mobile application meets the expectations of the audience.
Verifying the app’s performance is as essential as identifying needs, prototyping, or coding. Therefore, remember a scenario where testing could be skipped. It would not be cost-effective under any circumstances.
8. Application deployment
The next step in the process is the implementation of the application. The good practice of sharing the deployed mobile app with a small audience allows you to gather initial feedback. Based on this, it is worth using positive feedback to communicate the novelty in a promotional campaign properly. If shortcomings are identified, the company still has a chance to implement improvements before presenting the solution on a large scale.
9. Development and maintenance
For a product to serve its purpose in the long term, it must undergo constant development and maintenance to keep it up to date with the requirements and updates of operating systems. Maintaining a mobile application is also essential for its security – protecting it from hacking attacks, among other things. It also allows for further development of its functionality and optimization of performance. It also ensures constant mobile application customization by analysing feedback and implementing required changes.
Mobile application development. The process by which you gain practical support for your business!
Designing an application is a process that consists of many more miniature stages of program development. Each is crucial, and it is hard to imagine a situation where someone could skip them. Fast and cheap application development with the omission of a thorough needs analysis or testing has absolutely no chance of success. Also doomed to failure are those applications that would not be maintained after the implementation stage is completed.
It is still worth emphasizing the extraordinary role of practical activities promoting the new app and its proper positioning in the Google Play Store and App Store. Although marketing is not a stage of the app design process, its importance is enormous in achieving market success for the entire project.
The proper mobile app design company selection also plays a vital role. It is crucial to the success of the entire venture. If you want to create the product of your dreams, check what kind of background the specialists taking on the challenge have, verify their portfolio, and ask for a presentation of the process and project management.
If you are looking for a proven provider of mobile apps and other digital solutions for business, contact Digital Forms for a free consultation.