The digital world is rapidly evolving, with more companies doing their best to leverage a multitude of digital and tech tools to simplify their workflow and boost productivity. One other major concern for many growing companies is the need to elevate employee engagement and collaboration. As a result, brands are turning to app building as a means to achieve all those goals in one fell swoop.
Branded apps are so versatile and useful that it’s no wonder businesses are eager to make their own dedicated digital tools to help their companies flourish. Apps help keep employees motivated and interacting with other teams, but they also simplify so many company-wide processes. Whether you’re looking for your own dedicated app to serve your customers and help them reach you more quickly, or you want an in-house app to streamline team organization – here are a few core steps you need to keep in mind.
Determine the purpose of your app
What is the main reason for developing an app of your own? Will it be a powerful tool for generating revenue for your business, a diversification strategy to reach and engage more customers, or a useful internal tool to keep your business working smoothly? What’s more, how do you intend to achieve your goal – what kind of features do you envision for your app?
Its purpose will determine its usability, which is why it’s vital to start by defining your “why”. For any app development that focuses on external and customer-oriented communication, you need to research your competition and evaluate if there’s a market gap your app can fill. This will give you the intelligence you need to move forward with your development process.
Generate buzz with marketing
Inspiring interest in your app will make all the difference for its success down the line. That is why you need to use various marketing tactics to inform your target audience of your upcoming app, what it will do, and how they can benefit from it.
- If you already have a website, create content such as videos and blogs to talk about the upcoming app. Share it and send it to your subscribers to reach as many people as possible.
- Go social! App users love spending time on social media, so you can promote the app and generate engaging content like stories, polls, and surveys to see what they like or dislike.
- Work with bloggers and your industry partners to get the word out.
Native, hybrid, or web?
To make sure you hire the most effective developers and that you can give them a roadmap for developing the most successful app, you need to be specific in terms of the type of app you need. Native apps are the kind that are designed for a specific operating system and are directly downloaded from an app store, like Java-based Android apps. Web apps are the ones that are used on browsers like Chrome.
Hybrid apps, as the name suggests, blend the best of both worlds, allowing you to reach more people and perform more functions with your app. For that reason, many businesses rely on professional hybrid app development services to ensure that the final product will be as functional and effective as possible. Your app can then live online and be used across a wide array of devices like smartphones, laptops, and tablets alike. This makes it easier to enable diverse features and to customize the app for various user groups.
Pick your ways to monetize
Monetization is another issue that most companies need to address before they actually move forward with development itself. Why? Because this will allow you to segment your target audience, but it will also determine different levels of functionalities you can offer with your app, especially for customer-facing digital products.
- In-app purchases are a common option making it more appealing to customers of e-commerce brands or service-based brands that can sell their service online.
- The freemium model is a very popular one – you’ll offer a free version with premium features that can be reached only when paid for.
- Subscription-based apps are the kind that provide recurring revenue, especially if it’s for educational purposes, like sharing fitness lessons and plans and training programs.
- Paid apps are the kind that users need to pay for in the app store in order to download it.
Creating an app that will set your brand apart, or one that will connect your employees (or both) can be a major milestone for your organization. It all depends on how you approach the process, so it’s vital that you define your strategy before you push the launch forward.
From getting to know your target audience and core goals, all the way to determining the best ways to monetize your app, you should be prepared to face a number of obstacles along the way. It will help you keep track of your success and the impact your app is making, and it will become a valuable way for you to upgrade your service or the app itself over time.