What it costs to make a Mobile App

What it costs to make a Mobile App

Every small and medium business owner who aspires to market themselves begins with a website and a blog to showcase their services and interests. However, when it comes to creating an app for their service they are unsure of the cost that comes with it. People spend most of their time on mobile phones, truth be told. Benefits of mobile marketing and services through apps have been in the air for quite some time. What intrigues these business owners is how the Apps are created and on what basis are they charged. This blog will give a quick overview of what it costs to make an app. To a business owner cost may be THE factor to look at but to an App Developer- the ability to deliver the final product includes quality of the code, UI/UX quality, App quality, features that capture all the requirements and timeline of the entire app creation cycle matters. Keeping that in mind how can an App with same features cost differently with two different vendors?

Let’s Compare Starbucks and Coffee Bean & Tea Leaves Mobile Apps for example.

  • Placement of Login Button is pretty straight forward in Coffee Bean App as it leaves the user with a choice to log in or not.
  • Whereas, in Starbucks Home Button, the marketing strategy is to advertise Rewards system and allow the user to log in to check their Rewards.

  • The Menu Catalog for Coffee Bean App is plain and indicates Name of the item and Cost on the go.
  • Whereas in Starbucks App on the right, the Item is displayed which when clicked will provide more details such as cost, nutrition etc.

  • Say no more, as the picture says a lot than words. The photos in Coffee Bean App would not even be visible given the placement.

In short, before questioning App Companies on why they charge higher than their counterparts, research on their counterparts and their works as they provide you with an insight of how services are provided. Coffee Bean Apps are no more for Download as it was a huge failure. Both Coffee Bean and Starbucks are reputable but strategies took Coffee Bean’s app down the drain. Business Owners can only state down the requirements but the end result of how an app is created lies solely on the App Developers’ Shoulders as they require to pin point placing ‘what’ will lead ‘where’ and the ‘hows’ of every icon. Beyond every design requirements from business owners lies the need for creativity and intuition from App Creators. This is exactly the reason why two different vendors charge you differently for the same set of requirements.

The Brand Mantra

You may not want to pay extra just because the App Development company is so damn famous and probably under-delivers what they have promised. And you do not want to pay less to an average company just because they are not so popular. Brand needs to be disrupted. The reason why they need to be disrupted is, these Brands deliver until they reach the top notch and never improvise once they reach the Goal post. However this mantra if broken will pave way to several start-ups that provide creative solutions than big brands ever do!

Service Delivery of any Mobile App depends on the vendor. How a business owner can choose a vendor should depend on the following criteria.

App Creation Timeline

Are you as a business owner giving the vendor enough time to build your App? How many features does your App require, how critical is the function in each feature and how unique do you want those features to be? All of this depends on the Project Timeline and vendor competency.

Vendor Competency

To define Vendor competency is to define the quality of recruits and the number of recruits. Ultimately the competent vendors rely on sound design to reduce dependency on the recruits. This is because App Creation is more dependent on the talents and is labor intensive. Competent Vendors allot dedicated resources for each project and keep track of clearing objectives and communicating design to the clients.

Given you have more budget, decide what the best balance is and spend it on the right vendor. Your mobile app represents your brand, and you definitely  do not want to end up like the Coffee Bean mobile app. If you called for a budget and a vendor came in with a price that is drastically lower than anyone else’s, get suspicious and ask questions. Sometimes drilling down the issue leads to Clarity.

Author: Raj Sanghvi

Raj Sanghvi is a technologist, innovator and founder/CEO of BitCot, a full service award-winning application development company. With BitCot, Sanghvi has helped over 100 clients develop mobile apps & SaaS platforms, making them affordable and successful. Visit Raj Sanghvi on LinkedIn and follow him on Twitter, @BitCot.View Full Bio

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Dave S

Dave S

Co-Founder- StompSessions


I have Known BitCot for 4 years and have been impressed with the diversity and quality of BitCot’s work. With that solid foundation it was really easy to select BitCot as our development partner. Quote

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