In my previous post, '7 Good Reasons to Have a Mobile App for Your Business', we saw the reasons why your business needs a mobile app. In today's topic lets see how much it costs to build a captivating mobile app.
In this post we are not talking about the apps built just because my competitor has an app; but we are looking at the apps which really influence the customer experience.
First lets look at the different types of mobile apps which we can consider. We need to choose the best suitable for our business before we invest into developing a mobile app.
1. Simple Information App
These types of apps present simple information to users. Users can select from available options and can be redirected to the right information source. These types of apps mostly rely on the web-view controls and relay the information already available on a website into the mobile app. Apps with fixed information will cost approximately between $10,000 to $28,000. If the information needs constant updating and extracting data from the cloud server, if the app also needs local storage then it will cost somewhere between $14,000 to $41,000.
2. Sales of Product / Services App
You will need this type of app if you are selling your own products, digital goods or services through your app. You will need gallery, full-fledge e-Commerce function and payment function. For payments you will need to integrate some third party payment service providers. Please be aware that payments directed through iTune and Play Store incur commission of staggering 30%. It is worth investing in outside payment infrastructure even if integrating with it will increase your app development cost. In the long run the investment will pay off. PayPal or Stripe are examples of popular payment service providers for you to consider.
An app like this will usually cost between $15,000 to $48,000. If you want to go a little advance and include features like geolocation tagging and m-commerce and reservations etc. then price would easily go anywhere between $19,000 to $65,000.
3. Marketplace / Mobile Platform App
A marketplace app is what connects two or more distinct groups with demand and supply roles. These applications are extremely complex and need extensive development. these types of mobile platform apps allow businesses to deliver unique features and functionalities to the end users wherever they are and have a significant place in the market. Some of the example of mobile platform apps are Uber, FoodPanda.
The cost of building such apps varied between $25,000 to $85,000 based on the complexity of the app and features required in the app. A small business or a group of small businesses can collectively get benefited by introducing a platform app.
4. Multi User Platform App
These types of apps are capable of engaging users together instantaneously. They have built in functions for submission of listings and reviews, sharing information with each other and communication between users or user groups. Some of the classic examples of such apps are Yelp, Facebook etc.
These apps are complicated and expensive to build. Building such app may cost somewhere between $42,000 to $96,000. Small businesses generally do not get benefited by building such app.
5. Mobile Games
Games applications seem to be all fun but they are actually the most expensive types of mobile apps to build. Simple game development project might cost you from $80,000 to $160,000depending on complexity of the game, visual effects and 2D or 3D graphics. If you add support for multiple devices, API integration and social integration with multiplayer capabilities then these costs can go up to $450,000+
I do not recommend small businesses to invest in gaming apps unless there is significant need and benefit from it. Small Businesses can on the other hand tie up with some of the game app partners and think of integrating their mobiles apps with the third party games.
6. User Productivity Apps
These types of apps are generally used for workflow improvements. Most of the times such apps are made available under SaaS (Software as a Service) e.g. Dropbox or Evernote. Such apps which harness the office workflows between multiple users have much more complex database and protocols due to need to interface with multiple parties. Such applications can cost anywhere between $20,000 to $30,000 and up.
There are standalone type of productivity apps which are installed locally on mobile phones and they provide features for single user. e.g. a photo editing app installed on a mobile phone will provide service to anyone who installs it. It does not need to have a cloud based access control mechanism for accessing the app. Such app would cost approximately $15,000.
7. Business Process Automation Apps
These types of apps are used by businesses to reduce cost in time and money for carrying out common business processes. Even complex business processes can be automated, streamlined and simplified with such apps.
It is common for businesses to use such process automation apps for managing their Logistics, HRMS, CRM processes or doing activities such as document management and distribution or information sharing amongst different departments. Building such applications could cost between $18,000 to $60,000 based on features and integration to existing systems of the company. If a company requires full ERP implementation the costs can go as high as 1 million for complete business process automation.
For a business, before investing money into mobile app, it is important to determine which type of mobile app will give them optimal benefits. Edify Now provides complete end to end consultancy on defining complete mobility strategy for your business. For small businesses we have a special test offer where small businesses can try if the mobile app is really useful for them or not and can try different mobile strategies for as low as $3,000. Get in touch with us today to get your free consultation for your next big step towards amazing world of mobile apps.
Pranav M. Jere
Founder and CEO