The app market, or play store for my android friends, is a rough environment. It is flooded with millions of applications and many are very similar to each other when it comes to adding functionality to your phone. So how does one create a popular and successful application in an environment that is already saturated with other people? Well after doing a bit of research on the subject I have compiled a list on what I found to be the best tips from people in the industry. This will cover a small portion on what it is like in the competitive field of app development and what it is like to be an app developer.
Create Something You’re Passionate about
This sounds like a no-brainer, but it is probably one of the most important pieces of advice you can give someone who wants to create an app. Think of something that really drives you or inspires you and bring it to life. Whether it be a new launcher or the next flappy bird, create something that you can be proud of and want to share with others. It won’t feel like work if its something you really enjoy and want others to experience. Well it will be work, and hard work at that, but it won’t feel as tedious when its something that you are passionate about.
Debunk your Product
As a follow up to the previous point, you should be passionate about your product but not to the point where you ignore any fallacy that you might have. Don’t fall so in love with your idea without doing proper research on the competition and seeing where they made their mistakes so you can avoid them. No idea is perfect or immune to criticism and the good ideas are the one that can be improved and learn from their mistakes. Creating an app for the first time is a learning experience and should be treated as such.
If its Free its for Me
This simple four letter word: Free. Make your first app, or any app really, free. It makes a huge difference to the consumer when the app is free versus $0.99. You can always monetize your app with in-app purchases, a plan that many other successful apps have already done, or have in-app advertising and offer a premium version without any apps in it. But to continue that original train of thought, making the app free on the market will attract more users to download it and increase your chances of getting noticed on a broader scale. Apps don’t have to be a money dump for the developer because several options exist to make money, and in the grand scheme of things it makes more sense to offer a free product with the opportunity to make money.
Don’t look for others to Invest
Many successful developers have said to avoid getting investments from others. Build your app in your own free time, you’ll value it more and have a lot more freedom than if you have an investor breathing down your neck and telling you how your app should be made. Indie developers experience more creative freedom and can set their own schedules and goals with what they want to achieve with their idea.
This is also very important to creating a successful app. It needs to have some sort of built in-virality. Think about it, instagram, twitter, and clash of clans wouldn’t be as much fun or enjoyable if you can’t interact with your friends. Many apps have some way of adding friends and interacting with them in some way that makes the app more enjoyable. If you could only see your post on instagram that would be useless, its basically just your gallery of photos. You need to include some way for others to interact and to facilitate interaction among users. When users interact with one another word of mouth spreads and gives you free marketing within your market.
I hope these quick tips make sense and give you an idea of what it is like to be an independent app developer. These tips should give the people seeking some direction with their developing app some helpful advice on how to approach some of the problems that will occur when deciding to develop an app.