If you’re here,

then you have probably already thought about: launching a mobile app in your company, opening a new sales channel, creating a tool or an element of image support. 

That’s great, but before you start choosing a contractor for your future application and start dreaming about conquering the market with its help, think about the following 5 issues by yourself or with your team. The conclusions that you come up with will protect the entire project from a potential catastrophe, help to plan production works, schedule and plan for further development.

1. Why do you need a mobile app?

Specify your goal.

The implementation of the mobile app, depending on the number of functions and the selected technology, will take from several to several dozen months of work and will consume a significant amount of your budget. That is why it’s worth it to very precisely define the purpose of the app both for the recipient and for your company.

The purpose may be different:

  • increasing sales,
  • building loyalty,
  • launching a new service,
  • image enhancement.

The decision to start working on the app should be made consciously and it should consistently stick to a specific goal. Its measure of success should also be defined. Thanks to it, in the future, we will be able to determine to what extent the goal has been achieved. Also, keep in mind that changing the purpose of an application during development will usually lead to a bizarre digital creation which optimization will impact the budget and schedule of the project.

2. Do you know who are your Clients? 

Work on target groups.

If you already know why you want to launch a mobile app, it’s time for the next issue you want to think about. Namely, defining your target group. It’s a really important element, that you really need to think about because its implications will appear in every stage of the project. Think about whether:

  • your target groups are based on quantitative data (e.g. in the case of a sales app take your company’s sales data, financial reports etc. into account)
  • you have up-to-date data? (When was the last time you verified your company’s target groups or recipients of your service?)
  • your target groups are complete and whether they exhaust the potential of the market you’re active on?

Incorrectly defined target groups will result in the development of the characteristics of recipients (their problems, needs) that do not fit into the real framework of the market on which you operate. Additionally, a group/segment may be omitted, which will ultimately lead to a decrease in the effectiveness of the application in terms of finance and image.

3. Do you know your Client’s problems?

Create Personas.

Understanding the needs and problems of specific types of representatives of your clients’ segments (we call them Personas) is a key factor influencing the concept of functionality in your app. The functions included in the app should solve previously identified problems. They should be a response to the needs of customers. It’s important that knowledge about your customers (qualitative data) is collected within your company/organization. 

If you don’t have qualitative data about your customers, remember that you can get it. At The Humans, we always recommend conducting individually prepared research tailored to your industry and the characteristics of the recipients. They can take the form of an IDI interview, a focused group interview or a workshop where we will bring out Persons’ knowledge that interests us about your offer and services. The insights collected in this way are priceless and will serve your brand not only in the area of creating a mobile app but also in other marketing and even strategic activities. You can read more about the methodology of our research in the UX Research and UX Workshops sections.

4. Can the app solve those problems?

Specify base functions.

Having a list of Clients’ needs, expectations and problems, it will be much easier to define the basic functions of your app. It’s best to propose one functional solution for each problem and expectation first, without thinking about technological barriers.

If it turns out that there are already solutions to the identified expectations and problems, but they occur outside the mobile app (e.g. it is better to implement them on the website or by introducing appropriate changes in the sales process), then don’t worry – start introducing them where they will be the most effective. You will protect yourself and your business from a disaster that can be a missed mobile app.

5. Can you afford a mobile app?

Plan your budget.

Depending on the selected technology for creating a mobile app, its total cost (including cognitive workshops, research, UX prototype, UI graphic designs, development works) starts from approx. PLN 40000-50000 post-tax and it ends with … well, it doesn’t end 🙂 What is important in the case of mobile apps is the fact that work on it doesn’t end with the app being launched in the AppStore and Google Play. In fact, the app requires constant work all the time, including:

  • adjusting the app to new devices
  • reacting to users’ feedback
  • extending the functionality
  • optimizing the already existing functionalities
  • extending the graphic design ever and again

When planning the launch of a mobile app it is good to include a budget for its further maintenance and development. This is usually a monthly cost. The maintenance team can be selected in your company (by employing appropriate specialists, if you don’t have them) or you can make an appointment with the App Contractor for permanent care over the digital product.

To sum up

In my professional career, working as a UX/UI Designer, I’ve seen several mobile apps (but also dedicated systems) with questionable futures. All the problems that these digital products faced, in my opinion, resulted from non-compliance with the basic rules that I described above in those 5 most important points. I’m sure that if you consider the above issues when planning your mobile app, the chances of its success will definitely increase. Remember, each of the above steps can be completed with the support of UX consultants from The Humans. I am happy to answer any of your questions. The implementation of the mobile app can run smoothly.

Author: Igor Pietrzak

He has over 10 years of experience in designing mobile applications and commercial services for companies like Orange, mBank, Multibank, Ruch.pl, mBank, ESA (European Space Agency), Customer Zone in BIK (Credit Reporting Service) and the development of various internal processes. He combines graphic and analytical skills, and thus – brings many new solutions to the UX field.