In today's market situation, it is necessary to align with its realities and stay user-friendly. What else can do this better than the mobile app? The idea seems great, but it turns out everything is not so simple when it comes to its implementation.
The development process involves five main stages on average, but the number may vary depending on the project scale. This post will briefly present these stages, so it's easier to understand what is behind the scenes of mobile development.
Mobile app development process
Product idea and business analysis
The first step in this stage is to define the product vision and analyze the competitors' market. It is also essential to understand your customers - who they are, what they want, and what you can give them. Once the application requirements have been defined, project documentation for its functionality needs to be prepared. This is one of the most critical business analysis tasks. The mechanism of users' interaction with the application should explain the underlying logic of its work.
UX and UI design
UX/UI is the design of any user interface in which usability is as important as appearance.
UX defines the experience the user will get from working with your interface. How simple or complicated this process will be, whether it can meet the client's expectations, etc. Based on the UX designer's work, the client makes further decisions regarding your mobile service. So you sell your interface and give the user all the necessary elements to achieve the result (whether payment of the order or receiving its delivery).
If the UX designer plans every step of interaction with the interface, the UI designer comes up with what they will look like. Here you choose the appropriate visual style, effects, textures, colors, i.e., physical characteristics of the interface.
Back-end & frontend development
The back-end developer creates components and functions accessible to the application user via an interface. These can be application servers, databases - everything that is the internal architecture of an application. The back-end developers create everything that the user doesn't directly see or touch. Data storage, integration with the payment gateway, automated emails, and content updates are all back-end.
However, a well-developed back-end won't work without an excellent interface. Front-end development is about creating the client part of the site following the original concept. That means everything the browser can display or start. Frontend developers are responsible for creating new user functions, technical implementation of UI/UX designs, and application optimization. A well-designed interface largely determines the convenience and demand of your product.
Testing and launching
It is difficult to account for all nuances in the absence of actual implementation. Testing will help identify problems before the application is released. It will save you a lot of time and effort. It includes usability testing, navigation, and user feedback. Small experiments will help to understand what involves the user and to achieve maximum efficiency and quality.
Post-launch support and maintenance
Releasing an application doesn't mean that you have finished working on it. If you are interested in working with customers in the long term, you will have to earn their trust. To do this, you will need to keep your application up to date and functional. Essential points are often overlooked before you even get started, and that will require upgrading and improvement. On top of that, you'll probably need regular and quick maintenance, and often there may be a need for the upgrades.
Each of us wants the fastest possible result with minimal expense. As far as possible, it depends on the goals you have set, but you need to keep in mind that quality requires hard work and time. Much depends on the complexity of the application and its features. For greater clarity, we will demonstrate the whole process in the example of a food delivery service.
This industry is growing and developing at a tremendous rate, and it's very competitive. The development of such an application would, therefore, require considerable investment and continuous support. The timing, in its turn, depends on several factors:
- The idea of an application and its key features;
- Selected business model;
- Functionality and complexity (registration, requisitions, payment, courier tracking, etc.);
- Integration of third-party services (such as API, so that the mobile application can interact with the product and order base);
- Estimated costs of project implementation.
App development process flow
After analyzing these points, you can start the development process. Its main stages include:
At this stage, the main application tasks are formed, and the competitors are analyzed. You define your future steps, roughly speaking, you are engaged in drawing up the general development plan. A good strategy is the foundation of your success. It would be best if you had a clear idea of the market demand for your service, customer preferences, and the necessary technologies to turn your vision into reality.
This stage usually takes about 2-3 weeks.
After research and careful consideration of all the details, it is time to design the application interface. The goal is to create convenient and understandable navigation that allows the client to navigate the application easily. Here the UI/UX designers come into the game. The design should make users buy something - the more the better, thus images and visuals must be aesthetically pleasant.
User interaction experience must be efficient and enjoyable; you do want them to come back again. Background, font, widgets, and even textures — everything matters. But apart from the external side, you can not neglect the functionality and implementation of critical elements of the application architecture. Each tab, field, and button must be designed carefully.
If you sum up all the components of this stage, it'll take about 5-7 weeks.
Here we speak about the application code, back-end, and frontend. This is the most extensive and laborious part of all the described, so it will take more time to execute it.
The back-end deals with the implementation of server-side logic and data distribution, which are involved in registration, authentication of users and many other processes.
This stage is the most intensive, so it’ll take about 8-10 weeks.
Testing allows completing work on possible bugs and polish all irregularities before starting. It is not possible to create a quality product without this step.
Testing requires 2 weeks to complete.
The only thing left before the release is to install and scale your internal server with the current user base and deploy the application to the appropriate stores. It would be best to make sure that the application is correctly configured for different platforms and send it for the preview moderation.
This stage will take no more than a week.
Support and further improvement
It would seem that all difficulties are over, but any application requires constant improvements and changes, so work continues!
IntexSoft helps clients to transform ideas into converting apps.
We have the right people and firmly established processes to deliver decent software for businesses.
In the article, we tried to describe the development process from the beginning to its end. It's not that simple, so every step must be planned and carefully considered before the process begins.
As you can see, the whole app development - from the idea to the launch - can take from two and up to six months. Of course, it all depends on your requirements. The more complex application is, the more time or money the development will take. If you want to get a perfect output, you should be willing to spend enough time and resources.