Things You Must Consider Before Approaching App Development Firms

While it may be a popular hobby amongst consumers to download several apps each day, so is developing ideas for more great apps.

You probably have been sitting on a great idea for an app since months, only to save up enough money to finally invest in your own product, which then brings you to the crossroads where you either do it by yourself if you have the technical expertise or reach out to a website and app development firms.

Yes, it is a common trend and probably a convenient option too of reaching out to these development companies, which in turn has given rise to the number of firms offering these services and making it tougher for clients, like you, to make the selection of prospective development partner. But once you have narrowed it down to the firm who would be helping you to build your dream app, what do you do next?

Many of you would make a quick jump by contacting an app development firm without knowing what to expect. While it may not be a bad approach, it isn’t the best as well. Before you actually hire any development company, you need to do your homework well, because most of you won’t realize the months of planning and budgeting that is needed for building a large application. You must know early on about what you want and don’t want in your app, rather than debating over it six months down the line. It is crucial to have grips on the reality of commitment that is needed in terms of time, effort and resources that you and your development partner are about to take.

If you dream of making a lot of money off your app then you need to do things the right way, because having a great idea is just the tip of the big process that lies ahead and you need to gear up adequately for it. So, how do you prepare early on that would help you not only select a talented development firm but also plan out the details and most importantly do the job right?

Do the Research and Know Your Objectives

While this must be as an understood fact, more often it gets neglected. Rather than jumping into talking to the company’s sales representative, first understand what your requirements are. You don’t want to give any opportunity to less competent firms to lure you into something that makes you pay more money for inept services. Make a list of things that you want the company to do and define your goals clearly and accurately. Have a long term vision and break it down to create a functionality list for your product that you can communicate to the development firm.

Once you are ready with your goals, it will be easy to do the research on companies that you can partner with for development. Decide on factors such as, whether you want to hire a local team or would someone in another country be a better match, do you want to work with a freelancer or with a team of employees, do you wish to work directly on the project or would you rather have people working in the background for you. Once you are sure about these factors, researching companies that fit your criteria would be easy. Spend enough time studying the portfolios, case studies, blogs, and about the teams of these firms before you narrow down your search.

Know your Budget Constraints

This is an important factor and before you approach any development firm, you must know your range. You might require doing some research on the net for defining your budget that also takes into consideration the quality factor, which will save you from paying more for poor quality products. Rather than asking potential clients to enumerate the cost of work, it is always good to know your own budget beforehand so that you can remain focused, and can consequently find proficient services that would be within your range.

Most of the respectful companies will also be very honest with you if your budget is bigger than needed and would also not beat around the bush if your budget is too low for accomplishing your goals. A budget helps the companies to understand what can and cannot be worked out within that budget. Also, knowing your budget constraints will help you choose the finest company who can deliver you what you need without compromising on the quality.

Determine your Timeline

On the same lines as your budget, it is healthy to determine project timeline early in the game. It usually takes up somewhere around two months to plan and another six to eight months for the design and development phase. Without any unforeseen delays, the total timeline would scale up to a ten-month period before you launch your product. Understand through the development partners which you plan to choose, whether your projected timeline is realistic or if it would take some more time. As you speak to several companies you will start to get an actual picture of what the real timeline should be. Also, be clear on when you would be ready to start so that you don’t unnecessarily exhaust the time and money of others.

Safeguard your Interests

Now, as you are in talks with the companies you will be sharing your idea with them and of course, you don’t want it to get stolen, so insist on the non-disclosure agreements to protect your interests. If a company refuses on non-disclosure agreements then you know you must stay away from them as you wouldn’t want to partner with a company that does not act in your best interest.

Make sure that you have a process in place for things that do not work post-launch. You don’t want to spend additional amounts on fixing up bugs right after the launch. Also, once you have an application, it requires maintenance as well, so have discussions regarding it with the company. Check with them for their policies on warranties and product backups. Also, clarify on what happens if the company cannot meet the timelines. Companies that are honest and fair would make sure all your queries are handled appropriately and would always be open for any kind of further discussions.

As you embark on your journey to look for a suitable company that would develop your app in the designated budget and realistic timeline, make sure that they also care about your success. You don’t want to partner up with someone who is in it just for the sake of money but someone who is willing to help you and build a long-term relationship to make things even bigger.

By following these steps with right approach and effort you will not only succeed but will also save yourself from a lot of pointless stress that most first-time companies face.

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I'm a self confessed foodie, king of the kitchen, wannabe anthropologist, technology evangelist , curious, inquisitive & experimental entrepreneur at @DigiLands and an adrenaline junkie. Love spending time with my wife & two young children and faulty KitKats that consist purely of solid chocolate.