You’ve decided to invest in mobile app development soon, preferably before the end of Q1. After all, you’re aware that building and delivering great mobile apps is how businesses are engaging with their users and customers today. But you don’t have the in-house expertise required to get your app off the ground! You realize that you’ll need a mobile app development partner.
The challenge you’re facing now is – with so many mobile app development companies out there, how do you decide which one is the right one for you. We’ve all heard of stories where technology companies try to upsell or oversell; some even promise the world but ultimately fail to deliver. You have to avoid falling prey to some unscrupulous vendor at all costs. That is why we’ve compiled a list of important questions you should ask your app development partner before you start your project. This will also give you a good idea about their overall expertise and if they’re aligned with your objectives.
- What is your company background?
Any competent software vendor should have relevant information about their background on their website. You should get an idea about their management, existing clients, and successful projects from there. If you see generic information on the website without specific details, it should raise a red flag in your mind. Ask for contact information of their existing clients and get on the phone to ask about the vendor. Send out a detailed Request for Information (RFI) document to a few vendors. The information they give will help you identify which vendor to work with.
- What will the communication methodology be during the app development lifecycle?
Clear communication is one of the main factors which decides the success or failure of an outsourced project. Will you have a dedicated account manager? Will the team use a project or task management system and will you get access to it? How frequently will you get status updates? If they are unresponsive in providing these answers to you right now, you can almost be certain that they’ll be unresponsive during the entire product lifecycle. That is why you should ask all these important questions before deciding on a vendor.
- Can you work on multiple mobile platforms?
Your mobile app will need to work on all different platforms. You may decide to start by building an iOS app but in the near future, you may also want to build an Android app. Or, you could start by building a cross platform app. Whatever you choose, your vendor should have experience in developing both native apps and hybrid apps. They should also have experience in developing apps which work on all mobile devices – tablets, smartphones or wearable devices. You may even ask to see some of the existing apps that they have built.
- Who will be working on my project?
Your account manager may be a star. That does not mean that the development team is adept. Ask the vendor to send resumes of the key personnel. Going through the resumes will help you understand more about the vendor’s technical team. You should speak to lead developers, project managers, delivery managers and technical architects. Mobile app development should be done by individuals having experience and superior technical knowledge and not by a random company with two developers and a dog.
- How will my mobile app make money?
If you are looking to generate revenue, the development team should know what features to include in order to help you achieve your goal. You can have a “pay-per-download” model which will allow you to get a certain amount of money on each download. If you intend to have a free app, your mobile app can have mobile display ads, in-app purchases or alternately a paid subscription service. Ensure that the vendor’s development team has the appropriate technical know-how of different monetization scenarios.
- Who will be the owner of the mobile app?
You are going to be paying for the app, so make sure that you own the rights to it. Get clarity during the initial discussion stage itself. Ask the vendor if they will sign a “copyright assignment” contract or “work for hire” contract. The contract should include confidentiality clauses. It should also state that you will own the mobile app’s design, content and source code. If they are reluctant to sign such a contract, then drop them from your shortlist.
- What are your fees, payment terms, and delivery schedule?
Before awarding the project to any vendor, make sure you have an agreement in place. It should detail the fees, payment terms, and the project timelines. Ask them to make the proposal as detailed as possible. The idea is to understand if their cost estimates are realistic or if they are out to swindle you. This will also help you figure out their level of commitment and how well they understand your requirements.
How can SourceEdge help you with your mobile app development needs?
Global trends show that people spend more time on mobile devices as compared to desktop computers. In this day and age, you need a vendor with proven expertise in mobile app development. That is where SourceEdge can help you.
These are the steps we follow for any mobile app development project:
- We will work with you to identify the business needs and map them to the functional requirements.
- After you have signed off the functional requirements, comes the design phase. Our team of experts will design the app with a user-friendly interface ensuring that the design meets your branding requirements.
- Our mobile app developers will implement the functional requirements in a way that your business needs are met completely. We will leave no stone unturned to ensure that the mobile app behaves in a way that meets your requirements in a seamless fashion.
- Finally, we will perform a comprehensive mobile app testing process. Our dedicated testing team will use both automated and manual testing methods to remove all bugs and optimize performance.
- We will then work with you during the User Acceptance Testing stage to ensure that you are completely satisfied with how the mobile app works. In case you raise any concerns or issues, we’ll work promptly to iron them out.