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How to develop your own mobile app: 6 tips and best practices

Anyone can build an app for mobile devices. To streamline the process as much as possible, here are some must-follow pieces of advice on developing an app that works.

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Today, anyone can build an app for mobile devices. If you’ve got a good idea, and the commitment to see it through, the sky’s the limit.

Of course, it’s also worth recognizing that this won’t happen overnight, and there are plenty of problems you’ll encounter along the path to launching your first application. To streamline the process as much as possible, here are some must-follow pieces of advice on developing an app that works.

Analyze your target audience

The more you know about the people who will be using your app, the easier it will be to design it in such a way that meets and even exceeds their expectations.

This is particularly important if you’re aiming at competitive niches, such as online gaming. You can’t hope to conquer larger rivals if your product isn’t perfectly pitched to outdo them and connect with users immediately.

Start thinking about marketing as soon as possible

Talking of user engagement, understanding how you’re going to sell your app to people is important from the earliest stages of development.

Of course, the marketing of software is not always straightforward, so it makes sense to get in touch with a company like Upptic, an agency that helps with mobile games and apps. Having experts onboard to guide you and consider promotional opportunities from day one is vital.

Decide on the platforms you want to support

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to mobile app development in terms of platform compatibility. You could choose to build native apps for Android and iOS, for example, which means getting to grips with two different software ecosystems and submitting your app to multiple digital stores for approval.

You could also make a web app for mobile devices, with the intention being that users will visit on their device’s browser. This has its own hurdles to overcome in terms of browser compatibility, screen size, interface, and so on.

Once again, the sooner you choose which platforms to develop for, the simpler it will be to make other decisions moving forward.

Don’t make security an afterthought

From mobile payments to user data storage, there are all sorts of ways in which an app can be vulnerable to manipulation and exploitation. As such it’s the responsibility of developers to take security seriously, and put measures in place to protect end users.

Having a login process that includes multifactor authentication and the insistence on secure passwords, for example, is something that can deflect common brute force hacks.

Without testing, your app will surely flop

Every well-made piece of software out there today starts off as a buggy, badly optimized mess, and it’s only through repeated testing that problems can be identified and fixed during development.

It should go without saying, but unless you’re testing and tweaking your app throughout development, dealing with performance problems and flaws will be very difficult. It’s better to look for issues regularly and get an outside perspective on the user experience as well.

Having a focused list of features is best

Last but not least, when you’re working out what features you want your app to offer, resist the temptation to get carried away and add in every possible permutation of the capabilities that you could possibly include.

Simplicity and a focused design will deliver better results in the long run, and having this at the top of the agenda as you’re coming up with the concept and converting it into software that you can actually use will stop you from ending up with an overcomplicated final product.

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