Before your team begins developing your next custom app, your developers and business decision makers need to understand your users’ requirements, both necessary and optional. Below are the steps to take when building your custom app.
Determine your ideal app user.
Figure out the types of people who’ll be using your app. Creating individual personas will help you decide who your users are, what they’ll need, and how often they’ll be using your app. By gathering this information, you’ll build detailed profiles of your app users and have a better understanding of the functions they’ll need.
Translate your ideas into a prototype.
Once you have the persona types of who is using the app and the functionalities they’ll need, you’ll need to create an interactive prototype to test. Rapid application development (RAD) methodology is a great way to enable users to give consistent, quick feedback over long-term planning while also allowing you to make changes on the fly. Make sure to A/B test any new features and validate the user experience before beginning the next stage of your launch.
Build a minimum viable product (MVP).
After a successful prototype, you can create your MVP to release to the world at large. Here, you can get feedback from real-life applications, not just your teammates. By offering your users the latest updates with continuous delivery, the newest compatible technologies, and encryption that protects your customers’ data, you’ll stay compliant and on top of personal privacy.
Make sure your app stands out.
You can stay on top of all the latest updates and features but if your custom app doesn’t offer anything special, users will look elsewhere. Make sure you have the latest features installed on all operating systems, integrate with other third-party apps, and stay abreast of log-in functionalities to help eliminate bugs and expedite the quality assurance (QA) process.
Mobile teams don't always carefully plan for the necessary time it takes for QA to deliver a user-ready product. Focus on testing during your mobile apps development as it displays all types of user experiences, positive and negative.
Determine which app is best for you: Web or mobile.
There’s a common misconception that mobile and web apps are interchangeable. Knowing which app type you’re developing will have a huge impact on everything from design, to which app building software to use, to user experience (UX), to deployment. Mobile apps are restricted to your phone and platform specific, but they can access internal resources like GPS, photos, and contacts, are faster, and can function offline. On the other hand, web apps work just as any internet browser: No need to download or install them on your computer, and their ability to work is almost the same as on a mobile device.
Both web and mobile apps can be considered custom apps so make sure you understand what users need and how they’ll be accessing your information.
Consider the cost of custom apps development.
Depending on your end goal, many instances factor into how much your app could cost. Build, maintenance, testing, functionality, updating to the newest features of both operating systems consistently—these all play a part in the end cost of your custom app. There are price points depending on each element so you making sure you have just what your users need is crucial.
That doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune to have a functioning, user-friendly app. Microsoft Power Apps provides a cost-efficient, low-code solution to help build custom apps the way you like with embed dashboards, prebuilt templates, and quick deployment.