How Much Does It Cost to Build an App?



May 8, 2023

You’ve done all the upfront work to prove that your app is going to be wildly successful and that your app is the next biggest innovation. All that you’ve got left is to figure out how to build it and how to support. If you’re tech savvy, then you’ve got a head start but that still doesn’t mean you don’t need a team to put this together. You’ll need wireframes, user interface designs, user experience deisgns, architecture design, and the list goes on. As the leader of your app, you’re needed on the growth side of things for high level decisions. So if you’re busy growing the app, then you’ll need help figuring out how to build this. Once you’ve come to this realization, the first, if not second, question that you’re going to ask is, “how much does it cost to build an app?”

It sounds simple, but there’s a lot to unpack with that question: How far along are you with your app? How does your app work? Which platform(s) are you going to use? How soon do you need the app launched? Before we can get to a quote, you’ll need answers to those questions! What you’ll notice is that the more that you need for your app, the more it’s going ot cost. Make sense?

So, how far along are you?

App development, from start to finish, involves many, many steps. To build an estimate, we need to know what you’ve done and what remains for your app. That way, we don’t miss anything when we build and launch your app. The last thing we want is to hook everything together only to realize that your app was missing a core component.

If all you’ve got is a proven idea, then we know that you’ll definitely creative and technical builds. Creative builds consists of wireframes and visual designs while technical builds consists of the frontend and backend of your app. The creative side can take some time depending on how complex your app is. With the creatives finalized, we’ll have a clearer picture of the technical build and its estimate.

If you’re looking to be most cost-effective, then we encourage you to focus only on what your end users need and delay any nice to haves for your app. Sometimes, it’s not easy to know what they’ll need and what they’ll want. This is your minimal viable product (MVP) and will give you important feedback on what works and what doesn’t for you app. As a result, you’ll be educated for future decisions on your app.

And, how does it work?

We need to understand the complexity of your app. Is it as simple as an educational app where people just see content and do nothing else? In that case, all you’d need is the educational content. This is the simplest of apps and can be easily built in a very short amount of time, resulting in significantly cost-savings.

On the other side of the spectrum can be something as complex as a marketplace. A marketplace requires a matching algorithm, a buyer and consumer side, payment integration, profile, chat, reviews, among many other things. Operating in this complicated space requires a lot of thought and planning. The more complex your app is, the more time it’s going to take to build it, and the more it’s going to cost.

Which platforms are you going to use?

Platforms refers to the device that offers your app, which you’ve got a few options: web and/or mobile (iOS and Adroid) apps. Web apps work on the browser of a laptop through a web link. Mobile apps operate on phones through an installed app. If you don’t know which one to choose, a good rule of thumb is to determine whether your app is meant for business or consumers use.

If your app is built for business, then what we suggest is for you to start with a web app. We typically see business users interacting with business apps in front of their work computers during work hours. If your app is not built for businesses, then start with a mobile app. We see non-business apps being heaviuly used on mobile devices.

Ultimately, these are guidlines and the true test is to actually put yourself in the shoes of your end users. If most of your end users engage with your app on a certain platform, make that your choice and based on your choice(s), the final price for your app will be reflected. Keep in mind, it’s not always one or the other. Sometimes, you’ll need both web and mobile to meet the needs of your customers.  

How soon do you need your app launched?

To some, the app needs to be ready as soon as possible. To others, there’s a target launch date. To the remaining others, there may be no timeline for launching the app! Wherever you fall impacts the final estimate; a faster delivery will cost more than a slower delivery.

However, keep in mind that the success of your app decreases the longer you wait. Time is money and you’ll spend more time and money trying to get your app off the ground the longer you wait. You’ll need momentum on your side, which is key to closing out any project. Momentum is persuasive and can get people to buy into your app. There’s also the risk of another competitor launching a similar app, making it more difficult for you to win customers.

Unfortunately, there isn’t always an obvious answer to how soon. If you ask us, we’ll the the effective and efficient route and recommend that you launch as quickly as possible to be the first mover in your app space. 

The Bottom Line

There are a number of things that influence the final cost to build your app. We can share with you the average price tag for our apps but that still doesn’t answer the true cost of yours. Get in touch with us today and we can get started with answering the question, “how much does it cost to build an app?” 

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