Browsing LinkedIn, I recently came across an article I thought was worth sharing: “How Much Your Mobile App Costs.” Though as Mobidev notes, ‘vague’ is often used to describe the costs of a software product, it’s not altogether impossible to tell how much time and money your mobile app development project will take.
In their rundown, Mobidev estimates that a simple app with an hourly rate of $75 would take about 200 hours, for a total of $15,000. A much more complex app at the same rate could cost upwards of $75,000. There are ways to reduce costs during mobile app development—hiring a good team from the beginning, investing into documentation, etc.—but no matter how much you spend, Mobidev’s big takeaway is that “app costs don’t stop at the launch.”
If you’re thinking about developing a mobile app, Mobidev’s article is an excellent read. But I do have two important points to add. One, don’t let the cost of an app scare you away from developing one. Apps can be huge value-adds when executed correctly. And two, don’t forget to include ROI as part of the equation. That’s how you’ll figure out if your app is a value-add or a resource sink, and it’s also how you can build better apps and continue to make your business more efficient.
Costs really are only half of the equation—you can’t forget to track how your app is being used, who’s using it, how often it’s being used, and everything in between. Businesses don’t spend money for the sake of spending money—they spend them to invest, innovate, and improve their offerings. It’s up to you to expect, demand, and measure a return on your investment with mobile app analytics that allow you to track those important metrics.
So when developing an app, make sure you also spend some time finding out how you’re going to track ROI. How often are people downloading your app? Are they actually using it, or is it sitting on their screen unused? What functions within the app are being used? If you can find a mobile app analytics platform that allows you to do that, you’ll be much further on the track towards getting return on your app investment.
It’s one thing to know how much your app costs. It’s another thing entirely to know how much your app is making you. Make sure you don’t forget the latter when the time comes to launch that shiny new app.