The Benefits of Custom Mobile Development in 2023
In this digital world, many businesses strive to develop mobile apps catering to consumers who are constantly glued to their mobile phones. About 67% of consumers prefer using mobile apps to websites, and smartphone mobile network subscriptions are forecasted to surpass 7.8 billion by 2028. Any business looking to scale, increase conversions and customers should have a mobile app that showcases their products. Currently, mobile apps are beyond marketing tools but provide enterprises with the opportunity to increase customer loyalty and retention. This is why the development of custom mobile applications is crucial to the success of a business.
Although some companies have adopted mobile apps, many are still yet to figure out how to build the right custom mobile application that will be favorable to their business and yield desirable rewards. To find quick solutions, some corporations have resulted in using pre-built platforms to create their mobile apps. The downside to this is that many of them are faced with disappointment because these platforms cannot perform at an optimal level but only meet a few of their needs. Custom software development is the solution to have a great application with the right functionality that match customers' expectation and allows them to have a good mobile experience.
In this article, we will dive into the meaning of custom mobile development, the different approaches, benefits, and how you can select the right mobile app development company.
What is Custom Mobile Development?
Custom Mobile Development is the creation of apps for a target audience to address specific business needs. Also known as Tailored or bespoke custom software development apps, they have unique features and functionalities that are absent in off-the-shelf (OTS) solutions. Unlike customized apps, off-the-shelf solutions are mass-produced and do not have differentiating features for a customer or visitor. Moreover, there is no personalized experience that can keep customers hooked to take action and return to the app.
Customized apps allow organizations to close the existing gap between the business and the customer because it improves accessibility and high-quality experience for customers. Enterprises that develop customized mobile apps establish their own distinct identity and branding in the market, eliminating the need for third-party apps which may not perfectly align with the company's branding or specific requirements.
Custom apps also have the potential to provide a more direct and personalized communication channel for customers. For instance, brands like Amazon and Uber have mobile apps tailored to user needs. As a forward-thinking business, partnering with a mobile app development company to create a bespoke mobile application can give you a competitive edge.
The Different Approaches for Custom Mobile Development
Native Mobile Approach
Native mobile app development is a development process for building applications for Android and iOS depending on the targeted operating system. The mobile app is usually built for a specific platform using the programming language and native tools that suit the platform. Although native mobile app development is considered expensive and time-consuming, it offers flexibility and reliability for mobile developers in terms of functionality. Native mobile apps are considered faster, more secure, and more responsive than web-based apps.
Today, Native mobile app development is used for different well-known apps like Google Maps, Pinterest, Spotify, and WhatsApp. Mobile Developers use Objective-C or Swift programming languages for iOS and Kotlin for Android.
Hybrid Mobile Application Approach
Hybrid mobile application development is a combination of elements of a native mobile app and a web app. It is built using web technologies like JavaScipt, CSS, and HTML5. Hybrid mobile applications can be developed for any platform using a single code base. It allows apps to run the same way on all devices, displaying web pages directly within the app rather than redirecting the user to the device's default browser.
Hybrid mobile apps are faster and easier for software mobile developers to build. Additionally, they are relatively easier to maintain post-development. Apps developed using this approach have a similar speed to the regular web application, and the user experience is like that of the native mobile app.
When software developers adopt this approach, they can access hardware-dependent features, device hardware components, and native platform libraries. One of the primary advantages of the hybrid mobile development approach is its speed to market. Also, the code is portable, easy to manage, and economical to develop, with the added benefit of functioning both offline and online.
The Cross-Platform Approach
The cross-platform app development approach entails the development of mobile apps that can run on Android, iOS, and Windows. The cross-platform approach allows the app to be used on different operating systems depending on the app development framework and the tools adopted for cross-platform app development. The approach is suitable for platforms using a single code base.
The cross-platform app is easy to build and maintain across platforms and works like the native application. It is recommended that mobile developers use native platforms to create high-quality apps that maintain a great user experience and engagement on each platform. To build a cross-platform app, software developers may adopt tools like Xamarin, React Native, or NativeScript to work on each element of the app to make it adapt to each platform.
The cross-platform approach uses non-web and standalone tools, which is completely different from the hybrid approach that combines the native and web components.
Progressive Web Applications Approach
The Progressive Web Applications (PWA) are not necessarily considered mobile apps, but they have a similar experience and functionality to the native mobile apps. This approach uses browser capabilities to provide this app-like experience for the user. In this approach, the users do not download the application from an app store because it works like a regular browser and can be installed on the home screen of a mobile or desktop device.
The Progressive Web application is very responsive and works independently. Although limited implementation is a major drawback, there are a myriad of advantages, like its easy maintenance, the use of a single codebase, user-friendliness, and the absence of an app store for download or use. PWA is considered fast and easy to develop. Notably, the PWAs have a consistent experience across different browsers and devices.
What are the Benefits of Custom Mobile Development?
The best way to keep pace with users' growing needs is to have a custom mobile application. As a business, you can continually adjust the software's functionalities to suit the evolving needs of your users better. According to Forbes, customers are likely to spend more time, at least 3 to 4 times longer, on mobile apps than on desktops. With the growing popularity of mobile apps, enterprises can leverage custom software development to increase profits. There are several custom mobile app development companies that can help you create innovative and engaging applications tailored to your business needs.
The major benefits of custom mobile development are:
A significant benefit of having a custom mobile app is scalability. Scalability allows for increased growth and revenue opportunities. Having a custom mobile application will enable flexibility of adjustments and functionality. The company at any time can decide to add or reduce features on the mobile app depending on changes and influencing factors.
In most cases, a custom mobile app development company can readily help your business scale up or down to serve the unique needs of your customers. With customized mobile applications, vast amounts of data can be easily managed because the app is developed from scratch and specific features are considered. Additionally, custom mobile applications require regular updates and maintenance, ensuring their relevance and functionality as user needs and technology trends evolve.
On the contrary, when a company uses an off-the-shelf mobile application, they often face challenges in managing heavier data loads and providing the same level of adaptability and personalization. As a result, making them less effective in meeting unique user needs and achieving business objectives.
Improved Efficiency & Productivity
The efficiency of a company can be drastically improved when they opt for a custom mobile application, unlike generic applications that may not align with the business work style, brand, and needs. A custom mobile application can drive effective business operations because the app is tailored to the company's work approach, potentially enhancing employee productivity. Custom mobile app development ensures seamless integration of the app with the company's existing software tools and structures. This strategy not only improves workflow but also boosts employee morale and accelerates the achievement of your company goals. Employees having the opportunity to work on a single customized application that integrates multiple functionalities will yield high productivity.
Customer Satisfaction & Retention
Customized mobile apps improve customer satisfaction. Customers desire a platform where they can take action within a few minutes or seconds, whether it's making a purchase, feedback, or reporting a complaint.
Mobile applications enable an environment where customers can have a "feel-good" experience with the company. Therefore, application developers should factor in user experience, and functionalities peculiar to the brand.
The overall aim of any mobile app is to improve customer satisfaction and drive customer retention by converting visitors into customers. With the use of mobile app chatbots, your customers can get updates and notifications about the company's products and services.
A customized mobile app also allows enterprises to gather data to understand the trends and patterns of customer behavior and preferences. This ensures your business stays ahead of the competition in the market and can help tailor your marketing strategies.
Seamless Integration with Complementary Apps
Seamless integration is a crucial component of software and application development. It is the process of creating a harmonious connection between different apps, software, and tools to provide a seamless user experience. In simple terms, the user can easily switch between applications without any disruption or complications. The integration process involves the exchange of data or information between the different apps or software, allowing them to work together towards a unified goal.
Subsequently, complementary apps provide a holistic solution to users' needs as integration can be an excellent way to enhance the functionality and usability of an application. For instance, a project management software may integrate seamlessly with a time-tracking tool to provide a more accurate time analysis of the project's progress. Similarly, an accounting software may integrate with a payroll management or tax compliance tool to provide an efficient and streamlined solution for the organization's financial needs.
Seamless integration between complementary apps can be a game-changing feature for an application, providing users with a better overall experience. With technology rapidly evolving, integration has become more critical than ever, allowing consumers to work smarter and more efficiently. By teaming up with complementary apps, businesses can create a collaborative environment that supports growth and success.
However, not all software solutions provide this benefit. Off-the-shelf mobile applications, for example, can integrate with specific apps, but this process may prove difficult and result in bugs, negatively impacting the user experience.
On the contrary, custom mobile applications can integrate seamlessly with other apps. This is particularly true when custom mobile app development services create an API with clean code, making it easy to integrate without issues or problems. Easy integration also allows for data accessibility and is adaptable for future business changes and needs. Most companies prefer to outsource their custom software development projects to a software development company. If your company is considering this route, ensure you partner with a company that prioritizes clean code, continuous integration, and continuous deployment.
Enhanced User Experience
Customers want businesses that solve their problems and address their needs. App users want to encounter a user flow that takes them through a simplified journey of finalizing their requests. Unlike software developers who are primarily concerned about the code, they want to fulfill an action and your app serves as their solution. Therefore, your app should offer a streamlined user flow that guides them through their tasks and a great user experience that meets their requirements.
One significant benefit of custom mobile app development is enhanced security. Ensuring your app is secure is a vital component of business success. Developing a customized app can be a safe way to maintain and elevate the security level, protecting against breaches and data loss. When an app is not secure, it can affect the company's brand reputation and cause considerable loss. Mobile application development allows you to choose your server or cloud storage based on your resources and preferences.
Many customized mobile applications collect consumer data to maintain communication and build relationships. However, consumers need to trust that their information is safe when they share their details through your mobile app. With the understanding that there are always hackers and fraudsters who can steal customers' information, it is essential that your mobile app development company prioritizes data security to avoid cybersecurity breaches.
Customized mobile applications are easier to maintain than the off-the-shelf mobile application. Using a generic app means that your software maintenance is dependent on the web development company, which can affect both flexibility and continuity. For instance, if the third-party developer halts development, you may find yourself stranded with the existing functionalities of your mobile app without the ability to make improvements. However, when you own all the rights to your business app, you have overall control over developments and functionality.
Additionally, having a customized mobile application provides the assurance of your data safety. In terms of project timelines, you have the benefit of monitoring the development progress of your mobile app and the flexibility to change direction at any point. This means you can continuously align the app with your evolving business needs, maintaining an effective tool for your operations.
A significant benefit of developing a customized mobile app is the potential for increased revenue over time. It provides your business with the opportunity to achieve a high return on investment. A satisfied customer will keep returning, which can invariably increase your revenue and profit.
In-house vs Outsourced Custom Mobile Development: Which is Better?
Deciding between using an in-house IT Team and outsourcing your custom mobile development involves weighing the pros and cons of each of the models. The best choice will largely depend on business goals, project duration, and budget.
In-house custom mobile development involves the company using its own team and resources without the involvement of third-party employees. The development work is done by full-time mobile developers who are on the company's payroll and are entitled to employee benefits. Companies wanting to keep software development in-house but lack the right specialists can decide to recruit and hire to fill those skill gaps. In this case, there is total control over the project, but this comes at a higher cost and may result in delays due to a potentially lengthy recruitment process. For these reasons, many executives prefer to use mobile software development companies for their projects to ensure speed and efficiency.
On the other hand, outsourcing app development involves hiring an established team provided by an outsourcing agency. This team will comprise of all the tech talent required for the project, including mobile app developers, QA specialists, project managers, UI/UX specialists, and other tech professionals. It is a completely different approach compared to the in-house mobile app development, as the company has a pool of talent to choose from across different roles. Outsourcing mobile app development can be beneficial, particularly in reducing operational costs and increasing the launch speed of the mobile app. The mobile app development company offers end-to-end services and utilizes the latest tech to deliver an outcome that aligns with your business goals. Outsourcing is often the best option when your company is aiming to meet a tight deadline and has budget constraints. It's a great way to save costs and get to market quickly without restrictions. Additionally, when your in-house team does not possess the required talent and your project requires a broad set of skills, outsourcing the development of your mobile app can bring clarity and direction to the project by providing diverse views and perspectives with the latest tech insights.
How to Choose the Right Partner for Custom Mobile Development
There are key factors to consider when choosing the right technology partner for developing a custom mobile app. We've outlined some important points to aid your decision:
Before signing a contract with a mobile app development service, confirm that they have experience in building both iOS and Android apps. If you plan to scale your app according to business needs, it is essential to partner with a company that can support your business goals now and in the future. Moreover, research the company's domain expertise. A technology partner with extensive experience in your business industry can better help you navigate challenges and avoid development pitfalls. They can also serve as a guide in making crucial business decisions, such as regulatory compliance and choosing the most suitable revenue model.
Explore References & Portfolios
When researching the software development company for your mobile app, it is crucial to explore their reviews from previous projects. Platforms like Clutch, GoodFirms, and other online directories can provide you with valuable feedback from past clients.
Reviewing the feedback will give you a clear understanding of the level of work done and their area of expertise.
Consequently, be sure to check their success stories, and brands they have worked with. Specifically, observe if they have worked on a similar project in the past.
Custom App Development Cost
The cost of developing a custom mobile app depends on a variety of factors including the app's complexity, its features and functionality, the chosen platform, design considerations, and more. To estimate the cost of the mobile app, request a detailed price breakdown from the outsourcing company, which should include business analysis, development, and the technical components of the project, such as UI/UX design. It is also essential to understand the pricing model of the outsourcing company. Some custom development companies, like Devsu, offer a risk-free model. The best choice will depend on your business goals and the specific arrangement you have with your technology partner. Remember, it is important not to compromise on quality in order to save costs.
Communication & Collaboration
Effective communication is key when choosing the right technology partner. Select a mobile application development company that can adhere to your company policy and seamlessly integrate with your in-house staff. This requires strong communication and collaboration. Building a mobile app involves the interconnection of different unique roles for optimal performance.
From the initial interaction, such as discussing the project's goals and expectations, you can assess if a mobile development company would be a good fit based on its communication style.
Also, it is crucial to select a company that uses the right methods and tools to achieve results. The popular agile methodology is highly recommended when building software solutions because it ensures easy communication and collaboration among various teams.
In general, there are numerous benefits to developing a custom mobile app. In an era where customers spend a significant amount of time on mobile devices, custom mobile applications have become vital tools in the business landscape. These apps not only help in understanding customer preferences but also contribute to increasing company revenue and growth. Besides, they provide tailor-made solutions to business challenges, which emphasizes their crucial role in modern business operations.
Devsu specializes in helping companies, build custom mobile applications that address business problems. Our technology experts can help your company bring your idea to life from the initial stage to the launch and maintenance stage, to improve your brand reputation and attain business goals. Contact us to learn more about our services.