Our last article talked about how much money can be made from an app, but we didn’t discuss the cost of app development. Developing an app on your own can be challenging. That’s why hiring a team to make one for you can be the right move.
Do you need a lot of money or a big company to create an app? The answer is “Depends.”
In fact, in 2020 & leading to 2021, we see more applications being developed by smaller niche and larger development agencies, providing an array of options for your business needs. Today, there are so many options to use for application development that the possibilities can be endless.
That’s why in today’s article, we are going to roughly break down the costs of app development you can expect when moving forward with a developing team to create your desired application.
Having a rough idea of the cost of app development can help provide a slight idea of how much the application overall may cost. This is not a recommended way of estimating the budget. Instead, having a fixed tender would be your best bet to find and identify the total cost of the research & development of the intended application for your business needs.
When it comes to application development, there are different stages for each part of the project. These are as follows:
- Discovery & Pre-Research
- Testing & Deployment
- After-Care Support
Different requirements are identified for each of these stages, and different costs are involved due to each stage’s complexity.
This stage happens before anything begins on application development. In this stage, time is taken to consider & define every requirement, idea, or specification. This is then used to compare the market to see what has been released before your application. This information gathered will be priceless as it will provide valuable differentiation information. The analysis included in this stage include:
- Opportunity Analysis.
- Competitive Analysis.
- Industry Analysis.
- User Story Mapping Analysis.
- Functional & Non-Functional Requirements.
- Business Plan Analysis.
This stage often is free depending on the project & company you have chosen. The reason for this is often, businesses will try to gain business by enticing their clients with free discovery stage consultations.
Once all the information required is listed, the development team can move onto the next stage of the project, Design.
Now we come to the second stage which is the Design stage. In this stage, the developing agency will consider those requirements identified in the Discovery stage and begin to wireframe UX-based views of the predicted application.
The wireframe will show each screen and explain what sort of interactions it will have. This is also known as a concept. Once these screens have been created, a meeting will be held with the client to begin a collaborative design process. This will help identify what the client likes in the designs of each wireframe concept.
This will be then used to combine all the likes of the client into one solution.
Once this is done, the team will go back and develop a working prototype from the wireframes and put it together as a non-public release demo of the application for the client to view live. This will mimic the application as if it was developed; however it’s done yet. Once this is created, the development team will review it in the house.
This step is called user testing to identify if the prototype is ready to show the client. Once approved, the development team will hold another meeting with the client to showcase the prototype. Once this has been checked and approved by the client, the next stage begins.
The design stage’s average cost where wireframing & conceptualization occurs can range depending on the project and firm chosen. This section’s average costs are around $5,000 to $15,000, depending on the number of screens that need to be conceptualized.
This average cost of $5,000 often encapsulates 11 to 20 screens in an application. The more screens your application needs, the more it will cost during this designing stage.
As the name of the stage states, this stage of the application development project is where the actual development company creates the real application.
Using an assortment of different methodologies going from Agile to waterfall and a hybrid mix of methods, the development processes begin. Once the application is built, the developers test it first, usually in-house, then show it to the client to ensure there are no bugs or glitches by the quality assurance team.
Once the client signs off the project, it is then released to the market for public usage. This stage can often cost the most as it requires the most work. Average costs of development are between $5,000 for the most basic application, which ranges up to a whopping $250,000+
This is determined by the complexity and technologies used by a firm along with the developing firms’ hourly charge.
After-Care Support Stage
In this stage, app development companies often support the application they built in case of glitches, crashes, or environment changes. Even if you tested the application for a year straight, there are bound to be small glitches, errors, or malfunctions that support teams will take care of.
Support teams also provide support for upcoming updates, new systems, environment changes, and new devices. Often the after-care support stage is calculated into the development costs listed above, but most times can be provided at no extra charge depending on the project, and the company is chosen.
Average Costs Of Entire Projects
Depending on the app development project’s complexity and length, it will determine exactly the costs of each project. Now, of course, each development company charges differently across all the different stages of the project. While we showed you each stages average prices above, we also included below the average cost of app development from start to finish being fully developed and including after-development support care:
Basic App (Core Feature, 1 Platform)
Total Cost: Between $10,000 to $120,000.
Timeline: Between 3-5 Months.
Full Product (Mid-Level App, 1 Platform)
Total Cost: Between $120,000-$200,000.
Timeline: Between 4-9 Months.
Large Scale App (High-End Level, 2 Or More Platforms)
Total Cost: Over $230,000+
Timeline: Above 9 Months or more.
Keep in mind the costs are averaged, real figures may be higher or lower depending on the complexity of the project, length of project, company chosen, and other economic factors. To get accurate prices, always ask for fixed tenders for projects to avoid scope creep.
In 2020, application development through a development company had proven successful with different price points providing value for your business.
With the amount of work that goes into each application development project, different requirements exist. The prices shown above are industry averages and can differ from time, project complexity, project tenure, and company chosen.
Big Kitty Labs is one of the leading software development companies in Columbus Ohio that has been developing applications, websites, and software for over 10 years. Contact us for free discovery and consultation on your next project!