Building a profitable mobile startup
- Posted by Kateryna Bozhenko
- On January 5, 2018
- 0 Comments
- app, develop, mobile startup, Octodev, product, successful startup
The rapid evolution of mobile devices has changed the digital landscape once and forever. According to Smart Insights, 70% of all users surf the Internet on their smart phones and spend about 87 hours per month on it. The adaptive web design isn’t optional anymore; if the web page doesn’t offer a comfortable experience for mobile users, it loses a big part of the market.
In the last year, according to App Annie, the users from all around the world have spent over 900 billions of hours using the apps; it means that every person contributes at least 2 hours daily to this statistics. The income that the mobile apps generate has increased by 40%, earning the non-playable apps $7 billion. The digits are increasing and there is no sign of stagnation or decline.
The mobile has become a big part of our world and there’s no surprise that the mobile startups continue to pop up here and there. Some of them test their luck among billions of people, the others try to offer the new innovative services to thousands of companies all around the world.
The hardest part of the equation is to find an answer to this simple question: how to get successful?
Unfortunately, quite a few mobile startups fail at the very beginning of their story. There is a number of apps that earn less than $500 a month. It’s crucial to know the factors that’ll help you go as far as possible. Here are some features of the successful startups:
- Even the most inexperienced user should be able to use your app
Of course there are users who can boast great command over their mobile devices, but you can’t rely only on this segment. A wide range of people who interact with their phones on a daily basis will know just a number of routines for default action while everything else will cause problems for them.
- You have to make user experience as simple and satisfying as possible.
The users won’t get excited over the need to waste their time on getting used to your app, they’ve already spent some downloading it and want to get to use it straightaway. There are just too many apps in the market, you can’t let the steep learning curve scare off the convertible traffic.
Help people get on board, make the interface user friendly, embed some kind of hints. Avoid big difficulties at any costs. Your app should be a tool to make the life easier and the user himself happy, not frustrated.
- Get to know your target audience
The cool idea on its own will never be enough. Is your service or app cheaper and more comfortable than the ones made by your rivals? Who’s gonna pay you for it? How can you attract new clients? The successful mobile start-up knows its customers, the market it targets and knows who it depends on.
In 2007 at the dawn of the smart phone industry a venture investor Mark Andressen mentioned that the size of the market is the biggest factor for the startup to be successful. When the market is big enough, it’s loyal to you. That means the startup team will have the time to adjust the product and its market positioning in time – if it can win the hearts of the customers at the very beginning.
- You can’t make everyone happy – and you don’t need to
Please keep in mind that your app can’t be ideal for every single person. Do your best to satisfy the needs of people who you want to see as your users. Keep their summary portraits in mind when making important decision regarding app’s development. Don’t aim for every single person who could possibly download it, concentrate on your ideal customer and make him happy with your app.
- Feedback is important
Do you have some clients? That’s great if you do, but you want to get more customers for sure. Do you listen to them after you’ve sold them the app? Do you listen to what they’re complaining about to your clients service team? What are they unhappy about? How can you make their life easier?
It’s very important to talk and listen to your clients. Gathering, analyzing and implementing feedback is vital for your success. CleverTap, for example, has the tools to help you contact your customers. You can even send the personalized messages to every single one of them.
- Learn from your clients
The Internet is full of people who have their own opinion on everything. If they don’t like something, they won’t hesitate to tell you about it, even if you don’t really want to hear it now. However, this is one of the best ways to improve your product.Listen to the people who complain about something, even if it’s a bit unpleasant at times. Just don’t forget that you will always be criticized more than you’ll be praised and that’s pretty natural. That’s why we advise to always ask the users for the feedback, no matter positive or negative, it will show everyone that you actually care about what you do.
- Get to know your rivals
The first thing to do before the start of any project is to get to know the market and your most prominent rivals. If there is a version of something that people already use and like you should learn from it. Check your idea to ensure that your offer is unique and the people will want to use it. It can even be something that your colleagues have already worked on, but it’s the different point of view that puts you ahead of them.
- Concentrate on something and do it better than anyone else
Some people want their app to look like a mobile version of their website with all the functionality and features. Sometimes it’s not the most viable option because the app usually can’t be everything at once. For example, Facebook steadily converts their services to standalone apps, like it happened with their Messenger. Concentrating the effort on one feature at a time will help your team develop an expertise in this field and produce an outstanding solution.
- Always aim for improvement
Uber is probably the most successful mobile start-up that has emerged over last few years. Their idea to provide taxi services with a number of independent contractors isn’t exactly revolutionary. However the polished user experience for every participant, ultimate scalability and flexible terms allowed it to become the No.1 solution in the market, and it wouldn’t be possible without meticulous work of the best engineers, marketing specialists and managers.
Something that started like a simple app to connect taxi drivers and passengers is now a service where everyone can get a taxi from pretty much wherever they want and also an amazing job provider, where almost everyone can start a career. Uber is also steadily continuing to improve their payment process, rating system, maps and notifications. It proves that even if you are not exactly a pioneer, you can still achieve a lot with constant improvement.
- Never stop learning
The team of a successful mobile start up should always be learning. Make sure you hire the people are eager to obtain more knowledgeable each day, and the services like iTunes U, Khan Academy or Udacity will do the rest. But there should always be the thirst for new solutions, the ability to acquire and use new skills. It makes all the difference between mediocre and outstanding products.
- Don’t overspend
Even if you’ve got yourself a solid financial backing, it’s important to stay within economic limits. It allows you to be flexible and able to change the course and grow steadily under any conditions. You should spend the money only on something that you really need to succeed, and use the leftovers for advertising it creating a financial buffer. The use of new technologies is always lucrative, but it’s important to ensure that it’s reasonable. There is a wide variety of solutions today that provide marketing, branding, project management etc.
- Stay connected
The modern technologies allow the best specialist in the world to work for your company without leaving their hometown which is a huge advantage of the mobile era. But you should always stay connected with them so don’t forget to set up the management tools like Slack and messengers (such as Skype) to ensure that your team works as a unit and everyone sticks to the deadlines.
- Get inspired
To set up the business from the scratch and make it successful, you’ll need knowledge, loads of hard work and time, and of course inspiration to keep going. Get inspired, listen to the speeches of people who changed the world, meet your clients for a lunch outside of the office, get yourself to travel over the weekend. Be always open to new ideas, it’s crucial to keep going.
Remember that there’s no magic bullet to build a profitable mobile app, but you can certainly improve your chances by doing the following:
- Set your sights at a niche and its audience. Find the people who need an app but can’t find something with the required functionality. Then create an app for them.
- Track everything. Become an analytics master.
- Don’t show the ads from the start. Let the people fall in love with your app at first. Don’t make the people delete your app because of the annoying ads at the very beginning; you should first get the amount of users to make profit. You need no less than 400-600 downloads per day.
- Pay attention to what’s popular and trending, you need to know what exactly your users need. You don’t want to spend months developing an app and then understand that no one’s interested in it.
- You can copy something from the others, but only to make your app better — 4 million apps in the app stores can’t be all unique. Whatever you do, make sure you do it well and right. Diving deep into the market isn’t easy nowadays, but it’s the only way forward.
- A/B testing is everything. Don’t let anything escape your attention: the name, the screenshots, descriptions and design. Don’t rely on the intuition exclusively, check everything.
- Implement the in-app shop if you need to. It’s a pretty widespread solution nowadays.
- Always leave a ‘contact us’ field. The users should have a way to communicate, otherwise you may get 1 star feedback more often than you’d like to.
- Don’t underestimate the power of marketing. The effective PR campaign can pave your way to success.
- Optimize everything. Optimization is the way to working less and getting paid more, remember it.
And the most important thing:
Do. Try. Create. This is the only way to success.
If you are looking for a team of experts to make an app based on your vision, Octodev team will be happy to assist you on your quest for success. Contact us today to discuss your next project!