Mobile app development process explained for beginners

Consumers have become increasingly dependent on their mobile device to perform basic tasks, from booking appointments to paying bills via internet banking. Annual app revenue has reached $111 billion and is expected to grow exponentially in the coming years.

To make a real impact with an app, founders work with developers, designers, and marketers to build an effective app to simplify a user’s daily routine. In this article, we’ll take a look at what it takes to create the apps people rely on every day.

The idea

Every app started with an idea, but successful apps came about by putting ideas into action. Developers look at problems consumers face and think about how to solve them. This may seem like a pretty easy and straight forward task, but it’s actually a comprehensive set of steps. Developers brainstorm ideas by asking questions about target audience and consumer behavior through in-depth market research.

There is a good chance that a similar app will be available to consumers. That’s why developers dive deep into the competition after establishing their demographics. The key to a successful competitive analysis is to consider who is using a competitor’s app and how positive or negative their reviews are of it. Developers also focus on reviewing company history to see if marketing has changed over time and how companies have addressed challenges along the way. Taking the time to research every aspect of a competitor’s app and understand what gaps need to be filled is critical to creating a successful and effective app.


MVP stands for minimum viable product. It was set up by creating a roadmap to help developers understand where they are currently with the development process and what steps need to be taken to ensure that the app becomes successful. Some best practices founders use for creating MVPs is writing goals on a whiteboard and prioritizing them accordingly. They ask questions about the primary functionality of the app and what features should be included to attract users.

After the MVP is developed, marketers ask users for feedback so they can figure out how to improve the product and increase their sales.

Generate income

When the app is built, it’s time to start monetizing. Developers are working closely with marketers to figure out how to do this. They’re considering options like including in-app purchases or subscription payments. They may also contain advertisements or sell user data for profit. The key to setting pricing is to research what other similar apps on the market are charging and check reviews to see if customers are happy with those prices.

Founders don’t always monetize their apps directly. While it’s acceptable to go this route, it’s recommended that you take the time to determine when is the right time to start charging for the app. Skipping this step often leads to lost profits, especially for startups.

Design with user experience vs design with user interface

The terms “user experience” (UX) and “user interface” (UI) are sometimes used interchangeably, according to: Wix† However, they have two very different functions. UX focuses on how a user reacts to the product while UI is about aesthetic elements. UX designers use a number of different tools to ensure their app provides users with a seamless experience, as follows:

1. Information Architecture

IA is when the development team decides how an app’s data and functionality is organized, says Forbes† It usually starts with making a list of features the app needs and then prioritizing them.

2. Wireframe

This step involves using the IA to assign different functions and data to different screens. Initially, developers sometimes use wireframe software or even paper to avoid costly mistakes.

3. Workflows

Workflows represent a user’s journey on your app. To ensure a positive user experience, developers look at elements such as how many clicks it takes to complete an action or how accessible specific features are. If it takes too many clicks to complete a task, it’s a clear sign that the wireframes need adjusting.

While UI, on the other hand, uses an entirely different set of tools to design a visually appealing interface, reported by Digital Authority Partners

1. Style Guides

Think of style guides as the foundation of an app’s design. UI designers use them to make sure the colors and graphics align. For example, the font might be blue on one screen and red on the other; this makes the app look unprofessional and gives users a negative experience.

2. Revised Designs

At this stage, designers replace the wireframe designs with style guide elements. The designs are still flexible at this stage, so they can easily be changed if the designer wants to go for a different look.

3. Testing

When the style guide is fully implemented, designers test the click-through models and other features of the app to determine where improvements are needed.


Now that the app is ready to launch, marketers need to figure out how to reach their target audience. Often, many challenges come along with marketing an app. Financing is often one of the main obstacles. Marketing is expensive no matter which route an app founders take. They may want to try digital marketing, but also invest a little in traditional print marketing. In the digital age, app founders have endless opportunities to market their product, according to a San Diego mobile apps company. Social media marketing, PPC advertising and display advertising are just three of the many ways companies can market their product.

Last updated: February 9, 2022