Placing a bold question concerning the total price of an app is like asking about the cost of vacation. It always depends. What is your destination? Any accommodation you want to book? Travelling by plane or by bus? Need a guide tour? Planning to go on excursions? Anything to think of before going to exotic locations? And that is the tip of an iceberg.
Surely, when it comes to developing apps, the price-quality ratio is the supreme rule. However, the question remains why budget limits vary enormously between $5,000 and more than $700,000 (according to the Clutch survey). In this article we’ll uncover what makes this discrepancy. We will also explain what budget-forming rules, factors and processes are the basis for calculation and what this price includes once you engage outsourcing services.
Logically, the first question is about the actual “ingredients” forming the final cost figure. Putting a price tag on your dream project is possible once you realize or study precisely what it should act, look and feel like. As puzzling it may seem, we’ll throw a curveball by defining a number of criteria that help to frame the cost of a custom software:
NB! To decide for yourself if you need a hybrid app, read more about the pros and cons of cross-platform development in our article.
NB! Yes, testing IS vital to any app development to make sure it meets your requirements as works exactly as you imagined it to perform.
Maintenance. Post-release technical support is required to make your app alive and thriving. However, it is definitely more than fixing bugs or adding new functions. In fact, a recent Clutch survey shows that on average $5,000-$10,000 is spent on maintenance. NB! At LinkUp Studio we offer a 2-month period of support service as a part of the package deal to make sure your product operates in the best possible way. Once it is over, you can switch either to a full-time or on-demand support plan.
Of course, the general idea is: the simpler the solution, the more standard tools are engaged, the less hours and workforce is needed. Developing a basic software project for a local delivery company with user login/registration and a chat function performed by a freelancer from India will certainly cost less than assigning a Ukrainian software development team to build an advanced cross-platform app for booking holiday destinations that integrates with Google Maps, has an intricate search filter and backend infrastructure.
Another crucial issue to bear in mind is the pricing strategy you choose. Basically, there are two options to pick from.
Check out more points to think of while comparing both models.
|Fixed-price||Time and material|
|Works best for|
No doubt, the fixed price model seems quite appealing. It provides the client with a clear vision of what will be charged. And we do recommend this strategy for short-time projects. Yet, it is difficult, sometimes impossible, to foresee all the factors that influence the scope. Also, fixing your budget shackles the team from introducing vital changes to make an app better. So, what seems to be the way to financial security turns into causing the risk of building the wrong product.
When it comes to the time and material model, you may feel anxious about “too much flexibility”. But the latter is the key to success. What if you still lack the final vision of the project, exact requirements or testing to modify your idea. Sometimes, your market may (and in a COVID-driven era, is sure to) change overnight and you need to adjust in the snap of a finger. With the initial estimation and the potential to change the scope you get to control the expenses and create an app that people will want to use. After all, this is the ultimate task.
No wonder that such a list of things to consider may confuse even the experienced businesses, especially when it comes to remote-work. And that is what we as an outsourcing agency are for. To deliver your dream product in a flexible and risk-free mode we take the following steps to provide your business with new value.
Discovery stage. Processing initial data now transforms into a full-scale business analysis. If you still doubt that a thorough discovery stage is a must-have, check out our article to understand its role in shaping your most realistic budget. YES, this phase may cost somewhere between $2,000 and $10,000. And NO, it is not an option to skip it and use rough estimates. Superficial approaches lead to faulty solutions.
After all, this is like going on a trip with very little knowledge of all the stuff you’ll face. You may prefer spontaneous trips. But when it comes to long-term journeys, package holidays are the crackerjacks. They do cost more but make you feel safe that an expert has already studied (and included!) the price of entry tickets, transportation, proper guidance and booking. Thus, a discovery stage is like a package deal offering you to lower your risks, increase the chances to form an exact budget and ensure a successful first release.
The final actions at this stage are presenting the ultimate project concept (system models, requirements specification document, UX design (wireframes), UI design (clickable prototype), UI kit documentation, development plan and budget calculation, recommendation regarding technological perspectives). Only such detailed study can give you:
Surely, building the budget that doesn’t simply fit in with your finances but allows you to create a valuable product is quite an adventure. However, there are two ground rules you need to follow:
Rule 1: No professional outsourcing agency can tell you the price of your app at once.
Rule 2: All the calculators or budget planners you can find online are just marketing traps.
Once you choose to ignore these guidelines, you will come up with no more than a rather obscure budget estimation and faulty project assessment. What’s more, you will be quite lucky if you avoid cost and timeline overruns.
Still, we would like to give you at least rough figures to ensure conscious budget estimation. Thus, we will explain what different types of apps may cost depending on the functionality and expertise involved. Here are some vivid examples of apps you have probably heard of or use on a daily basis.
It’s true that when it comes to planning your budget, there are no short-cuts. You still have to involve a range of experts, discuss key issues in detail and form a reasonable strategy. Thus, to ensure adequate cost estimation you need to remember:
Yes, shaping the cost of your future app on your own is nothing like a vacation. But we are ready to turn it into an enjoyable journey. Contact us to know more about estimating your dream app development.