Planning Mobile App Budget: 8 Steps To Success

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Struggling with your app budget? Check out our tips that will help you plan your project budget in 8 fast and easy steps – with no slippages.

Let’s face it: mobile development services are not cheap. During the delivery of a product, there are lots of bills for entrepreneurs to deal with. So prior to diving right into the process, it may be worth taking some time to plan your app development and marketing budget. This greatly helps entrepreneurs to find out if they can cut expenses and, if so, how to do that.

#1 Start With Defining Your Goal

There are lots of reasons for building an app. The most common are:

  • Expand opportunities: When you already have a physically present brand or e-commerce website, you may want to provide your customers with the mobile experience. The number of mobile users grows rapidly, and even such giants as Asos, Lush and Walmart adjust their services to keep up with trends.
  • Bring an idea to life: If you have a million-dollar idea but little or no technical background, you may outsource the development to other countries. At least, that’s what Slack, Skype and Opera creators did.
  • Withstand competition: Mobile solutions come handy in each and every sphere. They are a great asset to businesses that want to make their products stand out or even outrun their competitors.
  • Engage customers: It’s about building a high-quality product not only for your current customers but also for potential ones. Nike built an engagement platform by releasing the Nike+ running app which became extremely popular.

#2 Choose The Platform

The choice of platform is extremely important when it comes to budget planning. And the cost to create an app will actually depend on whether you choose to release your app for iOS, Android or both. Android development is usually more expensive than building an app for Apple users. Why so? Android-based devices support a number of screen resolutions in addition to various OS versions the app should be optimized for.

The best way to choose a platform is to check what devices your target audience uses. Finally, make sure to check what solutions developed your competitors.

Planning Mobile App Budget: 8 Steps To Success


#3 Find The Team Of Developers

It’s in-house or outsourcing development you need to choose from. Since you have to find professionals, it may be more difficult to hire in-house devs. And don’t forget about salaries, hardware, and software provision, office rent, etc. – quite a lot to handle, especially for young startups.

Middle-sized or big outsourcing companies also provide high-quality development services. By the way, their prices are usually cheaper than those of in-house devs. A variety of startups choose to outsource their product development, and Google and Microsoft are using this approach too.

Planning Mobile App Budget: 8 Steps To Success


#4 Evaluate The Features

The number of features you want to add directly affect the cost. So measure twice. First, create a list of features your app won’t do without. Start with the basics – registration and profile management and then move to more sophisticated options like integrations and other platforms.

#5 Estimate Your Future Profit

Software development requires clear revenue goals just like any other business does. App building is expensive, and you should already be wondering when these expenses are going to pay off.

By analyzing the demand on similar apps, you can easily calculate an appropriate revenue. Mind though that there are lots of pitfalls as it’s impossible to foresee users’ behavior.

I hope that this information will help you to estimate the budget needed to create your mobile app. Unfortunately, development services are not the only expenses to bear. So make sure to add marketing expenses as an important part of your app’s success. Here are a few steps for calculating your app’s marketing budget.

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#6 Decide On The Number Of Installs

First of all, you need to know how many users you’re going to attract. This will help you to define the average marketing budget. Smart Insights calculations show that to hit the top of, for example, the music category in App Store, your app should have about 111,551 daily installations. And if you’re not interested in building music apps, just find out how many downloads top-rated apps in your category have.

#7 Define The Cost Per Install

The cost per install (CPI) defines how much customers are going to pay to generate a single installation. Currently, the approximate prices are between $1,2 and $1,6. Let’s do some simple calculations. Taking into account the $1,2 cost per install and multiplying it by 111,551 (the number of installs needed to get on top) we’re getting $133,861 of daily CPI investments. But to hit the top your app should keep the position for at least a few days.

#8 Get The Downloads

Still, it’s not that simple to get on top of any category and generate this number of installs. You will most probably need to hire a marketing analyst to test ads on Facebook, Twitter, and other platforms as well as check their efficiency. As soon as the campaign is launched, marketing analysts will find out where users come from, how long they use the app for and so on.

Instead of hiring marketing analysts, you can use automated services for app marketing. These services analyze user behavior and choose the best platforms to promote your app.

Wrapping up, I’d like to say that app budget planning may indeed seem complex. There’re lots of points to take into account. What I suggest is paying enough time to study all possible pitfalls of your future product to bring an efficient and unique solution to life. And, of course, not exceed your budget abilities.



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