We all know that mobile apps continue to flood the market. According to Statista, Google Play Store has around 2.2 million apps whereas Apple's App Store has around 2 million apps. By year 2016, the number of app downloads will increase more than 211 billion and 254 billion by 2017.
Among all these apps, a surprising number of apps end up with poor reviews and improper ROI (Return on investment). Only 35% of mobile app engagements lasts less than a minute. If the user is unsatisfied, they straight away discards the app. It is becoming difficult to create and release a good mobile app that performs brilliantly in today’s competitive market.
Ever heard of Google Wave? Maybe not. Basically Google Wave was one of Google's most hyped yet surprisingly least understood online communication tool. Though it seemed to be a great idea. Unfortunately, Google Wave failed in spite of great marketing strategy.
Reasons why it failed:
- Nobody knew what exactly it was.
- The end product was not user friendly.
- User expectations were not met.
In business apps development, the definition of success depends upon understanding customer's decision making and discovery process.
Most common reasons why the apps fail:
- Unable To Understand Target Audience: Before commencing on a project proper research should be done regarding your potential audience. Create the app keeping in mind what the audience would like. If you are unable to focus on your target audience properly, your application will never reach the right destination and all your efforts will go vain.
- Improper App Designing: All devices/platforms operates in different styles and using different gestures. Remember that for a successful and well-designed app, good user interface and superb user experience is must. Apps should be designed as per the guidelines of respective OS (like Android, iOS, Windows etc) and there different versions (Kitkat, Marshmallow, iOS 9 etc). Otherwise, the app gets discarded quickly and fails miserably. For example, users get disappointed when an app runs on the iPhone but not on their iPad.
- Incompatible User Experience: What would you do if an app is slow or lagging a lot, taking long time to load or most features are paid (premium)? You will simply switch to some other app. Buttons should be placed at right areas, don’t enhance UI up to such an extent which makes the app complex. Proper attention should be given to platform-specific UI/UX practices. Ignoring these is a costly mistake.
- Poor App Marketing Strategy: A good mobile app marketing plays a pivotal role in taking your business to great heights. It doesn't matter what type of business you are doing. Ask questions like is there a market for the type of app you are developing? Are you providing a unique experience by solving a certain problem? Is the idea defined well enough to work?. If you completely miss the marketing process then sorry to say your app will fail in a short time. You can make effective use of the social media tools, ask for reviews about what they would like to include in the application.
- No Unique Features: Uniqueness is what everyone loves. Keep a check on your competitors and bring new features gradually. This keeps alive the interest of the users and every new feature gets publicity by its own. Also, keep in mind that never launch too many features in bulk. It won’t make your app successful. Instead, it might confuse the app user and he will opt for some other app. So release the updates properly.
- Not Applying App Optimizing Techniques: Market is flooded with billions of apps. The abundance of apps is pleasing to the eyes of users but a tough challenge for the app’s marketer. App optimization is methodological approach and must be carried out carefully. Unoptimized apps are always at loss and there’s hardly any chance of them rising with the newer apps launching every minute.
- Excessive Battery Consumption: People simply hate those mobile apps which consume a lot of battery. Such apps are really frustrating and are quickly uninstalled from mobile devices. The developers of mobile apps should keep a check on the application code, make the code as efficient as possible so that the app runs leaner.
- Memory Usage & Performance Issues: Mobile app is a whole new world. All the code involved in mobile app development must be well-optimized otherwise it will lead to slow, clunky and negative user experience. Performance expectations are always at extreme level. If an app doesn’t respond quickly to user interactions it will be dead on arrival.
- Improper App Testing Approach: One of the most vital protocols that is often overlooked is application testing prior, during and after launch. If an app isn’t tested properly, it will be having bugs that impact user experience and is prone to crash. A single crash can lead to low user adoption and negative reviews regarding your brand. App should be tested before shipping so as to ensure there are no major issues.
- Budget Matters: Creating an app costs around few thousand dollars to hundreds of thousands. You need 100% of capital to start your business. Otherwise, sooner or later you will run out of money. It’s always recommended going in with a budget or price range. You need to know your limitations and keep it within these to create a successful mobile app.
The above mentioned points might seem to be common but it leads to major chaos in your brand value. Hence, it is recommended to create a road-map just like a pre-flight checklist.
An app is considered successful only when it is driving user engagement, delivering ROI and achieving business objectives.