In an effort to attract more customers and build better relationships with current clients, many companies are jumping into the world of mobile apps. In most cases, that means hiring a mobile development company to design and build an app. Like any business project, mobile apps require a large sum of capital. When looking for a potential partner, it’s important to ask the right questions before signing a financial agreement. Here are five questions that should definitely be on your list.
1. What are the costs of the project, as well as the cost of future updates?
When researching, you’ll want to get a clear idea of how much the entire project will cost. You may not be able to get an exact figure before the project, but mobile developers should at least quote you some numbers regarding hourly project costs, licensing expenses, etc. Because apps can become obsolete within a matter of months, be sure to inquire how accommodating the developers are to provide updates as well as, how much bug fixes and additional features will cost.
2. Where are your designers and developers located?
One common trick among development companies is to place a salesperson and/or liaison to claim that the company is “local” where in reality, the key developers and engineers are based in another country. Offshore offices shouldn’t be considered a deal breaker, but make sure that a company is upfront from the start..
3. On what platforms will my mobile app be available? And on what platforms do you have experience designing?
Before your search, you’ll need to determine whether your app will be available for iPhone, Android, Windows, and/or BlackBerry devices. If you desire multiple platforms, be sure have the company include this into the cost estimates. Most importantly, ask which platforms the company’s developers have the most experience with. Example if a development company only has experience designing Android apps, you may want to consider looking elsewhere if you are wanting an app designed for iPhone. Don’t get stuck paying for their “on-the-job” training.
4. How will users be able to download my app?
Obviously, any mobile app should be accessible through a business website. Beyond that, you should make note which third-parties will be selling your app to end users. If a development company cannot give you a reasonable guarantee that your app will be available for iTunes sales, don’t be afraid to kick them to the curb.
5. Of your previous projects, which ones are you the proudest of? Why?
Mobile app development companies want to put their best foot forward, so they’ll show you what they think is their best work. If what is shown to you isn’t user friendly, then you should think long and hard before signing on with them. It’s often easier to design a fancy app than it is to create an effective user experience. A good rule of thumb for an app, it should be as simple for your mother to use.
Squareball Studios (SBS), enables creatives, startups, and Fortune 500s to realize their vision through development, design, and strategy.
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