Not since the dot com days has there been such flock of technology startups. Success stories such as Instagram and Twitter have tantalized people’s pallets to go follow in their footsteps. But with the increasing number of apps present in the app stores (1.6 million in the Google Play store, 2 million in the Apple app store as of June 2016) the competition is high.
We looked at what app development firms focus on when they’re building out an app for their clients.
- Unique and appealing design
With so much competition app designers need to make their product look awesome. You’re essentially branding and packaging the app in this stage. Even if two existing companies offer practically the same service, the differentiation and ultimately triumph are heavily rooted in the design.
The design needs to be appealing to the senses. Sophistication and creativity should scream through the screen. And look is not the only factor in achieving peak design. The animations should be so good, it almost becomes a pleasure to press and swipe gestures within the app.
Though a spectacle for the eyes, design alone will not lead your app to the top of the app store. In fact, too much emphasis on intricate design may harm your app. An app is limited by its platform screen size. Too much going on will only take away from the user’s experience. Which leads to the next characteristic… Great UI
- Great UI (User Interface)
It’s human nature to judge an app within the first few seconds of use. We judge books by their covers so it’s only natural that we treat an app the same way. So if there is one secret in making a not only great but lasting impression, it’s a killer user interface.
There’s one keyword that that is crucial to great UI, which is “intuitive.” So you want your app to do great things in ways people love. The tricky part is finding ways to carry out all the essential functions that constitute your app, in the simplest, most clean and fluid way possible.
The UI must be unobtrusive, avoiding design elements that don’t add a use or function to the app. If it doesn’t add value, it’s eliminated. It’s essential that the user finds navigating the app simple upon first use. Reducing the learning curve as much as possible but at the same time including all the necessary features that would make your app successful.
- Platform appropriate
The app must be completely compatible with the platform it was developed for. It should take advantage of the natural qualities of that specific smartphone or tablet.
Each platform, iOS or Android offers various gesture-based navigation tools. Swipes generate a new screen while removing another, a pinch of the screen can zoom the image in or out. The gestures rely on the mobile platform itself. Developers need to understand these platform-specific gestures in order to provide an intuitive navigation experience.
- Listen to feedback, aim for excellent reviews
Maintaining high user feedback scores encourages more users to sign up and spread the word. Many individuals look at others’ reviews of a certain product to staple their confidence in purchasing the item. In a digital world, analyzing others’ opinions is crucial as you cannot physically see or try the product beforehand in many cases. Tons of positive reviews will spark great confidence in a potential user. If such a large community loves the app, chances are that they will as well.
On the other hand, negative reviews will strongly hurt. The occasional negative review is practically unavoidable but if the negative ones equal or outweigh the positive ones, you’re in for a bad time and the death of your app legitimate concern.
Generating a bit of success great, but if you can’t maintain that success, it’s all for nothing. Rolling out new features, bug fixes, and effective updates are crucial for the growth and longevity of your app. Angry Birds, a gaming app sensation with over 250 million downloads was no doubt fun to play but was not the only reason for their success. Angry Birds released fresh and fun updates periodically. Prolonged sameness will eventually leave the user bored, eager to try something new.
Competition on the mobile app market is relentless. The market is congested as ever, but that should never deter you from belief in your idea. Successful implementation of these 5 qualities will help you not only defeat but massacre your competition.