Web & Mobile App Development
An app can make or break your customer’s experience in interacting with your organization. A great app involves an equal amount of your input and our expertise. Our Process is…
Define Your Goal
Having a great idea is the starting point into every new project. Before you go straight into detailing though, you must clearly define the purpose and mission of your mobile app. What is it going to do? What is its core appeal? What concrete problem is it going to solve, or what part of life is it going to make better?
Defining a clear goal for the app is also going to help you get there faster.
By developing sketches you are laying the foundation for your future interface. In this step you visually conceptualize the main features and the approximate layout and structure of your application. Having a first rough sketch of your app helps everyone on your team understand the mission. These sketches should be used as reference for the next phase of the project.
This research has four main purposes:
Find out whether there are other apps doing the same thing
Find design inspiration for your app
Find information on the technical requirements for your app
Find out how you can market and monetize your app
Create a Wireframe and Storyboard
In this phase your ideas and features fuse into a clearer picture. Wireframing is the process of creating a mockup or prototype of your app.
While you are working on your wireframes you should also create a storyboard for your app. The idea is to build a roadmap that will help you understand the connection between each screen and how the user can navigate through your app.
Define the Back End of Your Mobile App
Your wireframes and storyboard now become the foundation of your back-end structure. Draw a sketch of your servers, APIs, and data diagrams. This will be a helpful reference for the developer, and as more people join the project you will have a (mostly) self-explanatory diagram for them to study.
Modify your wireframes and storyboard according to technical limitations, if there are any.
Test Your Prototype
Revert to your wireframes and ask friends, family, colleagues, and experts to help you review your prototype. Grant them access to the wireframe and have them give your app a test run. Ask them for their honest feedback and to identify flaws and dead-end links.
The goal is to concretize your app concept before it goes into the design process! Once you start designing it is much harder to change things around, so the clearer the prototype from the start, the better.
Build the Back End of Your App
Now that your app has been defined pretty clearly, it is time to get started on the back end of your system. Your developer will have to set up servers, databases, APIs, and storage solutions.
Another important thing on your to-do list at this stage is signing up for developer accounts at the app marketplaces you are developing for. Getting your account approved may take several days (depending on the platform) and shouldn’t be left to the last minute.
Design the App “Skins”
“Skins” are what designers/developers call the individual screens needed for the app. Your designer’s job is now to come up with high-resolution versions of what were previously your wireframes.
In this step it is crucial to include all comments from your prototype testers (see Step 6). After all, you are trying to build an app your target audience is actually going to use, therefore their feedback should guide you toward to the perfect UI-User Interface
Test Again (Yes, Again)
Once your designer has completed the design skins, you’re up for another round of testing. Don’t think that you are all set with what you’ve done so far. For the first time you have your actual app concept completely in place, all the graphics inserted, and all text as it should be. Which means you can finally test your app in the way it will really look and feel.
Revise and Continue to Build
Once you’ve given your design a test drive and collected more feedback from future users, you should use these new ideas to polish your app idea. You can still ask your designer to change the layout, and you can still tell your developer to change something on the back end.
Refine Each Detail
As you continue to build you will want to have a constant look at your new app. On Android, for example, it is easy to install your app file on a device to test its functionality in a live environment. iOS is different. There you will require a platform like TestFlight to download and test your app as it proceeds.
This step is the last step in the app development process. You can monitor your app all the way until your product is complete.
App marketplaces have very different policies when it comes to publishing a new app. Android, for example, does not review newly submitted apps right away. They’ll pass by at some point and check it out but you are able to instantly add your app to Google Play.
iOS, once again, is different here. Apple reserves the right to review and approve your app before it can go live. There is no set timeframe for this, but you can expect at least a week before you hear back from them.