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How to develop an app in 2024: A must read for small businesses

It is 2022, and a lot has changed in the world of technology. Mobile apps have become the ultimate tool for businesses and are outperforming websites by bringing in 3x more revenue.

However, many businesses are still stuck with websites due to hefty and intensive development processes and are either not building apps or spending way more time and money than they should.

This is mostly because they are not up to date with the latest app development technologies, tools and software that are democratizing app development.

So, how to create an app that attracts users and conversions without making a dent to your budget and funds? Let’s explore the blog and find out!

How much does it cost to create an app in 2022?

Costs of app development

Let us first start with understanding the current cost trends of mobile app development. The expenses can primarily be divided into three phases. These are as discussed below:

Pre-launch phase: Expenses on market research including competitor research, customer research, validating app ideas, creating marketing buzz, and more.

Development phase: Expenses on creating prototypes, developing the app, executing all the app ideas and features, etc.

Launch phase: Apple App Store and Google Play Store charges, promotional expenses, launch events, etc.

Post launch phase: App marketing and maintenance.

However, what one must really consider is the actual cost of developing the app, as almost every other cost will be within your control.

The cost of app development and maintenance is what matters the most. This will depend on a range of factors, such as:

  • App category, features, and functionalities
  • Scale and scope of the mobile app
  • Chosen mode or tool of app development (discussed in the sections below)

It may come as a huge surprise that the costs of app development can be as low as USD 1,000 per annum to as high as USD 500,000 per annum. It all depends on your preferences and the choices you make in the due course of app development.

Essentially, the development cost gets divided between UI & UX designers, coders or developers, copywriters, and researchers. While some companies hire full-time or freelance professionals to get an app built in-house, others often outsource the task to development agencies.

However, for in-house developments, you will also need the necessary resources and infrastructure that may include costly software and other equipment.

You can also go forward with a hybrid approach where you can get some of the tasks done by your in-house employees and outsource those that you are not equipped for.

Whatever your choice is, the cost will again be governed by a number of several other factors such as app type or category, complexity and density of the features and functionalities, and more. Let us explore it in the section below:

Cost based on approach

As discussed above, how you approach app development can determine your overall costs and expenses. For example, a simple app can cost you around USD 40,000 whereas a complex one can go up to USD 300,000 or more.

Also, whether you go with a custom app development agency or a no-code DIY app builder, will also impact your development costs to a huge extent. The average developer’s rate in the US is 100 – 150 dollars per hour. However, many DIY app builders may charge you less than this for a month.

Cost based on industry

Now let us discover how much an app would cost based on its category and industry type. From eCommerce to gaming apps, the price can also vary based on the industry and the app category. Some of the examples are as follows:

Basic utility apps like calculators and quizzical games: USD 10,000 – 15,000

Detailed data-driven apps like weather and navigation apps: USD 15,000 – 20,000

Loyalty management and POS (point of sale) management apps: USD 40,000 – 80,000

Social networking, dating and community apps: USD 60,000 – 300,000

eCommerce and on-demand services apps: USD 60,000 – 300,000

Ticketing, event booking and marketplace apps: USD 150,000 – 300,000

These are only some of the examples based on generic circumstances. The costs can run lower or higher depending upon other intricate details and logistics.

Cost based on features

The perfect app is an ensemble of many features and functionalities. Even for creating an MVP (Minimum Viable Product), you will need to make a list of all your required features that will shape your app’s functionalities, performance, and usefulness, and implement them all.

Now the cost of the app can vary highly depending upon the features you choose to integrate. In fact, every extra feature can add a surplus of hundreds of dollars’ worth of extra burden on your app budget.

For instance, a login and sign-up feature alone may cost you something around USD 1200 to 1600 whereas more complex and intensive features like payment gateways and push notifications can spike up the costs furthermore.

These were some of the examples of costs based on different variations like development approach, industry type and more.

Additionally, we also have a nuts-and-bolts guide on the cost of app development. You can read that blog suggested below and learn more about the cost of building an app.

Suggested Read: How much does it cost to make a mobile app?

What are the best tools for mobile app development?

Let us now address the most significant aspect, the app development part. While it might be easier for big establishments and businesses to invest hundreds of dollars in a complex app, not every brand is equipped to do the same. It is also not very strategic.

Besides, you must have all the options laid out for you before you arrive at any decision. So, let us explore all the avenues and make this read worth your while.

Pick the method that best suits you and get the app that your business deserves.

#1: Completely code-free DIY app builder software

There are more than 1.5 billion websites but only around nine million mobile apps in the world. This is when the demand for apps is so high that it is bringing in three times more revenue and traffic than websites.

However, the huge difference in numbers clearly shows that the existing and traditional methods of app development have failed to cater to the growing demands of apps and align themselves with the consumer aspirations. This is set to change after the advent of DIY code-free app builders.

These app builders are bringing the power of app development to the fingertips of each individual and anyone can now build their own app with minimal investment of time, money, and efforts.

DIY app builders have truly revolutionized app development and most of them are as capable of delivering powerful apps as any other conventional method of app development.

Such tools have all that one needs to create brilliant apps under one roof and some of them take the experience several notches up while remaining easy and affordable at the same time. You can explore this option if you want the best apps for your business that are easy to maintain and affordable to get.

#2: Low-code app builders (basic programming skills required)

If you are ready to face a bit of a learning curve and wait for a few weeks or months, then you can go with this method of app development.

You can sign up for a low-code development platform, learn their programming language and techniques, and then proceed to build an app. However, this is only recommended for those who have prior experience of coding.

If you are not very tech-savvy or simply do not want to waste weeks learning a new tool, then this might not be the very best option for you.

While it might be more affordable than custom app development, it is still not worth all the time and effort when compared with the more advanced DIY technologies.

#3: Custom app development

There are two ways to approach custom app development. These two methods are as discussed below:

i) Hire custom app development agencies

There are agencies that solve the problem of hiring different professionals and work as an aggregator of such professionals. You will need to intimate the agency with your requirements, and they will get the job done by their team.

However, this too can lead to hefty expenses and long wait hours. Besides, not all agencies have experts from all fields. So, if you try to cut down the budget, it may affect the overall quality of your app.

The agencies also suffer with huge backlogs, and you may have to wait in virtual queues to get your app delivered, while missing out on all the amazing mobile commerce opportunities you could have mined if you were able to get your app on time.

ii) Get in-house or freelance developers & designers

This is the most conventional option but not a very convenient one. You will have to hire your own team of developers and other professionals like UI & UX designers, coders, feature specialists, copy writers, and more. However, it does not really make sense to hire a team for building one or even a few apps.

You can get freelancers on board on an hourly basis but that can cost you a fortune and such a mixed bag of a team may lead to conflicts in terms of decision-making and consistency. Besides, it may get costlier to maintain the app in the long run with such an uneven team.


Let us now compare all the significant methods of app development in a tabular form, to get a clearer picture at a glance. Go through the table below and learn the same:

Methods of app development

As you can see, custom app development not only costs you the most, but it also takes much longer to deliver an app project if you follow the traditional route. It also gives you the least amount of control and authority over the entire process.

Whereas, while low code maybe a more affordable option as compared to custom app development, it is still only good for those who have prior coding experience and are looking for a more streamlined process to code their app on an integrated platform.

However, the best in our opinion is the new age code-free DIY technology that lets you create apps in the smallest amount of time, effort, and investment. It also demands less in terms of maintenance and still gives you huge control over the entire process.

Suggested Read: Five points to consider before choosing no-code app development

How to start building an app without breaking the bank?

Now that you are thorough with the cost and methods of app development, you can go ahead and pick your route and get yourself an app that will give your business a new edge.

However, if all the numbers above have left you tensed, then shed all your worries now. You can start with baby steps and then scale your mCommerce business to new heights.

You can go with a free app maker like AppMySite and create your own app without coding. Here, you will not have to make any up-front payment. Instead, you can create the app, add the features, and then test it before upgrading to a paid subscription.

What’s best is that you will not need a team of personnel and you can execute it all single-handedly. You can invite people to collaborate and work on the app later.

Additionally, it will also not take you several days or months to get your app. Instead, you can make an app within minutes and submit it to the app stores for review on the same day. You will save all that time and money that you can spend on other areas of your business.

Suggested Read: Know why AppMySite offers a Preview Plan to its customers

Wrapping up!

Liked what you read? Do let us know of your feedback in the comment section below. You can also checkout our other blogs and learn more about the new age techniques of app development.

Pick whatever suits you best and build an app of your dreams. If you want, you can also checkout AppMySite for free and create a prototype to assess how your app would look like.

You can test it for free and proceed to become a paid subscriber only when you are sure of what you have built. This is one the best methods of building an app for your website and taking your business to your customers’ smartphones.

So, get started now and go from web to app in no time. Launch your app and then proceed to promote and market it. Inspire hundreds of downloads and establish a full-fledged mobile commerce business!

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