The Elements that decide the cost of a Small Business Mobile App

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We are a generation hooked to our cell phones for things as simple as keeping a track of time to as crucial as managing finances. According to a recent statista report ,there are going to be 258.2 billion app downloads in 2022. Of the average daily time spent on mobile phones, a large chunk is spent using apps. A fore-sighted business understands the importance of apps to reach its target customer. As opposed to the stereotypical assumption that getting an app for a business is going to be an expensive affair, mobile apps can be developed for every budget.


We at Promatics, are a team of developers working creatively to provide cost-effective mobile app development solutions to businesses. Here we bring to you a rough estimate of building a mobile app:


Cost of Building a Mobile App

If you wish to read simply all-inclusive figure depicting the cost of a mobile app for business, you are in for a disappointment. Because there can be no standard cost for developing a mobile app for business. The cost of a mobile app depends on a number of factors that depend on a number of factors like choice of platform, use of technology, the business model you opt for and also the developer you narrow down on. Here are some details how the cost of developing a mobile app fluctuate with these factors:


I. Business Model

If you are a business trying to estimate the cost of building an app, you must first configure the value and functions that your app will serve in your overall business model. Answer questions like what purpose the app will serve in fetching revenues for the business.  Some apps help the business in generating revenues through sales, others help the business clients by serving some utility and make the business stand out against all competitors. The answers to these questions will help you decide the type of app you want to build and the scope of your development project. You can next narrow down on technologies you deem befittign for the project. All these factors will make up the total cost of your project.
II. Type of App You are Hoping to Build

The technological base you choose for building an app is an important determinant of the cost of the mobile app development project. Here is a brief overview of each type of app:


  • Native apps

These apps are the ones that are built using the language native to the operating system of a given platform. Promising excellent performance, native apps for iOS use Swift or Objective C and ava or Kotlin for Android.


However, businesses which need apps that function across multiple platforms would require to develop separate apps for each operating system which increases the cost of development significantly.


  • Hybrid apps or Cross Platform apps

Hybrid apps can be translated into websites that come embedded in a mobile app shell and offer webview. These apps can be built with the big three basic web technologies HTML, CSS, and JavaScript using frameworks like Ionic, React Native, Xamarin and PhoneGap. The Hybrid apps are a desirable bargain between performance and productivity. As there is no need to develop separate apps for different platforms, the development cost is low with hybrid cost. With cross-platform apps, you have the liberty to build it in one language, as you create a single source of code. This code can be compiled into native codes across multiple platforms according to your business needs. Moreover, it is less time consuming to build a hybrid app than to develop to separate apps. Although a cross-platform app does not match up to a native app performance wise, certain businesses can benefit from a unified codebase across multiple platforms.


III. Choice of Platform

Two of the most popular platforms for building a mobile app are Apple iOS and Android. Both of these platforms offer outreach to a wide customer base. It is best to invest in building an app for both platforms. You can begin with the platform you believe in and kick-start the app business and gradually adapt the app to another platform.
Without a doubt, Android has a larger user base and outreach with in-depth market penetration as compared to Apple’s iOS. There is a large open-source community with access to Android mods like the famous CyanogenMod or Paranoid Android. For iOS, it is a closed source development environment and a difficult operating system. The Android platform offers freedom to innovate while you spend less as opposed to iOS which is pricier. Apple offers its users routine release cycles which ensures its users get to use the latest version of the apps. This also means that iOS developers need to be upbeat with the latest APIs always increasing the cost of development. However on the downside, Android comes with lower media engagement diversity on average than iOS.  Android developers struggle with more backwards compatibility issues, multiple versions, and a larger variety of phone architectures and screen sizes. This can escalate the cost of development. When it comes to iOS, there are in place stricter guidelines for quality control with a focus on security.


A seasoned developer or a company can easily help you overcome the financial disadvantages of using one platform over the other or both. Insightful market research can help you pick which platform serves your business the best.


What decides the cost of your small business mobile app


IV. App Functionality

The cost of an app rises with advanced functionality features you opt for. While a simple app comes with basic login features through a username and password, an interactive app allows a user to log in through social media accounts and features a 2-factor authentication system. The apps that offer the users a privilege to communicate and interact with one another through social media integration to allow chatting and messaging become a hit. Additional features like in-app purchases, searches, shopping carts, and payment integration incur significant development cost too. Modern apps come with geolocation and push notification features as an essential component for avant-garde user experience. Other important choices like if the app comes with offline support, backend support for data needs also make the app experience seamless and incur expenses depending on the complexity of functions.
V. App Design

App design is one of the most crucial features in an app. An interactive app design ensures good retention rates. A good app design combines functionality and visuals to bring out terrific user experience. App designers sketch the ideas on storyboards, make working prototypes and also provide functional permanent code. After the role of a designer is over, app developers work on writing codes that materialise the ideas of a designer into an actual app. A developer stays working on the project even after the launch and works on updates, debug errors, and test new features. Both app design and app development cost depending on the time consumed in innovation and the rates charged. If you are looking to build an app for iOS, you need someone who is familiar with Objective C and/or Swift and the Xcode IDE. A developer with experience in Java projects and knowledge of the Android Studio IDE is your best hire for an android app. If you are looking to get a hybrid app, a developer with knowledge of web fundamentals (HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript), and frameworks like Ionic or React Native is your best bet.

An additional cost during the app design and development is the cost incurred by the organisation structure. This cost includes expenses like administration, planning, infrastructure, marketing, and deployment.
VI. Type of Contract

The cost of app development varies significantly with hiring style and type of contract you sign with the developer.  Most businesses believe in stereotypes like hiring a freelance developer is least expensive and signing a mobile app development company is pricier. However, it is not so in most cases. Businesses that opt for very basic app also choose app builders for DIY.


While a simple mobile app can easily be developed through an app builder or with the freelance delegation, its best to take advantage of the vivid expertise that professional mobile app development companies offer.



We can conclude, that the cheapest option for building a mobile app is an app builder where you can build it yourself. The procedure incurs a minimal cost but is going to be time-consuming one where you would have to spend time paying attention to each and every detail of the project. An average app builder costs around $20-$25 per month. If you are on the lookout for a simple app with minimum functionality it is best to DIY. In case your business needs an app that requires a more customizable app, you need to seek professional help.


A mobile app development company can be a cost-effective solution to your app development vows.  We at Promatics, work with an experienced team of developers to bring to reality apps that offer seamless user experience at competitive pricing.

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Sahil Verma

Content Writer

A highly detail oriented and committed professional with years of experience in technical project management. His quick understanding and instant problem solving ability not only makes clients' life easier, but also helps deliver the assignments with assured quality. He is well versed with agile and waterfall methodologies. He has comprehensive knowledge of various technologies and is quickly adaptable as per the requirement. Good communicator, leverage technical, business and financial acumen to Communicate effectively with client executives and their respective teams. Sahil enjoys spending time with his family and friends and fond of reading technical article, blogs and literature.

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