What developers should know about the app development lifecycle

If you want your app to be successful and generate user interest, you need to understand each step in your mobile app’s development lifecycle.

Mobile app development is so much more than simply creating an app. It is a careful and complex step-by-step process. What you put into each step of this process is vital to the survival and success of your application. Therefore, you need to think about your mobile app development as a lifecycle instead of a means to an end. If you make the mistake of cutting corners, you’ll only end up making attaining success that much harder for you by costing yourself product stability and user interest.

Regardless if you are creating your app yourself or you intend to hire a mobile applications development company to help you along the way, it is imperative that you understand the different steps in your app’s development lifecycle while it is being coded and developed.

Step 1: Use your imagination

The first step when it comes to creating anything is to envision the purpose of your creation. What will it do? What purpose will it serve? What need will it meet? Why would users want to use your app over another? Take the time to brainstorm and list all your mobile app ideas. The most enduring mobile apps are based on the strongest ideas created by consumers for consumers. Research. Compare other mobile apps and find out what works, what doesn’t, and why. Use your knowledge to develop a mission plan for your app and remember to be flexible.

Step 2: Make your plan a reality

Design is the next step of the app development lifecycle. Your job is to create an acceptable wireframe concept and begin the graphic design phase. Don’t cut corners. Take the wireframe and fill out each page of the app in detail. This is the main element of your app meant to keep your users interested. Don’t be cheap on the design – use the most popular app design tools available to grab the attention of consumers. Also, remember to keep the design sensible and user-friendly.

Step 3: Test what you’ve created

Once you’ve reached this step,  your job will be to work out any coding bugs that exist and to make sure that the app you’ve designed has achieved your objective and appeals to your users. While you should have friends test the app, be sure that users in your target market also give it a test run so you can obtain the most valuable feedback. Fix any issues that exist and listen to constructive criticism. You should also start marketing.

Step 4: Launch your app

Once your app is ready for release, make sure your app has been optimized for the application platform you have in mind and launch it in the app store that best suits your target audience. During this part of the lifecycle,  you’ll also want to begin marketing in earnest. Furthermore, once your app is launched, you also need to protect it from potential mobile app abuse. Abuse is more likely to occur if your app is popular. Watch for “copycat” apps that impersonate your brand or try to steal your copyright logos and images, etc.

Step 5: Maintain and make improvements

This is the final stage of the mobile app development lifecycle. In this phase, your goal is to continue strengthening your design by ensuring it consistently meets the needs and demands of users. You’ll find that there is always room for improvement and as long as you continue to update your app and make subtle changes that improve user experience, you’ll maintain as well as grow your user base. Always be flexible and continue to pay attention to what your user’s want, and deliver. Never hesitate to continue designing and redesigning your app right down to its wireframing level. Continual monitoring of your apps functionality and appearance is vital to its longevity.

Sarah Watkins is a tech geek and an online marketing manager at Global Traffic Jet. In her spare time, she enjoys contributing to tech blogs.