So you want to launch “that” app in the market! Good. You have got the market validation done! Very good. You have also thought about the revenue channels and how to monetize the app. Awesome!
Have you thought about which type of app to build? Which mobile platform to target and why?
For the success of your mobile app the less focused mobile development strategy is equally important as your business strategy. It plays a BIG role in defining how well your app will perform in market.
Basics first! We have three types of apps to fulfil consumer need; Native, Hybrid and Web app. They have their own set of capabilities and limitations. What differentiates them is the user experience, time to market and cost!
Below are some factors that might give you a clarity on the development approach:
If you have a budget constraint, it would be a sane decision to first develop an Minimum Viable Product (MVP) and test the app in market as a mobile web version. This would not only help you understand user expectations but will also give you real time data about usage of app. It has maximum ROI vs Risk ratio.
Given the sufficient funds, Hybrid or Native apps can be developed too for MVP. But be aware, Native apps are the most expensive to develop and time consuming. They have to be built for every platform that you are targeting.
This is where Hybrid takes over Native. Its write-once-install-anywhere flexibility saves you a lot of money and effort. They not just provide a native look and feel but also help launching your app on multiple platforms quickly to the market. This helps in reaching out to maximum customer base.
To use native features in your app go for Native or Hybrid. A mobile web app cannot access your device features such as camera, location, contacts etc.
Look and Feel
If you want an amazing user experience the Native app would be the best option. Neither a Hybrid app nor a Web app can ever match the level of creative user experience that you get in a Native app.
To keep the consumer engaged and informed about your business, you might want to go for Native or Hybrid app as Web based apps do not offer notifications.
Its Native hands down! Even if Hybrid app tries to match the level of Native, it can never match Native’s performance. And web app is nowhere to be considered here.
So all of this, in essence, is related to your business strategy. The need you want to fulfil as a business defines what is required in the app and thereby decides the development approach.
The geography and demographics being targeted speak about the platforms which are prevalent in that market and how the target audience engages with an app. Studying this, you can choose which type of app to develop and how it would benefit you in the longer run.
7-8 years ago, mobile web was the most amazing thing. But no more! The below graph shows how mobile web is on the verge of dying in the US. With only 10% people accessing apps through mobile web, it will surely become obsolete in coming years.
Consumers are using mobile apps more frequently than accessing a mobile web browser. A phenomenal 85% of consumers fall under this category (source)
So you thought developing a mobile web app for US market generate $$ for you?
Moreover, great visuals might attract consumers and make an exceptional first impression, a perfect user experience happens only through an awesome app performance.
An app that looks stunning but performs poorly would only have high abandonment rate!