The costs of developing a web app can be high, particularly if your requirements are complex. However, there are ways to keep the costs down by choosing an affordable development partner, using an Agile development process, and keeping scope to a minimum. Here we look at some ways in which you can optimise your web app development costs so that they stay within budget while still producing a fantastic final product.
Ask for demo and walkthrough before signing the contract
If you’re working with a new development team for the first time, make sure you have seen a demo of their work, and that they walk you through their development process. It’s important to get a feel for how the team works, and to make sure that the developers are skilled in the technologies required for your project. If the team is not able to show you a demo of their work, it could be a sign that they don’t have much experience. You should also check that they’re using the right tools for the job. If they’re using old and outdated tools, there’s a risk that your project will be delivered late, or that it will be of low quality.
Set a fixed-price development deadline
Be clear about when you want your app to go live and set a development deadline accordingly. If the client’s expectations are realistic, and there are no hard stop-dates, it is easier for the development team to change the deadline when they need to. If you state that your app must be completed by a particular date, it’s much more difficult for the team to change that deadline. It’s worth noting that most IT projects are delayed. So, if you set a fixed deadline for your web app, make sure you add a little leeway to the schedule. Where appropriate, set a fixed price for the development of your app. If the project is based on a fixed price, it’s important to be realistic about the functionality of the app. Make sure that you and the team have a clear idea of the scope of the project. That way, there are no misunderstandings about what the app will or won’t do.
Be realistic about functionality
If you’re working with a fixed-price contract, be realistic about the functionality required. It’s easy to fall in love with the idea of having an app that can do everything, but it’s not always necessary. It’s important to remember that every new feature added to the app will add time and cost to the project. If possible, start by producing a basic app that does one thing well. Once you’ve got that up and running, you can begin to add more complex functionality.
Be clear about branding requirements
If you have very specific branding requirements, make sure that these are clear to the team. If you’re working with an offshore development team, make sure that they understand your requirements. It’s much easier to keep costs down if the team is given as much information as possible up front. That way, they don’t have to come back to you every time they need clarification. If possible, try to keep branding to a minimum. While a branded app is great, it’s also an added cost that could eat into your budget.
Use remote usability testing
When you’re developing an app, it’s easy to get lost in the details and forget about the bigger picture. If you’re working with an offshore team, it’s harder to catch these issues. Using remote usability testing allows you to run usability tests from your side, without having to travel. It’s an unobtrusive method for testing usability and is a great tool for keeping costs down.
Don’t skimp on quality assurance
It’s tempting to keep costs down by skimping on quality assurance (QA). However, it’s important to make sure that the app is tested thoroughly before it goes live. If you’re working with an offshore team, you may not have easy access to the development team. It’s important to have a QA stage where you can sign off the app and approve it for delivery. If you don’t have QA, you risk missing errors and faults in the app that could have been fixed earlier.
The costs of developing a web app can be high, particularly if your requirements are complex. However, there are ways to keep the costs down by choosing an affordable development partner, using an Agile development process, and keeping scope to a minimum. If you’re looking to develop a web application, it’s important to keep your costs as low as possible. By choosing an affordable development partner, using an Agile development process, and keeping scope to a minimum, you can keep your costs down while still producing a fantastic final product.