5 Ways to f@#! Up Your App
I realize I might be a little bitter on this subject. Many clients I love working with, but there are a few I would like to forget. It’s not that I don’t enjoy the people and the passion that they bring to the table. The problem is that their unrealistic expectations put their project in imminent peril. So if you are one of these people (don’t worry, you wouldn’t know it if you were), then here is a simple list of 5 Ways to f@#! Up Your App!
1) Don’t launch your app until it’s Perfect.
You’re perfect so your app must be perfect as well, right? No on both accounts. Apps are more like people than machines. They are always in progress and are never perfect. Treat your app as if you were choosing your next girlfriend/boyfriend: while there are deal breakers, you keep in mind that no one will ever be perfect. Hopefully over time, as you get to know each other, things will continually get better.
2) Aesthetics are everything!
This one is hard to bring up because I am so passionate about graphic design. However, maybe the most overused phrase in app design is “look and feel”. While these things are important to the app design, they aren’t really nearly as important as we all would like to believe. Just ask Craig. He proved that people will forever use an app that “works” far more than an app that is pretty. I would give you an example, but there are millions of pretty apps that you have never heard of. Make sure that your app works first. The core of its problem-solving ability should be well communicated and intuitive. Like Craig, you may never have to change it.
3) Don’t Give Up Your Killer Pets
You dreamed this thing up so you know what pet features “have to” be in the first release. Truth is, the project owner is sometimes the worst person to decide this because the owner is too close to the project. Your passion clouds your vision. If the feature isn’t essential to introducing the app, then wait to share it later. Teams make the best applications. Listen to your team and work together to take things out, not put things in.
4) Development is over once you launch
Apps are a real business. With real businesses you need to have an operational budget that continues even if you aren’t making money. Suppose you are opening a restaurant. You wouldn’t expect to make money right away, you would plan to be in that location for at least a year before expecting to make a profit. That means you would have to plan to have enough funds for rent, staff salaries, insurance, and many more things. If you are starting an app company, expect to be in development the whole time you are going to be in business. And budget accordingly.
5) Don’t budget for marketing
If your app is good, everyone will find out about it on their own? Not likely. App marketing is becoming more and more important. If you’re not sure how people are going to find your app, chances are they won’t. While app marketing is not incredibly expensive, it is necessary. I would suggest preparing to spend 20% of your total budget on marketing.