4 mistakes for startups to avoid when building an app

5 min read
mistakes for startups to avoid when building an app

It happens that a founder exclusively focuses on the application he is looking to build ignoring other essential aspects which determine business’s success or failure. As a result, you get a fully functioning, yet useless app which gets no customers and generates no revenue for you. Here I am listing four crucial mistakes associated with such an approach and things to think over when you are launching a digital business.

Cloning the app of a successful business

Cloning the app of a successful business

‘I look for Uber-like app for drinks delivery’, ‘Can you build Tinder for recruiting?’, ‘I need Bla Bla Car for shared flights’…

It is no surprise that we are inspired by the examples of successful businesses. However, you risk building an app which will be abandoned by your target users if you overlook their needs and desires blindly copying app created for a completely different group of people.

Obviously, customers will only pay you for getting their problems resolved. So before you clone an app, define what problem you are going to resolve and make sure it really exists.

The next step, take a closer look at your target audience. Who are these people? What are their pains? What appropriate solutions can you find to those pains? This insight will help to tailor a unique business logic and user experience corresponding to your real users’ needs and expectations.

Finally, make sure that your niche size is big enough to generate revenue.

Ignoring your competition

Ignoring your competition

Sometimes founders behave as if competitors didn’t exist.

If you ignore the market landscape you risk building an app which has been already in place.

In fact, if your product/service is not completely new to the market, the most complicated task will be gaining your customers and convincing the users of your competitor’s product to switch to yours.

So, when you get the idea, take time to research your competition. You will get a ground to think how to make your product unique and different, refine its value for users and decide on the marketing strategy.

Underestimating the scope of development

Underestimating the scope of development

It seems that founders tend to underestimate the scope of development when they ask to clone any popular solution on the market. As a rule, from the time they were founded till present, they turned into large systems out of simple apps.

If you are going to build an application of such a scale at one blow you risk to spend months in the development and release an outdated product or your niche will be already occupied by competitors.

From the business perspective, it makes sense to use the agile approach – build an app with a minimum set of features, test it on real users, analyze their behavior and feedbacks, and improve the app accordingly.

So don’t chase the big, try to make the first version of an app as simple as possible. Such an approach will allow you to cut the initial development budget and keep control over the further development costs. You will launch to market faster and hopefully will start making sales and earning money earlier. Enhance the apps your business grows.

Forgetting about marketing

Naturally, it is a customer who pays you, not an app itself. It is not enough to build an app, even if it is a desired and great product.

You have to make your customers know your product and help them love it. Marketing will increase sales and make more money.

Start with developing your marketing strategy and remember that even recognized market leaders like Google, Amazon, etc. spend thousands of dollars on advertising campaigns to keep and strengthen their positions.

To summarise all the above, building an app is not equal to building a business and certainly, it won’t generate revenue for you. Think about a business to succeed. Focus on your target audience, their needs and the problem your product will resolve to create something meaningful. Make sure the market for your product exists to plan the revenues. Research competition and differentiate your product to stand out and make the brand work for you. Track users behavior and enhance your product wisely to optimize the costs. Put effort into marketing to build your prosperous business.

By Kateryna Ponomarenko

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