how to develop an app

How to develop an app? As mobiles and tablets become popular, more and more people started to wondering about this.  Designing and building your very first mobile app can be quite challenging. To help give you a general overview of the process, I’ve put together this 10-step introductory guide. This provides a nice overview of the development of how to develop both an Android or iOS app. It has been created from a survey of 100 developers and put into place based on their feedback.

Step 1. Idea and Goal

Having a great idea is the starting point into the question “how to develop an app”. But before you go straight into developing an app, you must clearly define the purpose and mission of your mobile app. What is it going to do? What problem is it going to solve, or what case is it going to make better?

Defining a clear goal for the app is also going to help you get there faster.

Step 2. Sketch

Validation of your app idea means that you’ve got something that people want to use. Now is the time to detail your product onto a document, this should be as detailed as possible. You are laying the foundation for your future interface, the flow of how the user will navigate the app, as well as all the features and structures. Having this rough sketch of your app helps everyone involved in the app development to clearly understand your expectations.

How to develop an app - sketching

Sketching an app

Step 3. Research

Many people choose to skip this step, but this is actually a very important step regarding how to develop an app, without research, you can still develop an app, but this app might be totally useless, or can’t generate any revenue as you have expected. Research could include market research, target audience research, and design & technical investigations.

Before hitting the market and start developing an application you should conduct a proper market research. Analyzing the market thoroughly will give you insights about your competitors, their strategy, their strengths and weakness too. This information will prove to be useful as you can avoid repeating the mistakes your competitors made. Researchers often overlook customer reviews. These reviews can give you a glance of likes and dislikes of users about a particular type of app. Thus, you must ensure that you take a note of the pain areas and try to resolve it in your mobile app. This strategy can give you a chance to provide a unique application that will win over your competitor’s customers.

Defining your target audience is very important for app development as the audience plays a huge impact on the development of your mobile application. All these questions such as who will be using this app, and how is it going to help them, be answered well before hand. If you meet your user’s expectations, your smartphone app is likely to get more popularity.

This is also the right time to look into the design and technical aspects of your mobile app. Find out what your requirements are and get a clear picture of whether your idea is truly feasible or not from a technical standpoint. In most cases there will be an alternative solution to proceed on a slightly different route. This research extends into legal restrictions like copyright and privacy questions, giving you a complete understanding of your situation.

Step 4. Prototype and Storyboard 

After step 3, your ideas and features fuse into a clearer picture, it’s time to create your prototype. You can find a number of prototyping tools online, like Balsamiq, Moqups, and HotGloo, which allows you to not only drag and drop all your placeholders and representative graphics into place, but also add button functionality so that you can click through your app in review mode. Ask friends, family, colleagues, and experts to help you review your prototype, let them give you their honest feedback and to identify flaws and dead-end links. If possible, monitor how they use the app, taking note of their actions and adapting your UI/UX to them.

How to develop an app - prototype

Prototype of app

While you are working on your Prototype you should also create a storyboard for your app. The idea is to build a roadmap that will help you understand the connection between each screen and how the user can navigate through your app.

The goal is this step is to concretize your app concept before it goes into the design process! Once you start designing it is much harder to change things around, so the clearer the prototype from the start, the better.

how to develop an app - storyboard

app storyboard

In part 2 on How to develop an app, you will be able to get in touch with back end structure, UI, developer account and programming, testing & debugging, and the release of your app. Check out here:  How to Develop an App — Step by Step through the whole process: Part 2.


  1. How to Develop an App — Step by Step through the whole process part 2 - […] 10-step introductory guide. This article is part 2, covering steps 5 through 10. Make sure you read How to…

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