Website or mobile application development is not a product but a service. That is why it is difficult to accurately assess an IT project implementation cost and provide definite figures. Different developers may realize the same project weather for $20,000 or even for $120,000. At the same time, both companies may earn the same profit in monetary terms.
Every new project is executed following the customer-specific requirements — therefore, there is no fixed cost. Moreover, the more difficult the task is, the greater the price and deadlines may vary: different teams have their own best practices and approaches to the process.
You can find many articles telling you how and on what you can save when developing an software product. However, it is better to talk about how to avoid unnecessary cost-cutting, considering the main mistakes made by development companies striving to save on their product development process.
Initial Stage Savings
This is where you definitely do not want to save. You have to find a sensible analyst before you decide to do something. You have to consider the most important aspects of your future product operation, how it should work, and what you will earn on. Sometimes, you will have to find answers to many more questions.
No, that is not the way out. Any interface should have some look. If there is no design, and a software engineer creates it during the development process, the product will turn out ugly, and a customer will have to make changes over and over again (this approach will consume a lot of time).
You can save by using ready-made design patterns, refining them a bit as you see fit. Another way is to simplify the design to reduce development time. In other words, you cannot completely ignore this direction.
We Do Not Need Testing
Never save on testing. If your product is not something absolutely necessary and does not offer some unique solution, a few bugs in your app will suffice to lose your users forever.
If you still take a risk of doing without a tester, be ready to spend several months, fixing bugs along with the developer after the project is completed. There is no software without errors — there is well-tested software.
In-house Development Is Not About Saving
Companies sometimes decide to develop their mobile apps on their own. This approach may seem to you like a good way of saving money, but as a result, it turns out to be the most expensive method to implement your project.
After all, to run even the simplest project, you should employ a project manager, analyst, designer, developer, testing engineer, oftentimes front-end developer, and you will almost always need a backend developer to integrate your app into the infrastructure.
It makes sense to transfer your mobile app to in-house development when it becomes a very significant channel for working with your clients, or when your work on it requires several permanent specialists on the agency’s side.
Cheap at the Start Can Turn into Expensive Afterwards
If you are offered cheap services, you will most likely get a very typical product, which will be difficult to further develop. To say more, this will be the case if you get it at all. Low-cost projects are usually done by single software developers or teams with a low expertise level.
Inexperienced teams or single software engineers are not able to physically provide the speed and quality inherent to professionals’ teamwork. As a result, saving a bit at the start, you can lose much more afterwards for the following reasons:
- constant errors and excessive resources to correct them;
- loss of users who react negatively to the bugs found;
- possible loss of money, time, or other resources due to incorrect or insufficiently efficient product operation;
- lagging behind competitors, who used a correct approach to implement similar projects, which ensured their advantages in the market.
The right way to save is to reduce costs at a certain stage of software product development but not to lose quality at the same time. It means you have to optimize certain processes but not to give up on these tasks completely in any case.
In this context, the right choice of a development team is crucial. Responsible and experienced developers will offer a customer the best solution themselves, tell them what functions can be skipped at the initial stage, and what features should be definitely implemented.