Working on any software product is a complex process requiring expertise, a budget, competent management, and taking into account many various factors. Indeed, starting a project is one thing, and bringing it to successful release is quite another.
The industry is rapidly developing, the competition in the App Store and Google Play is enormous, and only a few manage to at least bring the product to a successful release, leave alone consolidating their position in the market.
To make the success likelier, it is important to know the main reasons why mobile app development projects fail and how to avoid failure. I will tell you about this in this article from the perspective of our perennial development experience.
No Market Research
It may seem you have found a bright idea that will earn you millions. You may also decide to take the easy route and create a clone of an existing popular app, for example, Tik Tok or Instagram. In all these cases, you risk spending time simply developing an unnecessary product unwanted on the market.
That is why you cannot skip such an important stage as market research and competitive environment analysis. If the analysis results show at once that the project has no prospects in its current form, you will be able to save plenty of money and time. Moreover, you will manage to see what you have to change to make your app highly-demanded in the future.
There are 5 simple ways to validate your mobile app idea:
- Interview potential users
- Estimate potential demand using keyword research tools
- Study the App Store for competitive analysis
- Create a basic landing page and drive traffic to it
- Create your MVP.
Starting to work on a project without a clear understanding of what kind of product you have to develop, you eventually risk getting a mobile app that is completely different from what customers expected and users need. This is exactly why your project is likely to fail.
You can easily avoid the risk, resorting to the Discovery phase — the work stage that lets you glean the insights into the product you need to create, find out which technologies and tools to use, and so on. Based on the results of the phase, you can create a mobile application development plan and Product Requirements Document (PRD).
Lack of Resources
You need certain resources to create a mobile app. They include tools, people (specialists of different profiles), and money. If you lack the resources or fail to get them in a timely manner, you may face negative effects on the implementation deadlines, product quality, and other aspects, and that will ultimately lead to the mobile app development project failure.
On the contractor’s part, the budget directly depends on accurate deadlines and risk assessment. On the customer’s side, the budget is based on their understanding of the market and business requirements. The Discovery phase mentioned above will allow you to correctly calculate the necessary resources.
No Clear Focus
You must clearly comprehend who your target audience is and what issues you solve. If you are engaged in developing a mobile app meant for document scanning and digitizing, you have to focus on increasing the number of new functions precisely in that area but not to strive to make this app an image editor to compete with Pixelmator.
When you lack a clear focus, you may end up with a product for everyone and for no one at the same time. It will not have any particular value, and you will spend much more time and money than it is really necessary.
Unreasonable Release Date
You should always consider risks. The developer may set wrong deadlines, the customer may procrastinate with crucial answers and work evaluation, and that does not allow software engineers to set to work. There are lots of reasons preventing developers from meeting project deadlines. Consequently, it would always be best to take measures to play it safe.
The correct approach implies adding a margin for work coordination, quality testing, or other risks to correctly assess the required completion time.
Inexperienced Team or Poor Management
If the project is complex, and the people who work on it lack experience and necessary expertise, the results can be deplorable. At times, to make the resulting product the way it is meant to be, it will be easier to write the project from scratch than to try to improve the ready part.
Many customers keep asking themselves the same painful questions: How to see that these developers will cope with the level of their project and will not have to rewrite everything from scratch in a year? How to find out the real quality of things “under the hood”?
If you do not have a person who can competently evaluate the developer’s code, please read tips in our article “9 Tips for Choosing the Right Software Development Company” to minimize risks.
The Desire to Build Rome in a Day
Pursuing more functionality, you can spend money on unclaimed functions and put your budget at risk to run out halfway to product release. Besides, your app may turn out too complex for an average user to comprehend well enough.
You had better start by implementing part of the functionality, launching your project as an MVP. Starting with the most required features, you can add more functions based on feedback from app users and analytic data.
Poor User Experience
If users feel uncomfortable while using your app, they experience difficulties in using it for its intended purpose, and the interface is unclear for them, developers will have a hard time promoting such a product.
We can name the following most common reasons that negatively affect the user experience when interacting with a mobile app:
- Performance issues (the app runs slowly).
- The user profile registration process is too long.
- Complicated access to features (intricate navigation).
- Poor (or outdated) interface design.
You can read about all these issues in our article “8 Common Mistakes in UX Design for Mobile Apps” in more detail. We also describe how to solve them here — “8 Best Practices for Mobile UX Design (for 2019 and Beyond)”.
In this article, we have listed the main reasons why mobile app development projects fail and also provided tips on how to avoid such problems. We hope this info will help you plan your project well and bring it to a successful release. If you take these recollected issues seriously, you will be able to reduce the likelihood of these problems to a minimum.
To develop a quality product, the customer and the contractor have to work as a coordinated team. Our goal is to help you create a first-class mobile app. So, if you are looking for a reliable technology partner who could be trusted with your project development, contact us.