How much does it cost to build an app in 2023? What kind of budget should I plan for mobile app development? These are the kind of questions that we receive from companies interested in investing in mobile app development.
We are not surprised that companies ask us these questions first. Being in a competitive market and on a tight budget, they have to be sure about what and where they are investing their money.
Again, investing in mobile app development makes sense as there are more than 3.5 million apps on Google Play Store while Apple App Store has around 2.2 million. Apart from these numbers from Statista, the Statista Digital Market Outlook estimates that revenue from different app segments will reach around $613 billion by 2025.
With increasing demand for such solutions, businesses getting curious about mobile app development cost is simply justifying.
What are the factors that influence mobile app development cost?
The cost of developing a mobile application depends on a number of factors. Some of the key ones have been mentioned below:
1. Complexity of mobile app
Simple apps can be developed quickly and so it will cost you less. However, if you want to add in some advanced features, the development time will be extended and so does the app development costs. So, before you get started, there are a few questions you should ask yourself:
- How many screens and functions do you want in the app?
- How many features are required in the app?
- Is the business logic of the app complex?
The answers to these questions will help you decide whether yours is a simple or complex application. As the app complexity will increase, so will the cost to develop it.
Here is the app development benchmark for costs based on the increasing complexity:
|App complexity||Functionality||Development Timeline (months)||Average Cost|
|Simple app||MVP Simple & basic UI||2-3||$10,000 – $50,000|
|Complex app||Custom UI Advanced features||3-9||$50,000 – $120,000|
|Highly complex app||Bespoke UI Highly advanced features||10+||$100,000 – $300,000|
2. Features and functionalities
The cost of app development greatly depends on the features and functionalities you want to add to your mobile application. This means the cost of mobile app development will keep increasing with the addition of new features.
For the same reason, it is recommended to only develop the key features at the initial stage. Developing MVP for your app is also a good solution. Developing such an app with basic features will help you collect user feedback while spending less money and time in development. Based on the response, only the required development can be carried out. This will save you from spending on building features and functionalities that are of no use.
3. App design
The next factor that decides the cost of app development is app design. It is important for you to come up with specific app design to bring in more users and make them invest their time on your app.
When designing an app, you will have two options to go ahead with– Standard UI and Custom UI. As compared to Standard UI, designing and implementing Custom UI is tough and will require more investment too.
Other areas to focus on during app designing from an investment perspective are wireframing and animation. Wireframing is opted by developers to create effective user experience and navigation. Animation helps developer project any feature of the app intuitively. Implementing complex animations can cost around $1000 – $20,000.
4. Development region
App development rates are not the same across the globe. In some countries, the cost of hiring app developer is less than others. The reason behind it is the change in the hourly rates of the developers at different places. The average hourly rate of a developer in India can be around $20 – $40 while in UK it can go around $100 – $120. The developers in Australia and other European nations are expensive too while developers from the US are pricey and they charge around $120 – $150.
5. App development platform
It is important to think about the target audience first before getting into the development process. Based on that you can choose to go for native app development or cross-platform app development. If yours is a small business, you can choose to develop the application for one platform first and shift to others later.
Developing native applications separately for Android and iOS can be an expensive affair. On the other hand, businesses can get cross-platform applications built using a single codebase. This means the cost of app reduces greatly with cross-platform development as a single codebase will work on both platforms effectively.
6. App development approach
The cost of developing an app also depends on who will work on your app development project. There are different options to choose from like in-house team, local team, freelance developer or an app development company.
An ideal mobile app development company offers effective mobile app solutions with high-end functionalities and features. Hiring such developers can be expensive as compared to freelancers but is cheaper than building an in-house or a local team.
7. App development team
The complexity of your app project will decide the size of your app development team. This means as the complexity increases so does the number of team members. A bigger team will cost you more.
The entire app development will be managed by a dedicated project manager. He/she will be responsible for coordinating with the team and the stakeholders. The structure of the team will be as:
|Requirements||Simple App||Medium App||Complex App|
|Estimated Development time||2-6 months||6-9 months||9-15 months|
|Developers||$30 – $40,000||$50 – $60,000||$100,000+|
|UI/UX Designer||$4 – $5,000||$5 – $7,000||$10 – $15,000|
|Project Manager||$5 – $7000||$10 – $15,000||$10,000+|
|QA Specialist||$8 – $10,000||$15 – $20,000||$20,000+|
|Business Analyst||$2 – $3,000||$5 – $8,000||$8 – $10,000|
|DevOps||$2 – $4,000||$5 – $7,000||$10,000+|
|Solution Architect||$1 – $3,000||$5 – $8,000||$9,000+|
|Total||$20 – $50,000||$50 – $100,000||$100,000+|
What are the hidden costs associated with mobile app development?
Even after knowing the average app development cost, many companies end up spending more from the already set budget. This is because of a number of hidden charges associated with mobile app development. Some of them has been explained below:
- Multi-platform support
Many companies start by going for native app development. They choose a platform and get ahead with the development process without actually conducting proper market research and understanding the target audience base.
By conducting proper research, companies will be able to carry out development for another platform in a way that there will be less reworks. This means less requirement for improvements leading to lesser development costs.
- Integration of third-party services
Your development team will feel the need to include specific third-party integrations into your app during the development process. Now this can lead to an increase in the development time and will also affect the pre-decided budget.
This situation can be completely avoided by creating the infrastructure of the app before development by considering all the required third-party services and integrations. This will give you a clear idea of the app development timeline at the beginning itself saving you from surprises later.
- Marketing expenses
Businesses are focused and concerned about the cost of hiring an app developer or the money required for completing the app project. Something they miss during all this is the marketing budget.
It is important to work on this part right before the app launch itself. Planning out the promotion, working with influencers for beta testing, releasing promos of the app to tease audience, etc. is key for its larger market acceptance.
- Maintenance expenses
When coming up with the estimate for app development, maintenance costs are generally not mentioned. However, businesses end up with the need to maintain the app even after its launch which they are not ready beforehand.
It has to be kept in mind that when we talk about app development budget, only a part of it is spent on design and development. The developed app will have to go through changes and maintenance in the course of the next couple of years and this needs money.
How can Shaligram Infotech help you build mobile app at affordable rates?
Again, what is the cost of developing a mobile app? Well, now we know that there is no single and precise answer for that. It is only possible to estimate the cost of mobile app development by considering different factors associated with development, keeping your business requirement in mind.
When you hire app development company like ours, you can be assured that there will be experts at hand to offer you reliable services.
Right from effective consultation to building and launching the app in the market, our team of experts covers everything. We here develop scalable, flexible, and future-ready app solutions that help you keep up with the top brands in your industry niche.
So, whether you are planning to invest in an innovative app development or simply need to get a quote on app development, consult our experts to get started.