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WeLoveNoCode Blog

What is the easiest way to make an app?

How to Build It
Most businesses now have an app or are looking to develop one. For many, this is about internal efficiency and improving company performance, whilst for an increasing number, it is seen as a great route to market.

Across the Google and Apple app stores, over 5 million apps are available to download, with hundreds of thousands being added monthly. It is the place to be and with the industry estimated to be worth over £900 billion in 2022, it’s not going away anytime soon.

Downloads were up 7% on the previous year and standing at 218 billion in one calendar year, it’s an opportunity all businesses should be looking at but it is not easy.

When existing businesses start looking at adding an app or start-ups looking to create an app as part of their business model, it can be a daunting world. It is full of complex processes, long timelines and expensive development costs that make businesses wonder if it's a viable option.

But hope does exist and to help get people going, in this article we look at some of the things you can do to make developing your first app a much easier job, starting with what we believe to be the most important decision you’ll make…

Which Development Approach Makes It Easier?

It is always best to start with the decision that will have the biggest impact on your project and when it comes to app development for start-ups, there is no bigger choice than traditional development vs no-code development.

Over the last 5 years, no-code app development has become the method of choice for many companies but particularly start-ups. Let us have a look at the reason why no-code has become the default option in app development for start-ups. 

  1. Speed of development - For multiple reasons, developing an app within a no-code platform takes a fraction of the time. There are the templates that get you started; the affordable cost of developers meaning you can employ more; the availability of those developers; the lower level of errors because so much is already built into the platform
  2. Testing - automation is built into these platforms and because you are working with templates and functionality that has been tested already, you’ll complete testing faster and with greater accuracy
  3. Cost of development - Did we mention cheaper developers? Add to that the speed of development means you’ll need these people for less time
  4. Best practice - it’s built into the platforms. By selecting a template to start from and using the tools available within the platform, you know you’ll be following more best practice rules than if you created your app from scratch without an expensive development team
  5. Back end simplicity - most no-code platforms come with native databases built-in and will cover your hosting requirements, making the infrastructure conversations much faster. If you are looking at easy app development, then not worrying about hosting should be high on your list

Selecting A Platform And Resources

Once you’ve decided to use a no-code platform to get you going, you’ll want to assess the platforms to make sure that it is proven in the field you’ve chosen. There are now many platforms to choose from and each with have strengths and weaknesses to assess.

If you are an eCommerce business you’ll need to see use cases for this in the platforms literature. Alternatively, if you’re app is focused on taking bookings then you might find a more qualified platform and you can be sure if you are looking to build an internal tool to build a dashboard then it will another one entirely.

Then it’s time to select what resource you will need that will make your development easiest but without breaking the bank. This is where the large eco-system that now surrounds the no-code community is a gold mine for you. 

Look at the skills you will need and quickly build yourself a team of freelancers that will be able to work directly on the platform from anywhere in the world and produce the app you desire.

If you want help in building your roadmap and selecting the best freelancers, then sign up for a free call where our experts will help you. We have access to the top 1% of no-code experts on the market and can build you a team to help make your app development as easy as possible.

What Makes A Good Idea

Whichever approach you take to developing your app, the first stage of the process is coming up with an idea and verifying if the idea is a good one! And by a good idea, we mean one that has an audience that will download the app and engage with it.

Idea Generation

Obviously, we are not going to give you a list of app ideas in this article but there are techniques to help you come up with ideas.

  • Something truly unique - It is becoming increasingly hard and rare to have an original idea that no one has defined before but it can happen and usually comes from someone identifying a problem and looking for a way to solve it
  • Variations on a theme - The most popular approach to generating an idea is taking an existing app and refining or improving upon it. Someone sees a current solution and realises they could do a better job, then sets out to build a new app
  • Targeting a niche - One increasingly popular option is using an existing idea and developing it for a specific niche. For example, a marketplace app is not unique but someone might build one for the beekeeping industry!
  • Combining apps - one approach is to take elements that you like from a variety of apps and pull them together in one place. This approach is good if you are not the only person that would appreciate this information being pulled into one place

Idea Validation

Once you have an idea, you need to check if it's going to fit a market need. 

Step one is doing some market research. Talk to your potential audience and ask questions about their needs. Look at the app marketplace and see what other apps exist in the space. Don’t worry if you see several others, this is a good indication that people what this app. Your goal is to learn about the competition and understand how you can be different.

Another option might be building a prototype and sharing that with people to see what response you get. It’s the step before you build the MVP but will be able to let you know if people like the idea and get initial feedback on your planned feature set compared to the competition.

Follow A Process

As tempting as it is to speed on through, cut corners and rush, the easiest, cheapest and faster way to develop an app is following a process. This prevents errors (that take twice as long to correct), building features you don’t need and wasting money on expensive developers building the wrong product and having to rework it.

Start with your requirements list. These should be the absolute must-haves for the project, listed by those needed for the minimum viable product vs those that can be added later. You need a clear focus on what your app is looking to achieve and which features are essential to achieve this, the rest can come later.

Using this information you should be in a position to wireframe your app. It doesn’t need to be complex and a low-fi version is absolutely fine. You are looking to build out the user experience and ensure that when you come to design it, you’ve captured all the requirements and been able to show them to the key people.

Next, you want a basic design for the app. Combined with your feature list, this will be your bible for what will be going into the app. Design out the rough layout for each of the main screens. If you’ve chosen the no-code development path, then you should be able to use the platform and understand what is possible, thus not wasting time asking for features that are not possible.

Now you focus on building your MVP. This is the absolute basic version of your product that covers the key requirements for the customer, making it viable. You need to be very disciplined at this stage, the less you put into this phase, the faster to market you will be. But remember it needs to be viable, if the customer is not interested then it’s a wasted effort.

Throughout your development process, from ideation to release, always be mindful of what the customer wants. The more you build for the customer, the easier the long term process. You’ll have less rewriting and wasted code.

How To Save Money When Developing An App

One important addition when we are talking about the easiest ways to develop an app is looking at cost-effective app development because the easier we can make the development, the cheaper it will become.

Start with one platform

If you try and develop both an iOS and Android app from the beginning, you are potentially making your development twice as difficult, which will complicate things and add to the cost. Pick the platform that you think will give you the most benefit initially and then plan to build the other once you’ve proven your idea works.

Minimum Viable Product

We mention the MVP briefly in the process above but it is worth highlighting again due to its importance on cost and in particular in app development for start-ups. By focusing on the must-have features at the beginning you streamline the process, delivering cost-effective app development and a much easier road to completion.

The speed at which your initial product can get to market will save you time and money at a critical time for start-ups.

Don’t reinvent the wheel

Whilst you want your app to be as original as possible, many of the functions within it will be the same as many other ones on the market. This means an opportunity to use technology or data already in the public domain, normally accessed via smart use of APIs.

This is why selecting a good team of no-code developers at the start is so important. They will have come across these problems before and know the best places to seek out the functionality you need, either as a plug-in within the platform you have chosen or through the use of the large API marketplaces that exist.

Keep It Simple

To answer the eternal question we posed at the beginning of the easiest way to make an app, follow these five easy steps

  1. Select a no-code platform - one that is proven in your field
  2. Build yourself a team of no-code experts to cover your requirements
  3. Set out a process and stick to it - don’t cut corners as it will ultimately make your development harder
  4. Ensure you validate your idea before you push ahead with development
  5. Focus on your minimum viable product

If you want help in building your roadmap and selecting the best freelancers, then sign up for a free call where our experts will help you. We have access to the top 1% of no-code experts on the market and can build you a team to help make your app development as easy as possible.