An application development agency can be a lifesaver for a company looking to create its own mobile app. Development agencies provide dedicated tech experts who can create apps that do what a client wants them to, in a way that is easy for users to understand, and that is also aesthetically pleasing. However, there are lots of app developers around the world — about 19 million globally — and they are all a little bit different. So, it can be difficult for companies to determine which application development agency is just right for them.
If you’re at a company looking to hire an application development agency and you want to know which one to hire, the following facts might help. These nine basic facts about a company can give you a pretty good idea about who the company is, what they do, and if they’re the right team to build your mobile app.
1. What Kind of Clients They Work With
What kind of clients an application development company works with says a lot about it. You can learn about the company by looking at what types of companies their clients are, as well as what size they are. An application development company that works with businesses the size of Coca-Cola will be very different than one that creates an app for the mom-and-pop chip shop on the corner.
2. Their Price Point
Another good indicator of the work that an application development company does is the price that they charge for work. Low-end companies often create simpler, or more cookie cutter apps, while companies that charge higher prices tend to be able to do custom apps, and those with more complex features and functions.
3. What Types of Apps They Build
There are multiple types of native apps that exist in the world. Native apps are ones that are built to function on a specific platform, like Apple’s iOS, Windows Phone, BlackBerry OS and Google’s Android. A native app usually yields the best user experience, since the app was built specifically to function on the platform on which it’s being used. Each platform requires its own programming language, so you should make sure that the application development company you’re hiring has expertise in the language needed to build for your chosen platform (or platforms).
4. Who Their Developers Are
Mobile application development companies have developers that specialise in building and programming apps. Some companies have on-staff, dedicated developers who are employees. Others use freelance developers who rotate in and out. Using a company with on-staff developers may ensure more consistency throughout your experience, and after the app is released, since employees will most likely stick around longer than freelancers (although not always).
5. If They Take the Rights to the App
Most application development companies allow the client to completely own the rights to the app. However, there are some companies that like to keep the rights or share them. Make sure that you will own all of the rights to your app when it’s finished, if you want them. To ensure that you will, sign a copyright assignment or “work made for hire” document at the beginning of the process.
6. How They Test the App
Beta testing an app is a very important process of ensuring that any bugs or glitches within the app are removed before the app is released to the public. Ask the application development company how they plan to test the app once they’ve finished building it. Also, you should ask how they plan to fix bugs once they’re discovered, and how fast you can expect the process to take.
7. Payment Terms
You don’t only need to know the amount that you’ll pay an application development company before you hire them. You should also know how and when you’ll pay them. Every development company has different terms. Some companies require customers to pay by the hour, while others will charge a flat fee for the project. Also, payment schedules differ, with some companies requiring a portion up front, while others requiring the whole fee before work starts.
8. White Label vs. Custom Apps
Some application development companies are equipped to develop custom apps. Others use white label apps, which are basically application templates that they simply add your custom information into to make it your own. If you want your app to be unique and have custom functionality, make sure that any application development company you go to can handle that, and that they don’t recycle app frameworks from previous clients.
9. Length of Client Relationships
In general, app development companies will build your app, then work with you for several months past its release. Make sure that the app development company has the capacity, and expectation, to work with you beyond when they deliver the final product.
If you’re planning to hire an application development agency, doing research about the company beforehand helps. Knowing basic facts about the team will help ensure that they have the capability to do what you want, that you can afford their services, and that your experience working with them will be a pleasant and fulfilling one.