It isn’t uncommon for entrepreneurs to make decisions solely on price. Although many affordable finds promise a substantial return, this isn’t always the case, especially when it comes to building a mobile or web application. Cheap app development can be costlier in the long run, merely because intermittent progress in the context of technology will demand more technical remedies. While development—as the very definition of the word implies—comes in phases, sporadic advancement is an entirely different matter.
That said, look for a tech agency that isn’t just transparent with pricing, but reasonable altogether. Determine why specific departments can cost less or more and find out what you’re being offset with.
There are plenty of ways providers can make app development seem cheaper:
Intentionally underestimating project scope
Some providers will tailor fit a client’s needs to their agency’s existing menu of services. As a result, some of the client’s unique needs may not be accounted for and covered.
Not disclosing hidden fees
Look for a provider that lays every rate on the table. Some tech agencies have decent-looking prices on the get-go but may have hidden charges. Don’t immediately give in because a provider’s rates are more feasible than others’.
Letting junior developers spearhead projects alone
Morally speaking, there isn’t inherently problematic here. It only becomes wrong when agencies deliberately hire only up-and-coming developers to make up for fees. Always remember that experience matters. Hence, teams should be the right mix of newbies and pros. Otherwise, consider your app development project one long internship journey.
Accepting more projects than they can handle
Every tech agency dreams of scoring more clients. And while growth is inevitable for hard workers, look for a provider whose number of clients match their workforce. This way, you can make sure that each developer isn’t overworked and too loaded with an array of unfinished apps. The last thing you’d want is to entrust your app project to a three-person startup team handling a dozen clients.
The Price of Ownership
Always bear in mind that you’re likely to incur potential fees outside your agreed ballpark figure. Supplemental fees come in a variety of shapes. Here are two examples:
A vendor’s insufficiencies
This may not come as a surprise, but not every app development company will deliver. Yes, they may come up with a finished product, but quality and full functionality are never a guarantee. On top of a long domino effect, app launches may be delayed when providers miss deadlines or are unable to meet expectations. Many times, this will force clients to take their projects elsewhere, too.
When not included in the list of payables, clients may find themselves paying for a little over what they thought they would be shelling out. Post-production is an entirely different science in itself, so best believe that bug-fixing and working on other similar updates can be labor-intensive. Make sure every detail is clear upfront to avoid miscommunication.
Although some of these unfortunate occurrences don’t directly impact software development in itself, they all affect the monetary direction. In other words, supplemental fees can hurt a client’s Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). Whereas the TCO of purchasing an apartment unit includes association dues, parking and membership fees, and realty tax, the total cost of ownership in mobile and app development covers not only building the app itself, but also data and infrastructure management, support and maintenance, and talent staffing.
Therefore, cheap software development often amounts to more expenses in the end. Similar to cars, going for the cheapest pre-owned set of wheels doesn’t save you a ton of money. Regardless of each vehicle’s base price, safety, performance, maintenance costs, and service will differ. Moreover, buying a slightly more expensive and brand new car will arguably last you longer. The same can be said when it comes to building apps and all that it entails.
How much does building an app cost?
The truth is, there isn’t a universal price to this. You can search every nook and cranny the world wide web has to offer you, and all you’ll find are estimates. The best answer to this question is it depends. Multiple aspects can shape how your app will and should be priced.
Still, there are tech companies like us that present fixed prices to help startup founders better like you get the ball rolling. Beautiful, engaging, and dynamic apps designed for public consumption is often the product of collaboration. Be open to change and a whole lot of suggestions. No app is made entirely alike, and brands and businesses differ from each other. That being said, the app you have in mind may not even be the same app you want to build just yet.
One thing is for sure, though, you can’t make the next Facebook, Lyft, or Bumble with a sloppy three-digit budget. Oppositely, it doesn’t have to cost you a meteoric six-digit figure either.
There’s a sweet spot in pricing software development, and trust us when we say we know what it is.
Have more questions? Call us, and we’ll answer them all!