How to Turn your App Idea into Reality? The Complete Guide

How To Turn An App Idea Into Reality?

An application gives complete control over experience, engagement & growth. Easy steps for app development, marketing and monetizing your idea into an actual business. 

Updated on :
January 11th, 2021
Twinkle Kalkandha
Twinkle Kalkandha
Product Strategist

Every second person talks or thinks about creating the next big thing. How many people do you see talking about an app idea that they had? The only problem is that not a lot of them actually act on it.

If you think you have a good app idea then take out your phone or a piece of paper and write it! In BIG bold letters. Don’t overthink it, just note it down. Writing things is a sign of permanence and gives you more conviction & belief in your own idea. How to make an idea into an app? This post will break down steps to make an app and tips to monetize it.

Create an idea list

Now that you are serious about turning your idea for an app into a living, breathing entity, let’s take a few more steps in achieving it. Write all ideas that you have ever wanted to pursue as an application.

Shortlist your ideas by asking yourself the following questions-

  • Is it doable? – When the creative juices start flowing, there is no limit to what we can come up with. Thes easiest way to know for sure is by contacting an app development company. Practical experience in making high performing apps gives these development companies the right expertise to judge if your idea is doable.
  • Can you scale this idea– It is important to measure the scope of the application if earning money is the goal. With the applications giving access to people all over the world, a scalable idea will have limitless potential. Get to know a little about future trends and imagine if your idea for an app can grow with time.
  • Adaptability- Changing as per market trends is very essential for an app. You need to make sure your idea can adapt to new technologies & trends. Even apps like WhatsApp & Facebook adapted to their competitors on many occasions. Think in terms of adaptability so you never go out of fashion.

Have a thought about addition, subtraction & multiplication to the scope of your mobile application and that’s all the math that you need.

Do Market Research to Know Competition & Key Payers

A report published by “We Are Social” & “Hootsuite” indicated that as of 2018, there are more than 4.021 billion internet users across the globe and growing each year.

These statistics show a staggering number of people that have access to some form of application.

On average, more than 3000 apps are added to Google Play store each day. With an expanding application market, competition becomes severe and one has to identify unique opportunities and come up with a fresh app idea to make a mark.

Get to know your competition, the key players in the market. Read about their app successes and failures, not to duplicate them but to understand what works in the industry and what doesn’t.

Know your potential customers & where they hang out?

“An app has to reach its audience and then dazzle them” The first part of this statement has to be addressed first- “reach its audience”
To reach your potential customers, know them first. To create a user persona, you can create a fictional representation of a customer by answering the following things about your potential customer.

  • Demographics
  • Age
  • Job Type & title
  • Salary per month
  • Goals
  • Challenges
  • Education
  • Social Media Use, etc

A large customer survey is not the only way to identify people who would be interested in your application. Talking to people who use similar apps or are in the same industry will give a general direction to the identification problem. User persona can be modified with the increase in customer details.

Where are your customers? This is also an industry-specific question, an extension to “knowing your customer”. For example- If your target audience belongs to the education industry, then portals like quora, telegram, Facebook, and WhatsApp will be a good place to look for them.

Decide on app monetization

If making money is the goal then you must break down customer access. There are many tangents to making money from the application. You can decide from the following –

Free demo access- It is common for organizations to give free access to all features of the application for a limited time. This makes users interested in all features of the app, motivating them to pay for it when the free demo ends.

Limited access- A common method to keep certain features locked from freemium users. This limited access is used by many popular apps like Tinder, Canva, etc.

Paid Subscription- A fixed amount to give unlimited access to users, followed by streaming services like Netflix, Prime Video, etc. A subscription model is generally divided into monthly and yearly plans.

In-app purchases- There is huge potential for earning money through in-app purchases. In fact, an estimate of about 45% of all mobile app revenue is generated through this method. Gaming applications rely heavily on selling additional items, players, and skins through in-app purchases.

In-app adds- Many applications give users unlimited free access but users have to watch video ads in between. The scope of in-app ads has increased substantially. Games have started to promote music, movies and events inside the game or the waiting lobby.

Affiliate programs- Big organizations like Google, Amazon, and Apple have affiliate programs for mobile apps that can become a steady source of income. Getting specific affiliates from industry-related businesses can be very lucrative.

Sponsorship- The entire app development process needs to be within the pre-decided app budget. A smart way to raise funds and ensure a lasting financial aid is through sponsorships.
If the idea & vision is promising, then connecting with a business for sponsorship can be a very lucrative decision.

A Defining User Experience

The idea is good and there is a market for growth, how to create an app experience that people love? Building a mobile application from scratch gives a lot of control over design, convenience, and the app interface.

App development companies have analytical data and creative design experience to create a new design system and a defining user experience. Having an outline of the app structure or Wireframe beforehand will help in solidifying your vision for the app.

Outline of the app structure

How to develop an app idea?

Now that a solid groundwork has been set for your app idea, the actual development of the app will commence. The entire app development process can be divided into two-

  1. Front-end- The face of the app or the front end of it includes the layout, navigation, visuals, user interface e.t.c.
  2. Back-end- Hidden part of the application or the back-end is the groundwork of processing, networking, app logic, data storage, etc.

How to start the construction part? There are a few options you can explore-

Hire a developer- You can start by finding a good developer who understands your needs and can build a smooth functioning app but as front end and back end require 2 very separate skill sets and language expertise, a brilliant app will require at least 1 front end and 1 back end developer which can add to the total app development cost.

Hire Freelancers- Hiring remote resources for building an app on a project basis can be a bit economical. Many freelance developers are looking to be a part of exciting new projects.

Outsource to an app development company- The USP of outsourcing to an application development company is that they create an app development roadmap and assist in all functions of development- Wireframes, Front end, back end, Graphic design, UI/UX, marketing & maintenance. Consult development companies & find the one that fits your budget, expectations and creative vision. There are a lot of options in the market and something is bound to be the ideal fit.

Choose your tech stack

A tech stack is the mix of programming languages and softwares used to create the mobile or web application. When you approach a developer with your idea, they can help you choose the right technology for your application.

The problem is that a developer can be biased towards certain technologies based on their expertise and personal preference. You need to have a general idea about the kind of tech stack best suited for your needs.

Top 6 factors affecting Tech stack choice for your application-

  1. Goal of your Application
  2. App complexity
  3. Platform ~ Android/iOS or both
  4. Performance & compatibility
  5. Industry norm
  6. Security

When you conduct your preliminary market research about the industry, norm, user behavior and the complexity of your application then you will be able to choose the best tech stack.

Some suggested technologies for developing the front end of a mobile app.

Swift ~ This new technology is gaining a lot of traction because of its amazing design & functionalities in creating iOS apps.

Java ~ A hugely popular programming language to build android applications. It is also great for creating hybrid apps.

Kotlin ~ A programming language developed to improve on the drawbacks of Java. It can also be used with Java to create a high performing android application.

These are some commonly used front end tech stack for web application

  • HTML
  • CSS
  • JavaScript

Certain front end frameworks can help in utilizing the full scope of the technology. Some examples of that-

Javascript framework- This is a very popular framework used to build rich, engaging experiences. Some recommended technologies that use this framework-

  • AngularJS
  • ReactJS
  • Vuejs

Presentation framework –Technologies like Bootstrap use this presentation frameworks to provide a standardized format for creating clean and smooth aesthetics for responsive web pages.

Some great back-end technologies to choose from-

Javascript & Node.js are some popular backend languages to consider for back end development. Developers across the world keep updating to more stable and customizable tech stack. Some other refreshing & reliable back end technologies include-

  • Angular with Firebase
  • Parse
  • NodeJs
  • Ruby
  • Python

Native Mobile App development

Developing in iOS for iphones and in android for android devices is dubbed as native app development. This gives an added advantage in integrating real-time interactions such as micro purchases and push notifications.

  • Great for performance & overall application speed but could have limited scope of innovation.
  • Programming in the native language of the OS (operating system) is great if you want your app to use the GPS, camera or any other device hardware function.
  • Applications like Instargam, whatsapp, Uber etc are all programmed in the native language of the OS for a better performance and device sync.

Cross-Platform App Development

If you have limited time and money then creating 1 code for all Operating systems is the way to go. Cross-platform apps are coded just once and are operational on both Android and iOS.

This is a cost-friendly approach to app development and takes half the time as opposed to developing 2 apps, there is only 1 app that works everywhere.

One drawback of cross-platform apps is that the quality of performance is inferior to native apps in terms of stability and speed.

Tech stack for Cross-platform apps-

  • React Native ~ This is perhaps the most popular cross-platform application. It uses a Javascript framework and offers good application performance.
  • C++ ~ It isn’t as complex as Java but cross-platform apps can be created with C++. A disadvantage of using this language is that it can drain mobile device resources when the app is in use.

App testing, feedback & fixes

Before the application goes live, development companies generally go for various beta testing. These pre-launch tests are conducted to analyze application success in varying devices, OS & versions.

Customer reviews and feedback are crucial for new companies. These provide real insights from actual customers, acknowledging and fixing suggested changes will constantly evolve the application and increase customer retention

Using app marketing for success

Marketing starts the moment you decide on your brand name and continues throughout the development phase and grows with post-production. A complete app marketing guide can provide strategic insights on app branding and understanding user persona.

ASO or app store optimization is an important marketing practice that will boost the chances of visibility on Google Play store & Apple iTunes store. Increased visibility is a key ingredient for more downloads.

Contacting the right app marketing company with experience in your particular domain will give you the right perspective for unique branding, a profound social media presence, and multiple options of finding and attracting potential customers.

From an Idea to a brand

Taking it one step at a time, recognizing progress, and following the steps mentioned in this article will convert your idea for an app to an actual app for people. If you have been wondering how to turn an idea into a product, now you know! Leaps in technological concepts and this digital wave has captivated the mind of the masses.

Smartphones are now smart wallets, tickets, passports, food delivery sources, cab calls, full entertainment units, and much much more. A perfect time to easily create a successful app & reach a global audience.

    Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do I turn an app into a business?
  • How much does it cost to create an app?
  • How do you turn a business idea into reality?
  • How do you monetize an idea?
  • How can I turn my idea into money?

Next up

A detailed look into the best Development frameworks based on popularity & growth, segregated into- Android, iOS, Cross-platform & hybrid development. Varying frameworks are relevant for different business needs.