What You Need to Know before Starting Work on Your iPhone App
Working hard to get your iPhone app into mainstream media? Go right ahead and do just that. Though, it’s important not to get overzealous; practicing some good common sensibilities beforehand always pay.
Here’s what you need to know.
Who Says Only You Have to Develop It?
Can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard this: “Got this super duper idea about an amazing iPhone app.. but uhh, I don’t know where to start….”
Let me lay it on you plain and simple: you don’t have to be a programming wizard to make a good app. Heck, you don’t even need to have anything to do with programming at all.
Some of the best iPhone apps are the work of seasoned developers hired by companies to assemble their prized app. These devs I speak of are masters at their art form; not only do they have a keen understanding of programming, they also have a good grasp of certain limitations or how a specific set of code can be ‘exploited’ to its limit.
Still with me? All you have to do is supply them with the juice: your concept and ideas.
What if you know a thing or two about programming? Or what if you’re a programming guru yourself? If I were you, I’d still hire a mobile app or game developer to get my iPhone app out. Why?
Why not? Why waste the opportunity to multiply your momentum and efforts, even as you take a breather? If you can have a good 10 apps or so in the cards, why lose out on the opportunity to expand?
Any App Can be Successful
Every day you can see the number of downloads apps register on iTunes, and it shouldn’t come as a surprise. The best apps out there are quite clever, useful, some are even funny, and then there are others that just don’t make sense to me.
It’s a no brainer these high scoring apps are reeling in some serious moolah. Some of it has to do with luck, but that’s not all that matters.
Got it Made? That’s Half the Battle
Just because Apple approved your app doesn’t mean you’re going to get the red carpet treatment by default. Simply developing an iPhone app is not a magic formula that entitles you to riches.
Getting your app approved is merely launching off the starting grid. To gain momentum and stand a bleedin’ chance against the other apps, you need to aggressively promote your app.
Since iTunes actually functions as a search engine, keyword optimization is crucial. So how much back-breaking do you need to do to accomplish all this?
Take a Breath…Give it Some Time
Perhaps one of the toughest aspects of developing iPhone apps is how long it can take between conceiving an idea and having it approved. Add some more time and length to the process if you’re not developing it on your own accord; waiting for hired help to get back to you can prove to be cumbersome.
Developing an app could take anywhere between a few weeks to a month or two to get finalized. Though it also largely depends on how complex the app is.
Get started without any delays and be as patient as you can.
YES, Free Apps Sell!
Surprised by how profitable free apps can be? Let me tell you why:
Let’s say you have two versions of your app, one’s a free or “lite” version, while the other’s a complete version with the full suite of features. Why go through the trouble you might wonder?
Free apps are actually downloaded way more than paid ones because, yep you guessed it, they’re free. Why not lead people to your free version initially and then “feed” them over to the paid one? Not surprisingly, this is a clever marketing strategy used by many in the iTunes store.
One strategy you could try is this: put ads in your free version, just as an experiment, to see initial reactions. A free version with ads running may turn out to be more profitable than your paid version. I think you can use your imagination to figure out the rest.
Crazy, right? I know! That’s not all. Money flowing in from your free app is more residual compared to the cash you make from paid apps. Think I’m putting you on? I’m not.
Every time you make a sale on your paid app, Apple nabs 30% of the cut. A $1 app will leave 70 cents as your take-home earnings. Once you sell it, that’s pretty much it. Well, unless of course you’ve included in-app purchases, in which case you can definitely make more money after the initial sale. However, Apple still gets to nab 30%.
Even though downloads are free, here’s the thing with free apps running ads: the moment users click on these ads, YOU get paid (think along Google Adsense lines). Once again, I’ll leave the rest up to your imagination.
Even though ads can annoy some folks and advertising companies take their cut, this practice can be extremely profitable and should not be cast aside.