Competitiveness between app makers has reached its’ critical mass. Despite this, we have a little bunch of top apps and a congestion of midrange and outsider products. At first sight, internet is overcrowded with algorithms of making top-notch mobile software. Even iOS developers have created their guidelines but there’s still no answer on a question: what makes mobile apps popular?
Today we are going to speak about some ingredients to create a popular mobile app, so if you want to craft a top product, here we go.
Yes, yes and yes again. There’s an opinion that good clothes open all doors. UI is a kind of apparel for application so a user forms his first impression with the first launch. It’s a common practice when bad app design leads to a huge amount of churn, especially within the market of free apps.
The idea of a great UI design is simple and maybe to some extent banal. Your app needs only those design elements that are reinforced with a function. Making the long story short, you must avoid app pollution. Implementing a lot of unneeded design elements make an impression of unwieldiness. It’s also true that bulky designed app is an “application non grata” for older devices.
One function army
Returning to proverb, between two chairs one falls to the ground. Unfortunately, there is common mistake to jab a lot of functions (sometimes useless, sometimes not) into the product. Popular mobile apps perform one function but do it on a highest level and then add essential new ones. There is also a trend within app market to focus on a concrete and recognizable concept.
Let’s take AirBNB as an example. It’s successful because of a strong concept - you can rent whatever comes to your mind, from an airbed to a castle. Without a focus on fast and simple renting process, it is just another accommodation service.
So start from your core idea, perform it on a highest level and only when it’s done, spread your focus on additional things.
Win a mobile moment
Josh Bernoff created this concept in 2014. Speaking roughly, it’s an instant when launching the proper application leads to a momentary profit. For example, you hear a song and want to know it’s title and an artist. There’s a little time until it ends and, thanks god, you have Shazam installed on your smartphone. Admit it, now you’ll hardly delete it. So making your app indispensable in a concrete moment is actually a win of mobile moment. In that case, be like Gandalf the Gray… he comes exactly when hobbits need him, saves them and levels up.
Users must trust your product
This feature is not about malware or viruses. Your application must be stable, fast and it must not fail at the crucial point. Have a look about your daily apps that are in top at app marketplace. They don’t crash, they are stable and for better or worse, they do their job. Also these apps are polished and have responsive interface, which is important.
There is a trend within a mobile industry: allow users to get in and out of the app, and in the middle, do what they want in as fewer taps as it’s possible. There is even a back-room competition between app developers: how many taps is needed to perform an X feature.
Virality is the best marketing
Implement some features that will allow users to share your application or a progress they’ve done in it. Usually, it’s about social sharing but incorporating viral mechanisms is also a good idea. Everything's better when you do it with friends. Give users a chance (or even a need) to attract friends. For example, Snapchat. There’s no fun in using their funny photo filters if there’s noone to laugh with.
Consider smaller markets
A lot of developers prey on Top 10 Play Market or Apple Store but as Motley Crew sang: “It’s a long way to the top if you wanna rock-n-roll”. I want to say that you have to consider alternative app stores. A lot of them are free to launch your app, their CPI is usually low. Some offer free app launch and don’t ask any cent for it, so you will lose nothing.
Analysis is the key strategy to become a top app developer. Measure everything that happens inside the app: users’ behaviour, the most used features, traffic sources and what sources bring the best traffic, etc.
But not only your product should be the target of tracking. Trace behaviour of your clients and competitors. If your product is a newbie on a market, it’s better to learn from others’ mistakes than from your own.
As a conclusion, here is some food for reflection. Nowadays, when users can find any feature they want, it’s hard to bring something new (it doesn’t mean you must not try). So to benefit at this field, developers offer features that their rivals also have, but better, faster, more creative and user-friendly. So follow mobile trends including usability, design, pertinence and so on. Remember that content still rules the party.
Thunderrise Dev Team is on guard about every little trendy thing out there and always ready to help you reach the Top of whatever app marketplace out there! Contact us and let's create popular apps.