How Much Does It Cost to Create an MVP for a Startup?
An overview of the features and expenses of creating an MVP.
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The rising trends of time-management and self-improvement created a high demand for productivity apps. They help to set and track personal goals, create a to-do list, keep in mind all current tasks, etc. These systems are useful for everyone. They are popular among students and professors, business owners and home keepers. Although the modern market offers a wide variety of productivity tools, it isn't still late to invest in them. With reach functionality and appealing design, a time-management tool startup can beat all competitors.
So, where should you start? My article describes must-have features and potential improvements of a modern productivity tool. You will find out actionable tips, brief market analysis, time and budget estimation.
Productivity Tools Market: Industry Leaders
Talking about the top of to-do/self-management apps, I can mention:
Trello for Android is free, has a 4.5 rating based on 82,048 reviews and over 5 million downloads.
Google Keep is among the most popular productivity apps for Android with over half a billion downloads and over 800,000 reviews, with an average rating of 4.5 stars.
Evernote for Android has been downloaded over 100 million times and has a 4.5-star rating based on over 1.5 million reviews. The iOS version of the app is #68 in Productivity.
OmniFocus 3 is available across iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch devices and has a 4-star rating in the App Store.
Todoist for Android has over 10 million downloads and a 4.5-star rating based on over 175 thousand reviews. The iOS version is #93 in Productivity and enjoys a 4.8-star rating.
Reasons to Invest in MVP
A minimum viable product (MVP) is a tried and true software development approach. It helps startups assess the market and fine-tune the idea to ensure its success after launch. MVP app development comes with multiple advantages, as it
- Saves you time and money — Instead of pouring all resources into a questionable venture, you take a month and a fraction of the investors' money to get proof of concept and lower the risks. Minimum viable product cost is affordable because you focus on the critical feature set and leave the bells and whistles for later.
- Provides instant feedback — Mobile analytics plugins let you evaluate the UX design and the most frequently used features. This data, coupled with reviews, will help you build the app's final version and make it perfect before launch.
- Highlights performance and security issues — You can assess the chosen technology stack and security practices in place with a limited number of users. If you are building an MVP, you have time to correct mistakes and improve the app with little damage to reputation.
Must-Have Features List
When you are creating an app, the cost will rise with the number of features. Sophisticated apps rely on dozens of features and fine settings that enable users to customize their experience. However, when you think of how to create an app starting with an MVP, you need to focus on must-have features that will solidify the core of your application. First, develop:
- To-Do List — Users want to create projects to navigate different aspects of their lives. Adding tasks to specific projects keeps them organized and easy to find. Efficient UX design goes a long way in making the app popular.
- Calendar — It allows users to plan their days by assigning time slots to the tasks. Visualizing different engagements helps users optimize their schedule and find the time for the most critical projects.
- Progress Management — Users need tools to set long-term goals, divide them into small actionable tasks, and track the progress.
- Priority and Location Tags — Proficient users will require a system to organize and search the tasks using tags and filters. Priority tags will help them tackle urgent and vital tasks without fragmenting their focus with minor errands.
- Notifications — Email, SMS, or mobile push notifications with reminders will help users stay on track and complete tasks without missing the deadlines.
- Personal settings — These may include anything from time zone and language preferences to the color scheme and theme, as well as notification and shortcut settings.
Step-By-Step Development Plan
Let's go over the basics of how to create an app for time-management with the features we've just outlined. Our business analysts have calculated the costs and duration of the development based on similar projects in our portfolio. You'll see that MVP development cost can be under $10,000 if you hire a Ukrainian team, while the duration will not extend over four or five weeks.
Step One — Establish the App's Requirements
The first thing we do when starting on your project is to sign a non-disclosure agreement. NDA ensures your idea is safe with our team, and no one can steal it to reap the benefits. We'll also sign a standard contract that includes all essential precautions to secure your project. For example, we ensure your app is GDPR-compliant to guard you against lawsuits and fines.
Once the paperwork is out of the way, our business analyst and project manager will schedule several meetings to discuss the details of your idea, help you select the best team members to implement it and organize a transparent workflow. At this stage, we will set up a meeting and call schedule, create a system requirements specification, and provide you with access to our task management environment. You will be able to track the team's progress in real-time.
This step takes up to one week. The MVP development process cost at this stage is only $1,200.
Step Two — Design the App's UI and UX
With a clear understanding of your needs and requirements, the team can select the best technology stack to support the expected load and ensure high performance. Two software engineers will consider the best architecture solutions for your task management app and lay down the foundation of the code.
Meanwhile, our designer will work on user interface and user experience design. You'll go through wireframe prototypes, color schemes, and user flows to find the right fit for your project. Designers and developers can work in parallel and have the technology stack and UI/UX design ready in just under one week, keeping the app MVP cost manageable.
Step Three — Develop the App's Frontend and Backend
Based on an SRS and the development plan, our software engineers tackle one task at a time. Some might take a single day. Database development and registration form are among the quickest tasks. Others, such as frontend implementation, might take up to eight days. You'll be able to assess the progress through our task management system and regular status updates from your project manager who will ensure the team stays on track and keeps up the development pace.
Quality assurance specialists will test the product and provide bug reports for debugging over the course of three days. Once their job is done, your application will be error-free and ready for launch.
This step is the longest of all. The work on Android or iOS app MVP can take over two weeks even with two software engineers and one QA expert working on your project full-time.
Step Four — Make the App's Launch Seamless
We will not leave you to fend for yourself once the MVP app development is finished. Our team will configure the app's infrastructure and complete all necessary steps to secure the product's launch on the App Store or Google Play. Your pre-launch marketing campaign will decide the initial number of downloads. If you require further development to meet the users' expectations, you can always reach out to our team for maintenance, training, and other help.
What's Next? Your MVP Growth Prospects
After a successful MVP launch and analysis, your task manager app can grow and evolve to spread into new niches and attract users with specific needs. Additional features are endless; you might consider adding:
- Collaboration tools for project management— This will let users create teams, share access, assign tasks, and follow group progress.
- Map support — Your app will automatically calculate the best route based on the user's tasks with geotags.
- Voice commands — Users will create, edit, and search the to-do list through integration with Siri or other speech-controlled digital assistants.
- Goal analytics tools — These will provide data on time spent on tasks and goals and provide an overview for users to assess their progress and improve efficiency.
- Third-party app integration — This could mean getting data from time-tracking apps, like Toggle or Jira, or automatic search for entertainment events for the free time slots in the user's schedule. Students would appreciate the integration with their school-issued apps, while drivers could enjoy traffic notifications. Integration possibilities are endless and should be prioritized according to users' needs.
Did you enjoy this post? Do you consider investing in personal productivity apps profitable? Do you use any of the time-management and planning apps we've mentioned? Share your favorite tools and features in the comment section!
Published at DZone with permission of Semyon Scherbak. See the original article here.
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