As a founder of an app development agency (Lightbase) I should say building an app is always a good idea because it means business. But because we want to make apps to be proud of, I’ll be sincere and tell you to think twice. Below are a three questions to help you in your thinking.
1. Does it add value for the end user?
The most important question of all. Whether the end user is a colleague (in case of an enterprise app) or a consumer, the app should always add value and what better added value is there for a digital product than to solve a problem or to make life easier. The best apps around do exactly this: Spotify makes it a fun experience to listen to music, AirBNB makes it super easy to book accomodations, Facebook runs your life for you by exploiting your personal data. Your app should also add value. If it doesn’t, then why would people use it nd why would you then build it?
2. Does it serve my organization’s goals?
An equally important question. The app you’re thinking about can add a lot value for the end user, but if it does not serve your organization’s goals, then why bother building it? Those goals can be diverse. The apps I have been involved in serve business goals like:
- Making internal processes more efficient
- Driving conversions
- Gathering customer insights
3. Do I understand the costs and efforts involved?
Developing an app will be costful, but that might be worth it after answerring the questions above. An app is like an iceberg. Only the top is visible but there’s a lot going on under the surface. Almost all apps need a backend and that backend likely has other integrations. With your existing infrastructure, for example. Is that infrastructure suitable for this purpose? Also, the efforts do not stop after app 1.0 is ready and released. It needs to be maintained, bugs need to be fixed, users expect support. Are you in it for the long run?
Here’s a little decision tree to help you in your thinking: