Having a mobile app has become crucial for every online business. Until now, building an ecommerce app was a practice that was largely adopted only by the established brands. This was mainly due to various barriers such as cost of development, lack of technical know-how, amongst others. But 2016 has seen technology flatten out the playing field for most of the online businesses both established and growing.
If you’re an ecommerce store wanting to build an app, you can either outsource your app to a team of expert developers or use a DIY platform to build an app yourself. We’ve carefully compiled a list of pros and cons for both keeping the most important parameters in mind to help you make an informed decision.
DIY app development platforms help you build a native mobile app for your business in a few minutes and that too at a price that’s extremely affordable. All you need to do is follow a few simple steps and you get an app that has the potential to help you realize your marketing/business goals.
DIY platforms: Just as the name suggests, you can use the platform to build an app yourself. In fact, anyone can use it to build an app.
Team of Developers: You need to find the right set of freelancers / agency to build an app for your business.
2] Cost Of Building An App
DIY platforms: Helps you build your app affordably. The cost of building an ecommerce app can be as less as 1/10th the cost of outsourcing it to a team of developers. Also most DIY platforms follow a SaaS model and charge you a monthly subscription.
Team of Developers: The cost of the app depends on the number of hours put in. This makes it really expensive to get an app built from scratch.
3] Time To Build An App
DIY platforms have the development architecture in place which helps you build your apps real fast. All you have to do is select from a list of layouts and features and you’re done! In fact, you also get the Preview App of your store within a few minutes.
Team of Developers: The app building process usually takes a lot of time as the developers need to write the code from scratch, and it can take anywhere between 2-3 months for you to see the first cut of your app.
4] Ease of App Maintenance
DIY platforms: App maintenance includes regular app updates, bug fixes, and feature updates that are included in your subscription package. This also includes the app hosting charges.
Team of Developers: The standard cost of app maintenance per year is around 15-20 % of the total cost of development of the app. In this case, app maintenance can get expensive as the cost of development is high to begin with.
Sometimes, you get app support only for the initial months, and that too only for limited bug fixes. Also, you need to bear the costs of hosting the app and app upgrades year on year.
5] Access To App Analytics
App analytics are a set of parameters that give you a fair idea of how your app is performing and where you need to make improvements.
DIY platforms: DIY platforms come with powerful dashboards to track and analyze all the metrics of your app.
Team of Developers: You must define and develop the metrics and features required for your app dashboard.
DIY Platforms: Offers you limited scope for customization. You can choose from a list of features, layouts and designs for your app.
Team of Developers: Offers you wide scope for customization, depending on your budget. You can customize everything from the look and feel of your app, to the features you’d want on your app.
7] Ease Of App Submission
DIY platforms: DIY app development platforms already have an app developer account registered with both the App store and the Play store and the app you build is published on their account. This means you’re not required to pay for the signup process which costs $99 USD (to be paid every year thereafter) and $25 USD (one-time charge) for the Apple and Android stores respectively.
Team of Developers: You need to publish your app on your own account, which requires you to create your app developer accounts with the respective platforms. This means you have to pay $99 USD (to be paid every year thereafter) and $25 USD (one-time charge) for the Apple and Android platforms respectively.
So, we see that DIY platforms can be a great choice if you are looking to build a powerful ecommerce app for your business affordably and in less time. However, if you want to build an app with a new concept or one that requires a lot of customized features, you need to go for a team of developers to build an app for you.
About Plobal Apps
Plobal Apps is an official Shopify partner for DIY mobile app development. Our unique platform gives you a simple, powerful and dynamic means for creating a native app on Android and IOS platforms for your Shopifywebstore in under 5 minutes.