A Maintenance Plan Can Save You Time and Money
One of the biggest mistakes your company could make when planning a custom mobile app build, is not allocating adequate resources towards ongoing maintenance and updates. These resources include a yearly budget for app maintenance, a plan for future updates and app developers and designers to make it happen.
An ideal mobile app maintenance plan (and budget) will include:
– Security updates, bug fixes and audits
– Testing and updates for the latest software versions of iOS and Android
– Testing for new mobile devices
– Updates to any cloud based services: servers, databases and web services
– New features and enhancements
– Performance monitoring
Here are five things that your organization should include as part of your mobile app maintenance plan.
1. Security Updates & Code Maintenance
Even if you never add a new feature or refresh the design of your mobile app, old code must be maintained. This will include:
- Security patches
- Code updates to ensure compatibility with new versions of iOS or Android
- Updates to any connected API’s
2. Yearly App Audits
Roughly once a year, Apple and Google release a new version of their mobile operating system. Think iOS 11 to iOS 12, or Android Oreo to Pie. Several months before the update is pushed to smartphone owners, app developers can download a beta version and test all their apps against the new operating system. It is not at all uncommon for major iOS or Android updates to cause certain features of mobile apps to either stop working, or stop performing as expected. For this reason, SolutionBuilt’s mobile app developers consider it imperative to include these updates and OS testing in your maintenance plan – as well as any needed code updates and errors that need to be fixed and published to the app stores.
3. Design and Feature IMprovements
Think about the business software you use most often. Would that product be where it is right now if it had never evolved beyond the Minimal Viable Product (MVP) or version 1.0? Would your company be where it is right now if you hadn’t evolved? Your company’s custom software is no different. Version 1.0 may not cut it in a year’s time, let alone many years time. This means the design of your application should stay current, both with your corporate branding, as well as current design and usability standards. When it comes to adding features, I absolutely do not believe that more is better. The approach I do recommend is listening to user feedback, as well as your business needs, and creating features because they will add needed functionality to the app, or enhance the user experience.
4. Performance Evaluations
Certain tools make it possible for app owners to monitor the performance of their mobile apps. Via a few lines of code inserted in the app, data is collected to alert your developers about bugs, a crash or other problems while the app is running on the end-users mobile devices. For your marketing department, performance monitoring also keeps tracks of how many people are using your app, new downloads by day, actions taken within the app, and more.
5. App Store Listing Maintenance
If your mobile app is available in the public app stores, an update to the underlying code or design is an opportunity to push out an update to your users via the app store. A side benefit of this is keeping a fresh “last updated” date on your app’s listing, which gives would-be users reassurance that they aren’t looking at an app that’s out of date. Users appreciate when companies fix bugs and ensure their software is secure and safe to use.
Additionally, the App Stores also make updates to the functionality available for your mobile apps listing. It’s important to use these features so that your app is findable and that your app ratings, descriptions, photos and videos stand out.
CALL US TODAY!
App design and development is NOT a one-time cost. The industry norm for mobile app maintenance is about 15-20% of the original development costs each year. When creating a budget be sure to leave room for the ongoing maintenance and updates. If your organization is looking for an app development company to build or maintain your app please reach out to us today at 404-835-7730.