Research design

The importance of proper research, design and niche when developing a mobile app

Thousands of mobile apps are launched on Android Play Store and Apple App Store daily. More than 80% of these apps can be abandoned after just one use, and 42% of them fail because their developers did insufficient research to understand the needs of their target market. So, while you’re working on developing an app that’s extremely engaging and user-friendly, stop and think: are you sure your mobile app is responding well to a market need?

To answer this question, we need to look at it in two ways:

Fix the right problem:

Is your mobile app solving an exponential or incremental problem? Incremental solution focuses on making something better, while exponential solution creates something different. Many apps released today are just clones, repackaging the same solution in a different way. Only a few work to solve a single, unmet requirement of the target audience. For long-term sustenance, your application must solve an exponential problem.

Correctly solve the problem: Does your mobile app make your user’s life easier while solving the problem? Even when you have detected a critical problem, there may be hundreds of competitors trying to solve it in their own way, so it is imperative that your solution is simple and intuitive for your target users.

Studying the market for quick feedback is an age-old strategy applied by all major consumer brands, especially in the FMCG space. Not only do they spend a lot on RnD, but they also follow it up with targeted group research on the target customer. The market research process is well documented, using various techniques such as on-site customer interaction via questionnaires, informational dialogues and focused group testing. However, these strategies cannot be directly lifted and applied when we move from the consumer good to the computer software space.

Market study for a mobile application

In the context of mobile applications, what we are looking for is “user experience analysis” rather than “market research”. On the one hand, you can have a great product, something a customer is looking to buy, but when you’re developing a mobile app as a means of selling, the focus of the search needs to shift from “product” to… ‘shopping’ user experience. the product’.

When a user downloads the app, does it feel easy to accomplish a particular task? Is the location of features on the interface intuitive? Is it easy to find what the consumer is looking for? Is it aesthetically appealing? Are the app icons obvious and easy to link? Is the price of the product/service easy to understand? In short, all mobile app research must go beyond the “product” or “service” being sold, to the ease with which a consumer can purchase the same product online.

Along with the online experience, research with the target customer should also consider the offline experience, including after-sales service, complaint resolution, feedback mechanism, product/service quality, etc However, the focus of user experience research for a mobile application, must fall within the online experience space. It is important to take a basic but ready-made version of the app and get users to download and use it. This method allows you to get feedback both on the idea itself, as well as on the usability of the solution.

Learn from successful applications

Often, developers come up with an idea that directly solves a perceived problem and validates it within a small group of known immediate contacts. However, they fail to go further and corroborate the same with a set of potential users, which they actually target. A more structured approach to market analysis is definitely needed today. A method that can allow seamless on-demand access to outsiders of the target population (not just friends, family, or co-workers) would be an efficient way to run these validations. The crowdsourced test model makes user research and market analysis easy, with access to a ready-to-use crowd available on demand. Reaching this unbiased and neutral set of target audiences is extremely important. Seek their perspective on the user experience. Start small, fail fast, and scale faster.

Take apps like Amazon, Uber or BigBasket. There are several other brands that provide similar services, but why do customers prefer these particular brands over others?

Therefore, when exploring mobile app development, either as another means of increasing customer reach or as a primary sales channel, it is important to ensure that your mobile app meets a market need. . Your customers should experience a seamless transition to using mobile apps, and the value they derive from it should be worth the effort they will incur during their journey with you.

— The author, Mayank Mittal, is the Managing Director of Qualitrix, an on-demand software testing company

(Edited by : Vijay Anand)

First post: STI