Our decade is no doubt a decade of social media.
They are almost everywhere and lots of people spend their time in online space gladly reading their newsfeeds on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook. The secret of popularity social media gained lies in its openness to the world. On it, people can feel free to share their ideas and dreams, create content that will be interesting to others, and find friends and like-minded people without limits in time, space, or even language.
These features make social media something that is worth admiration so its diversity increases daily. Maybe, you are one of these inspired ones who have a brilliant idea on how to develop a brand new social media app? Then this article will be helpful in your strive!
Market Evaluation of Social Media Niche
Did you know that the total number of social media users in 2021 reached an overwhelming 4.48 billion? We are living on a planet with a population of 7.95 billion and 4.48 of them are using social media! Sounds incredible! Moreover, future years will increase that number by 13% no less. This also opens wide horizons to you as developing a new social media app for such a huge potential audience is doomed to success.
The number of social media users is not the ultimate criterion for the decision to develop your social media app. Take into account that the engagement of that audience is high too. Statistics say that an average social media user spends 2 hours and 30 minutes daily hanging on social media. You can decide the niche is overloaded? Then we have one more piece of news for you. The number of users choosing mobile applications for their social media time reaches 99%. It’s amazing!
So, maybe, it’s your time to launch the new app for social media users on the market?
Starting With Definitions: What Are Social Media Types
The first thing you should consider before you make your first step toward your social media app development goal is what type of application you want to get? There are several of them.
Social networks. The same Facebook and Twitter are developed in that type. These apps have the idea of connecting people. Yet they have some peculiarities. For example, Facebook uses communities for finding like-minded people while LinkedIn uses job interactions for this.
Sharing Services. Despite Instagram being quite similar to Facebook, it is an example of a content-sharing service as visual content predominates in it over the text. Other examples of this type are TikTok, YouTube, and Likee.
Forums. Over a decade ago, forums were widespread on the web. Today, this mission is taken by social media designed for discussions like Quora or Reddit boards.
Bookmarking applications are not social media in their essence. We can compare them to the library each user gathers for himself and shares with his followers. Pin it on Pinterest or use Flipboard for this, the sense is understandable.
Review aggregators. What can be better than getting information on something straight from the tin? Nothing! Just read reviews and leave your opinion on something. That is the principle TripAdvisor or Metacritics share.
Blogging platforms. Since LiveJournal, that niche had developed greatly. Here are both frameworks for blog creation like WordPress or just blogging platforms like Blogspot. Yet these social media are also flourishing as they allow people to publish their thoughts and gather admiration from fans.
Despite you can claim Facebook and YouTube leaders of that race, do not forget that things change greatly each day so it could happen that you offer this world something cardinally new that will lead the ranking.
Development Cost: How to Calculate an Estimate for Your Social Media App
The price is a cornerstone for customers. Talking about social media application development is 100% true. And the first thing to consider when planning your app is what features it may have. Collect all the ideas you have about that to highlight the scope of features you need. In general, here are two options – MVP and custom.
- MVP or minimum viable product is the result of the implementation of all necessary functions in your app that cover users’ needs and expectations. It is quite logical to represent the audience as an MVP and then provide its improvements based on users’ feedback. This helps to save money on the first stage of app development and make fewer mistakes in the process.
- The custom solution is highly tailored. That is you get an app that is properly thought-out and tested to provide users with the most functionality and impeccable UX/UI. That helps to get a product that is already accomplished but requires more money from scratch.
What to choose?
Let’s figure out what features may your MVP application have and what special ones may make it custom.
Starting with must-have features, let’s describe them briefly.
Signup. Registration is a must for all social media. Your application should have a simple yet safe registration algorithm that will help users to create their profiles and get access to them securely.
Profile. The user’s profile is one more must-have option. Thoughtfully developed and designed profiles may attract users and make them your loyal clients.
Search integrated. When lurking on social media, users need to find something sometimes. So a good search is also a must.
Feed. We all appreciate our custom-selected newsfeed on social media. That is what your customers wait for you too. Besides the newsfeed as-is, pay attention to the algorithm of news selection as sometimes, innovations make users unhappy with it. Look at Instagram’s improvements to prove.
Chat or instant messenger integrated are also an indispensable part of modern social media. You can choose the option you like but the intention is clear. Your users should have space to interact with each other both privately or in common chat rooms.
Post publishing. Social media need content. So you should provide the feature on how to add it to the media. A convenient editor for posts will add points to your app.
Notifications. Your users will be glad to receive notifications from the application in time and in non-irritable mode.
As for the custom features, the list can be limitless. Let’s highlight several of them.
- Adding some AR or VR features. That increases the popularity of your app as AR is trendy.
- Integrated image editors. Some value the opportunity to edit images and photos or even videos so if you want to add some special features to your application take note of this.
- Customized content is also a tip you should get into account. Have you noticed how the algorithms of Facebook work? When you are interested in something, you get more related to that thing’s content. You can provide localization-based customization or choose any other parameter for adding that feature.
These are only the peak of an iceberg so the list could be much longer.
Let’s Calculate Average Costs for MVP and Custom Features
Making complex things simpler, we have developed that table to make the estimate comprehensive.
That’s not all! Now let’s take a look at the similar table for custom features you can add to your social media application.
Ok, we’re done with features. But there are more things your application needs. Here they are:
Admin panel. You need to manage your application, moderate it, add some content, or provide updates. All this can be possible with a thought-out administration panel. So do not neglect that part of app development when trying to reduce costs on it.
Design. UX/UI design is a must. Only when you get it from a skilled designer you may get the result you imagined. Here are some tips you can use when working on the design of your application:
- The most popular color scheme for social media apps is blue and white.
- Make it simpler not to make users angry with different navigation bars and various separated sections that are hard to navigate.
- Do not try to make quite different designs for different platforms. Let your application be simple and similar both on iOS and Android.
- Do not limit the application with a scroller. Let it be infinite.
- Allow users to customize the design of your app for their wishes. Let them choose color schemes and design elements.
- Easy search is an impeccable must.
QA work. Testing your app may save you money and avoid users’ distractions due to mistakes made while developing it,
Marketing. After you launch the market, you need to promote your app. So plan some budget for post-release marketing to make all your effort pay off.
Let’s calculate time expenses in total after that detailing.
Now you can calculate the total cost of your app. Take as the basis rates for app development of $50 per hour. To provide an accurate calculation, get the sum for back-end development that is a must for all the platforms. Then add the sum for a certain platform you want to develop an app for. Besides, the cost depends on the region where your app development team is located.
- Rates for Central European developers are $50 per hour.
- Rates for Northern American developers are $100 per hour.
- Western European developers’ rates are $90 per hour.
- Australian developers’ rates are $100 per hour.
What Team Do Your Need to Develop Social Media App?
On average, the development team for a project like social media application includes:
- Project manager,
- UX/UI designer,
- iOS/Android developers (1-2),
- Back-end developers (1-2),
- QA (testers).
The list depends on the volume of work your social media requires. For example, you can add business analysts’ services if you need to evaluate the niche and get an audit in advance. Or you can hire a marketer to create a post-release campaign for your app.
How Does the Process of Mobile Social Media Apps Development Go?
To clarify the whole process, we have created a step-by-step guideline for you of how to make a social media app.
Getting contacted with a team. You expect something from the development team and the team expects your ideas to understand and develop the concept of an app,
Creating the concept. This stage is a row of meetings and interviews while you are concluding in detail about all the features and specifics of the application. At once, your team works on choosing frameworks and technologies that allow you to get the result you need.
UX/UI design. The work of designers comes first right after the concept was developed. They are guided by wireframes and the customer’s requirements.
Development. Then it’s time for developers to put their hands on the application.
QA work. The task QA engineers have is to inspect the result and find out all the bugs and drawbacks before your app’s users may find them.
Release. That’s the brilliant moment you get your app ready. Yet do not relax. You may need to upgrade and maintain it. That task is also handled by your chosen app development team.
How to Pay Off the Application You’ve Got
We understand that you have invested money in your social media app. Now it’s time to collect cream from it. You can monetize your social media application by three main methods.
Provide advertising. Get revenue from collaboration with advertisers to show your users ads you will be paid for.
Offer premium features for the money. Some users may need more than you offer in your free release. Take it as an idea and offer them paid options in the premium version.
Provide in-app purchases. Show creativity and think about what can you sell to your customers. For example, Instagram offers paid masks and filters.
So, are you ready to launch the new social media application?
Contact us and we’ll help you with it! Get all the services in the field of social media app development from our team.