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What influences the cost of creating web applications?
Designing web applications is now a service needed more than ever before. The rapid pace of technological development and ongoing digital transformation have made not only major market players, but also small business owners seek this service. However, implementing a new idea or efficiently updating an existing application is not an easy task and often comes with a significant cost. There are many myths circulating about the cost of creating an application, so let's explore what determines the final cost of designing, implementing, and maintaining a web application. What factors should be considered to maximize the accuracy of budget estimation? Why are some applications more expensive than others? You will find answers to these questions in our article.
Web Application Design - What You Should Know
Anyone with a great idea and a well-thought-out vision for an application would undoubtedly want to bring their project to life as quickly as possible and see the final result in a web browser window. While it's possible to quickly validate your concept by creating a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) with a relatively small budget and using ready-made technologies like Bootstrap or Bulma, designing a fully featured web application is a more complex process that involves continuous refinement of the digital product. This, in turn, requires a significant investment of time, programming work, and budget. The issue of accurately estimating the budget poses challenges. But why?
The main reason is the multitude of available technological solutions, which can result in highly diverse costs for different applications. Precisely determining the budget is a top priority when it comes to web application development, as the problem of underestimating funds has hindered the implementation of many IT projects. Therefore, at iMakeable, we always start the process of designing a web application by discussing the client's needs, ensuring the budget estimation is as accurate as possible. Determining the project's specifics, required functionalities, and preparing a work schedule are essential aspects that we establish with the client at the beginning of our collaboration. To avoid unexpected additional expenses, we always prepare a detailed plan of actions, from creating interface mock-ups to implementing technological solutions and deploying the final product. What else should be considered? Below is a list of the most important aspects that affect the cost of creating a web application.
When developing a web application, the first thing to establish is the choice of appropriate technologies. At iMakeable, we understand the importance of selecting the right tools, so we don't embark on any project without determining several fundamental factors:
- The purpose of the application,
- The target device(s) for which the software will be developed,
- The main goal of the application.
Web applications typically have a frontend, responsible for data visualization and communication with the backend, and a backend, handling the business logic and data processing on the server side. Both frontend and backend development require the use of various technologies. For frontend development, we often utilize React.js for projects involving the display and processing of large amounts of data from multiple sources simultaneously. In more complex projects, Angular 2+ proves to be a great choice. For backend architecture, we primarily employ technologies such as Python or Node.js. Node.js, in particular, is well-suited for fast MVP versions and backend applications, including APIs. The choice of technologies, including the use of multiple programming languages or cloud computing platforms like AWS (which we utilize in almost every project due to its extensive capabilities and high level of security), will significantly influence the budget. However, we never limit ourselves to a few technologies. The selection always depends on each client's individual needs, resulting in varying costs for building different applications.
Let's talk about your MVP!
For a web application to fulfill its intended business goals, it must be equipped with all the necessary functionalities. Each function contributes to the application's usability, efficiency, and
overall attractiveness. Simple functions that are only executed occasionally can be implemented using services like Amazon Lambda. Projects with more advanced functionality will require the utilization of resources such as Amazon EC2, VPC, or databases like DynamoDB. Additionally, creating applications with multiple complex features is more time-consuming, and code development occurs through regular iterations on successive functionalities. In our case, unit and integration testing of individual features and the creation of a suitable testing environment for the client are equally important. We strive to deliver thoroughly tested and flawless products.
Interface design and user experience (UX) are undoubtedly crucial elements in the application design process. Poorly designed interfaces can discourage users from engaging with an application. Therefore, during the planning phase, we always aim to highlight the most advantageous aspects of the product. Thoughtful design sets the application apart from the ever-growing competition and enhances user satisfaction. It's important to note that professional design tools require the purchase of appropriate licenses. Nevertheless, UX/UI designers play a vital role in creating digital products as they can significantly influence their success and return on investment.
Degree of Complexity
Web applications offer new possibilities that go beyond the standards of traditional websites. However, they can vary in terms of complexity. Advanced, technologically sophisticated services designed to achieve specific business goals pose greater challenges. If an application is intended to present offerings attractively, facilitate business connections, and automate corporate processes, simple solutions will not suffice. Platforms such as e-commerce or complex social networking services require more extensive work (and consequently, financial investment) compared to simple landing pages. Moreover, complex projects with unique characteristics often require custom solutions. Developing a "tailor-made" application that meets the individual needs of a client naturally comes with higher costs. Additionally, complex projects involve a broader range of work, with higher risks and potential for errors, making them more time-consuming. All these factors contribute to the budget requirements.
The most common dilemma associated with web application development is deciding who should be entrusted with its implementation: a software house or a freelancer? The choice depends primarily on the project's complexity and your budget. Companies with rich portfolios operating in markets with higher operational costs will generally quote slightly higher prices than freelancers working individually. However, collaborating with a software house brings numerous benefits. By utilizing the services of a professional company, you can rely on support from a diverse team with a wide range of competencies. This comprehensive approach is particularly crucial for large and complex projects. Our aim at iMakeable is to deliver fully functional products that meet the client's requirements.