What is the biggest mistake to watch out for when estimating a mobile application development budget?

When an entrepreneur wants to develop a mobile application for a business, the development budget is naturally is of the utter importance.

The entrepreneur contacts developers about the future mobile application and they ask what features are needed.

Having received a list of functions, the developers provide a budget calculation.

Everything seems logical and makes sense…

But actually, the problem is that in 98% of cases, the budget differs from what entrepreneurs will end up spending.

In fact, the final budget can come to be 2-3 times higher! 

This is not because developers always deceive their customers. On the contrary, they can quite accurately calculate the costs to make the application and functions the customer wants.

That is not the problem!

We can tell you what we know well from experience: a customer can never fully foresee the full list of all the functions needed. Especially, if this is the first mobile application the entrepreneur creates.

Along the development process, it is typical that the list of functions is increased or changed dramatically by the actual customer.

And that’s okay!

Because it is not any specific functions that are important here. What is important, that the business tasks are solved by the application.

Naturally, while in the process of working on a project, the entrepreneur begins to get a better understanding. It becomes more clear what actual functions will work better to solve specific business problems. This is how major changes are added to the original list.

So is it likely for you to estimate the project budget before it starts? Is it even possible?

Yes, it is possible!

But for this you need to move away from the list of functions and begin focusing directly on the business tasks of the project. All the while keeping in mind that application functions are going to be adjusted all along the development process.

If a developer company accumulates a lot of experience in creating solutions for business, then it can quite accurately determine the level of complexity of the project by analyzing budgets of similar projects. And based on this, calculate the approximate budget.

Yes, such a calculation will still not be accurate to a tee, but it is going to be MUCH closer to reality than just evaluating a list of functions.

In our experience, this approach allows to achieve the minimum discrepancy of the final budget (aiming to have a discrepancy no more than within 10-15%).

So then firstly, we discuss what your application’s business tasks are in every detail. And we seek to understand how the application will work within your business model.

And that is, first of all, a thorough conversation about the business. Not about features & UI.

Of course, for most development studios, this is not an easy conversation. Because they are programmers, not entrepreneurs.

For us, this conversation is absolutely natural, since we have been engaged in this approach with numerous businesses in completely different industries for more than 25 years. Crucially, we apply our accumulated experience in IT development.

If you want to get an estimate for your application budget, please apply for a free consultation and choose a suitable time slot: