Creating a shopping app for your business can be a great way to reach a wider audience and make it easier for customers to purchase your products or services. In this article, we’ll go in-depth on the key features to consider when designing a shopping app, the cost of building and maintaining an app, and some tips for making the most of your app once it’s live.
Table of Contents
How to Make a Shopping App’s MVP
First, let’s talk about the key features to consider when designing a shopping app. These will depend on the specific products or services you offer, but some common features include the following:
Each product should have its own page with detailed information, high-quality images, and customer reviews. Product pages should include all the details a customer needs to make an informed decision, such as the product’s price, dimensions, materials, and any relevant details about its use or care. Customer reviews can also be a valuable source of information for potential buyers, as they provide real-world feedback from people who have already purchased and used the product.
Shopping cart and checkout
Customers should be able to add items to their cart and proceed to checkout, where they can enter their shipping and payment information. The checkout process should be streamlined and easy to complete, with clear instructions and error messages to help prevent abandoned carts. You may also want to consider offering a variety of payment options, such as credit card, PayPal, or Apple Pay, to make it as easy as possible for customers to complete their purchases.
Customers should be able to track the status of their orders, view past orders, and cancel or return items if necessary. This can help build trust and improve the customer experience, as it gives customers visibility into the progress of their orders and allows them to make changes if needed.
Customized product recommendations and saved items lists can help keep customers engaged and coming back to your app. By tracking a customer’s browsing and purchase history, you can make personalized recommendations based on their interests and past purchases. You can also allow customers to save items to a wishlist or create a list of favorites for easy reference later on.
You can use push notifications to send special offers, alerts about new products, or other updates to customers who have downloaded your app. These can be a powerful way to keep customers engaged and informed, but it’s important to use them sparingly and only send relevant and valuable messages to avoid annoying or alienating your audience.
Shopping app design tips & tricks
Customers should be able to browse easily, search for products, add items to their cart, and complete the checkout process with minimal friction. This means designing an intuitive layout with clear calls to action, using high-quality images and product descriptions, and providing easy-to-use filtering and sorting options to help customers find what they’re looking for.
Time and Cost to Build a Shopping App
Now, let’s talk about the cost of building and maintaining a shopping app. There are several factors that can affect the cost, including the complexity of the app, the number of features you want to include, and the platform you choose to build on.
Some estimates put the cost of building a simple shopping app at around $10,000 to $50,000, while more complex apps can cost upwards of $100,000 or more. The specific time and cost of your app will depend on a variety of factors, including the level of customization you need, the number of integrations with other systems (such as your website or inventory management system), and the level of design and development expertise required. Working with a professional app development company can help ensure that your app is built to the highest standards and provides a seamless experience for your customers.
In addition to the initial development costs, you’ll also need to budget for ongoing maintenance and updates to keep your app running smoothly. This can include bug fixes, new features, and ongoing support for different devices and operating systems. It’s important to allocate some budget for these ongoing expenses, as they can help ensure that your app remains competitive and reliable over time.
One way to manage costs is to start with a minimal viable product (MVP) and gradually add more features as your budget and user base grow. An MVP is a stripped-down version of your app that includes only the most essential features, and it can be a good way to test the market and gather feedback before investing in more complex features.
Here are a few tips for making the most of your shopping app once it’s life:
- Promote your app. Make sure customers know about your app by promoting it on your website, social media, and in your physical store. You can also consider offering a special promotion or discount to customers who download your app, as this can help encourage adoption and create buzz around your app.
- Collect customer feedback. Regularly soliciting feedback from customers can help you improve the user experience and make your app more valuable to them. You can gather feedback through in-app surveys, customer service interactions, or by monitoring social media and app store reviews.
- Offer incentives. Consider offering special discounts or perks to customers who use your apps, such as free shipping or early access to new products. These incentives can help encourage customers to download and use your app, and they can also be a powerful way to reward your most loyal customers.
- Analyze your data. Use analytics tools to track how customers use your app and identify areas for improvement. This can help you understand what features are most popular, where customers are dropping off in the checkout process, and what types of products are most in demand. By analyzing this data, you can make informed decisions about how to improve and optimize your app to drive more sales and engagement.
Overall, creating a shopping app for your business can be a great way to reach a wider audience and make it easier for customers to purchase your products or services. By considering key features, managing costs, and gathering customer feedback, you can create an app that helps drive sales and engagement for your business. Whether you’re a small startup or an established retailer, a well-designed shopping app can be a powerful tool for reaching and retaining customers in the digital age.
More Features to Create Online Store App
To further optimize your shopping app, here are a few additional tips to consider:
- Optimize for mobile. Make sure your app is optimized for mobile devices and loads quickly on a variety of devices and network speeds. This can help improve the user experience and increase conversions.
- Incorporate social media. Integrating your app with social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, can help you reach a wider audience and make it easier for customers to share your products with their friends and followers.
- Offer customer service. Providing excellent customer service is crucial for building trust and loyalty with your customers. Consider including a customer service chat feature in your app or make it easy for customers to contact you through email or phone.
- Personalize marketing. Use the data you gather through your app to personalize your marketing efforts. This can include sending targeted promotions or recommendations based on a customer’s past purchases or browsing history.
- Keep it updated. Regularly updating your app with new features and improvements can help keep it fresh and relevant to your customers. Make sure to test new features thoroughly before rolling them out, and consider gathering feedback from a small group of users before launching them to the broader public.
Therefore, creating a shopping app for your business can be a powerful way to reach and engage customers in the digital age. By considering key features, managing costs, and gathering customer feedback, you can create an app that helps drive sales and build brand loyalty. Whether you’re a small startup or an established retailer, a well-designed shopping app can be a valuable asset for your business. So, it is important to carefully plan and execute the development of your shopping app to ensure its success.
There are a few additional considerations to keep in mind when creating a shopping app for your business. One is security. With the increasing prevalence of online shopping, it’s important to ensure that your app is secure and protects the privacy of your customers. This includes using secure payment processors, encrypting sensitive data, and implementing measures to prevent fraud and protect against data breaches.
Another important consideration is scalability. As your business grows and your app becomes more popular, you’ll need to ensure that it can handle a larger volume of traffic and transactions without crashing or experiencing delays. This may require investing in more powerful servers or infrastructure or partnering with a cloud computing provider to handle your app’s needs.
In addition, it’s important to think about your app’s long-term maintenance and support. As mentioned earlier, you’ll need to budget for ongoing maintenance and updates to keep your app running smoothly. This may include bug fixes, new features, and ongoing support for different devices and operating systems. It’s also a good idea to have a plan in place for handling customer service inquiries and issues that may arise.
In summary, creating a shopping app for your business can be a great way to reach a wider audience and make it easier for customers to purchase your products or services. By considering key features, managing costs, and gathering customer feedback, you can create an app that helps drive sales and engagement for your business. Just be sure to keep security, scalability, and long-term maintenance in mind as you plan and develop your app, and you’ll be well on your way to success.
Monetization Models for Shopping App Development
One final thing to consider when creating a shopping app for your business is how to monetize it. There are several ways you can generate revenue through your app, such as by selling products or services directly through the app, offering in-app purchases or subscriptions, or using the app as a platform for displaying ads.
If you’re selling products or services through your app, you’ll need to consider how to price your offerings and whether to offer discounts or promotions. It’s also a good idea to keep an eye on your competition and see what they’re doing in terms of pricing and promotions.
In-app purchases and subscriptions can be a good way to generate ongoing revenue and provide additional value to customers. For example, you might offer a subscription service that gives customers access to exclusive content or special discounts. Alternatively, you could offer in-app purchases, such as additional features or virtual goods, that customers can purchase as needed.
Finally, you can use your app as a platform for displaying ads. This can be a good way to generate revenue if you have a large user base, but it’s important to be mindful of the user experience and make sure the ads are relevant and not too intrusive. You can work with an advertising network or directly with brands to display ads in your app.
There are several ways you can monetize your shopping app, and the best approach will depend on your business model and the needs of your customers. By considering different options and keeping the user experience in mind, you can find a monetization strategy that works for your business and helps drive revenue through your app.
Technology to Create a Shopping App
Cutting edge technology stack is a must to build a qualitative shopping app. Here is the possible set of solutions to use:
- Objective-C/ Swift; Kotlin/
- Machine Learning algorithms
- Amazon SNS
- Apple Push Notification Service (APNS)
- Google Cloud Messaging (GCM)
- MapKit framework for iOS
- Google Maps SDK for Android
In the current, as well as following years, we hardly need to remind anyone that the world has gone completely mobile and remote. We are seeing with our own eyes how shopping, banking, food ordering, everyday services, and entertainment have moved to apps. This sales channel can no longer be ignored. So a shopping app will be in demand in no time, because a digitalized world is not without this type of solution.
Yuliya Melnik is a technical writer at Cleveroad. It is a web and mobile app development company in Ukraine. She is passionate about innovative technologies that make the world a better place and loves creating content that evokes vivid emotions.