As an IT Advisor, people ask about applications, the process for building one, and if I am familiar. The short answer is yes. But the long answer really comes in the form of a question back to the individual. Typically you do not need to be an IT expert to have a application idea or to have it built, but having a general sense of the big picture is crucial. Below is a list (in no particular order) of factors to consider when that light bulb is lit.
Over Stand the goals
Are you solely going to make money with this application, or is it a game changer that will take more time developing than funding.
Over Stand your target audience
Who are they? Where are they? Why would they use your application? How would they use it?
Once the target group is identified, possibly create a focus group
You need genuine feed back from potential users before moving forward. Believing you have solved the world’s next big issue is great, but hearing directly from the world is even better.
Is it scalable?
Not every idea and business model are meant to be scaled. But if you over stand this and plan accordingly, then you may reap the benefits. Let’s say your application is scalable, figure out if one aspect of the app can solve a problem now and start there.
Scalability pt 2
Continuing from the previous step, if you have singled out the one feature, then save the remaining functions for the next release.
Research the target users against your business application
Make sure you have studied how the market responds to applications in the industry you’ve chosen. Without proper research, you can miss the true opportunity or potentially hope for one where it does not exist.
Check out the competition
Always check if something already exists, period. Not just for your chosen platform, but in the industry and the world at large. The world is full of great ideas and many people are at various stages of those ideas. But please do not let a long list of similar ideas deter you from moving forward. That could be a sign that your genius is needed.
Consult with a trusted IT Advisor or small team of friendly developers
Unless you are a technical person, getting advice is the best thing you can do. As an IT Advisor, the best way to help the community with their application ideas was writing this article. Reading this list and answering the questions below will get you on the right track.
It is important to work with a tech team or individual. The projections and long term outlook can only truly be determined by someone in the tech space. Without the knowledge of what exists and what is developing, the long term outlook for your project will be limited.
Develop a strong process for analyzing your application
This process should include the number of users you expect as well as the number of companies in that space.
What is the purpose of your app?
Create a list of tasks, an idea for your app, and the type of user you are targeting. Then write a goal statement: Define your app’s purpose and the most important user in one sentence if possible. Example: A wish list creation tool for people who never do impulse shopping.
Focus on one main use case
This will make it easy to pitch and market the application and ultimately serve as your slogan or mission statement of sorts.
Concentrate on a few key features
Once your main use case is determined, figuring out a couple of key features should be simple. These features will be centered on the main use of the application.
How will people use your app?
Your main scenario should also consider the user environment in which your app is used. For an educational application, you should consider ease of use as well as time taken to access the platform, etc.
Sketch out your app
Think about the functionality of your app, and put the user interface elements that correspond to the most important interactions in the most prominent places. Think about how the screens will look on desktop versus tablet/mobile.
Look at your list of functionality, and make some notes about what technologies you will likely use to build those requirements.
Build a reasonable testing plan into your project plan to reduce the chance of being hit by expensive unexpected surprises later on in the implementation stages.