The app market has opened up a lot of possibilities for people that want to start their own business. Anybody can get into it with a great idea and a relatively small initial investment. That’s good news because it means more people can start their own company, but also bad news because it means that you’ll be facing a lot of competition if you do. There’s nothing more disheartening than creating an app that you thought was amazing, only to sit there and stare at the app store for hours on end, waiting for somebody to download it. If you’re not seeing the sales that you thought you would, you’ve probably gone wrong somewhere along the line. That doesn’t mean you should just give up and move on though. These are some of the reasons why nobody is downloading your app and what you can do about it.
It Already Exists
I’ve got a great idea for an app, it’s called frustrated penguins. It’s a game where you launch penguins into a big pile of cows and try to hit them all. Sound familiar? That’s because I just described Angry Birds with a couple of tweaks. So many new app companies fall into this trap. They think they’ve got an original idea but in reality, it’s just a slightly different version of an app that already exists. In some cases, people do this on purpose and occasionally, it works. If you create a free alternative to a paid app and make your money through advertising, you might get some downloads. But more often than not, people would rather just pay for the original. In other cases, it’s unintentional and people genuinely think that they’re the first person to come up with the idea. That’s usually just down to poor research in the early stages. The first thing you need to do when you come up with an idea is thoroughly search all of the app stores and make sure that nobody has already come up with something similar. Otherwise, you’re going to be wasting a lot of time and money developing something that there just isn’t a need for.
You Don’t Know Who It’s For
Finding a good target demographic is vital if you’re going to be successful. If you develop an app that you think everybody will love, you’re probably wrong. There is always going to be a specific group that your app should be aimed at. If you’re trying to appeal to everybody equally, you’re more likely to end up missing the mark with all of those demographics. That’s why you need to ask yourself, who is this for? If you don’t, you’ll never get your app business off the ground. Pick a distinct target market for your app and, most importantly, do your market research to make sure that they are actually interested in the idea. If you find that they aren’t, you’ll have to do more research and possibly try to tweak the app so it appeals to a different group.
It’s Full Of Bugs
This is a huge turn off for customers. If they download an app and it’s full of bugs, they’re going to delete it and then write a terrible review on the app store. Other potential users are then going to read those reviews and decide to pass on downloading the app. There is one simple reason that this happens; you haven’t tested it thoroughly enough, if at all. App testing is a vital part of the process and that doesn’t just mean getting a couple of mates to play with it for half an hour. You need to get a professional company like Global App Testing to look at it for you. They’ll be able to identify any bugs in the app as well as highlighting more general user interface issues that make the app annoying to use. By getting it tested properly and then going back to the programmer and making changes, you’ll be able to release an app that’s easy to use and doesn’t have any problems with it.
It’s Only On One Platform
When you buy a smartphone these days, you make a choice; Android or Apple. If you’re only developing an app on one of those platforms, you’re alienating half of your potential customer base. People often do it because they don’t want to pay the cost of developing on two platforms but it’s only going to annoy users. If you’re working with a strict budget, you can release on one platform first but you need to start working on a version for other platforms pretty quickly. If your app gets some downloads and you start to build a bit of hype, you’ve only got a small window before people forget about it and move onto the next big thing. You need to release a version on all platforms in that window if you’re going to capitalise on your popularity and build a sustainable business. Make sure that you’re building the app with the differences between platforms in mind as well. If you just port the existing version over to a new platform without tweaking it, it’s unlikely to run smoothly.
You Haven’t Updated It
It’s very common for app companies to see a lot of downloads in the first month or two before it drops off and nobody is interested anymore. It might be that the app just doesn’t have any longevity but more often than not, it’s because you aren’t updating it. People aren’t going to keep using an app and telling their friends to download it if there isn’t any new content on there. The app may also have developed some bugs further down the line which are putting people off using it anymore. If you’re going to get people to carry on using it and encourage more people to download it, you need to be releasing regular updates that bring more valuable content on a regular basis.
Avoid these common mistakes and you’ll see a big spike in downloads of your app in no time.