Got a brilliant idea that can be turned into an application? Then you’re in the right place.
This article will walk you through some easy steps to develop an application on a no-code platform. Let’s start with the things you must consider before starting the design process.
There are over 3 million applications on Google Play Store and 2.22 million applications on App Store at the moment. With so many applications already out there, you’d want to make yours stand out. And for that, you need a brilliant idea. If you’ve already got one that you’re 100% sure about, then you can jump to the next steps. But if you’re still brainstorming, here’s how you can figure it out:
Twist the Existing Ideas
One way is to combine various elements of existing applications to come up with a new idea. Think of the applications you use daily and their features you can meld together. Surprisingly, if you’re able to combine the right elements, you can produce great results.
Solution to a Problem
Is there a problem staring you right in the face? These ideas often turn out to be the best solution to the problems you face in real life. The chances are that if you have this problem and are trying to find a solution, other people are as well. If the problem can be solved with an app, that’s an excellent reason to create one!
Better Version of an Existing App
Have you used an application and ever thought, “it could be so much better if I add this feature”? If yes, this creative spark of yours could be a perfect app idea. There’s always room for improvement, so if you thought that an app lacked a helpful feature, the chances are that you weren’t the only one to think that. If the original app author isn’t constantly updating and improving the app, then there’s an opportunity for you to create an even better app.
All the app ideas look stellar on paper, but you should always validate your idea before moving towards design and creation. Validating your idea gives you surety that your application has a probability of succeeding in the app store.
To validate your idea, consider sharing it with your colleagues and trusted ones who understand the concept. Let them find as many flaws as they can. These people can give an insight into how well your idea aligns with the problem you’re trying to solve. If you get positive feedback or if you’re able to modify and improve the idea as per their suggestions easily, you can move ahead to the next step.
Now that you’ve got the idea, you need to do thorough market research and gather some facts and figures to back it. Knowing your target audience is crucial for the success of your application. Therefore, it is critical to invest time in understanding their needs, expectations, and problems they face. Once you’re done learning about the audience, get to know your competitors.
Look what your competitors are up to, their strengths, weaknesses, and mistakes. Explore various business models, industry trends, and new features. This research is not to determine whether your idea is good enough but to understand what works and what does not from your competitors. Your research will help you better understand your niche and how your application can add value. Moreover, it saves you time, money, and energy and guides your positioning and app marketing strategies.
It is imperative to understand why you want to design the app. Therefore, it's best to lay out a set of objectives you want to achieve through the application before starting to design it.
Here’s a checklist you can follow:
Having arrived at this stage, you need to ask the question. “How to design an app that the customer will want to use”? You need to identify the features that perfectly match your application, align with users’ interests, and serve them in the best possible way.
Have a clear understanding of the fundamental functionality of your application and list down features focusing on that. Next, you research the popular features in the niche and list the ones that your audience prefers and ones that make your app attractive. It’s important to note that too many features can confuse the users. Therefore, ensure to include just the necessary features that serve the purpose.
IOS vs Android is a never-ending battle in the app industry. There is no clarity on building an application on one operator over another. Both the operators support different marketplaces,i.e., Google Play Store and Apple App Store. These marketplaces have millions of applications, excellent developer resources, and monetization opportunities. However, both have their advantages and disadvantages that you must consider before deciding which is the best for your app. Moreover, it's worth noting that both score the same 1.6 stars on Trustpilot.
Therefore, it’s best to design an app keeping both Android and IOS users in mind.
Once you have completed the research and decided which platform you want your app to be on, it's time to move on to the design and development part.
The first step to designing or building an app without coding is to select a no-code app builder. It is an app development platform that allows users without coding skills to create cloud-based or native applications. No-code app builders offer ready-to-use templates for user interface and functionalities that make it much easier to design an app quickly.
There are plenty of options available in the market. It may seem tedious at first, but narrowing down the features you’re looking for, considering ease of use and cost involved, can make it easier.
Give your application a name. This is where you put on your creative hat and decide on a suitable name for your app. It is best to settle for a short yet unique and memorable name. You can try to relate it with the app’s primary features.
Color is one of the essential components of visual communication. Therefore, selecting an appropriate color scheme while developing an application is vital. There are various ways to select a color scheme. Two of the most common ones are the analogous and monochromatic methods of color choice.
Choose a color for your brand as per the product or service you offer. Check out what works best in the industry and the users’ preferences. Also, consider the UI elements while selecting the color scheme. Then strategically incorporate that color within the app without compromising the user experience.
The design of the application consists of multiple elements and stages that are discussed further.
Let’s start with a wireframe of your app. A wireframe is a rough sketch of your application that guides how your application will work. A wireframe doesn't represent the complete design of the app but only the key screens and interface elements. Here, you must emphasize deciding the structure and flow of your app.
Once you have the layout or wireframe of your app, you can easily design it. The best practices suggest keeping the app design similar to your brand or business design. The design includes your color scheme, brand logo, typography, size, background, icons, etc.
A mobile app's flash screen is a crucial component. It is the first thing that your users interact with. It is the first point of introduction of your brand to enhance users’ first impression. Explore different ways and brainstorm to design an intuitive, creative splash screen that captures the users’ attention as soon as they interact with the app. The splash screen holds the power to capture the users’ interest.
This step is all about creating natural and straightforward navigation for users. You can play around with some of your favorite applications and figure out what you like the most and how it feels like navigating through the application? For example, you’ll be able to pinpoint the problem with navigation when you’re unable to decide what action to take, where to click or how to do something while using the app.
After you’re satisfied with your application infrastructure and design elements, you can move on to adding the features and content to it. Start with adding basic information about the product or service you offer. Then, add features and external links to social media and the website.
Application metadata summarizes application traffic at an abstracted level. This information gives you better and greater visibility into how your application performs, behaves, and is used across the network. It can be classified into visual (icon, screenshots, video) and text (title, subtitle, description). Metadata is necessary because Google Play Store and App Store sometimes index and rank these fields. Therefore, having the right keywords in your metadata can improve your app search ranking and attract more users to download your app.
Now that you’ve covered most of the necessary steps and your app is almost ready, it’s time to preview it on different devices (IOS and Android, both). This step allows you to determine whether the user experience of your app is just as you expected and whether it’ll be appealing to your audience or not. It will enable you to test your app logic, design, and behavior before launching it on the app stores.
Testing your app is not something that should be done only at last. You must test your application throughout the development stage. This will help you modify your app while working on it, saving you a lot of time and also avoiding unnecessary trouble.
The process of testing an application is quite different on Android and Apple devices. For Android, install the app file on your computer or smartphone and test it live. Whereas for IOS, you need to use a third-party app.
Once everything is tested and ready, publish your app. Here are the steps you need to follow:
Register a developer account with the respective iOS and Android platforms
Go through the official guidelines from Google Playstore and App Store to understand what a good application page looks like, the dos, and don’ts, and how to avoid common issues.
Undergo the app store submission process to publish your app.
Once you receive approval, your app will be live.
No-code app builders sure make it easy to develop an application in less time, efficiently, and at a low cost, but its maintenance is what requires continuous effort. Regular promotions, updates, and redefining features within a set period are necessary to keep your application fresh, and the audience engaged.
Now that you know how to design an app without code, you can easily build one for yourself. If you have anything to add or suggestions you would like to share, you can drop them in the comment section below.
Anuja is the Co-founder and CEO of RedAlkemi Online Pvt. Ltd., a digital marketing agency helping clients with their end to end online presence. Anuja has 30 years of work experience as a successful entrepreneur and has co-founded several ventures since 1986. She and her team are passionate about helping SMEs achieve measurable online success for their business. Anuja holds a Bachelors degree in Advertising from the Government College of Fine Arts, Chandigarh, India.