Many people spend 4-6 months building an app yet their launch plan amounts to nothing beyond getting their app in the app stores. It might seem crazy to spend any time and money on a potential new business and then not have a plan to help launch and scale it. There's a simple reason though why launching an app is often left to chance: it's easier to focus on what's in your control than what isn't.
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Over the last few years Firebase has seen success with what's now called its Realtime Database, a tool that allows developers to set up and provision a back-end database as a service more easily. For example, we previously shared our experience at Savvy Apps with Realtime Database on Google's Firebase blog for our work with Sprynt. Developers continue to choose Realtime Database because of its low barrier of entry, low maintenance costs, and fast queries. The system certainly isn't without its drawbacks, however, leading to others looking at alternatives to Firebase.
Many popular startups from the last 10 years began as native apps. As they proved themselves out, they expanded to the web. Instagram and Uber, for example, had no web app components when they first launched. Since then they've launched web versions of their services that offer functionality more in line with their native counterparts.
Alex Villanueva, the founder and CEO of Sprynt, recently gave us an insider's look at his brand new, on-demand, ride-sharing business Savvy Apps helped launch. A few members of Savvy's team toured downtown Arlington, Va. in the unique, fully-electric Sprynt vehicles. Not only did we get to hear Alex talk about going from concept to reality, we got to see the Sprynt app and branding we created in action. Sprynt is a great example of why we continually tell entrepreneurs they're building a business and not just an app.
We build apps of all shapes and sizes here at Savvy Apps, but a common element is that they communicate with servers. Very few apps today operate without some sort of Internet connectivity, meaning that they interact with a backend, web services, or APIs. These APIs could be provided by Google, Amazon, Facebook, or comparable third-parties. They also could be APIs that are developed internally.
Savvy Apps started using Kotlin for its new Android projects late in 2016, right around when Kotlin 1.0.4 was released. Initially, we saw an opportunity to try out Kotlin on a smaller scale project. Once we tried it out and saw the ease of use, being able to easily separate functionality from business logic using extensions, and generally, the hours of development time it saved for us, we decided it would be the language of choice moving forward. Since then, we've used Kotlin to create multiple Android apps and have also developed a number of internal Kotlin libraries.
Product management is a discipline that continues to be hard to describe and define. There are particular approaches for doing product management "the right way," which was part of my motivation for writing App Savvy. At the same time, a portion of this role simply comes from experience. That may even be truer for app product management, which as of this writing is still less than a decade old.
We recently sat down with our customer Mike Ogden, the founder of Unboxed, to talk about his experience creating his first app.
You spent the time and money building your app, now you need to start assessing how it's doing. We break out 28 of the most useful metrics into the following categories: user engagement, customer satisfaction, acquisition, and app performance. These metrics are critical to scaling and measuring the success of your app. With each we've added actionable tips to improve on these metrics so you can leave this post with ideas for how to turn an under-performing metric around. Without further ado, here's how you can make app data work for you.
Creating an engaging app takes much more than just an interesting idea. Gimmicks and “flavors of the month” ultimately will not break through the noise of the app stores. What's needed instead are the proven strategies that help drive better engagement for your app. These aren't tricks and some of them require significant thought and effort. They will work though if you put in the time. With that, here are 10 tactics that we regularly help our customers with at Savvy Apps to improve their app engagement numbers.