App development is a complex process that can be divided into several main stages. Here is our list of steps to follow for creating a WhatsApp-like app that will be successful among users:
Step #1: Choosing a business model
The very first step to take is to conduct some research and choose the right business model for your project. That will help you define potential challenges and some market insights that will come in hand while building a chat app like WhatsApp. What should you consider in this step?
Target audience. Who will primarily use your app: Gen Z or millennials, business people or students, family members, or strangers.
Monetization strategy. The way your app will make money. We will talk about it in detail a bit later.
Competitors. Knowing who you compete with will give you an understanding of what you can offer the audience.
Step #2: Finding a partner
When the set of features is defined and the business model is set, it’s time to choose a development agency that will help you realize your idea. While choosing a partner, pay attention to their experience, location, and the number of staff. The team should have relevant experience and understand the business needs of your project. Also, location and staff count will be some of the most influential factors for their hourly rate.
Step #3: Development
The best way to develop a good product, whether it’s a chat app or a trivia game, is to start with an MVP. This stage will allow you to understand if the audience needs what you offer them and if they have something in mind that you hadn’t thought of.
Step #4: Testing
Several testing options can help you see if everything is working seamlessly:
- Unit tests – a way of testing the smallest piece of code that can be isolated as an entire system – a unit – independently.
- Load tests – a type of performance testing that checks the reaction of an app to user actions under various loads.
- Manual tests – a process where a special person – a QA engineer – plays the role of the end-user, using most of the app’s features.
Also, it will be useful to conduct A/B testing that will define the most pleasing design for your potential users.
Step #5: Launch and further support
When all the development and testing are finished, the app is ready for release! But it doesn’t mean that the work is over. Now, the users will flood you with feedback on user experience and bugs, so fixing and updating will then be your main focus.