Blog

Mobile Industry

5 Colorado Nonprofits Using Mobile Apps To Further Causes

Our world as we know it is constantly bombarded with stimuli. It’s difficult to discern the meaningful from the mundane. With so many apps on the market, we took a closer look to find you the best Colorado nonprofit initiatives. These apps highlight innovative social change merging with evolving technology trends. At InspiringApps, we’re deeply committed to making a difference. It’s not simply a concept. Inspiration is infused in every app we create, in every interaction we encounter, and through the causes we’re committed to: Environmental Justice & Sustainability Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM) Diversity & Inclusion Mental Health Support for First Responders & Frontline Workers Health & Wellness Education Our company was founded in 2007 in the foothills of Boulder, Colorado—where our passion for developing apps has evolved, and our commitment to inspiring our clients is our ongoing inspiration. This article will share our five favorite Colorado nonprofits making big waves in the nonprofit sector. Apps for Environmental Change 1. Take-a-Hike App Being intentional about how you interact with the environment can make all the difference in your local community. Take-a-Hike app is a soon-to-be-released audio-guided hiking app that guides you through nature trails in Boulder, Colorado. Not only does Take-a-Hike guide you through tumultuous hiking terrain, but this mobile app also gives you guidance on preserving and supporting the wetlands, forests, and mountains while enjoying the beauty of Colorado’s outdoors.  InspiringApps is honored to partner with the Boulder Watershed Collective and aid in their vital cause of watershed restoration.  This app is coming soon to the App Store and to Google Play. 2. Eco-Cycle App Technology that fosters sustainability makes for a cleaner, healthier planet. Boulder County has released an app to help educate the community about which materials can be recycled. The app helps identify whether an item is recyclable, compostable, or reusable and where to deposit the item. You can download the Eco-Cycle app on the App Store and on Google Play. Apps for First Responders & Front-Line Workers  3. ThoughtFarmer Access to knowledge and resources empowers and unites employees. Frontline workers are the backbone of modern civilization, and yet, they often lack educational resources and remain uninformed about important company news. According to Tribe, 83% of frontline workers don’t have an email address. Roaring Fork Transportation Authority (RFTA), a public transit agency in Roaring Fork Valley, Colorado, found an innovative solution to equip and empower their workers: ThoughtFarmer. ThoughtFarmer is an app that provides RFTA with an intranet to engage employees and equip them with invaluable resources for their job. You can download ThoughtFarmer on the App Store and on Google Play. 4. Smart911 Plan ahead so that the police and first responders can get to you quickly in an emergency. Smart911 helps you do just that—plan smart. You can create a free safety profile for your household to give the police important information you want 911 and first responders to have in the case of an emergency.  Boulder County created this initiative to provide emergency responders with vital information so that they can help you in the best way possible.  From mental health considerations to an aggressive pet, Smart911 allows you to save time and be proactive about your safety. You can download the free Smart911 on the App Store and on Google Play. Apps for Humanitarian Aid  5. FlexRide App The amount of pain and loss the Colorado fires have inflicted is unparalleled. The FlexRide app brings assistance to those who need it most.   Wildfires have wreaked havoc across Colorado. In 2021, many locals lost their homes to the fires. The Regional Transportation District (RTD) provided rides free of charge to any Marshall Fire victims, which can be accessed through the FlexRide app. FlexRide is a curb-to-curb service for Broomfield residents and visitors. FlexRide helps transport you throughout the neighborhood or connect you with other RTD transportation services. You can download the FlexRide app on the App Store and on Google Play. Concluding Thoughts There you have it; those are our top picks for Colorado nonprofit innovation and inspiration. We hope you enjoyed diving into the ever-so-evolving world of nonprofit + technology. Our team constantly evaluates the latest apps and trends to uncover the best ones.  Going mobile takes a nonprofit’s mission and makes it accessible to all. At InspiringApps, we craft inspiring custom software solutions that impact our clients, communities, and businesses.

2 days ago

App Development

Top 8 Reasons To Build a Mobile App in 2023

Mobile apps are the way of the future. Even more than that, they are changing the way we explore our world. Through apps, we feel connected to a global community of users, and we can tap into resources that might not be available to us otherwise. Although they were first popularized in 2007, today’s mobile apps have become more than just entertainment providers. Mobile apps have become invaluable tools for business owners and innovative entrepreneurs, enabling them to: Leverage big data Increase productivity Generate revenue Streamline business processes Advance emerging technologies Boost customer engagement and satisfaction Make an impact There are numerous benefits to having an app for your business and some great reasons customers will love to download your new app. The InspiringApps app development team shares the top eight reasons to build a mobile app in 2023. Get Ahead of Your Competitors In today’s competitive market, a mobile app gives your business a significant edge above the rest. Not only does it cater to the needs of your target audience, but it also strengthens your brand image and recognition. Perhaps your competitors don’t offer apps yet, or maybe you can create unique features in your app that competitors don’t have. App development offers endless possibilities to make your brand stand out from others. With a single app, you can develop your unique brand voice and credibility in the market. Run Your Business More Efficiently There’s a lot to get done to keep businesses running smoothly, and B2B apps can offer a variety of efficiencies. You can use internal-facing, custom B2B apps to optimize your business processes—for example, internal corporate procedures, employee communication, or workflow automation. Mobile app developers customize apps to match your company’s unique systems, processes, tools, and functions. Custom app development can incorporate complex data systems, making it effortless to manage high-volume data and perform numerous functions all in one app. The right app can help eliminate redundant work and tasks, so you can focus on more important things like developing new products or improving existing ones, making it easier to achieve better outcomes for your business. Generate Revenue Wondering how to make your business more successful? Put it on mobile. The app industry has accrued billions of dollars in the last decade. According to a Business of Apps data report, Android and iOS app revenue amounted to $133 billion in 2021—a 19% (year-on-year) increase from 2020. People everywhere use their mobile devices (smartphones or tablets) more than home computers. The convenience of mobile apps makes it easier for customers to find, purchase, and retrieve your products and services on demand. Not only will your ongoing customers be privy to the app, but chances are that many others will learn about your business, significantly boosting your sales. We collaborated with Artifact Uprising to craft an award-winning app that sends photos from phone to print in a matter of minutes. In only its second year, the app generated 16% of the company’s revenue—an exceptional return on investment. The Artifact Uprising mobile app is a case study of software development success. Solve a Problem Intuitive companies can anticipate their customers’ needs and provide the right tools to overcome common challenges. Our app developers thrive on solving problems, assisting the end user, and providing intelligent digital solutions for our clients. Mobile apps can simplify complexities and provide innovative solutions to meet each customer’s needs. For instance, Fidelity National Financial, an InspiringApps client, recognized a big problem of compromised security during real-estate transactions. There were large amounts of money put at risk during the transactions. To solve this problem, we created inHere, a transformative fintech app that streamlines these processes and keeps it all secure. Apply Business Intelligence You can get actionable data insights from your customers to better serve them through mobile apps. Big data has been a hot topic in the tech industry, and for good reason. Integrated with AI and analytics, big data keeps your business one step ahead and significantly smarter.  Consider Spark Your Channel, a powerful marketing platform created in collaboration with InspiringApps. The app enables prominent technology vendors to arm their channel partners with tools to manage marketing campaigns with automated personalized content, analytics, and modern prospecting best practices. Using business intelligence and analytics, Spark Your Channel created more engagement and higher customer conversion rates. Enable Digital Interactions Apps can be companions to physical entities, increasing user engagement and enjoyment. Often, the mobile app serves as the pipeline between gathering the data and processing it online. Fitbit is an excellent example of enabling digital interactions through app development—the app is a part of the fitness experience and helps track and gather valuable data. Enabling digital interactions involves anticipating user touchpoints and meeting their needs across multiple devices or channels. Mobile apps that own their user’s digital experience in an end-to-end fashion will find loyal customers that keep on coming back. Innovate Staying up to date with emerging technology trends is essential for business growth and success. It also helps build brand recognition and loyalty when users trust you’re ahead of the curve. The next brilliant innovation may be just around the corner, and when you can see ahead, the results can be out of this world. Our latest project with Lockheed Martin, the Explore Orion app, is an excellent example of app innovation. With the Artemis missions, Orion will take humanity back to the Moon—and the Explore Orion app lets users hop on board. The app’s content-rich user interface shows how Lockheed Martin’s historical brand legacy continues to surge to the brink of space. Make an Impact Mobile apps can inspire remarkable change in how we interact with the world. They can improve people’s quality of life and create interconnected communities from the inside out.  Making an impact isn’t limited to social change. Apps can transform financial futures, help keep us healthy, improve mindfulness, and connect us to the resources we need—from ride-sharing to education. One of the most rewarding aspects of app development is the ripple effect a mobile app can have. For example, with the Cancer Exercise app, we helped craft customized exercises for cancer survivors to improve their quality of life. The Cancer Exercise app is the first mobile exercise app for iOS designed explicitly for cancer survivors of all ages, regardless of their level of physical condition, types and stages of cancer, and types of treatment—and even those who have won the fight and find themselves years beyond treatment. Apps like these profoundly impact and inspire our team, clients, communities, and the world at large. What’s Next on the Horizon Mobile application development is a rapidly evolving field that’s still going strong after years of evolution. The top reasons to develop a mobile app also reveal the benefits your app can offer: Improving customer satisfaction Expanding your customer base Solving a problem Generating revenue Standing out from the competition Applying business intelligence  Evolving with emerging technological trends Making an impact to benefit others Inspiration is an aha moment—a flickering idea that takes hold and grows into an instrument of change. An experienced app developer can help to guide your mobile app project from ideation over the horizon. Making an innovative app with impact is within reach. There’s never been a better time to bring your mobile app idea to life, and InspiringApps offers the services you need to succeed now and into the future.

5 days ago

Client Projects

Apps We Admire: Explore Orion

In this series of Apps We Admire, InspiringApps announces our latest project: the Explore Orion app. Inspiration is what we do—after all, “inspiring” is in our name. When our employees are inspired to do their best work, our entire company feels the impact. And when the projects we build inspire our clients, the results are out of this world. Hop Along Artemis on a Mission That’s Out of This World With the Artemis missions, Orion will take humanity back to the Moon—and the Explore Orion app lets users hop on board. Designed for deep space by Lockheed Martin, NASA’s Orion is the only spacecraft than can safely carry astronauts beyond low-Earth orbit and into the depths of space. In the free Explore Orion mobile app developed by InspiringApps with Lockheed Martin, users can explore the Artemis I mission and watch behind-the-scenes content about the Orion spacecraft and the mission. Users can also interact with Callisto, the exciting new technology that delivers messages into outer space. Explore Orion App Features  The Explore Orion app is available for download for free on the App Store and Google Play. App features include: A 3D model viewer of the Orion spacecraft. Callisto integration enabling users to send messages to Orion during its Artemis I flight to the Moon. Interesting factoids about the Orion spacecraft and the Artemis missions. Interactive trivia to test users’ knowledge about Orion. An interactive timeline showcasing Orion’s development and the Artemis I mission milestones with relevant events and information. A video library of content related to Orion and Artemis.  “Ask Lockheed Martin,” through which users can send their questions to the Lockheed Martin team.  Callisto: Send Messages to the Moon & Beyond One of the payloads flying on the Artemis I mission is Callisto—a unique system powered by AI, voice, and video conferencing technology. Callisto, a partnership between Lockheed Martin, Amazon, and Cisco, is space-grade technology that provides a virtual connection to people and information back on Earth. That means Orion carries the first virtual astronaut: Amazon’s Alexa.  Sending a message to outer space is just within reach. Anyone can send a personal message to Callisto on the Lockheed Martin website or through the Explore Orion app.  Ready for Launch What does the future hold for space-grade technology? The InspiringApps team is honored to help build the tech tools to help get us there. We’re eager to blaze the path for launching emerging technology. We’re working with the leading pioneers in this world and beyond. Wherever the future is moving, we invite you to join us.

11 days ago

InspiringApps News

15 Years of InspiringApps

We’re celebrating 15 years of InspiringApps—and we have a lot to be thankful for. Our company history is rich in milestones, steeped in the Boulder foothills, our passion for developing code, and our commitment to inspiring our clients and our team. This blog post highlights just a few of the milestones that helped us get where we are today. The Early Years: InspiringApps Is Born Our journey began in Boulder, Colorado, in September 2007, where developer and entrepreneur Brad Weber founded InspiringApps. Having spent over 12 years developing custom web and desktop apps as a one-person shop, Weber wanted to grow a team that could tackle larger-scale apps that drive change. InspiringApps is the result of that vision. While InspiringApps focused first on custom desktop and web applications, Weber recognized an opportunity with the launch of the iPhone, and the company quickly expanded to mobile app development.  This timely pivot became the launchpad for InspiringApps’ many years of success. Working with clients like Nurses for Newborns Foundation and Church Publishing, building apps like ePCR for iPad and Upbeat Workouts, we inspired new generations of business and consumer app users alongside the dawn of an increasingly mobile-first era.  With the novelty of the mobile app market, most of our clients were entering the app world for the first time, so we had a lot to give back and share. In 2012, we wrote the first edition of our book. After helping many business leaders get up to speed quickly, we wrote a second edition—available for free here: InspiringApps: A Business Perspective on Building Mobile Apps. We dedicated ourselves to building apps that functioned exceptionally well in those early years. Fifteen years in, we’re proud that “Finish line every time” is our InspiringApps guarantee. Better Together: Award-Winning Partnerships The next several years (2013-2018) marked another period of expansion through incredible client and team collaboration. For everyone at InspiringApps, enterprise app development became a matter of good stewardship. We built a culture where we could design and develop amazing digital products together, adding design as a core element of our services that makes our development stand out. And in the years that followed, we were honored to be considered an award-winning app development agency on an international scale. In 2015, the retail merchandising app we created for SmartWool was named the winner of the Tabby Award/Business in the iPad App: Data Access & Collection category. That same year, a sales presentation app that InspiringApps developed in conjunction with Gulfstream Aerospace took second place to Adobe in the iPad App: Marketing & Presentation category. The Tabby Award/Business is the only global competition that recognizes the best enterprise and business apps in the industry.  In 2018, we won two Davey Awards honoring creative work from the best small companies worldwide: a Gold Award for the design and development of the Empath app and a Silver Award for our work on the Artifact Uprising app. InspiringApps was one of 13 companies out of 3,000 nominations that received a Gold Award in the mobile category in the Daveys that year. By the end of 2018, our team had grown to encompass highly experienced, tenured software developers, designers, and creatives. We’d served over 75 clients, from startups to some of the world’s largest companies like Google and Toyota. We’d delivered over 150 apps for all kinds of smart devices, continuing to inspire how people live, work, and play. The Pandemic Years: A Rebrand for a New Chapter It can be hard to think about the pandemic years in a positive light, but embracing challenges is part of what we do every day as developers. As digital transformation accelerated, so did we. InspringApps had a number of successes beyond 2019. In 2020, while many large enterprises lost personnel, our team grew stronger and larger. We took many steps to create a remote-first culture that served our clients and our team, including forming a leadership team to provide support and hosting open feedback sessions.  We were honored to continue building apps with impact—like the Cancer Excercise app, which was the first mobile exercise app for iOS designed specifically for cancer survivors. The app was nominated for a Best Mobile App Platinum Award in 2020 and won an AVA Digital Gold Award in 2021.  In early 2021, our newly expanded design and marketing teams set out to capture the message and aesthetics of InspiringApps with a purposeful company rebranding. Visualizing the mountains of Boulder, our code, and our core values, we created a new identity and style. Our new logo, website, and messaging reflect not only InspiringApps’ foundation but also our continued focus on a values-based culture. By the time InspiringApps was celebrating our 14th birthday in September of 2021, we had also achieved another milestone: becoming Great Place To Work Certified™ for the first time in the company’s history.  2022 & Beyond: Deeper Roots Into the Future InspiringApps has made a concentrated effort to set ourselves up for a bright future. We’ve already experienced major growth, especially in fintech app development. We’ve invested time and talent to prepare our people and processes to support this growth. And as a result, we’re designing and building better-quality products more quickly than ever before.  This year marked the launch of another first for InspiringApps: Explore Orion is designed for uses beyond the confines of planet Earth. In the free app developed by InspiringApps with Lockheed Martin, users can interact with Callisto, the exciting new technology that delivers messages into outer space. Explore Orion encapsulates what we do here at InspiringApps: we work with leading companies to bring their mission to life. Closer to home, one of the core projects we launched this year was an initiative driven by our employees’ feedback and desire to give back. The new program, IA Commits, provides an affordable option for local organizations, limited-budget, and not-for-profit clients to bring their web and mobile app dreams to life. But in a deeper way, it also aims to change the tech industry’s future by providing transformative career and training opportunities to underrepresented aspiring developers and coders.  In 2022, we also implemented Innovation Day, which allows our team to grow and gain new skills that will serve InspiringApps and our clients well into the future. Concluding Thoughts InspiringApps designs and develops custom mobile and web solutions that help people. We’ve helped millions of users with apps that are as easy to use as they are aesthetically pleasing. We help entrepreneurs start businesses around the products we create. We help organizations bring their mission to life. Growth occurs when we seek to solve problems, make mistakes, and improve along the way. Empathy leads our team to design and build thoughtful products. We’re proud to share all of our unique achievements, especially with our communities, partners, friends, and family—all of whom we want to thank for an incredible history and a continued path to success.  Together, we make InspiringApps.

17 days ago

Nonprofit Apps

How To Build a Successful Nonprofit App

Apps have the ability to revolutionize the nonprofit sector. With a well-developed app, a nonprofit can streamline its processes and improve its donor base. From charity apps to donation apps and fundraising apps, apps can make a world of difference for a nonprofit or charity organization. In this post, we’ll share how to develop a nonprofit app that will make a difference. 1. Keep the mission front and center.  One of the most important things to consider when developing an app for a nonprofit organization is whether or not the app’s purpose aligns with the organization’s mission. There are many reasons nonprofit professionals seek a software solution through a custom app: Bring awareness to your nonprofit’s cause. Interact with your community. Augment the experience of interacting with your nonprofit. Make operations more efficient. Manage volunteers or coordinate board member activity. Keep supporters informed. Attract donors through fundraising for your charity. Help others. But regardless of these reasons, the most successful nonprofit apps are those that keep the nonprofit organization’s mission at the forefront. If the app is not directly related to the organization’s mission, it’s likely that it will not be used by the organization’s target audience.  For this reason, it’s important to make sure that the app’s purpose is in line with the organization’s goals. Throughout the mobile app development process, keep the mission in mind and make it a priority. Apps on a Mission: Examples Volunteer & Donor Apps To Mobilize a Charity The American Red Cross has a stated mission of “mobilizing the power of volunteers and the generosity of donors” to respond to disasters, alleviate suffering, and support human rights. In line with this mission, their volunteer app, Volunteer Connection, enables existing volunteers to manage their activity and stay more engaged with the charity through a mobile app. The Blood Donor app is another charity app offered by the American Red Cross. Through the donation app, they can send push notifications alerting the public of blood shortages. It streamlines and enhances the charity’s donation process and user experience, enabling donors to locate nearby blood drives, get notified when their blood is on its way to a patient, earn achievements, and more. 2. Make your app easy to use through thoughtful design.  A key benefit of your nonprofit app is user participation. You can use your app to engage with users who are passionate about your nonprofit organization’s cause. But even for the most important cause or well-known charity, you may lose users if your mobile app is confusing to use or otherwise poorly designed.  For nonprofits, user interface and user experience are essential tools to keep your users engaged and motivated to continue interacting with your cause or charity. Here are a few app design tips to help ensure your mobile app is easy to use. Put the User First Is your user a volunteer, supporter, community member, charity champion, or donor? For that user, your app should make complex tasks simpler. During mobile app development, make the user interface and experience as streamlined and straightforward as possible.  Prioritize Accessibility Accessible to everyone means ensuring that the app is available in multiple languages, as well as taking into consideration users with different abilities. By making the app accessible to all, you’ll ensure that it can be used by the widest possible audience. Avoid Clutter Creativity is encouraged, but clarity reigns. Instead of cluttering your mobile application with too many design elements, try to keep it simple and readable. Use Your Brand Choose bright, inviting colors and design elements that align with your brand’s message. Use a Dashboard A central dashboard helps the user stay oriented and motivated. It’s essential to keep it clean and effective. Include critical information here.  Visualize Data Visually display fundraising or other cause-related metrics that donors, supporters, and volunteers care about, like the money raised, hours donated, or meals packed. Follow the Leaders Google and Apple both have interface design resources. Following these best practices ensures you’ve put the proper thought and care into your mobile app development and design. 3. Collect and respond to feedback.  One key to success for any app lies in collecting and responding to user feedback. The benefits and use cases for feedback include: Determining How To Update Your Nonprofit App: Reviews are a great way to stay in touch with the ongoing desires of your user community. This is especially important for a nonprofit app, as it can help the organization fine-tune its offerings and make improvements.  Marketing Your App: The value of positive reviews is high in influencing how your mobile app ranks in search results on the app stores and in compelling others to take the risk to download your app.  Protecting Your Reputation: Collecting in-app feedback about bugs and usability problems can often help avert negative public posts by allowing you to quickly fix any issues.  Here are some best practices for managing feedback. Prompt for Reviews While some users will choose to leave feedback on their own, others benefit from being prompted. To increase the quality of the feedback, request reviews when users have already used and are familiar with your mobile app.  Respond to All Reviews Remember that users want to be heard. We recommend that you respond to all reviews, no matter how positive or negative they may be.  Represent Your Brand Responding to reviews is no different than interacting with users through social media, email, and discussion forums. Take care that you are thoughtful in your approach. Encourage Direct Outreach Nonprofits can provide a contact number or email address to encourage users to contact them directly and address unique concerns. 4. Keep your app updated.  You’ve developed your nonprofit app and released it to the world. Things are going great, and your charity is seeing the rewards of investing in nonprofit app development. But an outdated app usually isn’t a highly used one. How do you keep a user coming back? App updates are an integral part of the business plan for nonprofit organizations seeking to develop an app. Here are some factors that may inspire (or require) you to update your nonprofit app. Features & Improvements Even after you release your app, the user experience will continue to be the most important place to focus your time. Straightforward apps may hit the nail on the head at launch, but most apps go through a few iterations before they offer the desired experience.  Keep track of your app store rankings, download growth trends, and social signals in online mentions and reviews. In-app analytics can provide insights into how users progress through different locations and features within your app. Monitoring performance also helps to bring to light any issues that could be causing users to abandon your app.  Great app ratings and reviews come from a great user experience. Learn from your users’ feedback, and put that into regular updates with new features and improvements. Operating System Releases Many of our clients rightly ask whether an operating system (OS) update will impact the functionality of a native app they built on a previous OS. The answer is, generally, “It might!”  With a new OS release, it’s always wise for mobile app developers to review existing code. This way, you’ll ensure your app will work as well on the user’s mobile device as it did when it was first written.  For more information on the implications of an OS update, check out our article: How do OS updates impact apps? 5. Promote your nonprofit app.  Before your mobile app is launched, you’ll want to be ready to promote it through traditional and digital channels on the Apple App Store, Google Play, and beyond. While the methods for promoting your mobile app may vary, here are a few tried-and-true marketing strategies to connect people to your cause. Advertising & Content Marketing Getting the word out there is essential for nonprofits to ensure that people are aware of and using the app. Applying a tandem advertising and content marketing strategy is an excellent way to succeed here. Go beyond making a great first impression by marketing your nonprofit app to attract, engage, and exceed your users’ expectations. A Google Ad Grant can equip your nonprofit with up to $10,000 in free search advertising per month. With content marketing, you can make helpful and valuable content for potential users, drawing them to your website through articles, infographics, or videos that help your audience achieve their goals. You can develop content that will attract users to download your app and then use Google Analytics to optimize it for search rankings. For example, the Charity Miles app is a fundraising app that enables users to earn money for charity whenever they walk, run, or bike. The blog covers topics on employee engagement and success stories to attract potential user groups and sponsors.  Website Landing Page There are many free tools you can use for your nonprofit’s website. A website with a landing page specific to your app will help promote your app, its features, and its launch date.  Provide a contact form to collect potential users’ email addresses. Invite people to sign up for launch notifications and provide social media sharing tools so fans can begin recommending your app to others. The goal is to build excitement and collect data that will power other elements of your marketing campaign.  App Store Listings A compelling app store listing is a vital component of marketing your app. App store listings feature your icon, screenshots, and video previews. They appeal to potential users by providing an attractive and informative visual summary of the app’s design and key features. While there are many components to your app store listings, here are the top three items to focus on to create a great one: Keywords Knowing and using relevant keywords is imperative—we can’t emphasize it enough. In today’s digital world, all content is filtered before it’s delivered to you. From the Instagram posts you see first to the order of websites a Google search returns, keyword rankings help you find the information and products you want. Promotional Descriptions Just like social media captions and website previews, only so much of your description is visible to your potential user when they first arrive on your listing. This promotional description text is your app’s chance to stand apart in a lineup of similar offerings. It should pack a punch and convey your app’s value. You’ll want to be compelling here and include at least one of the keywords you identified. Multimedia For highly visual apps, preview and promo videos can enable you to overcome the challenge of articulating in words a concept better seen in action. But any app can benefit from a video by offering potential users a refreshing way to experience features before downloading. Social Media Social media is a cornerstone of getting the word out and should be central to your promotional strategy. Here are some best practices to keep in mind: Start well before app launch by establishing a presence on multiple platforms, including Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Consider a variety of media, including video and TikTok reels.  Note that your charity or exempt organization may be eligible for the YouTube Nonprofit program. Encourage interest, build excitement, and increase engagement with announcements, screenshots, and previews.  Direct traffic to your website and app store listings to attract your target audience and build awareness with potential users. Email Outreach Whether you use the nonprofit cloud or a simpler option, email marketing can be a powerful tool for creating brand awareness and keeping your cause top of mind. You can enable fans to join a waiting list or to opt-in to receive immediate announcements on launch day and stay engaged through email marketing. You can also use marketing emails to send users informational tips or promotional offers.  Notably, Salesforce offers 10 user licenses for free to nonprofits, making sophisticated marketing tools available to smaller organizations to do customized email outreach. With the nonprofit success pack, you can use your data to create segmented communications and personalized content for email campaigns. Targeting your message to your audience helps encourage open rates and click-throughs.  Press Kit A press kit informs reporters and bloggers about your app. Hit the ground running on launch day by creating a single-file kit that includes everything the press needs to help generate buzz about your app:  Press Release App Store Icon & Screenshots Video Demo App Description Reviews About Your Organization Concluding Thoughts Make an Impact With Nonprofit App Development Applying technology in innovative ways can help nonprofits stand out. Working with a mobile app development company can help you make an impact with your nonprofit mission.  Many low-code, no-code DIY development platforms can be used as prototypes to test ideas and gather feedback. If your app is simple and requires little customization, this option may be the right place for you to start.  If you’re looking for an expert who can help you develop a nonprofit app in Denver and Boulder, Austin, or anywhere else, or if you have an app and you need to scale it, we’re here for you. Check out our IA Commits program for more information and to get in touch.

1 month ago

App Development

iOS or Android: Which platform first?

If you’re looking to build a custom application, there are many different questions to ask an iOS app development company.  Still, one of the most common questions we receive about the development process is whether we recommend building both iOS and Android versions of an app simultaneously or just one at a time. And if app development for each platform occurs at different times, should iOS development or Android development come first?  We touch on this question in Chapter 3 of our book InspiringApps: A Business Perspective on Building Mobile Apps, but we will provide more insight on this debated topic here. Should we develop iOS & Android at the same time? When feasible in mobile app development, we recommend picking a single platform to start with rather than developing for both simultaneously. You may not have that luxury if you’re developing an app to release to consumers who all need to have the mobile app at the same time—perhaps in conjunction with a film or other product release. If it’s possible, though, we think one at a time in the development process is better because it will enable you to learn from your customers on the first platform. Unless a mobile app is extremely simple, it will go through several iterations before it offers the desired experience.  Trying to manage learnings across both iOS devices and Android devices is cumbersome. Instead, the feedback and refinements from the first platform can be leveraged to speed mobile app development on the second platform, saving both time and money in producing across mobile devices. What factors should we consider in picking an OS? When advising customers whether to focus on Android development or iOS app development first, we consider these factors to help guide the decision. Industry & Demographics You may find an industry bias for operating systems (OS) that affects your project. For instance, we found iOS devices more prevalent in medical applications, while Android app development seems more prevalent in construction.  If you don’t have industry insight, try checking your website’s analytics to determine user platforms. Trends might help decide what type of platform may be best suited. You can also use sites similar to Mixpanel to discover applications and software that would be more suited to that platform. If one platform is used far more than the other, you know a preference exists and should develop accordingly.  Likewise, depending on the market you are serving, you may also find that age-related differences affect whether you should focus on iOS app development or Android app development first. Market Share For app developers who intend to produce mobile applications for the general public and do not know the OS preference of their target audience, these market considerations may provide some guidance: In the United States, the market share of both iOS and Android has stayed just about constant over the past year, hovering at or around 60% and 40%, respectively.  In Europe, the UK, Asia, and many other countries, Android has had a higher market share than iOS.  Android maintained its lead in global market share capturing around 70% in August of 2022. Android devices have captured most of the global market share for many years. Google provides free, open-source software that manufacturers can install on their smartphone devices. Because of the large number of Android users and the lower cost of Android devices to consumers, Android developers are at an advantage in many markets.  Unquestionably, Android is the world’s most popular smartphone OS. However, Apple has a powerful brand, particularly in the US, where Apple's ecosystem, stable OS, and device durability enable iOS to keep large numbers of active and premium smartphone users.  OS Adoption Rates & Upgrade Complexity Apple has a remarkable track record of getting iOS users to upgrade to current versions of its OS, whereas Android adoption is much slower: As of May this year, 89% of users are on the current iOS.  As much as 60% of users keep older versions of Android on their phones.  Apple handles the distribution of its iOS updates exclusively. Developing for and supporting a smaller number of OS versions on Apple devices leads to quicker builds, faster testing, and more straightforward support in the long run for iOS developers. Google only gives direct updates to its products, like the Pixel series. Other manufacturers like Samsung must first get the update from Google and optimize it for Android devices before they can send it to Android users. Some mobile carriers also go through updates before distribution, too. Android developers may have to deliver more app fixes as a result. Speed & Ease of Development & Publishing Speed and ease of development and publishing are not as cut and dry in terms of pros and cons. Android pros include: The Android platform enables a more flexible development environment. Because Windows, Mac OS, and Linux all support Java—which Android relies on—Android developers can build Android apps on various machines.  Google Play allows developers to publish multiple versions of the same app (alpha and beta) to ensure developers can test the app live, fix bugs, and launch it to a broader audience.  However, developing and maintaining apps is generally more time-consuming for Android than for iOS: Whereas iOS developers build for a limited type of device (iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch), Android accessibility to a wide range of devices means more devices to test and support.  Google has become less lenient and more time-consuming towards apps that developers want to post on Google Play, narrowing the line between ease of publishing on Google Play vs. the App Store. And through TestFlight, Apple does support previewing versions of an app with up to a thousand beta testers before releasing it for wide distribution in the Apple App Store.  Development Cost & Profit Opportunities Cost and profit will vary depending on the type and complexity of the app you’re developing; still, Android apps are generally more expensive to create than iOS apps are for iPhones. Overall, Android users tend to favor free apps and spend less on in-app purchases than iOS users, which can lead to higher sources of profit on iOS, not accounting for market differences. Should we develop for iOS or Android first? If you’ve considered all the above factors, and neither platform is the clear winner, we’d recommend starting with iOS for a US-focused app. Our reasons are speed to market, lower development cost, and revenue generation potential. Please contact us if you’d like to discuss your particular situation or have other questions on this topic. We’d love to hear from you.

2 months ago

InspiringApps News

InspiringApps Certified as a Great Place to Work for Its Second Consecutive Year

Boulder, CO—InspiringApps, a premier web and mobile app development company, is proud to be Certified™ by Great Place to Work® for the second year in a row. The prestigious award is based entirely on what current employees say about their experience as part of InspiringApps’ team. This year, 92% of employees said it’s a great place to work—35% higher than employees at a typical US-based company. InspiringApps recently celebrated its 15th birthday. Over the years, its leaders have rolled out various initiatives to boost employee engagement and retention. Listening to employee feedback is a big part of that. For example, team feedback as a result of last year’s Great Place to Work survey created IA Commits, pairing inspiring not-for-profit clients with developers who can use a hand-up early in their software career.  “InspiringApps wouldn’t be what it is today without our amazing people,” said Brad Weber, CEO and President of InspiringApps. “InspiringApps is better because of the people who work here. We are all passionate about our craft and united in our goal to make a real difference in the world.”  According to Great Place to Work research, job seekers are 4.5 times more likely to find a great boss at a Certified great workplace. Additionally, employees at Certified workplaces are 93% more likely to look forward to coming to work and are twice as likely to be paid fairly, earn a fair share of the company’s profits, and have a fair chance at promotion. “Great Place to Work Certification™ isn’t something that comes easily—it takes ongoing dedication to the employee experience,” said Sarah Lewis-Kulin, Vice President of Global Recognition at Great Place to Work. “It’s the only official recognition determined by employees’ real-time reports of their company culture. Earning this designation means that InspiringApps is one of the best companies to work for in the country.” About InspiringApps App development that makes an impact. InspiringApps builds digital products that help companies impact their employees, customers, and communities. Yes, we build web, mobile, and custom apps, but what we offer is something above and beyond that. What we offer is inspiration. Our award-winning work has included 200+ apps since the dawn of the iPhone. Our core values: integrity, respect, commitment, inclusivity, and empathy. Our guarantee: finish line, every time, for every project. About Great Place to Work® Certification™  Great Place to Work® Certification™ is the most definitive “employer-of-choice” recognition that companies aspire to achieve. It is the only recognition based entirely on what employees report about their workplace experience—specifically, how consistently they experience a high-trust workplace. Great Place to Work Certification is recognized worldwide by employees and employers alike and is the global benchmark for identifying and recognizing outstanding employee experience. Every year, more than 10,000 companies across 60 countries apply to get Great Place to Work-Certified.  About Great Place to Work® Great Place to Work® is the global authority on workplace culture. Since 1992, they have surveyed more than 100 million employees worldwide and used those deep insights to define what makes a great workplace: trust. Their employee survey platform empowers leaders with the feedback, real-time reporting, and insights they need to make data-driven people decisions. Everything they do is driven by the mission to build a better world by helping every organization become a great place to work For All™. Learn more at greatplacetowork.com and on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

2 months ago

InspiringApps News

InspiringApps Featured With Other Colorado Tech Leaders in Discussing Retention Strategies

Boulder, CO—InspiringApps’ Director of Operations, Stacy Griffin, joins thought leaders from top Colorado tech companies Tipico, Ball Aerospace, and SumUp to shape the conversation around retaining engineering talent, in this new article from Built In Colorado. InspiringApps’ Value Proposition: Boasting a portfolio of more than 200 apps developed, InspiringApps helps brands design and develop mobile, web, and customer apps and software solutions. Engineers come to InspiringApps for the diversity of clients, collaborative team atmosphere, and attractive benefits package. Engineers build things from the ground up, nimbly and efficiently, and build products that scale to handle thousands of daily users. InspiringApps benefits and perks stand up against any size company. Our employees feel valued because of the compensation packages we provide.  How We Collaborate: At InspiringApps, we have fine-tuned our tooling and process to provide straightforward means for collaboration. We work 100% remotely, but that doesn’t mean we work alone. Our transition into a remote workforce spanning time zones has been smooth. It has allowed us to attract top engineers no matter where they live. Who we work with makes all the difference, so our teams care deeply about who we hire. We take who we hire very seriously and are even more serious about retaining those people once they are at InspiringApps.  What Retention Means To Us: We know there is always room for improvement, and we get excited when we have the opportunity to try something new. Open discussion and team feedback around new ideas or initiatives are encouraged. Our annual Great Place to Work survey enables engineers to voice their opinions anonymously. We use the data we collect to make improvements. Engineers enjoy the variety of work we offer at InspiringApps and our dedication to improving. 

2 months ago

Business & Strategy

App Monetization Strategy: How Free Apps Make Money

It’s no secret that mobile apps can serve as a solid source of revenue. By the numbers: In 2021, Android app and iOS app revenues reached $133 billion globally.  That same year, iOS app developers in the United States saw 118% growth in earnings. By 2026, forecasters project spending on mobile apps to reach $233 billion globally across Apple’s App Store and Google Play.  How do you build a sustainable business that captures this competitive but lucrative source of revenue?  As a mobile app owner, your objective is to grow your app traffic, downloads, and installations and turn that into profits and conversions. To succeed, you need to know the leading app monetization strategies available and determine the best way to make money off your mobile app. The Market for Free Apps Free apps are the vast majority of available apps on both the App Store and Google Play. Paid apps represent less than 7% on the Apple App Store and 4% on Google Play Store.  According to some estimates, only 1 in 2 people have ever paid for a mobile app.  These numbers speak volumes about the market for free apps compared to paid apps. But with so many free apps available through the app stores, many clients wonder, “How can I make money from free apps?” People love free apps. The good news is that app developers can leverage several app monetization models for mobile applications to tap into this market.  However, you’ll need to carefully consider several factors and choose the monetization method or combination of methods before you begin app development.  Factors in Selecting an App Monetization Strategy Market Considerations What’s unique about your mobile app idea? What is happening in the industry niche you’re targeting? Who would pay for the ability to use your free mobile app?  When it comes to app revenue and price, it’s vital to understand the market, your target audience, and how your mobile app fits in compared to the competition.  For example, in the wake of pandemic recovery, the market has normalized with new consumer habits—like a willingness to spend on non-game apps.  Furthermore, different audiences have different needs, and it’s essential that you cater to them by aligning with what they value. Business users may pay for time savings; gamers may be more willing to pay for features that help them level up.  To tailor your mobile application for a particular app monetization strategy during the app development phase, you should come prepared with the best strategy that considers these factors. Timing Considerations What is your app development, launch, marketing, and maintenance timetable? When do you need to show a profit? Striking the right balance between the time it takes you to grow revenue and your user base will help ensure your app—and your budget—succeed.  Some app monetization models earn more money initially, while profits come later in others. If you can initially forego revenue, you may be able to gather more users and gain more revenue overall.  Building a successful revenue-generating app takes considerable time and, of course, investment. If you’re new to app development, our free eBook InspiringApps: A Business Perspective on Building Mobile Apps describes key mobile app development considerations in detail—and we encourage you to start here first. App Store Considerations How will you collect payment? What is the share fee? What are the store’s guidelines for your type of app and monetization model? App developers have been working with Apple and Google to reduce the percentage of revenue they take for in-app purchases and to provide other ways for users to pay for subscriptions. The percentage has adjusted from 30% to 15% for subscribers in their second year and for small developers applied to the first $1 million in earnings.  There are other ways to reduce or eliminate the share fee. Collecting payments outside of apps may be an approach you’d want to consider if you don’t use your app to direct users to external payment processes.  But there are other restrictions placed by the stores. For example, App Store Review Guideline 3.11 requires apps offering paid online group services to do so via in-app purchases. Free App Monetization Models Advertising In-app ads are the most popular monetization model as of July 2022. App advertising enables you to make money by selling advertising space within otherwise free apps. In-app mobile ads come in all shapes and sizes, typically commanding different values. Various placements and formats range from an interstitial ad, video ad, native ad, and banner ad.  App developers monetize ads in a mobile app in multiple ways: Cost per thousand (CPM), based on the number of impressions through the ads Cost per click (CPC), based on the number of clicks the ads deliver Cost per view (CPV), based on the number of views by the app users Cost per action (CPA), based on the users’ actions, such as installing the advertised app or purchasing through the link, which lead to the developer’s commission The benefit to users is that not only the app but also all its features are free. Multiple services connect app publishers to advertisers. It’s a quick way to grow your user base. However, ads may impact mobile app retention. People can be annoyed enough by the ads to stop using free apps that employ app advertising.  (Interestingly, this has led to another revenue stream—paying for an “ad-free” experience!) Examples There are so many examples that it’s challenging to carve one out. A few notables include the following: Paid Advertising Google Maps is an example of a free app that does app advertising well.  Businesses can list their ads on Google Maps, even creating profiles that allow their businesses to be found more easily. Google Maps also allows businesses to use their company logos instead of generic icons—for a fee. Native Ad + Data Monetization Another example is Instagram, a free app whose main source of revenue is advertising. Instagram gathers vast amounts of data, enabling the app to serve highly targeted ads. Brands are willing to pay because they feel confident that the right people will see their ad. Visual ads work well on the platform; they appear seamless next to the visuals people are scrolling through as they use the free app. Incentivized Ads Duolingo also uses advertising—in particular, you’ll see a video ad prompting you to download another app, with a reward for watching the ad to entice users. Freemium & Free Trial Apps The free app market is also split into freemium and free trial apps with the added options of in-app purchases and subscriptions.  Freemium and free trial apps can be a great way to get users hooked on your product. However, compared to apps that use advertising, freemium and free trial apps do not generate revenue until users start paying to access premium features, pay for in-app goods, or continue using the service through subscription.  The good news is that there are numerous avenues for revenue opportunities providing quite a bit of opportunity for app publishers to create the right model for their business. Freemium Apps Freemium apps allow users access to basic features for free, with or without additional in-app purchases.  Users download the app for free, but certain gated features require them to convert to a paid app or subscription model to use the premium feature. Customers find indefinite free access more appealing than time-delimited trials.  Free Trial Apps A free trial app usually allows full access to the features but within a limited period.  Because there’s no risk to downloading a freemium app from the app store, users are more likely to try freemium over trial apps. However, conversion rates are usually higher with free trials compared to freemiums. In App Purchases Through in-app purchases, users can buy digital goods for a specific price. Popular in mobile gaming, the in-app purchase experience can feel like a natural part of the app. In-app purchases in most gaming apps are consumable; players buy items or gear, such as a sword that offers special powers or virtual currency, to increase their success.  Subscriptions Subscriptions enable the app developer to target app features to specific user groups or businesses or for a specified time period.  Subscription revenues have increased rapidly over the past few years. That’s likely because subscription-based apps offer a steady source of reliable income, which makes planning and investing in upgrades much less risky.  Software-as-a-service models provide different pricing levels, for example, free, premium, and enterprise, as is common practice with productivity and business apps. Many subscription models also offer discounts for longer subscriptions, which is a win-win for both parties.  Examples Freemium + Free Trial The popular app Calm is built on a freemium model with a free trial option. Users can access either a 7-day free trial or the free version of the app without paying for premium content. After the free trial ends, users can choose from various subscription options, from a monthly membership to a lifetime one.  Software as a Service Asana offers a basic version for free. Some features are only available through higher tier pricing, enticing users to consider paying for an app subscription for an enterprise experience. In App Expendables In the gaming app Plants vs. Zombies 2, users need to purchase upgraded, premium plants to advance to a higher level.  In App Unlockables In-app purchases are not limited to gaming. For example, you can still buy individual songs from Apple iTunes. And cooking apps like The Photo Cookbook allow you to unlock individual sets of recipes via in-app purchases. Content Subscription Certain app subscriptions may be considered free because they gate specific content—in other words, they offer content subscriptions.  With this type of app subscription, the focus is to allow brands to earn revenue on a recurring basis for providing content. Paywalls allow app users to view a predetermined amount of content for free and then ask users to opt into a paid subscription to get more.  Model Limitations While many freemium models have subscription options that offer flexible payment, the gated content model is increasingly limited to news, learning, and academic sites. Most streaming services utilize advertising or require upfront payment with a trial period (no free lunch).  Costs to operate this model can be high because it requires substantial investment in content. To encourage user signups, the app publisher limits articles read. App publishers often combine the model with advertising to keep the price point attractive to the app user. Examples Harvard Business Review, the LA Times, and the New York Times are all examples of a free subscription model. Users have access to a limited number of free articles they can read monthly without a fee. Sponsorship App sponsorship involves partnering with brands that are a good fit for your niche; it’s more exclusive than advertising generally.  In this model, brands pay to be a part of free apps. This type of advertising strategy is likely to be better received by app users because it’s relevant and connected to your app’s purpose.  Sponsorship can earn revenue by dividing revenue from the mobile app with the sponsor, having an app sponsor for launch, or setting a monthly sponsorship fee. Brands use free apps to reach their target audiences and vice versa, creating a win-win for the sponsor and your business.  Model Limitations To succeed with sponsors, you need strong networking skills and a narrow focus. Sponsors can be notoriously difficult to find and pitch.  Sponsorship is usually incorporated with those applications that already have regular users and lots of data on those users—in other words, apps that are already mature in their market niche.  So if you have significantly grown your user base over time, have significant data on those users, and have created a well-established business, brands may be interested in establishing a sponsorship deal with you.  An Alternative: Affiliate Marketing Affiliate links are another variation of sponsorship, but instead of granting sponsorship rights exclusively to one organization, you’ll negotiate with a few interested partners and agree to place their reference links in your free app.  App affiliate marketing can be a great way to increase income from apps if you lack a market sponsor who is ready to cover your costs. App affiliates act as marketers and are rewarded for doing so.  Examples Mobile event apps like EventMobi enable event planners to offer exclusive sponsorship on the app or offer several tiers of visibility for sponsor listings. Apple’s affiliate program allows app publishers to promote products that people purchase through the App Store through their free apps. Concluding Thoughts on App Monetization Free apps and paid apps have costs associated with using them—whether behind the scenes, in the available features or content, upfront, or somewhere in between.  That being said, money shouldn’t be on your user’s minds but rather how much value and joy your app brings them. While there’s no silver bullet, the most successful monetization strategy for your app will be the one that integrates well enough that it feels like a normal part of the app experience.  We’re always happy to talk with our clients about which model—or combination of models—could be most effective for you. If you need help to decide, please reach out for a free consultation.

2 months ago

Business & Strategy

Our Hiring Process To Build an Inspired App Development Team

Importance of the Hiring Process Who we work with makes all the difference. InspiringApps’ hiring process is an important part of our culture. Our teams care deeply about who we hire. We’re always on the hunt for amazing, talented people who’ll make us a better version of ourselves. We’re passionate about our craft and united in our desire to build products that make a real difference. Steps in Our Hiring Process While we value confidence, there’s no room for ego at InspiringApps. Throughout our hiring process, we treat each other with consideration and respect. As a result, you can expect to have a great experience with InspiringApps. Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to help. Job Application To make it easy for you to apply, we provide a variety of options: InspiringApps Careers page, Built In,  LinkedIn (using “Easy Apply”), and other major job boards. You can also simply attach your resume with an email message to jobs@InspiringApps.com.  Applicant Review When you complete your application, we’ll review your unique strengths to see if they’re a fit. We truly appreciate your interest in InspiringApps, and we value our connection to you. Although we’re a small team, we can confirm that we personally review each application. However, typically, we only reach out to those candidates who are a fit. Initial Interview You’ll meet with the hiring manager for your role. Typically, that’s Stacy Griffin, Director of Operations. We want to get to know you better! That’s the purpose of this interview. Code Challenge for Technical Positions Our self-guided coding challenge reflects the real-life work environment you’ll work in. It allows you to show creativity, thought process, design, and more. Team Interview You’ll meet with three to four InspiringApps team members to review technical areas and logistics. You can expect a warm and empathetic welcome. We love to meet new people! Hiring Decision & Offer We work closely together internally to reach a decision and to let you know the outcome quickly. If we make an offer, you’ll start the onboarding process.    Who We Hire Each member of the InspiringApps team is a highly-talented, highly-respectful contributor. Positive attitudes and trust in each other drive much of our success.  Software developers, designers, and testers work together to deliver client concepts into full-fledged, go-to-market digital products. Together, we build custom web, iOS, and Android apps that are ready for launch. Our team is made up of… Accessible Leaders Accessible leadership creates an environment where the most innovative digital products continue to come to life. Brad Weber, InspiringApps’ President/CEO, has more than 25 years of software development experience. With a passion for software artisanship, Brad founded InspiringApps to build a team that could tackle larger app development challenges than he was able to handle on his own.  Hear Brad explain the importance of culture when building a remote team: Software Developers Software developers play an essential role in getting digital products up and running. There are three teams of developers and engineers at InspiringApps: web, Android, and iOS. Serving a broad client base means the business and technical challenges are usually fresh. And, there’s a high value placed on the design and polish of apps.  Inspired employees make InspiringApps. Nadia Magallon, a software engineer on the web team, explains how being a dog trainer inspires her and how it relates to her work at InspiringApps: Designers Building a successful digital product requires more than development skills—design is crucial for any app project. At InspiringApps, our design skills elevate us from what other development agencies can provide. Our UI/UX designers work to create a well-designed user experience and a beautiful interface for clients. Aaron Lea, art director, UX/UI designer, and illustrator, has a creative digital design process that puts novel creations into the world: Testers Finding and fixing bugs is an essential part of quality testing, but there’s much more involved than ensuring apps don’t crash. Quality assurance (QA) testing starts with a test plan to evaluate all the app’s essential functions. Our QA testing team creates and executes test cases to ensure the app will work as the client and users expect it to. Dan Harris, part of the testing team, shares his passion for guitar building and how attention to detail can be both art and science: What we all have in common… The traits of a successful InspiringApps team member are curiosity, humility, empathy, and persistence. Curiosity We’re problem-solvers. Whether you’re a developer, designer, or tester on our team, you benefit from being curious about what works, what doesn’t, and why. Because we’re curious about new tools and techniques, we’re able to keep up with the latest advances across our disciplines. Humility Growth comes from making mistakes and improving. Recognizing we’re all a work in progress facilitates that growth without the hindrance of being embarrassed or ashamed.  Empathy Empathetic teams design and build thoughtful products. At InspiringApps, we design and build mobile and web solutions to help people. We help entrepreneurs start businesses around the products we create. We offer convenience, knowledge, fitness, and hopefully a little joy to the consumers we serve. Team members who care about the people using the products we create will craft considerably better solutions than those who don’t.  Persistence Persistence is beyond getting the job done. It’s bringing the passion for doing things well to your work every day. We sweat the details, so you’ll need the ability, when necessary, to deep dive—to look at something over and over and hone it until it not only works but works well and is easily maintained and changed.   How We’re Unique Our Tech Stack We’ve had the privilege of designing and developing 200+ apps and custom software for both innovative startups and Fortune 100 companies. We have experience in aerospace, fintech, healthcare, and a variety of other industries honed over the past 15 years. Still, technology is moving at hypersonic speed, giving way to more innovative, efficient, and engaging ways to do the things we love. We work on novel methods for our clients to harness technology to transform how people interact with the world around them.  Emerging technology can reshape industries and experiences and guide businesses and consumers into a new era of communication—so the graphics you see below are just a representation of a tech stack that’s constantly evolving. Technology We Use: Engineering Technology We Use: Product Values To Work By InspiringApps designs and builds mobile, web, and custom apps, providing strategic business solutions and immersive experiences that transform ideas into reality. We help companies impact their employees, customers, and communities by creating strong partnerships with inspired companies. In concert with the above mission statement, the following core values shape who we are in and out of our office: Understanding & Perspective That Shapes the Process & the Product Empathy comes naturally to our team members, and it’s easy for us to find the right questions that get to the heart of our client’s intent. We have a deep capacity for understanding a problem from a business, development, and user perspective, holistically framing our entire software development process in the key areas that make a product successful. Consideration & Appreciation for Client, Team, & Individual Diverse backgrounds, skills, hobbies, and perspectives make us a stronger team. We appreciate and embrace each other’s differences. We respect our clients and their ideas, and we work hard to approach problem-solving from a positive perspective as equal partners. A Mandate Kept Top of Mind for the InspiringApps Team We seek equality for both our team and our products. Inclusivity best practices are made throughout our software development process. Inclusive recruiting initiatives remain top of mind for our team. Approaching Tasks & Team With Passion & Intention Easy to use is often hard to design, so we sweat the details, treating clients’ app development projects like our own. Clients repeatedly convey they love working with us because we passionately dig into projects alongside them. Our team is committed to the work and to each other. Small but mighty, the culture has a cohesive atmosphere that never skips a beat. Approaching All With Heart & Authenticity Integrity is at the core of all we do at InspiringApps and is exhibited throughout our hiring, training, and development practices. Honesty, excellence, and authenticity are as important to us as they are to our clients. Rewarding Work Trust-Based Remote Work & Great Locations We care about your contribution, and we trust you to meet expectations. While there’re general times we’re all available, you’re empowered to work when and where you work best. Inspired where we are—that’s our mantra. Our teammates work from their homes across the country. But we also have access to our Boulder HQ and coworking spaces in major cities.  Free Healthcare Plans & Lots of Insurance Options We offer health, dental, vision, life, and AD&D insurance plans at no cost to you. That means we cover 100% of the premium cost for employees for the standard plans. Should you wish to elect extra coverage, there are a variety of plans to choose from. Dependents and spouses are covered at 50% of the premium cost for eligible plans. Generous Time Off + Parental Leave We expect everyone to deliver their best. You take care of your work and take the time off you need. For general paid time off or sick time, there’s no need to count days. And to support families’ health and well-being, we provide two weeks of paid parental leave. Take an additional four weeks of unpaid parental leave or six weeks if you’re the primary caregiver. 401(k) With Match & Profit Sharing Plan for your future and financial independence with InspiringApps’ support. We offer a 401(k) plan and will match 4% of your contributions. Furthermore, your work makes a difference to the bottom line, so we share company profits. Opportunities are based on salary, hours worked, and years of service. Professional Development & Innovation Days Your ongoing education matters to us. Attend job-related conferences or training sessions. Join learning communities. Mentor others. Ask for what you need to keep your skills sharp. Social Connections Remote work that feels like a close-knit team: part of the culture at InspiringApps. Drop in for a virtual social hour, join an expense-paid annual getaway, or hang out on Slack. Share a deeper connection with everyone on the team than you’ll find elsewhere. Impact Join us in doing work that strengthens communities. As just one example, the Cancer Exercise app is the first mobile exercise app for iOS specifically designed for cancer survivors of all ages, regardless of their level of physical condition, types and stages of cancer, and types of treatment—and even those who have won the fight and find themselves years beyond treatment. Our client Anna L. Schwartz, Ph.D., FNP-BC, FAAN, a world-renowned pioneer in cancer and exercise oncology, created the app to bring customized exercise plans to cancer survivors that improve their quality of life. The app was nominated for both a Best Mobile App Award and an AVA Digital Gold Award in its first year. For more examples, see Impact: When Work Meets Mission.    How We Thrive Here are our strengths as a group: Customer Service & Satisfaction Top & High-Quality Work Experience & Expertise Finish Line, Every Time Empathetic Approach Establishing Authentic Connections Partnership & Collaboration Creativity & Problem-Solving Aesthetic & Design Nailing & Improving User Experience Pitch & Presentation Happy people make great products. We create strong partnerships with inspired companies, helping companies to positively impact their employees, customers, and communities. InspiringApps’ clients say we aren’t like vendors; we feel like part of their internal teams. Happy clients share praise, recommend us, and commit to new work. Our strong company culture fosters loyalty, creativity, and motivation. We’re selective in our hiring. We’ve gathered a diverse and accomplished group, deep with app design and development experts. And about half of our team has worked together for at least five years, providing a cohesion that’s unusual in the software industry. Today, our virtual and established team enables us to passionately dig into projects alongside our clients.   Quick Tips & FAQ I haven’t heard back about my application. What should I do? We’ve likely proceeded with another candidate if you haven’t heard from us about an application you submitted in the last two months. We’ll reach out should there be an opportunity in the future. If you have further questions, please email us. Can I work from anywhere, including locations in other countries? Nearly all of our roles require our team members to reside in the United States. Although we might make an exception, we prefer that applicants currently live in Colorado, Florida, Texas, Arizona, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, or Oregon. Do you work with other agencies, such as recruitment firms or independent contractors? We partner with other organizations and individuals occasionally and strategically. However, we have never worked with an external recruiting firm and don’t hire independent contractors to work on client-facing projects. Do you hire for apprenticeship positions? IA Commits provides additional technical and career training for aspiring software developers. We may also offer internship opportunities in other areas. View our open listings for further information and to apply. Do I need a degree to work here? A learner mindset is a commonality we share, but most of our positions don’t require a specific degree. What if I need accommodations for the interview? If you need accommodations, please let us know. We invest highly in creating an inclusive hiring environment for everyone who applies.  

3 months ago

App Development

The Cost of App Development

Are you an entrepreneur leading a startup with a new business idea? Or a CEO looking to increase enterprise productivity with a mobile app idea? In either case, a top concern is the cost of app development.  Mobile apps are integral to everyday life. We can monitor health data, track finances, and show the weather by tapping a few buttons. Behind the scenes, though, the complexity of the code varies. Mobile app development costs reflect that.  In the sections that follow, we explain: Factors that influence the cost of developing a mobile application. Functionality and app features are the heavy influencers on application development costs. Other factors include the development platforms, the user interface, and server requirements.  App development cost breakdown. App development costs begin at around $25,000 for a simple standalone app. Development costs increase to over $1 million for a complex app with numerous integrations and new features. We’ll break down the average costs by app type. Tips to protect your app development budget. Downloading a new app might set you back a few bucks. But this seemingly cheap accessibility can mask hidden costs. We want to bring those to light so you can develop your app on time and within budget.  Factors That Influence the Cost To Develop a Mobile Application What determines the ballpark cost of building an app? Before digging into app development cost ranges, let’s review these factors. App Features & Complexity It makes sense that the more basic the app is, the lower the cost. Expenses start rising with additional functionality and app features that lengthen the app development process.  Logins, push notifications, payment processing, and rating functions all raise costs. Even though apps may use some similar features, the cost can vary based on the app’s complexity. A complex feature set:  Requires additional upfront work to understand user experience needs.  Increases complexity in UX design.  Takes additional time to code during the development process. Requires additional quality assurance tests. Development Platforms Simply put, more platforms mean higher mobile app development costs. Even with cross-platform development tools, Apple and Google apps will have unique requirements that require specialized development. Selecting an iOS app, an Android app, or a cross-platform app is a decision you shouldn’t base on cost alone. However, the cost will vary based on platform type. Android and iOS app development tools are more similar than ever. Still, Android apps are generally more expensive to create than iOS apps are for iPhones. If you opt for Android, an increase in app development cost of 20% to 25% isn’t out of the question. This increase is primarily due to ongoing changes in operating system versions and device form factors. Target Audience A consumer app built for the general public must stand on its own more than an enterprise app. Consumer apps require users to download and use them without much guidance. They need extra care to develop an intuitive and polished user interface during app design. Internally oriented apps should also be high quality and easy to use. Still, in contrast to consumer apps, there are opportunities to help train and guide users directly. Apps that require fewer onboarding features have lower related development costs. They’re also less expensive because they have a less complicated UX design. Server Requirements Standalone apps either require no backend server or can function without network connectivity. However, when a backend server is involved, you must consider its configuration, ongoing hosting, and maintenance. Providing data to apps requires its own set of coding using APIs. The ability to exchange data with the server requires additional software development work. App Development Cost Breakdown Our framework for estimating app development prices is based on the type of app. Standalone, basic apps are in the bottom cost bracket of mobile application development. Social media and ecommerce apps usually hit the middle of the average cost range. The most expensive apps pair with physical objects or enable control and interactions with remote objects. Cost To Develop an App With Zero or Limited Network Connectivity Standalone, simple apps do not access a server, require no authentication to work, and have a limited need for a network connection. This category includes apps with basic features like clocks, calculators, and weather apps.  Typical Cost Range per Platform: $25,000 to $50,000 Cost To Develop an App With User Authentication Most apps today require user authentication. This category includes apps that help with more complex tasks like managing a household, tracking fitness data, monitoring stock portfolios, or curating a wine list. User authentication implies user profiles or accounts. It means there will be a need for data storage to store and protect personal data and the ability to sync across devices or interact with data in other ways. Average costs rise because of these features. Typical Cost Range per Platform: $50,000 to $250,000 Cost To Develop a Social Networking or Ecommerce App Many apps include social features. At a minimum, social networking apps offer basic functionality. Features include user authentication, friend networks, and messaging. Social networking apps also interact with other users’ data, for example, through likes and comments. Apps in this category are prevalent. Many are heavily used—Twitter, Facebook, WhatsApp, and TikTok, to name a few. Ecommerce apps have social features, too. For example, the app may enable you to like or share a favored product. Ecommerce apps also require payment gateways and the ability to access a product database. For some of these functions, developers can use off-the-shelf platforms. The more customization each function requires, the more design, development time, and thus costs incurred. As a result, there’s quite a bit of cost variability.  Typical Cost Range per Platform: $75,000 to $800,000 Cost To Develop an App That Connects to a Smart Device Smart apps are considered part of a technology category called the Internet of Things (IoT). It’s a fancy name to convey the idea that the app communicates with objects in the real world. Objects include everything from garage door openers to thermostats to wheelchairs. This category has the highest upper-end cost. However, these apps don’t necessarily have complex features. They may just need low-level interaction with firmware that controls the hardware. Those that are more feature-laden can drive costs up significantly.  Typical Cost Range per Platform: $50,000 to $1,000,000 Tips To Protect Your App Development Budget Hidden costs can impact your app development budget. To protect your app development project from scope creep, consider these questions: Do you need a cross-platform app? Unless your app is extremely simple, if you plan to make it available on multiple platforms, we still encourage you to build each native app sequentially—one platform after the other. Apps go through several iterations before they offer the desired user experience. And trying to manage learnings from those iterations across two platforms is cumbersome.  Instead, you can apply feedback and refinements from the first platform to speed development on the next—saving time and money. This approach enables you to efficiently apply learnings from your customers. How will you market and maintain your app? App development costs reflect just that—creating the app. Once built, ongoing app maintenance costs and enhancements and optimization are almost always required. You’ll also need to market your app to your target audience on Google Play or the App Store and respond to user feedback. We encourage you to learn about mobile app marketing and user retention before you begin the development stage if you’re unfamiliar with these concepts. What do you need from your developer? An individual or small developer shop can do stellar coding work. However, outsourcing your project to a larger app development company may offer additional services you need to succeed. These development services range from UX design and specialized Java or other programming language skills to mobile app strategy, project management, and marketing expertise. A higher price tag might be more than worth it to gain assistance from an experienced app development team in areas critical to market success. What is your developer’s pricing strategy? A freelancer’s cost structure differs from that of a large mobile app development company. Common pricing structures include: Hourly Rates: With hourly pricing, the development agency charges a rate for each hour worked. The developer tracks the number of hours spent on your project. They estimate how many hours they believe the project will take in a proposal or statement of work. But they charge for every hour worked, whether that total time is below or above the approximation, in the final cost. Fixed Cost: In a fixed-price project, the developer will provide you with the project’s total cost and (hopefully) stick with that number. When work above and beyond the original scope is necessary, the developer should tell you how much extra work will cost before moving ahead. Some software development companies have created price-my-app cost calculators that offer a projected total cost. In our experience, estimating app development costs is a layered process. We can project the app development cost more accurately by speaking with you. Are any guarantees offered? You want to be able to plan your time and budget for the project’s length. Ensure the app development company provides a written app development cost estimate to agree on the expectations. It happens more often than you think—you’re midstream in the mobile app development process, and the project stalls. For that reason, we offer a specific guarantee: finish line, every time, and every project. Concluding Thoughts: The Cost To Develop Your App App development costs are a significant investment. But that investment is usually worth it. Millions of people use their mobile devices daily. There’s enormous potential for mobile app monetization (whether you’re using a freemium or app purchase model). In the case of enterprise apps, business productivity provides ROI. Eager for a quote? Book a free consultation.

3 months ago

InspiringApps News

InspiringApps Announces Growth Plans for the Future

Boulder, CO—In the latest article from Built In Colorado, InspiringApps President & CEO Brad Weber shares the growth plans at InspiringApps and what the company is looking for in top candidates. What InspiringApps does: Backed by exceptional talent, InspiringApps helps world-class brands design and develop Android and iOS web apps and custom software solutions. With a portfolio of more than 200 apps, the company is well-positioned to help other companies’ internal teams employ best practices. InspiringApps is also launching its IA Commits initiative to provide career opportunities for less experienced developers while serving nonprofit organizations.  Where InspiringApps is headed: The company has spent the last two years honing their skills for anticipated growth, and the team is now designing better quality products, quicker than before. “I am excited about the growth, not for growth’s sake, but because we’ve invested time and talent to prepare our people and processes to support it,” said President and CEO Brad Weber. This growth, especially in the fintech industry, has increased demand for talent in Flutter, JavaScript, Kotlin, React and Swift. “We are growing our development teams, and new team members will join a cohesive group of professionals who have served clients together for years,” said Weber. Who InspiringApps is looking to hire: The InspiringApps team is looking to find people who exemplify three characteristics: curiosity, humility and empathy. Designers, developers, project managers and testers “all benefit from being curious about what works, what doesn’t and why,” explained Weber. “In order to keep up with the latest advances across our disciplines, we have to be curious about new tools and techniques.” Humility relates to the ability to learn and grow from mistakes. “Confidence is valued, but there is no place for ego on our team,” he said. Finally, having empathy when working with customers is a gamechanger, Weber explained. “Team members who care about the people using the products we create will craft considerably better solutions than those who don’t.”

3 months ago