The thought of having a business, solely based on simply creating mobile applications through our creative minds to then be pushed off to a driven company that handles the transactions and logistics is simply amazing.
According to Statista “The number of smartphone users is forecast to grow from 2.1 billion in 2016 to around 2.5 billion in 2019”. https://www.statista.com/statistics/330695/number-of-smartphone-users-worldwide/
That’s over 2.1 billion people using smartphones every single day! Just take a moment to think about this. There is over 2.1 billion people who are a tap away from downloading your app. If this doesn’t make you excited, as far as seeing a great opportunity, than I don’t know what will. In another view, we can examine what its like for a retail store to get exposure. The store is stuck at 1 location in one city. Unless its able to open new stores and be online, it still has a problem with people not able to find them. Now for apps they still have a discovery problem, this is where niche apps come into play. If your app fills a need it is better positioned as all it takes is a tap away rather than needing to drive to a single located retail store which seems inconvenient.
The App Store Risks
If your apps are only available in one app store, or even all the top 5 app stores (iTunes, Mac App Store, Google Play, Amazon, and Microsoft), you are at mercy to them.
Any policy changes they make, which they do quite often, can either, raise your profits, keep them steady, make app discovery harder, or put you out of business altogether, overnight, most of times without notice. Not to mention some stores require annual fee’s to have the “privilege” to sell on their app store with of course a 30% cut from each app sale. The 30% cut the app stores take can be a bit hefty but for indie app developers like myself I see it favorable since they are taking care of the app transactions, refunds, and a online marketplace.
Because of the many risks it is always better to diversify through different app stores or if your brave enough, sell direct to consumers through your own personal website. Although you need to set in place merchant account to accept credit cards, transactions, refunds, ways to fight off pirates, more expensive website hosting services to handle the traffic, withholding taxes for every jurisdiction including overseas (app stores handles some of these), and advertising.
App Store Not Consistent With Paying Developers
Since I’m on all the 5 app stores I get a monthly direct deposit that works great. However, there is a certain app store that is not consistent and with no expected date to receive payment it can be frustrating. I think Apple’s payment is the most reliable one out of the 5 because it informs us when to expect payment and is pretty consistent within a day or two every month. Keep this in mind and be flexible. So if app store doesn’t pay up, good luck because customer service is useless or non existent.
So the opportunity of over 2.1 billion smartphone users globally, this is definitely a great opportunity to be in for app developers. As with any type of business there is always some kind of risk, the risks outlined here are the risks associated with app developers. It is really easy to get into this type of business and if you have the drive and consistency to do it, I don’t see why you wouldn’t be successful. You need to create valuable apps but not depend on just 1 app. I’ve read plenty of developers complain how it doesn’t work for them or blame other circumstances instead of there own. It takes hard work and dedication to creating new apps. There are apps that make money, ones that don’t even get 1 download but based on your situation the best solution is to just make a better one and move on. Complaining about a situation doesn’t get us anywhere or make us into a better person either. Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed but what is, is what we can control and that is our mind and how we respond to challenges and if we have the courage to solve them, results will show up.
Build out your app empire and watch the market grow with your app journey.