Software for Enterprise

How much does it cost to update an app?

If you have some doubts about app updates, the necessity of such actions, and its cost,  the following article will help you to make the final decision.

Like any product or service, every app will require certain updates and improvements after it is released. This is caused by dynamic market requirements and customer trends.

The app updates are basically one of the strongest marketing tools, which provide connections between your company and the consumers. Nowadays, the average customer has up to 30 mobile applications on his/her device, so regular updates can help to highlight your app among the rest.

With the frequent updates, your company can expect loyal customer relationships and the lengthened use of your app. But how much will it cost to reach such levels?

Cost of app updates

Many app owners falsely believe that after releasing an app, the cost of creating an app is finally determined. In fact, the app itself demands permanent updates to keep or increase market quota and the number of users. The simplest answer to the question, how much the app updates costs is the answer to how good it was built.

A golden rule for estimating the costs of app maintain, including updates, is 20% per year of the primary app development costs. So, if your app development budget was $100,000, you can expect about $20,000 spending per year for app updates and support. It seems quite expensive, but with poor design, lack of important features, and without timely updates, your app won’t attract a lot of users.

Factors, influencing the cost

In many aspects, the app development process affects the costs of the following updates.

Among the main factors, which form the price of app updates are:

App Store Cost Payment order
Apple App Store $99 Yearly basis
Google Play $25 One-time payment
Windows Store $49 for individual/

$99 for company

One-time payment
Amazon Appstore $99 Yearly basis

Source ThinkMobiles

Main reasons to update your app

To understand the importance of frequent updates, let’s see on the major reasons for improving your app:

 Source SensorTower

How often do you need to update your app?   

Pinterest currently has about 100 million downloads on Google Play with every three weeks updates. The company product manager, Mike Beltzner explains the reasons for such frequency: “Because I got pushback when I tried for two? That’s an honest answer”.

During a three-week development cycle, only a small piece of the mobile app code can be changed each time. And in case of a bug, the company can quickly fix it. When the company had a long time between updates releases, the number of updated features was bigger, and the possibility of mistakes was higher. So, luckily for Pinterest, they found ideal updates frequency.

But, how to define the terms specifically for your company? Most successful and popular apps release 1-4 updates a month. But, as it is shown below, only the third part of all app owners are ready for monthly extra costs of further development of its mobile application.

Source AnyPresence

The frequency depends on user feedback, data, team size. Most feature updates should be done up to two weeks, but the longer this process will take time, the faster bugs need to be fixed.

Beside weekly or monthly bug fixing and features updates, there is a possibility for renewals, when the app gets a brand-new look. Just notice how Instagram through the years uses simple updates together with version upgrades. What in the end led this app to the highest popularity among the customers.

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To reach success and recognition by consumers, you must continue the work with your mobile application. And don’t expect it will cost nothing. One-fifth of the app development budget is the minimum price to maintain your app. Bug fixing, design, and feature updates are going to be a permanent part of the work to promote the mobile application. And only with every two-three week updates, your app will reach high rating and users’ popularity.

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