The article covers such a crucial aspect of mobile app creating process as prototyping and shares a bunch of essential reasons why it is important and effective.
The greater chase for entrepreneurs these days is conceiving that million-dollar idea, a truly revolutionary concept that’s bound to change the app environment. On the other side, there is the struggle to fund that ingenious idea. On the flip side, there are few worse feelings than struggling to fund that brilliant idea.
There are a lot of options for investors to choose from; thus, even entrepreneurs with splendid ideas could have a rough time securing funding for app development. One way to stand out from the rest and win over investors is prototyping. To develop a mobile app in React Native, iOS, or Android, prototyping is an interactive final product simulation, which only allows you and the team to evaluate concepts as well as share feedback early on in the early stages of development, but also demonstrate value to potential investors too.
For both app developers and stakeholders today, whether iOS or Android or React Native app developers, it’s one thing to have an idea or concept drawn on a piece of paper or a computer program, it’s another to see it in interactions. Therefore, prototyping is relevant because of the following reasons:
- Providing true design test and the functionality intended
- Testing the prototyped unit in its true environment, and possible issues overlooked with the process of manufacturing or the design itself could be changed and highlighted ahead of production
- Chance to review the unit prototyped and possibly add value to a client and review how we manufacture to see if we’re able to achieve the same results
- Opportunity for the manufacturing cycle to be familiar with the unit before full production commences
A prototype will not perform in the same manner as a product in post-production, and shouldn’t be subjected to the normal wear and tear. Prototyping enables testing the features of a product, user experiences, methods of manufacturing before going to full-scale production.
The gathered feedback and information from testing are paramount in the implementation and launch of the product. The faster the prototype is, the quicker you could test, improve, and launch the product to the market. Rapid prototyping is a chance to boost your project into a user-centered and intuitive product.
5 Reasons to Prototype App Idea Before Development
1. Prototyping Could Help Get Seed Funding
The majority of people may not find it appealing or even easy to ask others for money, regardless of the reason. It’s pretty awkward admitting that you don’t have enough funds to cover your business idea. Nevertheless, since business requires cash, you must look for ways of pushing through the uneasiness and do it.
Prototyping could help your magnificent idea get the needed seed funding to jumpstart your business. It could showcase the attention to detail and hard work you’ve put into your idea; thus, they could assume you will continue to be as dedicated as you are when the funding pushes through. A mobile prototype will show your investors that you have completed throughout the concept.
It should not necessarily be perfect, and you could always make changes later. Having a prototype, however, that’s functionality can impress your prospective investors a lot more compared to a bunch of sketches. Probably the most important of all is that it would show them your concept proof, which obviously is a great deal when trying to get to provide you funding.
2. It’s More Effective In Communication Than Sketching
The chances are that the majority of successful mobile app designs have begun in one place: on a piece of paper, a simple sketch, or a napkin in a bar or restaurant even. Sketches are paramount in the process of designing, as well as help relay and communicate ideas with fellow designers and developers, working through issues in the design and allowing implementing ideas you have in mind before they’re forgotten.
The communication possibilities nonetheless are very limited than mobile application prototyping. Sketches are static images; they couldn’t move, but you couldn’t transform them into something with just a touch of the finger.
Prototyping is as vital as sketching because it answers questions that sketches are not able to do so. Additionally, because prototypes are animated, you will be able to perfectly illustrate the desired transitions.
3. It Fits in the Whole Life Cycle
It’s not hard to imagine how the process fits at the beginning of the life cycle of a product. It helps get a mobile app design into an interactive and animated format, which could be easily shared with family, friends, and prospective investors. In a manner that’s extremely easy, you could play with various ideas and work out kinks that you could undo should you don’t like it.
What most business persons fail to realize is that it could be very versatile in the entire mobile app life. In the maturity and growth phases, prototyping could be used for testing out new features, as well as any changes you decide to make based on design trends changes or user data. Keeping updated could extend the life of the app for months, and even years.
4. It Provides a Leg-Up With Convincing Investors or Clients
Mobile application prototyping is often a missed step in the startup process. Nonetheless, who’s invested time in could take their startups to the next level. The truth is that if you have a prototype, you would impress your investors or clients more than the competition. People want to see examples of what they are investing in before putting money on it; thus, you should not skip this step. This lets you more feasibly and confidently ask for a higher amount. Furthermore, because you have a more attractive presentation compared to others, you would likely get funding.
5. It Makes Easier Lives of Entrepreneurs
The best thing about mobile app prototyping in mobile app development services is that it makes the lives of entrepreneurs better. Founders of a startup have a million small details in their heads all the time. It would seem at some point that there are just too many things in your head, thus let the prototype take some brilliant ideas in your head.
Major Elements to Consider In the Process of Prototyping
- The target audience. Who is the consumer of your product, and how would they use the product, as well as the pain points.
- Competition. Determine what you could do better than your competitors. Furthermore, what ideas do they lack?
- Core features to prototype. Which features would you put on priority? This helps cut out on non-essentials.
- User personas. Whether through observing behavior or asking questions on their goals and needs, you could build a persona for your ideal customer.
- User stories. How would users engage with your app? How would every feature of your app satisfy user needs?
Prospective stakeholders, before investing, would want to see a tangible product, and prototyping helps ease any concerns they have. It allows you to involve stakeholders and clients in the creative process in which you could ensure that the final product would have the features, meet the project goals, and match ideas for all parties.
- Idea validation. Realizing the functionality or design flaw after putting a lot of effort and time into a project could be deflating. Prototyping helps validate an idea and explore solutions early on. User testing helps to determine possible enhancements. Also, it could trigger ideas or confirm that you’re headed in the right direction.
- Reducing uncertainty. It’s never a good thing to be uncertain when creating an application. Sharing your vision and understanding of how the app must function, look, feel, and flow is critical for both developers and stakeholders. Equally important, you wouldn’t want to confuse users and leave them with no choice but to abandon or ignore the application. Prototyping could help build out the visuals, interface, and app interactions, which ensure its purpose is clear as day.
- Lower Costs. Assuming there would be no hiccups during development is a huge assumption to make, particularly if you’re new to apps development. Inefficiencies could end up costing more money, so it’s important to be clear before starting development, instead of going back for several rounds of fixes. Prototyping inspires and urges feedback and lends a final product that’s not just better but more cost-effective as well. Without prototyping, it could be tougher to identify and fix deficiencies, secure funding, and keep costs down.
- Secure Funding. Before they invest, prospective stakeholders would want to see a tangible product. In this regard, prototyping helps a great deal. Presenting a prototype to possible investors would work in the same manner as demonstrating the potential of the product.
Moreover, prototyping lets you get involved with stakeholders and clients in the creative process to ensure that the final product would have. If you seek funding, your prospective investors may steer clear from your product without a prototype. A prototype, therefore, assures them the clearness of your direction and goals.
If you don’t have enough funding for your brilliant app idea, then prototyping could be the answer. The process is invaluable to the process of application creation, which enables you to validate ideas, lower the costs, and lessen the uncertainty. There is different app prototyping software to choose from. Moreover, there are also application developers with extensive experience in the process.
About the Author: this is the guest post by Olivia Diaz from eTatvaSoft, an enterprise-level mobile application development company. Being a tech geek, she keeps a close watch over the industry, focusing on the latest technology news and gadgets.
Title image by Prakhar Neel Sharma
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