Web development is one process consisting of multiple phases. Just as time is segmented into centuries, decades, years, months, weeks, days, hours, minutes, seconds, the web development process is also segmented into steps for better understanding and supervision. The segmentation of the steps differs from one developer to developer. Here, we will accentuate over the salient steps or phases of web development process. Different developers might give these a different name, but the work done in each step is the same.
1.Collection of Information
The first phase includes a collection of information and requirements. If it is your website, you outline what look you want at the front-end and what you wish at the back-end, the goal of the website. It is for traffic only or converting visitors into leads. If it is client’s website, ask the questions that would fetch you enough information to move on to the next step.
2. Planning Phase
Once you have enough information to start your web development project on paper, you start off with the planning stage. It’s time to work and the list of requirements and research on the basis of the information gathered. The best optimal solutions are offered to proceed with the work in the planning stage, tasks are allocated, and deadlines are given.
3. Web Designers
Web designers come into play to prepare a mockup to let everyone see how will the website look before it is actually made. Web development and designing go hand in hand. Any changes in the visual aspect can be made at this phase of the development process. Designers are also given the list of requirements for the clients and functionality to be used on the website. The designers in some cases prepare a wireframe to check if everything is in its place.
4. And, The Coding Begins
Once the design is ready and every element in its place, the coding part begins to bring the design to life. This is the core web development phase. Page after page, functionality after functionality, the codes are implemented, re-checked. Best framework and language are chosen that keep the website light and maintain a good page speed.
5. Testing and Delivery
Once the coding is done, testing phase in web development begins. It is done to eradicate the minor or major errors if any. The goal of each functionality is thoroughly checked on several parameters to see if it is working on all browsers, devices. When all the errors are rectified and the website is fully functional as the client wanted it gets delivered to the client.
Bonus Phase and The Most Important One
Updates in the content display, functionality, adding more products/services, and managing them all are taken care in the maintenance phase. This goes on as the demand for the updates is generated.
Prepare your project sheet and segment the complete web development process in these phases. The key is to concentrate on each point at one time so as to deliver efficient overall results.
Knowing what investors are looking for in mobile apps is a game of utter unsurity.
The investment/funding rounds most often than not come in waves.
2017 was the year of Blockchain. Investors were swooping in to grab a piece of the decentralized pie.
2018 was all about mobile app startup funding of ubernized business models. Businesses like eScooters and P2P travel accommodation booking came on the forefront during this time.
2019, surprisingly was all about Fintech. Investors from all across the world and different interest groups were funding projects making Fintech sector reach the developing and underdeveloped nations. They also showed a special interest in projects that would combine the domain with disruptive technologies like Blockchain and AI, etc. This, in turn, helped set up the grounds for app investment trends 2020.
At Anteelo, we are known to help our clients get funding on their project idea and finished applications. It’s an event that results from our knowledge of the steps of how to get an investment for an app and knowing what types of apps investors invest in.
We have shared the first part of the knowledge in this article – steps to raise money for your mobile app startup. In there, we had touched base upon a number of things: How much mobile apps fund do you actually need, the types of investors for mobile app startup, Things investors look for in an app, and how to get investors for your app. In our another article on the ‘Alternate Funding Models’ we have also looked into the different models that businesses can look into if the traditional routes don’t work.
In this article, we will get you acquainted with what mobile apps investors will be looking for in 2020.
*Disclaimer: This article has been the result of our observations. The ultimate probability of businesses getting funding for app startup will depend on what individual investors are looking for and how well businesses are able to promote their value offering.
App Types Investors Will be Focusing on in 2020
A. On-Demand or Educational Cannabis Apps
Cannabis is getting legalized across the world like wildfire. Entrepreneurs are looking ahead to different tips to make their cannabis business successful. And with this, the inclusion of technology in the sector for making it worldwide. A massive tech driven demand for the industry is coming in from the mobile domain. In fact, the cannabis sector has become a prominent part of the on demand app investment trends 2020.
Businesses, from all across the globe, are finding ways to make cannabis accessible to users from their smartphones, whether it’s through cannabis delivery applications or apps educating people of how and to what extent should they use cannabis.
Zak Garcia, the chief marketing officer at CBD Capital Group says “with hemp-derived CBD products legal in all 50 states, the market is growing at 132%”. According to the Brightfield Group report as well, the total cannabis market is projected to reach $22 billion by 2022.
B. Real Estate Apps Blended with AR/VR or Blockchain
With the interest rates across the globe being on a historic low, it is very difficult for mobile app investors to not like real estate sector.
Being an industry that affects the majority and is ripe for technological advancements, real estate is poised to get a lot of investor attention in the coming time. The attention defining the real estate app investment trends 2020 will majorly be seen around products that make real estate accessible to the world and bring transparency in the domain.
This in turn, translates into how important it is for entrepreneurs who already have a solution to get in touch with their real estate mobile app development company and get their mobile apps features updated, maybe even get it incorporated with new technologies like Blockchain. In fact, if you do end up taking the decentralization route, you’ll be able to avail the benefits of blockchain app investment trends 2020 as well.
Louise Samet, Partner at Blossom Capital, Stockholm, Sweden says, “I’m excited about the global opportunity in B2B fintech. For quite a while now, there’s been a lot of focus on consumer fintech products, while there’s still a huge opportunity in B2B payments, banking and insurance. Companies like Pleo and Tink are growing extremely fast and others are following.”
Like Real estate, Fintech is another mobile app market that holds the potential to disrupt the masses. An application that uses a combination of different technologies like Blockchain’s decentralization and Artificial Intelligence with the domain, is poised to be an instant hit with the mobile apps investor in 2020.
The app investment trends 2020 will not just see a greater rise in P2P payment app development but also ones that help millennials more financially sound and secure, such as stock market apps like Robinhood app or AI-powered budgeting app like Cleo.
D. ERP Solutions Backed by Big Data
Investors have a special place for infrastructure solutions that help startups and enterprises grow. An example of this can be seen in Slack, Intercom, or Skype for businesses. This year as well, they will be focusing on products that help businesses deliver better solutions or simply better streamline their processes.
In this vein, we can see investments happening in business automation systems helping brands across industries – Finance, Manufacturing, Healthcare, etc.
Sarah Smith, the Investing Partner at Bain Capital Ventures, says “I believe the way leaders, managers, teams, and all employees interact and work is changing quite rapidly, but it is not yet clear if one super-app will stitch together everything a remote team needs or if we’ll deploy even more apps than before. More importantly, I’m keen to find tools that create the trust, empathy and companionship that inherently comes with in-person interactions which are mostly lost in a fully remote working world.”
E. mHealth Apps Incorporated with Machine Learning or Blockchain
The fact that the healthcare domain is still mainly practiced with humans, even after going through the stages of healthcare evolution, being the sole innovation agents, offers a massive opportunity for incorporation of custom healthcare software development driven by technologies. The combination of Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare and Healthcare and Blockchain hold the potential to evolve the entire health and care ecosystem.
The health app investment trends 2020 are bound to see investors inclining towards app solutions that makes healthcare cost efficient and real time accessible to the masses. On this front, they will also be showing interest in insurance applications which would help people in need in real time through the scope of micro lending.
Geographical Markets That Will Statistically Get Investors’ Attention
The global mobile app investment landscape will be fundamentally altered by the impact of changing trade regimen and digital disruption. In order to remain competitive in the market, businesses will have to work in close alliance with policy makers to adapt and then respond to the changing economic globalization.
One such shift can be seen in the United Kingdom because of the Brexit. The country is seeing its top position getting challenged by several other countries and projects to Germany.
The app investments trends 2020 can be seen betting on the growth potential of India, with the country’s economy coming on track to overtake China as the most populous country by 2027, according to the United Nations.
Also, Vietnam, which is one of Asia’s fastest-growing economies, is becoming a profitable haven for U.S. multinationals looking to safeguard themselves in the US-China tariff issues.
“There’s huge growth potential in Asia,” says Rich Sega, the global chief investment strategist at asset manager Conning. “The geopolitical stress in Hong Kong has opened up opportunities for other areas in the region for Vietnam, Thailand and Singapore.”
Ultimately, investors will be looking for mobile apps solutions that make technology mainstream, taking it to domains and nations which have been operating sans them. Moreover, they will be expanding their focus from leading nations like Australia and the USA to emerging markets, which show a potential of immense economic growth.
Now that you have got a starting point for 2020, it is time to take the journey and come in the conscious mind of investors looking for investing in an app startup.
Have you been struggling lately with your design-development workflow? Are you experiencing the handoff problem resulting in poor product decisions? Looking for ways to significantly improve it? Well, you need a Design Systems. It will help you work better, faster and improve your team collaboration. But what really is a Design System?
Well, a Design System is a fairly new idea in the digital transformation landscape. But one that has stirred up a lot of emotions and interest lately.
Known by many names such as Atomic Design Methodology, Component Design, and Design Language, the idea behind a design system is creating a series of design components that can be reused by you and your team.
Airbnb and Uber have fundamentally changed how digital products are designed by implementing their own unique design systems. By using a series of repeatable components and a set of standards that facilitate the use of these components, these companies were able to drastically change the pace of innovation and production within their teams.
What are Design Systems?
When too many people work on the same project and face the same challenges in a design team, each person finding a unique way to solve the problem can result in an incoherent experience for the user when they use the product. The fundamentals of a Design Systems is to manage design at scale.
The definition of a Design System is a series of elements that can be combined and reused on a product by the whole team. It includes colors, designs, components and character styles. These series of components can be reused in different combinations.
Product Design has always been about consistency and predictability. With a unified Design System, you can build products better, faster and it results in a cohesive experience for the user.
A Design System helps companies render exceptional UX and strengthen their brand.
The Handoff Problem:
Previously, Designers and Developers faced a lot of problems. Due to iterations, requirement changes and siloed nature of design and development, handoff posed a lot of challenges. More often than not, it resulted in developers being blocked by designers and poor product decisions.
By focusing on commonly used components, there has been greater collaboration between designers and developers and previously siloed teams are now working off the same mental model. Seeing already existing design system components eliminates a great deal of duplicated effort.
The component-based design model is a great step. It has significantly reduced the need for handoff.
Design System is a consistent approach to product development, one that encompasses guidelines, principles, philosophies, and code. A design system is a perfect tool for scaling the design practice, eliminating the need for hand-off and facilitating greater collaboration.
Difference Between a Design System, Pattern Library and Style Guide
Design Systems are a comprehensive guide on how to design a product. It is not just the classification of components but a whole process. It is a collection of rules, principles and best practices. The main element of a Design System is a library of UI components.
More often than not, a Design System is interchangeably used with a Style Guide or a Component Library. However, these are sub-components of a Design System.
A Design System is far more complex than simple style guides. It includes everything from colors to documentation. What a Design System really does is, it defines a common visual language for the product teams.
It speeds up the design process. A System Design bridges the gap between the teams involved in building a final product with consistent graphics standards, making it super easy to create websites from components. It is like a rulebook for the design and development teams and can be broken down into:
Design System – The entire set of design standards along with principles, patterns, and components on how to achieve them.
Pattern Library- A sub-component of Design System, a pattern library is a repository of reusable components and user interface design elements. Essentially, a pattern library is a collection of design elements that surface multiple times on a site.
Style Guide- Another sub-component of the Design System, a Style Guide emphasizes the visual presentation and determines how products should look. It includes colours, fonts, brand attributes and logos.
Why should you use a Design System?
There are many benefits of this System. It helps the entire company deliver better and more consistent design solutions efficiently. A Design System eases out the process of designing delightful experiences for end-users.
1. Facilitates Consistency-
Building a System begins with classifying all the visual components within a product. This helps in highlighting the biggest inconsistencies within the product and helps the team decide the product’s relevant and most commonly used elements and components. Consistency in Design is the most crucial Design Principle.
2. Better communication-
For the team involved in product development, Design Systems are often referred to as the single source of truth. It helps the team to plan, develop and maintain product quality.
Single source of truth (SSOT) is a concept that organizations apply as part of their information architecture to ensure that everyone uses the same data when making business decisions.
Since it is a single source of truth, this implies it also includes the vocabulary that may be used in the project. Gone are the days when a developer referred to a button as the red colored one. This leads to better discussions between the developers and designers and allows them to talk in the same naming convention.
3. Clarity to Developers-
With a design system in place, developers have a clear vision of how to build the required components while maintaining the unified styles.
4. Iterate Faster-
By implementing a Design System, teams can iterate a lot faster. You can release new designs with lesser resources in small chunks and with shorter feedback loops. It helps you stay organized and up to date with all the design changes your team makes.
5. Leveraging Each Other’s work–
Since Design Systems can be shared across multiple teams, efficiencies can be extended across teams and products. It has become easy to leverage other people’s work, use each other’s innovation without reinventing the wheel.
Operating at scale and improving efficiency and consistency are the main advantages of using and maintaining a Design System. Since you are reusing components in a Design System, the time and effort spent on building one really pays off in the long run. Your design and development team can just tweak the existing products, enhance the experience or focus on building other products.
Examples of Design System
With a staggering rise in the number of devices, environments, and browsers, there is an ever-increasing need to develop thoughtful interface design systems.
Design Systems are an industry standard. Not only do they provide the best team collaboration and keep your project organized, it also provides design guidance which is especially important in larger design teams. In recent years, leading tech firms have shared their design concepts and conventions, and here’s a list of the best design systems:
1. Material Design
Material Design System is widely known for its simplicity of navigation. It is a design language developed by Google in 2014 to create consistency across all Android design and devices and is widely adopted by Android and Web App developers.
Atlassian Design System is quite exhaustive and is widely used to create straightforward and beautiful experiences.
Polaris from Shopify is widely popular for simplifying the designer-developer workflow.
Carbon Design System is IBM’s open-source design system for products and experiences, with the IBM design language as its foundation.
5. Human Interface Guidelines
Human Interface Guidelines is a Design System prepared by Apple for all their platforms which provides in-depth UI resources and practical information.
Created by Hewlett- Packard, Grommet is a design system that can help you embrace atomic design methods and build a library that meets your needs.
Mailchimp’s design system is all about bold and creative designs with a focus to provide a consistent structure to the design language.
8. Digital Telepathy
Digital Telepathy is a Digital Design agency. Over the years they have refined a results-driven design methodology to iteratively improve the experience of customers.
Since the initial design system was not scalable, Zomato recently came up with a new design system called Sushi. It provides a new and enhanced experience to its users with the Zomato app.
How can Design System benefit designers?
Now that you know what is a design system in UX and UX review, and the many benefits of having one, a design system benefits designers and simplifies the tasks for them. As a leading mobile app design company, we noticed that for Designers it has become easy to break down the UI into small parts rather than consider the whole webpage as one entity. You can think of a particular page as a set of components and quickly find and use the right component, pattern or style option( color, icons, fonts, etc.) from the Design System.
Instead of re-thinking the foundation of each new experience for your products, a Design System keeps designers, developers, product managers as well as multiple stakeholders aligned with the design vision of the company and allows the team to easily focus on pixel-perfect development.
Geographical distances should not be a roadblock to collaboration and creativity. Who understands this better than a digital product development team? Going by this sentiment, for a process that lays down the basics of creativity and collaboration at the product ideation stage – Design Sprint – the steps should be the least complex.
While good to hear, on paper, the reality is that for a lot of brands, the process of a design sprint is difficult when conducted in a room, let alone when conducted remotely.
But with 85% of our clients belonging to other global nations, we have more or less mastered the art of running remote design sprints. So now when remote is the new workplace normal, we are in a somewhat better space.
Here’s our design sprint process that your team can also benefit from.
Table of Content
What is the design sprint methodology?
Challenges of Running Design Sprints Remotely
Pre-Design Sprint Model
4 Days Remote Product Design Sprint Process
Remote Design Sprint Tips & Tricks
What is the design sprint methodology?
The design sprint process – a.k.a one of the top UX best practices – is a four days’ step-by-step methodology that answers critical business and product questions via designing, prototyping, and idea testing. Built by Google and GV, it is a mix of innovation, business strategy, design thinking, behaviour science, etc. brought together to make a way of working that any team can make use of.
The user experience design formulation process works for product managers, developers, and designers, who work in the space of innovation and problem-solving. It answers some of the most critical questions a brand struggles with:
How can we convert an idea into a validated prototype faster?
How can we ensure we are designing the right product before putting a ton of money in it?
How can we test whether the feature-set we are envisioning the ones that users need?
Irrespective of how straightforward the product design sprint process looks, conducting the event virtually is difficult.
Challenges of Running Design Sprints Remotely
The difference in time zone and availability of team – UX sprint calls for intense, engaging sessions. Scheduling and aligning distributed teams for long periods can pose a challenge.
Low engagement – On a remote mode, the concentration of the team is one click away from going to YouTube or Telegram. Keeping them focused is a key issue that sprint teams face.
Tech-specific challenges – Low battery, bad internet condition, and faulty microphone is a trio that can make your design sprint steps take a bad turn. As a mobile app design company, we ensure that the technology part of the sprint is on point before the design sprint commences.
Our first two three sprint sessions brought us face to face with these challenges. Although the failure count was low, the frustrations were galore. Although our struggle phase goes back to 2014 when we were handling our first client interaction, from what we read across the internet, the issues remain more or less the same. Here are some of the pre-sprint setups we settled on to make the remote design sprint process smooth-sailing.
Pre-Design Sprint Model
Prepare the design sprint material and template beforehand
For ensuring that you get the most of the remote design sprint, prepare all the materials beforehand. The existing customer insights, documentation shared by the clients, etc. should be gathered and distributed within the team before the process starts.
Form the team
We created a team of seven people leaving the finance team out of the process since we would hardly need any budgeting activity here. The role of decider and facilitator, although important even in the regular sprint session becomes all the more important in a remote sprint design process. The decider is the one who has the final call while the facilitator is someone who takes the responsibility of bringing everyone on the same page aided by the necessary technical help.
Schedule the sprint event
The UX design sprint method requires the teammates to be available, without distraction for five days. While doable when we were in the same space, fixing 5 days is difficult when operating remotely. But since we pride ourselves on being an app design firm that takes a design-first approach, we knew the importance of the process and convinced the clients to make themselves available as well.
Pro Tip: If you find it difficult to get people available for five consecutive days, put a weekend between the deciding and prototyping days. This way, the team will approach prototype creation with a fresh mind on Monday.
Logistics side of pre-sprint prep
Although a remote-inclined tech and office setup should come naturally for brands that work with a distributed team or overseas client, in case you are not one of them, we recommend you to have:
Good internet connection which can support you being on video at all times for five days
Whiteboard to make the sketches on.
With the pre-design sprint process discussed, let us now give you a peek into our four-day process.
4 Days Remote Product Design Sprint Process
Day 1: Sketching and Mapping
The phase comprises bringing the sprint team together and brainstorming the product and the solution it would offer. The entire day is spent on researching whether or not the product is even needed by the masses and if that as a whole is a solution they are looking for. Here, we also discuss the alternatives of what would people choose had the product didn’t exist.
With multiple ideas now present, the team on Day 2 fix a plan of action. They draw a storyboard containing how the users would come to the app, why they would open it, the features they would interact with, and what will be the outcome of their time inside the application.
Ensure that you have added all the necessary materials and resources backing the storyboard assumptions.
Day 3: Prototyping
Once you have the storyboard ready and the idea decided, head on to the stage of prototype development. The idea is not to build a product that will be deployed in the stores, but an app that people can run and experience. There are a number of different app prototype tools you can work on to create a clickable version of your app vision.
The process of prototype development should be done with the intent to allow people to test it on Day 4.
Day 4: Testing
This is the last step of the design sprint process where you get people to test your prototype and share their experiences with your team. The best thing to do here is to record those sessions so that you can always go back to them when your application hits the development stage.
Up until this point, you have read everything that you need to know about conducting remote design sprints. But the true success stories lie with brands that know the many side-tips. Ones that every innovative mobile app design agency knows.
Remote Design Sprint Tips & Tricks
In case you are finding it difficult to get team’s availability at the same time, divide the remote design sprint across two weeks.
Prepare sprint brief and template beforehand
Add ample breaks
Restrict multi-tasking – the team focus throughout the design sprint session should be on the session.
Ask everyone to divide their screen into video and the digital whiteboard so that they can see the whiteboard and the participants at the same time.
We have reached the stage where the only thing left for you to do before you go to the idea conception stage is get in touch with a mobile application design company that is an expert in remote design sprint. We can help.
Delivering excellence, collaborating across time zones.