Testing is a critical step in app development. But it's not a one-time step at the end, it should be done throughout the entire development process.
When you decide to develop a business app, you’ve already taken the biggest step toward improving the online and mobile exposure of your brand. But the decision to move ahead in this process is only the first step in making sure that your business app development will actually be successful.
You may work with external experts throughout the process, but you will also need to be involved to make sure it’s designed both to your specifications and with the greatest chance of success. In particular, a crucial part of the project will be testing at multiple stages.
For most app development companies, testing is no longer limited to the final stages of the project. Especially developers who embrace agile concepts will test throughout their work, making sure that minor issues are addressed early enough to not turn into major problems.
Much of that testing will be done internally at the app development company. But you should be involved with testing at least some initial concepts that will allow you to see where the project is going and make adjustments as needed. You likely started off the development process by giving your design partner some ideas, and this stage will allow you to verify whether the direction is right.
A mobile app will include a number of areas in which it has to be successful. The design needs to be consistent with your brand, the content needs to be written in a clear and compelling way, the navigation needs to be straightforward, and the underlying code needs to ensure that it performs smoothly and doesn’t crash. Of course, your app may also include interactive features or even games and simulations.
Each of these elements needs to be tested for success. How much you will be involved depends on your relationship and partnership with your app development company, but you should know that these tests occur. When in doubt, ask if you can be involved in the process to retain oversight.
Once the first version of the app is finished, it’s time to run it past actual users to see whether it functions as desired and gets the positive reaction it needs. This type of testing is usually referred to as ‘usability testing,’ and you can help your app development company in making sure it’s successful.
To ensure that’s the case, always give input in the type of audience that will be using the app. If your intended audience will be business managers, having it tested by teenagers makes little sense. You can even provide the names of current customers and brand evangelists who might be willing and representative beta testers.
Ultimately, for your app to be successful, testing should weave its way throughout the development process. If you only test at the end, you risk finding major issues that cannot be addressed without a comprehensive redesign. Testing from the beginning, on the other hand, allows you to make adjustments early on and avoid small issues turning into big problems.
Of course, you also need to work with an app development company that embraces the testing part of the development process. Some companies may seek to shut you out of the process, which will not be conducive to success. Look for a development agency that is willing to work with you in making sure that the final product will be one that everyone involved can be proud of.
Testing, in short, might just be the single most important part of the app development process. To learn more about how we incorporate testing into our mobile app development process, contact us.