Web App Development Cost in 2023
Table of contents
- The global web app market revenue
- Types of web applications
- How much does each phase of web app development cost?
- What factors affect web app price?
- Composition of your web app development team
- Hiring option you choose
- How much does it cost to develop a web application?
- How to reduce app development costs
- Cost estimation at Magora
The global web app market revenue
Doubtless, today, it is crucial for businesses to have a presence online. If you don’t have one, consider that you are missing out on a large group of your potential customers. Or, maybe even on regular ones? They may prefer to shop online and have breakfast in bed. But what if it is too cumbersome to design your own app, but a simple website does not satisfy your needs? There is a great option to create a web application, and it is the right happy medium. It looks like an ordinary site for the average user, but with wider interactive functionality such as making purchases, chatting, playing games, and so on. The best-known examples are Netflix, Starbucks, and Amazon.
According to the research, the web app development market will only grow in the next five years and will reach £10.44 billion.
In addition, the key factors that may persuade you to choose a web app are the following:
- Too much data today makes us save memory on devices, and a web app is a combination of comfort and functionality without taking up any bytes.
- Money and time issues: a web application is easier to build, which implies cheaper and faster work.
- Users are able to use it regardless of the operating system on their devices, and you are free from obtaining approval from the stores.
- Still, the conversion rate of websites is higher than that of smartphones.
- Progressive web apps stand very close to native apps in the parameters of speed and functionality: IoT, push-notifications, VR/AR — all are available through your browser.
Types of web applications
According to your business goals and requirements, there are several options for a web app that you may choose from. The main types are listed in the table below.
How it works
Multi-page applications (MPAs)
“Traditional” way of working: all buttons and links initiate a new request to the server along with redownloading the page. The new feature is a new page.
Simple SEO optimization
Many solutions are supported by a huge number of frameworks
Single-page applications (SPAs)
One web page whose additional parts are loaded upon request without reloading the whole page. All functions are on one page.
Quick loading time
Smooth user experience
Progressive web apps (PWAs)
Created on the basis of the advanced technologies (API, AngularJS, and Lighthouse), PWAs provide users with a native app-like experience by leveraging push notifications, working offline, and looking like a standard website.
Transport & Logistics
Retail & Ecommerce
Quick loading time
Our team is always ready to help you with a careful analysis of your business and build further innovative strategies for web app development.
How Much Does Each Phase of Web App Development Cost?
There are standard steps in the process of app development, as well as in web app development, that are followed by the majority of IT companies. We recommend that you follow all stages without skipping a single one, as each is vital for a successful project release and trouble-free app work. Let’s go through each phase and roughly calculate its cost.
A good beginning is half the battle, and this is more than ever suitable for the development process. Knowing your product inside and out, as well as its goals and target audience is a must. The discovery phase will help you to avoid pitfalls and outline the whole development path with an accurate timetable and list of expenses. It takes a web app development team up to 5 weeks, depending on the complexity of the idea, to complete a full review, which will cost an average of £3,000–£8,000, or 10% of the total development budget.
This phase of the web development life cycle is responsible for the way your customers will see your product, their initial impression. In order users love spending their time on your web app, ease of usability, ergonomics, and intuitiveness should be created without sacrificing functionality. The average cost starts at £3000 and reaches £50,000.
So, here the heart of the project starts beating, as from sketches and drawings, the magic of coding builds an MVP. This stage will approximately cost you £10,000–£50,000. Each functional component has its own price. For example, if you add payments, cards, history, and transactions, you get £3,000–£7,500 in expenses. Thus, the final cost and duration of this phase depend on the web app filling.
This is a stage that absolutely shouldn’t be neglected. QA specialists test the app, trying to find bugs and errors. And it is wonderful if they find it (and if not, a great job!), because customers should interact with the app without encountering problems. It may cost you your reputation or huge expenses in the future. Don’t hesitate to spend up to one more month (you are itching to release your product, we understand) to do a full check. You may spend from £3000 to £50,000 on testing.
The final stage is the one that can last forever or for the entire period of the app's existence. In order to stay among the cutting-edge technologies and keep up with changing demand, or just to fix or optimize your web app, you need to provide constant web app maintenance. Annually, it will cost like â…• of the total software development budget, or nearly £60–£60,000/year.
What factors affect web app prices?
As we said, there is no definite answer to the question of the right price for web development because it is volatile and a combination of many factors. Which one? How about slicing and dicing together?
The size of your idea directly influences the complexity of the web app. The necessary time for development grows exponentially from simple to complex web apps. Below, we list the characteristics for each group so you can better understand what league your app will play in.
- Simple web apps:
- static information page;
- basic functionality set;
- a few interactive components;
- a simple search.
- Medium or professional web apps:
- greater interaction with users: creating accounts;
- advanced functionality;
- third-party integrations such as payments and mapping;
- multiple pages with much more content and animations;
- security measures.
- Complex apps:
- automation of the business process;
- management and administrative functions;
- a unique design;
- a large number of users.
The custom and catchy interface that blends full functionality and usability with the simplicity of forms requires more work than a standard solution. And the perfect design also requires high costs.
Innovation of the idea
It is mind-boggling if you enter the market with the novel idea of creating innovative web apps that have no comparable counterparts. In such an instance, keep in mind that the web app development cost will increase. Normally, a development team uses web development frameworks and libraries to ease and accelerate the process. But in this case, specialists will do the coding from scratch.
Web Development Team
Depending on the level of effort and the diversity of tasks performed during the web app development process, there will be a different structure of the team, or there might even be just one person. Frontend and backend developers, designers, and QA engineers–the more specialists you hire, the higher the cost is. In fact, the manner of cooperation also influences. Basically, there are three options for how to build your team:
- form an in-house team;
- search for freelancers;
- hire web app development companies.
However, we will take a closer look at these issues a bit later.
Location of the team
Due to economic reasons, the price for the same job may vary significantly depending on the country your development team works in. Hourly rates are distributed as follows: the most expensive web app development will be in the USA, Canada, and Australia, with rates of $80–$250/hour. In Western and Central Europe, the rates are a little bit lower: $65 – $100/hour. Eastern Europe and South America are on the same level at $35 –$70/hour. Finally, search for the cheapest offers in Asia and Africa; the average cost there is $15 – $45/hour. Think twice, as in your desire to reduce costs, you may add some undesirable issues such as language barriers and time zone differences.
Time is a tricky thing when it concerns project work. Too-tight deadlines can spoil the whole job and put gray hairs on your head. As a result, you will have to hire extra staff to finish the development on time, which will increase expenses. Too much time is also a misallocation of resources, as a lot of unnecessary work might be done.
Composition of your web app development team
Web app development is a multi-component process. In order to achieve the perfect result, you need to have a comprehensive team where each member is an expert in his field. But who might you need?
- A business analyst is the one who does market research, analyzes your target audience, and agrees on the app’s features; he is the key player in the discovery phase.
- A frontend developer creates the user interface (UI) of the app.
- A backend developer is responsible for server-side functions such as security, data storage, and application programming interfaces (APIs).
- A database engineer designs, integrates, and maintains the app’s database.
- A web designer plans an app’s layout, which includes visual imagery, graphics,and a logo in an eye-pleasing manner.
- A QA engineer checks the system for errors and ensures that the app works smoothly and meets the initial requirements.
- A project manager leads the team and oversees the whole app development process.
- A Product owner supports the development team by prioritizing the product backlog and creating user stories serving as an internal customer expert.
The hiring option you choose
Normally, there are three ways to build your development team. Let’s run through the options.
Work with a freelancer
Perhaps, it is the first idea that crosses your mind when thinking about app development specialists. This variant has its pros and cons. A freelancer is easy to look for, as you have plenty of different platforms and search filters to find the one who suits your criteria. Your candidates might be all over the world. And choosing this option is easy to fit into the budget because it is the cheapest solution. Lack of guarantees that your project will be done on time and of the right quality is a possible risky moment. Moreover, for complex web app development, several specialists are needed, and in this case, you will have to manage them. Freelancers are good for such web app development services as updating apps, adding 2–3 new functions, or running a small project.
Recruit an in-house team
If you prefer full immersion in the development process, close communication with the team, the ability to make quick changes, and having many projects to implement, this option is your best choice. Still, there is also a fly in the ointment. It is quite a time-consuming process to recruit a full in-house team. Moreover, you always need to think about office rental, social benefits, and sick leave.
Cooperate with a web app development company
It is a balance point between the two mentioned options. It allows you to save money and get high-quality products. And beyond that, you are free from coordinating every step as you have a project manager to support the entire process. Such companies have a diverse staff to suit your needs, from analytical work to marketing programs. It sounds like a great end-to-end solution. Based on the customer testimonials, you may choose a team from all over the world at an affordable price.
How much does it cost to develop a web application?
It becomes clearer if the examples of cost estimation are illustrative. Let us suppose that you want to design an e-commerce web application. By way of illustration, we can take Amazon, eBay, or Asos. The development of e-commerce web apps is characterized by the presence of three sides: admin, user, and seller. Seller profiles serve as an information card about themselves and their product. User profiles maintain the history of orders and all personal data. A product listing is like a showcase that helps to present products and services. You will absolutely need to implement payment functionality in order to allow customers to use different payment methods. There should be comments for each item, maybe with the ranking. Emails and push notifications will increase consumer engagement. On average, it takes more than 1500 hours of work to implement this functionality, and £30,000–£80,000 of the budget depends on the magnitude of the project and the hourly rate of a web app development company.
How to Reduce App Development Costs
A discovery phase is the key
Study every step of the web app development process scrupulously. With a team of experts, outline the whole map of the process, identify potential risks and vulnerabilities, and create a resilience plan. Elaborate preparation will minimize your expenses. When the whole plan is laid out before you, it is easy to make a rational decision with maximum benefits.
Build an MVP first
Designing the simplest version of the web app—a minimum viable product (MVP)—will help you to save resources and, at the same time, enter the market with a first-rate product that performs the basic features. Afterwards, it is possible to modify your web app and make changes on the basis of gathered reviews.
Use third-party services
Don't reinvent the wheel if you can use third-party services in your web app. Sometimes it is a better decision to pay a fee and borrow some functional solutions than to recreate them, wasting too much time, money, and effort. You can always customize it to your needs and fully integrate it into your interface.
Cost estimation at Magora
At Magora, we are ready to offer you a detailed cost estimation plan in order to reduce surprising invoices and your disappointment in the future. We value our clients and suggest only vital, effective solutions without trying to increase the budget. The Magora team is deeply worried about every project, as your success is proof of our great job. We will guide you throughout the full development process and, at the first steps, will provide a comprehensive list of expenses. Everything should be agreed upon on your side and meet all your requirements. During the discovery phase, we:
- calculate the number of working hours needed depending on the scope of work;
- discuss involving third-party services and their price tag;
- number of standard procedures and their cost;
- possible options in the development process that may influence the total budget.
Every project is unique and demands an individual approach. We have long-term experience and are ready to share it with you.
Why is it important to have a web app?
- Current digitalization determines the way business is conducted. Along with traditional methods, it is crucial today to have a presence online in order to reach a bigger part of the target audience and be in close proximity with your customers.
How long does it take to develop a web app?
- It depends on the complexity of the web app. The full development cycle may last from 3-8 weeks for a simple web app to more than 24 weeks if it is a complex web app.
Can I skip the discovery phase?
- Yes, it is possible; however, we strongly recommend including the discovery phase in your development process. Or, you may face unexpected problems that may increase your expenses and delay the release of the web app. With the discovery phase, you will be ahead of the game.
How can I reduce my costs?
- Do a weighted analysis during the discovery phase.
- Develop an MVP first.
- Use third-party services.
A web application’s development cost is like Lego: has many components and conditions that may vary. The complexity of the web app is one of the starting points for cost estimation. Considering the scope of work, you determine the professional structure and size of the team. Location mostly depends on your budget and your desire or ability to work in different time zones with a representative of another culture. As you can see, web app development is quite a complex process, and if this is your first app development journey, we advise you to seek the assistance of a skilled crew. We also know how to hire mobile app developers and provide a solid experience that you can take advantage of. Contact Magora specialists for a nice talk and discuss the details of future fruitful cooperation.