How Much Does It Cost To Design a Mobile App in 2023?
A seamless UI/UX design is the key to the success of a mobile app. When users open an app, they expect it to be visually appealing, easy to navigate, and intuitive. A well-designed UI not only enhances the aesthetic appeal of the app but also improves user satisfaction.
On the other hand, a poor UI/UX design can lead to frustration, confusion, and ultimately, the abandonment of the app. In a competitive market, where thousands of apps are vying for attention, a seamless UI/UX design can be the differentiating factor that sets your app apart from the rest.
In this article, we will delve into the world of UI/UX design in mobile app development and uncover the cost required to design a mobile app.
Factors that Contribute to the Cost of Designing a Mobile App
The cost of designing a mobile app can vary significantly and is influenced by a variety of factors. Understanding these contributing elements is crucial for any project’s budgeting and planning.
From the complexity of the app’s features to the platform it’s intended for, such as iOS or Android, each factor can exert its influence on the overall cost.
Here is a list of factors contributing to the cost of designing a mobile app:
1. Application Type
The type of app you want to design plays a significant role in determining the overall cost. Different types of apps, such as social media, lifestyle, utility, gaming, productivity, and information apps, have varying levels of complexity. For example, building a simple news application would likely take less time than creating a unique gaming app, and therefore, their cost will differ as well.
2. Uniqueness of the App and Custom Design
The uniqueness of your app idea and whether you require custom design elements can affect the cost.
Uniqueness refers to how different or innovative the app is compared to others in the market. Custom design, on the other hand, involves creating a visually appealing and user-friendly interface that is tailored specifically for the app’s brand and target audience.
Creating a unique app requires extensive research, brainstorming, and designing time. Founder and Designer need to come up with creative ideas and innovative features that will set the app apart from its competitors. This often involves prototyping, testing, and refining the app’s functionalities to ensure a seamless user experience. The more unique and complex the app is, the more time and effort it will take to develop, which in turn increases the cost.
Similarly, custom design elements add another layer of complexity to the app design process. Designers need to create visually appealing graphics, icons, and animations that align with the app’s brand identity. This involves creating wireframes, mockups, and iterating on the designs based on user feedback. Custom design elements not only enhance the user experience but also help in creating a strong brand presence. However, all these custom design efforts require additional resources and expertise, which ultimately increases the cost of the app.
As per ScaleupAlly’s experience, uniqueness of the App and Custom Design elements can increase the cost of the UI UX anywhere from 10% to 50%.
3. Technical Complexity and Scale of the Project
The technical functionality of the app, such as personalised recommendations, virtual try-ons, offline mode, discounts and coupons, video streaming, or 3rd party integration, can contribute to the design complexity and ultimately affect the cost. The more features and functionalities you want to add, the higher the cost will be.
As per ScaleupAlly’s experience, technical complexity and the scale of the project can increase the cost of the UI/UX anywhere from 20% to 70%.
4. Location and Experience of the Designing Team
The cost of designing an app also depends on the location and experience of the design team. Different regions have varying hourly rates for design services.
For example, the average hourly rate for design services in India would be USD 15 to 50 compared to rates in the United States or Western Europe which could be USD 50 to 100. Additionally, more experienced design teams may charge higher rates.
Here is a breakdown of hourly rates of app designers in different parts of the world:
|India||USD 15 – USD 25|
|USA||USD 50 – USD 100|
|Western Europe||Euro 50 – Euro 100|
|Eastern Europe||USD 25- USD 75|
|Australia||AUD 50- AUD 100|
|Canada||CAD 50- CAD 100|
5. Team Type
The cost of designing a mobile app can vary significantly based on whether you hire an in-house team, outsource to a third-party agency, or rely on freelancers. In-house teams may have higher upfront costs with long-term benefits, while outsourcing can offer cost savings but may come with potential communication challenges and quality control issues.
Opting to outsource your tech team can provide a cost-effective solution while also offering a broader spectrum of experience and expertise.
Discover how ScaleupAlly can be your remote in-house tech team for your great ideas
Now that we’ve explored the various factors that can impact the cost of designing a mobile app, it’s time to delve deeper into understanding the specific components that make up this cost.
In the following section, we’ll break down the key elements that contribute to the overall expenses of bringing your app idea to life.
Understanding the components of app design cost
The cost of designing a mobile app can be broken down into several components:
- The first component is the design concept and wireframing. This involves creating the initial design concept, wireframes, and prototypes to visualise the app’s structure and flow.
- The next component is the visual design, which includes creating the app’s visual elements such as icons, buttons, and colour schemes.
- After the visual design is finalised, the next component is the actual UI/UX design, which involves creating the user interface and user experience of the app. This includes designing the layout, navigation, and interactive elements.
- Finally, the last component is the testing and refinement phase, where the app is tested for usability and any necessary changes are made.
How Much Does It Cost to Design a Mobile App?
The cost of designing an app can vary depending on the factors mentioned above. It is challenging to provide an exact cost estimate as each project is unique. However, we can provide a general range based on the complexity and scope of the app design.
For a basic app with simple design (iOS & Android, or web), the cost could range from $1,500 to $3,000. For an app of medium complexity for multiple platforms, the cost could range from $3,000 to $5,000. And for a complex and unique app with numerous features on multiple platforms, the cost could be $10,000 and more.
It’s important to note that these cost estimates are based on average rates and may vary depending on the location and experience of the design team. Additionally, these estimates only cover the cost of UI/UX design and may not include other development or maintenance costs.
Here is a detailed breakdown of mobile app design cost based on design complexity:
|Complexity of App||Type of App||Estimated Cost|
|Simple App (Around 10 Screens)||Hybrid||$1,500 to $3,000|
|Simple App (Around 10 Screens)||Android App||$1,000 to $2,000|
|Simple App (Around 10 Screens)||IOS App||$2,000 to $4,000|
|Medium Complexity App (Around 50 Screens)||Hybrid||$3,000 to $5,000|
|Medium Complexity App (Around 50 Screens)||Android App||$2,500 to $5,000|
|Medium Complexity App (Around 50 Screens)||IOS App||$4,000 to $8,000|
|Complex App (Around 100 Screens)||Hybrid||$10,000 to $15,000|
(Around 100 Screens)
|Android App||$7,500 to $12,500|
|Complex App (Around 100 Screens)||IOS App||$15,000 to $25,000|
Additional Costs to Consider
While app design is a crucial aspect, there are other aspects to mobile app development costs as well.
These costs may include:
- Development Costs: This includes the cost of coding and programming the app’s functionality. Development costs can vary depending on the complexity of the features and the platforms targeted (e.g., Android, iOS).
- Testing Costs: Testing is an essential part of the app development process. It ensures that the app functions properly and is free from bugs or glitches. Testing costs may include hiring testers or using automated testing tools.
- Maintenance and Updates: After launching the app, there may be ongoing costs for maintenance and updates. This includes fixing bugs, optimising performance, adding new features and improvements based on user feedback.
- Marketing and Promotion: Once the app is developed, there will be costs associated with marketing and promoting the app to attract users and increase visibility in the app stores.
It’s important to factor in these additional costs when budgeting for app development to get a comprehensive understanding of the overall investment required.
Tips for Reducing App Design Cost
While app design costs can vary, there are several ways to optimise and reduce the overall cost. Here are some of the tips that will help you save up on app designing costs
1. Proper Planning
Careful planning and defining the scope of the app’s features and functionality from the beginning can help avoid costly changes and revisions later on. This includes prioritising essential features and functionalities and focusing on the core functionality of the app.
2. Choose the Right Design Partner
Research and choose a design partner who can provide quality services at a fair cost. Consider their portfolio, expertise, and client reviews to ensure they align with your budget and requirements.
3. Consider Outsourcing
Outsourcing design services to countries with lower hourly rates (starting USD 15 per hour), such as India or Eastern Europe, can help reduce costs without compromising on quality. However, it’s essential to ensure effective communication and collaboration with the outsourced team.
4. Simplify Design Elements
Limiting the number of custom design elements, such as animations or illustrations, can further help reduce design costs. Focus on creating a clean and user-friendly design without excessive visual elements.
5. Design for Multiple Devices
Designing for multiple devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and desktops, from the beginning can help avoid costly redesigns later on. This includes ensuring responsive design and optimising the app’s layout for different screen sizes.
6. Optimise Development Process
Collaborate closely with the development team to optimise the development process and identify any potential areas for cost savings. This may include optimising code, reusing existing components, or leveraging open-source libraries.
By implementing these tips, you can optimise the app design process and reduce costs while still building a high-quality and user-friendly app.
Examples: Successful app designs and their costs
To understand the investment required for a seamless UI/UX design, let’s take a look at some examples of app designs and their costs.
Example 1: XYZ Food Delivery App
This app was designed universally to run in both Android and iOS platforms and had a complex user flow with multiple features and screens. The total cost of designing this app was $7,000, with an additional $2,000 for testing and refinement.
Case Study 2: ABC Fitness Tracking App
This app was designed for Android only and had a simple user flow with limited features. The total cost of designing this app was $3,000, with an additional $500 for testing and refinement.
These examples highlight the significant variation in design costs based on the complexity and platform of the app.
Designing a mobile app involves various factors that contribute to the overall cost. Understanding these factors can help you estimate the budget for app design services accurately.
Factors such as the type of app, uniqueness of the design, technical complexity, location of the design team, and additional costs should be considered when estimating the cost.
By following best practices, such as proper planning, choosing the right design partner, and optimising the development process, you can reduce app design costs without compromising on quality.
Remember that app design is an investment, and a well-designed app can significantly impact your business’s success.
Ready to create a seamless UI/UX design for your mobile app? Contact our professional app designers today for a personalised consultation and cost estimate.
FAQs on App Design Costs
Q. Are Android and iOS app design costs similar?
No, Android and iOS app design costs differ due to platform-specific requirements and development complexities. ScaleupAlly suggests opting for Hybrid App Design if it suits your business.
Q. How can I reduce app design costs?
You can reduce app design costs by choosing a skilled development team, optimising features, and planning your budget wisely. ScaleupAlly being in India, aims to give you the best ROI.
Q. What are the hidden costs in app development?
Hidden costs may include app deployment, feedback from Apple App Store, post-launch maintenance, third-party integrations, and unexpected design changes.
Q. Is investing in mobile UX design worth the cost?
Yes, investing in mobile app user experience (UX) design can lead to higher user satisfaction and potentially better financial returns.
Q. How can I monetize my app to recover costs?
Monetization strategies such as in-app ads, subscriptions, or selling digital goods can help you recover app development costs.