How much does it cost to maintain an app in 2023

Some app store and Google play statistics for 2023:

Apple’s App Store had 3.8 million iOS apps and 1 million games. Google Play had 2,7 million android apps (according to Statista), 97 thousand android apps are published per day (according to Statista), and billions of downloads! Isn't that impressive?

Google Play statistics
App Store statistics

But how many apps succeed? A few. Even if the application was wildly popular at an early stage of its development and millions of people around the world downloaded and used it, the next generation may not even know about it. What is the reason for the catastrophic failure after the wave of success? One phrase: App Maintenance.

Unfortunately, after release in the App Store or Google Play, the work of the app owner does not end. In order for customers to come and for popularity to grow, you should constantly work on the application, add new features, improve the technical part and user interface, as well as increase the security of users' personal data.

All this plays a huge role on the way to achieving the success of a mobile application. So let's look first at what benefits you can get from app support, then we'll talk about how much does it cost to maintain an app in 2023 and what is included in app maintenance costs?

Have a nice read!

How much does it cost to maintain mobile apps?

There is no definite answer to this question since the cost varies throughout the niche. However, it is possible to predict the approximate application maintenance cost based on indicators such as scale, complexity, and whether it is a native application or cross-platform development was used. Typically, application maintenance costs do not exceed 40-50% of the original development cost, on average 15-25%.

Cost also depends on these factors:
  • Whether you will be adding new tech features in your app to hold existing app users
  • Whether you will upgrade the server and host
  • Whether you will modify your code, add last technology or even rewrite your whole app on a new language

What is included in the mobile app maintenance cost?

Hosting Fees

The app server cost can range from $70 to $320 per month.

It is only an approximate figure since it is necessary to consider such indicators as the scale of the application, the type and volume of content, the number of users, and so on. The larger the size of the application data, the more space you will need on the server. Similarly, the type and volume of content, and the number of active users, affect.

Updates and New Features

First thing you should remember if you want to make a successful mobile app is never to stop making it better.

Support

Once your app is on the market, you have to provide customer support.

As a professional app development company, we have been providing custom mobile application development services since 2013, and during this time we have seen enough app owners that could not succeed only because at some point they forgot about user support.

App support costs about 50$ per hour. It depends upon the project's scope.

App Store Fees

Yes, regardless of whether it is an android or an iOS app, there is a fee that should be paid to the market. If be more precise you will need to pay an annual fee of $99 for the Apple App Store or a one-time fee of $25 for the Google App Store.

In addition, almost all apps are charged an additional fee of 30% of all in-app purchases made through their platforms.

App analytics

Free Analytics Text Stock Photo

Unfortunately, bugs, crashes, and other things do not leave your mobile app once you realised them to users. And those problems need to be monitored and analyzed so you can get rid of them and prevent future problems. Analytics tools like Google Analytics can help a lot by providing insights to help you make better decisions.

Marketing activities

It is also worth considering spending on marketing and advertising. Organic growth is not always enough to quickly enter the market and win your loyal audience. Sometimes, you need to connect social platforms, advertising in applications, and popular bloggers to get your first users.

App maintenance services

A successful mobile app requires regular maintenance services such as monitoring and updating the latest functionality, identifying & fixing errors, and improving the overall user experience. For businesses to succeed, it is essential to maintain mobile apps and increase revenue.

Why is it important to maintain mobile apps?

As we said earlier, thousands of new applications enter the market every day, but how many of them survive? And how many of them continue to gain popularity a year or 2 after the release?

When you put your mobile app in a competitive market, your road has just begun. And without constant maintenance updates, code optimization, bug fixes, and security improvements, your application will soon become obsolete.

What about the fact that users will not receive answers to their complaints about issues they face? If you don't figure them out, then no one will recommend you. On the contrary, you will receive more and more negative reviews. Guess how long a mobile application with such a set of problems can last.

What is app maintenance all about

We have already considered what is included in the cost of supporting the application, and have deduced approximate expenses.

We also mentioned that the cost to maintain an app can range from 15-20% to 50% of the original development costs. Let's look at several possible types of application support

Types of Mobile App Maintenance:

Perfective Maintenance: as the name suggests, this is the case when you continue to work on the application, add new features, and trends, work on bugs, improve the service, design, and и process user feedback

Adaptive Maintenance: ensures that an app works well on all operating systems or devices. Mostly, it is used to adjust certain a component of the operating system or hardware/software environment.

Preventive Maintenance: active monitoring of your app analytics and preventing all possible issues.

Corrective Maintenance: in short, it is a bug-fixing process, code optimization, and analysis of reported anomalies.

4 Tips to reduce mobile app maintenance costs

1. The right development platform

Choosing the right development platform should not be underestimated. This can greatly affect the final cost of the application itself and, accordingly, all future expenses. For now, there are two types:

  • Native App Development
  • Hybrid App Development

What should you choose? We have a different article on that theme that perfectly helps you with this question. Talking in short, native apps are designed for specific platforms and are thus quick and responsive. They are said to be the most efficient and provide the finest overall user experience. Moreover, they are better at custom solutions

Hybrid Apps need you to deal with issues that arise from both native and web systems, making bug fixes more complicated. By using hybrid application development services you can have mobile applications run in webview, performance is also a drawback.

But you should keep in mind that a cross-platform app can be used on multiple operating systems, such as iOS and Android. And by using a cross-platform app, you can avoid the need to maintain separate versions of your app for each operating system.

2. Build an MVP

MVP stands for Minimum Viable Product. MVP is the best way to check if your idea has a demand. Will people use it or not? Mostly, this is a product with ONLY ONE function.

We have already said that any successful application started with an MVP. And there are reasons for this. The minimum viable product is your application, but with minimal development costs and without unnecessary functionality. Only the main one. Thus, you save time, and resources for development, hosting purchases, and so on.

And when you realize that customers love your product, use it and ask you to add any innovations yourself, you will be able to improve it, add all the functions that you have in mind, optimize the code, and so on.

3. Following the latest development trends

You will not need to release new versions of the application too often if you initially keep up with the times and adapt to popular technical solutions.

One way is to analyze competitors. Go to the app market. Find competitive products, squeeze all the juices out of their applications, find everything that catches and repels you in them and make your project better.

4. Find the right one among all app development companies

It may seem obvious, but many owners fail here, trusting the cheapest developer instead of the most experienced one. Find someone, who has done similar projects. If you have a fintech app, you need someone who's done banking apps. If it's a social media platform, you need someone with social media experience.

Final words

You will never be able to stop working on your mobile application if you sincerely want it to be the best and earn your loyal audience who will use your mobile app and advise it to their friends and acquaintances.

Well, how much does it cost to maintain an app? Average application maintenance costs range from 15% to 20% of the total development cost. And this is the case when you don't add a lot of new features and only work with existing code.

To retain existing users and attract new ones, you should always think about adding the latest technological trends, optimizing code, working with user feedback, and thinking about your future improvement steps right after you have a brilliant application idea.

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