Humans are social animals, and the ubiquity of social media apps like Whatsapp and Snapchat prove this adage. The success of Snapchat is because these apps target the basic human need of feeling connected. The multimillion-dollar valuations of these apps have prompted a race amongst starry-eyed techpreneurs to build the next Whatsapp or Snapchat.
The first hurdle that these entrepreneurs face is estimating the cost of building such an app. As an expert mobile app development company, we decided to take responsibility and clear the air on the cost of building a social media app like Whatsapp or Snapchat.
Cost of Developing a Messaging App
Getting straight to the point, the cost of building a full-featured instant messaging apps like Whatsapp or Snapchat will cost you anywhere between $50,000-$75,000.It is the ballpark range that you can start. The cost depends on a lot of factors with the complexity of the app and the location of the developers being the primary ones.
As the complexity of the app increases, so does the cost. Another factor that has a significant effect on the ultimate cost of your social media app is the location of your app development company.
Suppose your app developers are located in a developing country like India. In that case, they will build your social media app at 1/3rd cost as compared to the developers located in a developed country like the U.K. or the U.S.A.
Now that we have had a look at the costs of building a social media app let us have a look at the revenue sources for the same.
A large user base that spends a lot of time on the app is the two factors that act as a magnet for the advertisers. Social media apps have this lethal combination and hence provide an excellent opportunity for the app owner to use advertisement as a lucrative revenue source.
Another great revenue opportunity comes in the form of M-commerce. You can partner with various third-party sellers and allow them to sell directly on your social media app.
The consumers can shop directly from your app for their favorite merchandise, saving them from the hassle of searching the goods on various online portals. The sellers gain access to a vast audience base, and you get a healthy source of revenue. It is a win-win situation for all stakeholders.
But do make sure that any of the revenue sources do not feel intrusive to the users. After all, you do not want to lose users to your competitors by spoiling the experience, do you?
Remember the Whatsapp business? You could try something similar and offer a corporate segment in your social media app. This way, you would allow the corporate to target their customers in a much better manner. You could implement a pay-as-you-go model by allowing the corporate to access a certain number of users (say 100,000) from an area or by limiting the number of messages that they can send in a particular plan. You could also provide unlimited access to the corporate for a fixed fee; the options are numerous.
Must-Have Features in a Chat app development
The features of your social media app will decide its fate in the market. Given below is the list of essential and some advanced features that will aid you in out-competing your peers?
⦁ Send Photos
⦁ Send Audio Files
⦁ Exchange Geo-data
⦁ Send Contact Data
⦁ Chat with contact
⦁ Group Chat
⦁ Chats backup
⦁ Send Voice Messages
⦁ Contact sharing
⦁ Read Receipts
⦁ Push Notifications
⦁ Location sharing
Self Destructing MessagesAs the name suggests, self-destructing messages are those messages that destruct themselves after a certain point of time. Sometimes people want to send private and sensitive messages as they fear the misuse of the information contained in the message. By providing this feature, you will allow your users to send such sensitive messages without worrying about them.
Messages Requiring Password Authentication
The users use social media apps like Whatsapp and Snapchat for many purposes, which include business as well. Many confidential details are stored in the chat history of a social media app. Thus to prevent the misuse of the information, you could provide the password protection feature to your users.
Live Location Sharing
What is better than sharing the location on a common platform? Increase the popularity of your social media platform by allowing the users to share their location with their friends on your app. This way, you will make life easier for your users as they won’t have to access the maps application and then share the location.
Smart assistants like Google Assistant and Alexa are in vogue today. People are becoming accustomed to using the help of these digital assistants in their daily lives. By integrating an AI-backed smart assistant, the assistant can complete small tasks like replying with a standard message to all those who contact the user, giving weather updates, and recording videos/taking snapshots on the user’s command.
Double up your social media app as a payment app by partnering with payment service providers. This way, you will give one more reason to your users to visit your app. Integrating payment within your social media app will also boost m-commerce in your app as stores can get payments from the users directly from your app, eliminating the unnecessary step of re-directing them to third-party payment apps.
Technology Stack to build Messaging App
- Get exemplary performance out of your social media app by using programming languages like Erlang, PHP.
- Use FreeBSD operating system that can manage millions of messages every single day.
- Handle the massive load of dynamic content like videos and GIFs using YAWS and Lighttpd
- The XMPP protocol provides a fast exchange of structured data between multiple networks.
- If you want to provide encrypted chat, then use SQLCipher, HTTPS, and EnMicroMsg.
Why Do You Need to Hire a Professional app development company for your messaging app?
Mobile app development is a team process. It takes the finesse and accuracy of professional mobile app developers to build a complex application like social media. Bear in mind that the ultimate aim is to enroll millions of users on to your social media app. A small glitch can potentially wreak havoc on your reputation, and with competition lurking around it will be challenging to make a comeback.
By hiring a professional mobile app development company, you will save yourself the headache of having to build a complex social media application yourself. The app developers will take care of everything, including integration with third-party apps and publishing on app stores.