Secrets of the Best Global Apps

How do you design the best global apps? There’s no easy road between development and worldwide success, but the work demands attention. The financial services application market alone will be worth more than $103 billion by 2019. The bottom line? Going big is no longer a choice; it’s a necessity. Here are three secrets to global application success.

Secret #1: Your App Is Already Global

Your application has already gone global. Why? Because app stores aren’t confined to geographical areas, so users worldwide can access your software. With this realization comes the need for change: apps can no longer be designed locally “to start” and then adapted for a broader audience over time. Instead, global mobile marketing must be part of your mindset from the very first line of code. This means incorporating multiple language support to reach the largest audience possible—for example, tapping a market of 1.3 billion citizens just by offering a simplified Chinese version of your application.

Secret #2: Your Reach Is Expanding

When designing the best global application, understand that your reach is expanding every day, whether you’re ready or not. As noted by Business Day Live, the global app market is seeing significant growth thanks to the falling prices of smartphones. In Asia, for example, the price of smartphones is predicted to drop to $215 by 2017, almost $50 lower than in the United States. Mobile device adoption is also stronger overseas than in North America, with India, Indonesia, Brazil, and Russia all outpacing the US. Not surprisingly, China tops them all in smartphone sales.

This means every day, thousands of new users are joining the mobile market and have access to your application. What’s more, most of these users don’t speak English and have low tolerance for apps that seem awkward or unwieldy. As a result, app localization is imperative. Your mobile content needs to look and feel like it was crafted for native speakers, not drafted by machines as a quick way to grab extra market share.

Secret #3: Your Competition Isn’t Waiting

The last big secret? You’re already behind. Facebook is on track to reach $100 per share, due in large part to the global reach of its mobile properties, such as WhatsApp and Instagram. Tech giants and small companies alike are now planning for global success before apps ever go live, making sure native speakers around the world don’t feel like second-class citizens.

But this isn’t a doom-and-gloom story. Reuters reports even high-profile developers are still struggling to find the “next big thing” when it comes to new apps. Consider the announcement of Apple’s new iWatch: although the technology looks promising, creating a “killer app” will be crucial to long-term success. Similar Android wearables haven’t had much luck in the global app market, and developers are worried.

What does this mean for your application? Global success isn’t a sure thing, even for big players. While some have already conquered worldwide markets, others aren’t enjoying the same success. The result is room for your business: with the right translation software, you can craft a global-ready app from day one, and launch across multiple language markets with full support.

You want the best global apps, and it’s no wonder why. The worldwide app and smartphone markets are both red-hot, but breaking in means understanding the three secrets of global app development: you’re already global, you’ve got more reach than you realize, and your competition isn’t afraid to try.

Image source: BigStock

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About Doug Bonderud

Doug Bonderud is a freelance technology writer with a passion for telling great stories about unique brands. For the past five years, he's covered everything from cloud computing to home automation and IT security. He speaks some French, is fluent in Ancient Greek and a master of Canadian English — and yes, colour needs a 'u'.