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As an entrepreneur, your main goal is probably related to the growth of your business. Naturally, every business owner hopes that their app will become a hit on the market at some point. Success entails a steady growth of your user base, which is inextricably linked to higher pressure on your app’s performance. After all, more people using your app means more data being transferred, more backend processes running, and more space needed to store all that data. When your application isn’t able to deal with all this information, a crash is inevitable.
When creating an application, it’s essential to keep future growth in mind. This is where scalability comes into play. This blog tells you all you need to know about scalability in app development, and why it’s so important to prepare your application for growth in an early stage of development.
What is scalability in applications?
App development is a complex and time-consuming process. In order to make the process as efficient and fast as possible without losing quality, our developers implement specific agile strategies to work towards a product that’s perfectly aligned with the needs of the end-user. It is wise to start small when creating a digital product rather than constructing a full-fledged version from the start. Instead of offering your customers something they might not like, you can build a simpler version of the app and test it out among end-users. This is where the concept of the MVP, or Minimum Viable Product comes from. You start by putting together a simple version of the product, test it out among end-users, and upgrade the solution with the feedback from these users.
You might wonder what that has to do with scalability, and the answer is pretty simple: everything. Scalability has everything to do with your app’s ability to grow and evolve together with your company, depending on the demand. A scalable app is, therefore, an application that consists of a flexible architecture and in which additional features can be added without affecting the overall performance.
Why does scalability matter?
As mentioned before, when you have your app developed, future growth will likely be one of its main objectives. This means that, if all goes well, your app will be used by an increasing number of people. What you want to avoid is to have to completely start from scratch soon after developing your app because it isn’t built to accommodate an influx of new users. Not only would this be a major waste of time, effort, and financial investment, it also causes you to lose the user base you’ve been working to build for so long. All this could have been easily avoided if your app was built with scalability in mind.
Besides the fact that a highly scalable application ensures sustainable growth of your user base and business without facing drawbacks in performance, there are much more benefits to high scalability:
The approach of starting small and scaling up serves as a safety net that also allows you to save a considerable amount of money. Begin with a product that has just the right amount of functionalities, the MVP. Show it to your users, collect valuable feedback, and improve from there. You can save critical resources this way because your product's expansion is based on reliable data, and you're not merely delivering a fully-developed product to your customers that eventually doesn’t do it for them.
Improved user experience
Developing an application based on the strategy of an MVP allows you to tailor your app and its functionalities to the needs of your end-users, based on their input. This implies that, when you scale the app based on what your customers need, you can continuously improve and adapt the UX when it comes to new features or modifications, while also ensuring that the app runs smoothly as the number of users grows.
Stability in performance
An improved user experience is, without a doubt, the most crucial benefit of scalable development. When you design and develop your application with scalability in mind, you can be assured that the application is able to deal with a surge in users. Whereas a non-scalable application would likely show a decrease in loading time or even crash completely, your app’s performance will remain flawless, no matter how many people use your app. Which, in its turn, positively impacts the overall user experience.
Flexibility in customization
In case you want to add a new feature or a specific improvement to your application, high scalability allows you to customize your app, making sure it stays aligned with your business objectives and the input of your users. The basis of the app keeps running, while you get the freedom to implement small design changes or update specific features without having to start from scratch. With a scalable application, you can also apply the practice of A/B testing to try out small changes in your design or in a certain functionality without having to rewrite the entire code. This allows you to continuously add value to your customers quickly and efficiently.
How to prepare your app for growth?
Scalability involves planning and preparation because every business has its own needs and objectives. Together with your development partner, you’ll have to dive into your goals, available resources, suitable technologies and a solid testing strategy.
Before diving into the development of your application, you’ll need to have an idea of where you, your business and your app want to work towards. For example, it could be that your business is active in a very niche market, or your digital solution is meant for a specific group of users and won’t be commercially available in all app stores. In this case, your main objective could be to automate and optimize the workflows within the boundaries of your own company, rather than becoming the number one application on the market. These objectives have an impact on the level of scalability your application needs to possess in order to keep functioning in the long term.
The right technologies
If you consider scalability during the planning stage, you’re already one step ahead. When you begin the development of your app, it’s essential that special attention is paid to the technologies that are being selected. Different technologies, such as programming languages, databases and frameworks possess a different level of scalability. For example, Node.js is the go-to backend environment for flexibility and scalability, and it can be used for both web- and mobile development. This is one of the reasons our developers at Lizard Global have implemented the versatile MERN tech stack, including technologies that are designed to be highly scalable and customizable.
Want to know more about the technologies we implement at Lizard Global to make sure your app is ready for growth at any time? Give us a call or reach us on WhatsApp to get in touch with one of our experts to hear more about our tech stack and what technologies might best suit your solution.
Testing your app's behaviour in multiple scenarios is the most crucial component of ensuring it is scalable. There are several methods for determining whether your software has the ability to keep up with user growth, the most important of which are load testing and performance testing. With load testing, we increase the demand on the application and see what impact it has on the performance of your app in case a lot of people try to access it at once. While load testing tries to see how many users it can accommodate before it impacts the overall performance, performance testing entails the analysis of specific performance metrics, such as loading speed, response time and stability under different circumstances.
Need a hand?
At Lizard Global, scalability plays an important role in our development processes. Because we’ve worked on projects for large organizations with high growth potential, we’re experienced in creating solutions that are fully prepared for a higher demand in case your solution takes off.
In case you’re planning to develop your scalable application, you can now sign up for a free consultancy session with our experts via the contact form on our website! We’d love to hear about your ideas and answer any questions you may have regarding a digital partnership with Lizard Global and the development of your digital solution.
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Send us a message on WhatsApp: +60183565702 Mail us: firstname.lastname@example.org Call us: NL +31 (0) 10 80 80 860, KL +60 32 770 6959 Or fill in the contact form on our website, and let’s get to know each other!