How to Outsource App Development in 3 Steps + Benefits, Risks & Options

Every problem a company faces is different and needs a customized solution that stems from a deeper understanding of projects, their clients, the brand, and much more.

Creating an app for your business can add one more layer for the audiences to access your product or services. There were 2.59 million apps on the Google play store in 2021, and the number keeps increasing.

While you take the first step in creating your app, choosing the correct outsourcing app development is crucial. It can be tricky since it entails trusting someone with the most critical aspect of your business.

However, despite apps being a buzzword, they could still be unknown territory for many businesses.

Check out this article to know the best way for you to have your app designed and how to navigate your outsourcing strategies.

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Should You Outsource App Development or Develop App In-house?

Before kickstarting the debate, it's obvious to know that there will be pros and cons to both of these options. Which model suits your requirements will depend on multiple factors of your business.


Compared to an in-house team, an app development agency may take a long time to study your customers, tonality, vision, and goal. Since there are no one-size-fits-all app development guides for everyone, getting started after one call could be difficult for an agency. Hence, they will require more time to get the intricate details right.

If the app is supposed to launch promptly, taking more time could be a hindrance. However, the same could also allow the agency to absorb the details of your business in a way that could lead to the results you envisioned.

On the positive side, an outsourced team can bring expertise in multiple industries, making them a one-stop solution.


One of the biggest perks of having an in-house team is that you don't need to spend more time explaining their offering. An in-house team will already be familiar with the brand voice, vision, goals, target audience, competitors, and the company's background. These ingrained insights can go a long way in creating an ideal app for your business.

Since the process requires close collaboration, you can not only maintain consistent communication with an in-house team but can also keep a tab on the progress. This further allows you to pivot the process as and when required, allowing it to grow faster with quicker approvals.

Conversely, an in-house team can still leave some gaps unaddressed. You will have to recruit, train, and onboard if you do not have experts within the team. An in-house team will also require dedicated space, equipment, and software!

If there is a need for more personnel, it could only lead to mounting costs. An in-house app development team will also require the company to shell out hefty salaries, insurance, paid leaves, and other expenses. Despite that, since the in-house team is only exposed to the nuances of only your industry, they could be pretty limited in their knowledge.

If you still feel unconvinced about both models, you can opt for a hybrid model, where specific tasks are outsourced while some are handled internally, giving you the best of both worlds.

How to Outsource App Development?

Once you've decided to outsource app development, how to find the right fit makes all the difference.

It can lead to a smooth delivery and a great user experience with the app. Take a look at some steps to help you find the right agency to outsource app development.

Step# 1: Maintain A Clear Outline

A clear outline and a vision will help you translate your app into execution more easily. Further, since the agency will have more than one person to handle the process, it is best to have the briefs documented for future references.

Below are some questions that can create a clear outline:

  • What aims do you wish to achieve with the app
  • What type of app do you wish to build: iOS, Android, Web, Windows, or Hybrid?
  • What customized features does your app need?
  • What problem should your app solve?
  • How do you plan to make your app better than your competitors?

Considering these parameters from the beginning can drastically help clear out the confusion. Once you know what you want, you can discuss the budget in detail. More to follow about it in the next point.

Step# 2: Finalize a Budget

Laying an outline for the budget can help you ensure a good financial picture for your company and compare the budget to other agencies'.

It is essential to discuss the number of iterations allowed. If the additional iterations aren't included in the budget, your finances could increase with the mounting iterations and the requirements during its development.

As much as you want to keep the budget in check, you might also want to keep an eye out for suspiciously cheap deals. Such deals may lead to poor-quality apps.

Step# 3: Engage in More Research

Engaging in more research is a wise idea when making vital decisions about your business. As for an app development agency, too, you might have to go down the rabbit hole to find the best ones along these lines:

  • Experience
  • Qualifications (team members)
  • Industry expertise
  • Tech stack

If you consider geography before handing over your project to a professional, you might also want to check if they are off-shore, on-shore, or near-shore. Conducting a brief interview to research the agency market can help. Your questions to the agency manager could include asking about the agency's process, previous work, tools they are proficient with, and the current practices in the industry.

Apart from the questions, you can also look at their live products, opt for a demo version, and establish sprints and expectations (for example, agile and waterfall).

Yet another way is to check their website's positive and negative reviews, testimonials, case studies, and references. Case studies will be a detail-driven asset that can show how tactfully the agency solved a complex problem previously.

These verticals can shed light on the agency's positives and negatives. You might also want to check their portfolio for certification to know about their prowess.

These aspects will also allow you to ensure how passionate the agency is about delivering holistic customer experiences.

If you partner with on-shore or near-shore agencies, you can connect seamlessly with them by meeting in person to discuss collaboration.

Get connected with the right app development agency for your project.

Application Development Outsourcing Benefits

Despite the communication gaps, the benefits of outsourcing app development can highly outweigh the gaps. Check out how application development outsourcing can help your business:

Step# 1: Allows You to Choose from Multiple Price Ranges

Price differences can be a game changer, especially for start-ups or firms going through financially challenging times.

You might want to tap into the vast talent pool of professionals from certain parts of Asia and Eastern Europe, whose charges can be significantly lower than those in the western countries.

Step# 2: This allows You to Tap into The Ideal Skills

The right skills are primary in turning a great idea into a compelling product. Outsourcing can allow you to find specialists in your niche who have worked with a similar business to yours.

Outsourcing mobile application development can offer you cybersecurity skills, User Interface (UI) design, IoT, Backend computing, and much more for your app to compete with those of the other competitors.

Step# 3: Helps You Save Time

Outsourcing could be the best option if you don't have an in-house team, as it can save you from the hassle of creating a team from scratch, as mentioned above. As these professionals and groups come with years of experience, you will also save more time since they'll know the basics of the task.

The best way to save time is to find an agency that suits your requirements and proficiently delivers your project on time.

Step# 4: Offers More Flexibility

Outsourcing can remove the hassles of contracting or expanding the team if required. This can be done more conveniently with an external team rather than managing an in-house team.

Flexibility can also be ensured despite working across time zones. Outsourcing allows you to work with people across the globe, and thanks to comprehensive project management tools, both sides can work comfortably according to their time zones.

Step# 5: Offers More Accountability

The outsource app development agencies have accountability as a critical factor in their operations when creating structured processes, meeting deadlines, and expecting an update.

With a reputable agency, you can be assured that they will take accountability for the product they create if there are any errors in the process and will be willing to rectify them at the given time. This also shows that the agency is holistically driven to improve the customer experience.

What Are the Options When Outsourcing Mobile Application Development

Mobile application development outsourcing, as well as having an in-house team, are two completely different options. However, there are multiple other options available apart from the most popularly known ones. Check out those options below:

Hiring Freelance App Developers

Freelance app developers could be cheaper and more talented than the usual agencies as they are also experienced in working with clients from multiple industries. Some of the freelancers might even work on an hourly basis, making it a more feasible deal for you.

However, they could have narrow specializations in platforms and technologies, may lack guarantee, have gaps in communication, along with timelines being a problem too.

To make the process work for you, it is advisable to keep up with regular communication and be consistent with updates while ensuring that the shared data isn't breached.

Off-the-Shelf Software Solutions

The off-the-shelf software solutions are a cheap option similar to the freelance model. This model is comparatively quicker to launch, with many features included right away.

Although, this model could result in the UI/UX being standard in quality with no quick updates.

App Development Outsourcing Company

An app development agency is likelier to have solved complex problems and must have worked with more detailed apps. Their experience makes them more likely to know how to navigate the route in getting things done successfully.

The process can be seamless with skilled professionals such as developers, team leaders, product managers, quality and testing engineers, analysts, and designers.

Outsource App Development: How to Reduce the Risks?

Avoid handing over large lump sum amounts right at the beginning of the project. You can avoid this by deciding on installments during the app's development.

Protecting your sensitive data can be yet another aspect that will require you to go through multiple checkpoints while partnering with an agency.

You need to be assured of your data as the agency may work with other similar firms at the same time as your product development. You can have an NDA or an agreement to ensure that the data shared with the agency isn't leaked and confidentiality is maintained.

How to Outsource App Development Takeaways

A person spends almost 88% of their mobile time on apps. And that is why apps rule the digital world, making it essential to find the right talent if you intend to create an impact.

Finding the right fit can help you shorten the time to market, decrease costs and improve the app's quality.

On the other hand, ending up with the wrong people can not only give you a bad experience but can also lead to lost opportunities, time, and resources.

You can check out B2B marketplaces such as DesignRush, design communities, online freelance platforms, and their reviews to find the right match. However, with many pitches, it is also important to remember not to give in to the rush. Instead, take your time so that you don't end up running in circles at the 11th hour.

We hope this article helps you make the right choice!

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