Software development project budget

The article is a part of Code Inspiration’s software development outsourcing Knowledge Base.

It goes without saying that one of the most important and frequently asked questions when it comes to development is how much does it cost. As software development is always something about the details, usually, when a client shares the general idea of the app it is not quite possible to estimate it straightforward. To help understand better why projects similar in the functionality or in idea can have completely different budgets, let’s get through main points which impact the budget of a software development project.

There is a scope of functionality which practically every app has, like Sign up, Login, Forget password, Privacy policy, Terms of use, Terms of service, user profile. There is specific functionality in each app which reflects its idea and main functionality.

Budget in software development projects

What can impact the budget of a software development project? Let’s see:

  • Amount of browsers supported. There are 2 most popular browsers, such as Chrome and Safari, however, sometimes it is required to support Edge, Mozilla and other browsers depending on the region of usage.
  • Complex animated UI for sure looks great, however, it also takes more time to implement it.
  • Mobile responsive version, as most users are browsing internet with the help of their mobile phones it is important to make the web application mobile responsive.
  • Necessity to integrate any kind of third party services, for example, for ID verifications signing up or logging in.
  • Which platforms it should be developed for, if we are talking about mobile apps. Should it be developed for IOS, Android? Both?
  • Define supported versions for IOS and Android devices.
  • Push notifications.

Further, if you are planning to integrate any kind of third party service, the price for integration of one same service may vary. For example, integrating Google Maps has tons of functionality, to reflect the map itself will take few days of development, however, if you need some specific things like search of places, appropriate translations depending on the language selected on your platform by the user and so on, it will definitely take much more time, and, surely, increase the budget.

Integration of the payment system, such as PayPal or Stripe can also take 40 hours or few months, much depend on what API endpoints exactly are to be integrated.

The last important point many customers forget at early stages of mocking up their ideas is admin panel. What would you need to see as an admin. CRUD (Create-Read-Update-Delete) are usually not enough for the product owner to manage even an MVP. Admin panel is a great part of “hidden” work which the final user doesn’t see, but it definitely exists.

Now, when it is more or less clear with the functionality stuff – let’s get through the process itself to understand the formation of the budget.

Budget for software development

Each software development project if started from scratch has:Software development project phases

  1. Discovery phase. Usually it takes 1-4 weeks. For sure can take longer depending on the project and many other aspects, like integration of the product owner in the process, how fast decisions are made and so on and so forth.
  2. Mock-up phase. This phase for a standard project usually takes 4-5 weeks. It will contain low-fi mock-ups and detailed specification guide with screen by screen description and overall logic of the app
  3. Development phase. Usually divided into iterations, back end and front end work. Together with development always goes QA. It is important to perform testing during all stages to have a good beta version
  4. Beta. When the development stage results in a project, it requires regress testing and bug fixing. All in all, testing on a project takes around 20% of hours estimated for the software project.
  5. Release. The most exciting moment when the app finally goes live and the most difficult for the development team. Maintenance and support goes together with the release. This is usually a separate contract. In very details about SLA you can read in the article written by our CBDO for TheManifest.

Development of any software project contains plenty of variables and pitfalls, but definitely worth trying. If you are “in good hands” of a professional manager, you will be guided through the process avoiding multiple mistakes.

The article is a part of Code Inspiration’s software development outsourcing Knowledge Base.