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From Concept To Click: The Complete Guide To E-commerce App Development From Scratch

Published datePublished: Feb 8, 2024 ViewsViews: 610
Shanal Aggarwal

Shanal Aggarwal

Chief Commercial & Customer Success Officer
Shanal is a passionate advocate for crafting innovative solutions that address real-world challenges and consistently deliver outstanding results for TechAhead's clients. As a strategic and creative leader, he specializes in driving revenue expansion, developing client-focused solutions, pioneering product innovations, and ensuring seamless program management.
From Concept To Click: The Complete Guide To E-commerce App Development From Scratch

Have you ever considered diving into e-commerce mobile app development but needed help figuring out where to start?

With the global e-commerce market soaring to unprecedented heights, now is the perfect time to explore this lucrative avenue.

In fact, according to recent statistics by Forbes, the global e-commerce market was approximately valued at $6.3 trillion in 2023 and is now projected to surpass $ 8.1 trillion by 2026.

With such staggering numbers, it’s evident that the demand for e-commerce mobile apps is only set to escalate further.

This comprehensive guide will walk you through every step of the process, empowering you to turn your concept into a fully functional app ready for users to click and engage with.

Whether you’re a seasoned entrepreneur or a newcomer to the app development world, this guide will provide the knowledge and tools you need to bring your e-commerce app idea to life.

Let’s dive in.

Why Startup Enthusiasts & Retailers Must Prioritize Ecommerce App Investments

Investing in an eCommerce app is not just a smart business move; startup enthusiasts and established retailers must stay competitive in today’s digital economy. Here’s why you need to build an e-commerce app:

Wide Market Reach:

  • With  79% of shoppers regularly making online purchases, having an e-commerce mobile app opens up a vast market of potential customers. By tapping into the online shopping trend, startups and retailers can expand their reach beyond geographical limitations and target a global audience.

Mobile Dominance:

  • Mobile commerce is rising, with sales projected to hit $710 billion by 2025. Moreover, mobile commerce already contributes over 67.2% of all online sales. Investing in an e-commerce mobile app ensures that businesses capitalize on this growing trend, providing users with a seamless shopping experience at their fingertips.

Increased Sales Frequency:

  • A staggering 29% of people worldwide make a mobile purchase at least once a week. This statistic underscores the growing reliance on mobile e-commerce apps for shopping activities. By investing in an e-commerce app, startups and retailers can capitalize on this trend and drive higher sales frequency.

Different Types Of Ecommerce Apps For Development

Different Types Of Ecommerce Apps For Development

Steps To Develop Ecommerce App From The Scratch

Step 1: Choose The Type Of App Development For Your E-commerce Platform

The Type Of App Development For Your E-commerce Platform

When embarking on the development journey of an e-commerce mobile app, it’s crucial to delve into various app development models to ensure your platform aligns with your objectives and target audience.

Here’s a detailed breakdown of four common types in the realm of the e-commerce app development process:

B2B (Business-to-Business):

The primary focus of B2B e-commerce app development is facilitating business transactions. These apps cater to companies seeking to procure goods or services from other firms. Examples encompass:

  • Wholesale Marketplaces: Platforms connecting manufacturers or distributors directly with retailers or other businesses for bulk purchases.
  • Procurement Platforms: Tools streamlining the process of sourcing and purchasing goods or services for businesses.
  • Industry-Specific Supply Chain Solutions: Tailored solutions addressing various industries’ unique needs and challenges, such as manufacturing or healthcare.

B2C (Business-to-Consumer):

A B2C e-commerce app is designed for businesses to sell products or services directly to individual consumers. They are ubiquitous across various industries, including:

  • Retail: Platforms offering a wide array of consumer goods, from groceries to electronics, accessible for individual purchase.
  • Fashion: Apps dedicated to clothing, accessories, and lifestyle products, providing a personalized shopping experience.
  • Electronics: Platforms specializing in electronic gadgets and devices catering to tech-savvy consumers’ needs.

C2B (Consumer-to-Business):

C2B e-commerce app development involves platforms where individual consumers offer products or services to businesses. Examples include:

  • Platforms For Freelance Services: Marketplaces connecting businesses with freelance professionals for tasks ranging from graphic design to software development.
  • Influencer Marketing: Platforms facilitating collaborations between businesses and social media influencers for promotional campaigns and brand endorsements.
  • User-Generated Content Marketplaces: Platforms allowing consumers to create and sell their content, such as artwork or digital products, to businesses or other consumers.

C2C (Consumer-to-Consumer):

C2C e-commerce app enable individuals to buy and sell directly with other consumers. These platforms serve as intermediaries, fostering peer-to-peer transactions. Notable examples encompass:

  • Online Marketplaces: Platforms where individuals can list and sell items to other users, covering a diverse range of products and categories.
  • Classified Ad Platforms: Websites or apps enabling users to post advertisements for goods or services they want to buy or sell.
  • Auction Sites: Platforms facilitating bidding and auction-style sales between individual users for items ranging from antiques to collectibles.

By comprehensively understanding these e-commerce mobile app models, you can tailor your platform to meet your target audience’s and industry’s specific needs, paving the way for a successful e-commerce app development journey.

Step 2: List The Basic & Advanced Features Your e-commerce app Must Have

Basic & Advanced Features in your Ecommerce app

Developing an e-commerce mobile app involves integrating various features to ensure a seamless shopping experience for users.

Here’s a breakdown of both basic and advanced features that your e-commerce mobile app should incorporate:

Basic Features:

1. User Registration/Login:

Allow users to create accounts or log in using existing credentials to access personalized features and track orders.

2. Product Catalog:

Display a comprehensive list of products with images, descriptions, prices, and categories for easy browsing.

3. Search and Filters:

Implement search functionality and filtering options to help users quickly find specific products based on criteria like price, brand, size, color, etc.

4. Shopping Cart:

Enable users to add items for future purchases and provide a seamless checkout process.

5. Checkout Process:

Streamline the process with multiple payment options, guest checkout, shipping address selection, and order summary.

6. Payment Gateway Integration:

Integrate secure gateways to facilitate transactions, including credit/debit cards, digital wallets, and other payment methods.

7. Order Tracking:

This allows users to track the status of their orders in real-time, from confirmation to delivery.

8. User Profile Management:

Provide users with the ability to manage their profiles, view order history, update personal information, and manage preferences.

9. Push Notifications:

Send timely notifications to users regarding order updates, promotions, discounts, and personalized recommendations.

10. Customer Support:

Offer various channels for customer support, such as live chat assistance, email, or call support, to address queries and resolve issues promptly.

Advanced Features:

Advanced Features

11. Personalized Recommendations:

Implement AI-driven recommendation engines to suggest products based on user preferences, browsing history, and purchase behavior.

12. Multi-Language and Multi-Currency Support:

Cater to a global audience by providing support for multiple languages and currencies to facilitate international transactions.

13. Loyalty Programs and Rewards:

Implement loyalty programs, discounts, and reward points to incentivize repeat purchases and foster customer loyalty.

14. Augmented Reality (AR) & Virtual Try-On:

Integrate AR technology to let users virtually try on products like clothing, accessories, or furniture before purchasing.

Incorporate voice search functionality to enable users to search for products using voiceover commands, enhancing convenience and accessibility.

16. AI-Powered Chatbots:

Deploy AI-powered chatbots to provide personalized assistance, answer common queries, and offer real-time product recommendations.

Analytics and Insights:

Utilize advanced analytics tools to gather data on user behavior, sales performance, & marketing effectiveness, allowing you to make data-driven decisions & optimize your e-commerce app for success.

By incorporating these basic and advanced features into your e-commerce mobile app, you can create a robust & user-friendly platform that meets the needs of your target audience and drives business growth.

Step 3: Technology Stack For Your E-commerce Mobile App

TechAhead-Logo

Selecting the right technology stack is crucial for developing a cutting-edge e-commerce mobile app. With TechAhead as your e-commerce app development partner, you can leverage our expertise to elevate your project.

Here’s a crisp overview of the technology stack options you need to build an e-commerce app, including those our development team specializes in:

Language:

  • Java: Robust and versatile, ideal for scalable back-end systems and Android apps.
  • Kotlin: Modern, with concise syntax and seamless interoperability with Java, perfect for Android app development.
  • Swift: Speedy and safe, preferred for iOS apps, ensuring powerful user experiences.
  • Objective-C: Relevant for iOS app development, especially for maintaining legacy codebases.

Frameworks:

  • Reactive Cocoa: Facilitates reactive and functional programming in iOS and macOS apps.
  • Socket.io: Enables real-time bidirectional communication for features like live chat and notifications.
  • Alamofire: Simplifies networking tasks in iOS apps with a streamlined interface.
  • Moya: Enhances code readability and maintainability by providing a type-safe way to handle network requests.

Database:

  • Firestore: Offers real-time syncing, offline support, and automatic scaling, perfect for reactive e-commerce apps.
  • SQLite: Lightweight, reliable, cross-platform compatible, widely used in mobile app development.
  • Realm: Provides fast data storage, synchronization, and encryption for offline-first and real-time collaborative apps.
  • CoreData: Apple’s framework for managing object graphs and persisting data in iOS and macOS apps.

By leveraging these technologies and TechAhead’s e-commerce app development expertise, you can create a robust, feature-rich, scalable e-commerce mobile app that delights users and drives business growth.

Our proficiency ensures your app is built to the highest standards, delivering unparalleled performance and user experience through our splendid e-commerce app development services.

Step 4: The Budget You Want To Spend

Budget for your ecommerce app

When considering the budget for your e-commerce mobile app development, it’s essential to factor in the scope of functionalities and the level of customization you desire. Here’s a breakdown of the potential costs of building an ecommerce app:

  • For a basic e-commerce app with standard features like a product catalog, shopping cart, and secure payment gateway, you can expect the cost to fall within the $30,000 to $60,000 range.
  • If you’re looking for a more feature-rich app with additional customization and user engagement elements, be prepared for a higher investment. Prices for such apps can start from $60,000 and may range up to $300,000 or more, depending on complexity.
  • For highly complex e-commerce applications with advanced features, integrations, and scalability requirements, the cost may exceed $300,000 due to the intricate development process involved.

When it comes to designing the UI and UX of your e-commerce app or website, here’s what you can anticipate:

  • On average, designing an app’s UI and UX typically costs between $2,000 and $30,000, depending on the project’s scale and complexity.
  • For a simple e-commerce app with standard functionalities, expect the UI and UX design costs to range from $4,000 to $7,200.
  • If you’re developing a medium-sized e-commerce app with more features and multiple platforms, budget around $8,000 to $15,000 for UI and UX design.
  • Designing a custom website’s UX and UI can vary significantly based on size and complexity. The cost may range from $3,000 to $12,000 for large or complex websites, considering the intricacies of crafting a seamless user experience.

Understanding these cost estimates and aligning them with your project requirements allows you to establish a realistic budget for your e-commerce mobile app development journey.

Step 5: Hire A Development Team

Development Team for your app development

Partnering with a trusted development team is paramount when bringing your e-commerce app vision to life.

Talk to TechAhead for your app development idea, a leading e-commerce app development company renowned for its expertise in crafting innovative & scalable digital solutions.

TechAhead offers a comprehensive range of services tailored to meet your e-commerce needs, including:

1. Full-Fledged Ecommerce App Development:

TechAhead specializes in fully customized e-commerce apps tailored to your business requirements, ensuring seamless functionality, intuitive user interfaces, and robust security features.

2. Optimized Shopping Carts:

With a keen focus on user experience and conversion optimization, TechAhead crafts optimized shopping carts that streamline the checkout process, reduce cart abandonment rates, and enhance overall customer satisfaction.

3. Shopify App Development:

Leveraging its deep understanding of the Shopify platform, TechAhead delivers bespoke Shopify apps that extend your online store’s capabilities, enriching the shopping experience and driving business growth.

4. Magento App Development:

TechAhead harnesses the power of Magento, a leading e-commerce platform, to build feature-rich Magento apps that empower businesses to scale, manage, and optimize their online storefronts effectively.

5. BigCommerce App Development:

As a certified BigCommerce partner, TechAhead develops high-performance BigCommerce apps that leverage the platform’s robust features and integrations to help businesses succeed in the competitive e-commerce landscape.

6. WooCommerce App Development:

TechAhead excels in WooCommerce app development, harnessing the flexibility and extensibility of WordPress to create tailored e-commerce solutions that align with your brand identity and business objectives.

With TechAhead as your development team, you can trust in their commitment to delivering cutting-edge e-commerce app development services that exceed your expectations and propel your business forward in the digital age.

Discover TechAhead’s track record of success with our collaboration with Starbucks to develop a unique mobile app for its users to earn loyalty points, redeem them, and receive customized discount offers in real time.

Case study

This partnership showcases our e-commerce app developers’ expertise in crafting tailored mobile app solutions that drive customer engagement and enhance the e-commerce experience.

Started Starbucks Loyalty Program

Step 6: Testing and Quality Assurance

Quality Control Improvement Development Concept

In the realm of e-commerce app development, thorough testing and quality assurance are indispensable steps to ensure your application’s reliability, performance, and user satisfaction.

Here’s how you can ensure the highest standards of quality in your e-commerce apps without specific mention of any development partner:

Integration Testing:

Integration testing focuses on testing the interaction between different components or modules of the app to ensure they work together seamlessly as intended.

User Acceptance Testing (UAT):

UAT involves testing the app with real users or stakeholders on their mobile devices to validate whether it meets their requirements and expectations. It helps ensure the app meets user needs and provides a satisfactory experience.

Compatibility Testing:

Compatibility testing ensures that the app functions correctly across devices (e.g., smartphones and tablets) and platforms (e.g., iOS, Android, web browsers).

It involves testing the app’s performance, appearance, and functionality on various device and platform configurations to ensure a consistent user experience.

Ensuring Compatibility Across Different Devices and Platforms:

Develop a comprehensive test plan that includes testing on a diverse range of mobile devices, operating systems, & browsers commonly used by your target audience.

Utilize emulators and simulators to test the app on different device configurations and screen sizes.

Regularly monitor and analyze user feedback, crash reports, and performance metrics to identify compatibility issues and prioritize them for resolution.

By implementing testing & quality assurance processes encompassing various testing methodologies and ensuring compatibility across different devices and platforms, you can deliver high-quality e-commerce apps that delight users and drive business success.

Step 7: Launching Your E-commerce App

Launching Your Ecommerce App

After planning, development, and testing, the time has come to launch and introduce your e-commerce app to the world. Here’s a comprehensive step to ensure a successful launch of your e-commerce apps after your e-commerce application development plan:

App Store Optimization (ASO):

Optimize your app store listing by including relevant keywords, compelling app descriptions, high-quality visuals, and engaging app previews to attract users and improve discoverability.

Marketing and Promotion:

Develop a comprehensive marketing strategy encompassing various channels such as social media, email marketing, influencer partnerships, and content marketing to generate buzz and drive app downloads.

User On-Boarding and Support:

Ensure a smooth onboarding experience for users by providing clear instructions, tutorials, and tooltips to guide them through the app’s features and functionalities.

Monitoring and Analytics:

Utilize comprehensive tools like Firebase Analytics, Google Analytics, or Mixpanel to track critical metrics post-launch.

Monitor app downloads, user engagement, retention rates, and in-app purchases to gain insights into your app’s performance.

Regularly analyze user feedback, reviews, and ratings to understand user sentiment & identify areas for improvement to enhance their experience with the app.

By monitoring your app’s performance, gathering user feedback, and implementing iterative improvements, you can ensure that your e-commerce app continues to evolve and thrive in the competitive app market.

Exemplary Ecommerce Apps Shaping the Industry

Amazon:

amazon logo

Source

  • Product Diversity: Amazon offers an extensive range of products across various categories, from electronics and clothing to groceries and home goods.
  • Streamlined Shopping Experience: With a user-friendly interface and advanced search functionalities, Amazon provides a seamless shopping experience for customers.
  • Convenient Delivery Options: Amazon Prime membership offers perks like free two-day shipping, same-day delivery, and access to exclusive deals, enhancing convenience for shoppers.
  • Global Dominance: Amazon’s presence spans numerous countries, solidifying its position as a dominant force in the worldwide e-commerce market.

Walmart:

walmart logo

Source

  • Omnichannel Integration: Walmart seamlessly integrates its e-commerce app with its extensive network of physical stores, offering options like in-store pickup and same-day delivery.
  • Personalized Recommendations: Through data-driven algorithms, Walmart provides customized product recommendations, enhancing the shopping experience for users.
  • Wide Product Selection: Leveraging its vast retail network, Walmart’s e-commerce app offers various products at competitive prices, catering to different consumer needs.

AliExpress:

Aliexpress logo

Source

  • Competitive Pricing: AliExpress is known for offering products at highly competitive prices, appealing to budget-conscious shoppers worldwide.
  • Buyer Protection: The platform provides protection policies, ensuring customers receive refunds or replacements for damaged or undelivered items.
  • Global Accessibility: AliExpress facilitates international shipping, allowing customers from different countries to access its vast catalog of products.

eBay:

ebay logo

Source

  • Auction-Style Listings: eBay’s unique auction-style format enables buyers to bid on items, creating an engaging shopping experience and allowing for lower prices.
  • Seller Community: With millions of active sellers, eBay fosters a vibrant community of merchants, offering a diverse inventory of new and used items.
  • Buyer Protection Policies: eBay provides buyer protection policies, safeguarding purchases and ensuring a secure transaction experience for users.

Etsy:

Etsy logo

Source

  • Unique and Handmade Goods: Etsy connects artisans and small businesses with a platform to sell their unique, handmade, and vintage products, appealing to consumers seeking one-of-a-kind items.
  • Community Atmosphere: Etsy fosters a sense of community among buyers and sellers, with features like seller profiles and customer reviews contributing to transparency and trust.
  • Global Marketplace: While focusing on individual creators, Etsy operates as a global marketplace, allowing sellers to reach a broad audience of potential customers worldwide.

Wrapping Up

In conclusion, navigating the journey from concept to click in e-commerce app development requires meticulous planning, strategic decision-making, and execution excellence.

Following the comprehensive guide on e-commerce application development, you’re equipped with the essential knowledge and steps to create a successful e-commerce mobile app from scratch.

With the expertise of a trusted e-commerce app development company like TechAhead, you can elevate your vision to reality, ensuring a seamless user experience and driving business growth.

Ready to embark on your e-commerce mobile app development journey?

Get in touch now to discuss your e-commerce app idea.

FAQs

What is the timeline for developing an e-commerce app from scratch?

The timeline for developing an e-commerce app varies depending on factors such as the app’s complexity, features, and customization requirements.

On average, mobile app development can take between three to six months for essential apps and six months to a year or more for more complex projects.

How do I ensure the security of my e-commerce app and customer data?

To ensure your E-commerce apps and customer data’s security, implement industry-standard security measures such as:

  • Data Encryption
  • Secure Authentication Methods
  • Regular Security Audits
  • Compliance With Data Protection Regulations Like GDPR

What platforms should I consider for launching my e-commerce app?

The choice of platforms for launching your e-commerce app depends on your target audience and market reach.

Consider launching on popular platforms like iOS and Android for broad reach and web platforms for accessibility across devices.

How can I measure the success of my ecommerce app post-launch?

Success metrics for an e-commerce app include app downloads, active users, conversion rates, average order value, customer retention rates, & return on investment (ROI).

Utilize analytics tools to track these metrics & make data-driven decisions to optimize your app’s performance.

How can I optimize the user experience (UX) of my e-commerce mobile app to increase customer satisfaction and engagement?

Optimizing the UX of your e-commerce app is a crucial part of your e-commerce application development
process as it enhances customer satisfaction and engagement. Consider implementing features such as:

  • Intuitive Navigation
  • Streamlined Checkout Process
  • Personalized Recommendations
  • Fast Loading Speeds
  • Mobile Responsiveness
  • User Feedback Mechanisms

By focusing on these aspects, you can create a seamless and enjoyable shopping experience for your customers, increasing engagement and loyalty.

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