Application Software Deep Dive
Posted by Lacey Wilcox | January 27, 2021
It’s pretty amazing to think about how much software impacts our daily lives. It’s almost impossible to drive a car, check email, or listen to music without using software in some form. In the same way we turn on the lights or use a refrigerator without marveling at the technology that makes it possible, so too we have become accustomed to software making our lives easier – and in some ways, much better.
But it’s not just day-to-day life that is impacted by software. Your business requires it for everything from marketing to customer relationship management to running internal systems and processes. And just like electricity or refrigeration, it’s really something you can’t (and don’t want to) be without. Today we’re taking a closer look at one type of software: application software.
What is Application Software?
Application software is the most common of the four types of software and is the one you are most likely to interact with each day. This is any end-user program that performs a specific task or achieves a desired outcome. Simply put, it’s any software designed to be put into operation for you, the end-user. Application software is everywhere, from the apps you install on your phone, to the tools you use online for search or for work, to the smart devices you use to power security, entertainment systems, and so much more.
Application software needs to be installed on a device: a computer, a phone or tablet, a smart TV, etc. based upon a user’s need or intended use. And because application software is abundant, it means users have options to find tools that fit their needs, budgets, and expectations. It also means that, for businesses who want to create a custom software solution, the sky's the limit.
How Application Software Can Help Your Business
Because application software is designed to complete a specific goal or objective, it’s an extremely powerful tool for businesses to have in their arsenal. If pressed, you could probably list dozens of such software programs right off the top of your head: tools like Hubspot, Photoshop, Drift, Wistia, and so many more. While these tools are helpful, effective, and even necessary for growing your business, they do have one small drawback: they are not completely, 100% yours.
But a custom application software? You own every aspect of that.
Deciding whether or not you need a custom application software instead of using a tool already on the market will depend on your budget, your exact need(s), and your intended user. Here are two distinct benefits to having your own software built just for your company.
First, you can offer something completely different and unique to your customers that will keep them using and trusting your business for the long haul. Anyone who has used Walmart’s or Target’s app to purchase and pick up an item has probably been easily sold on trusting these companies in the future. Having an easy-to-use software for your personal finances makes you more likely to keep your money at your bank instead of trying out another.
Second, you can create an in-house tool that keeps your team more efficient and proactive. If this tool cuts down on the time and effort to complete a task, it will save your business money in the long run and allow your team to focus their energy where they can be the most productive.
Bottom line: if you have the budget for it, creating custom application software is just a better wheel. You’ll own a unique tool that exactly meets the needs of your business and/or customers, allows your team to be more adaptable and scale their work, and belongs solely to you.
Why It Matters Who Builds Your Custom Software Solution
It’s no secret that building custom application software is a monetary investment. It’s an extensive process to build something unique and valuable that can be put to such good use. If you’re going to make that investment, it’s crucial you successfully vet the agency building your product so that you can ensure the greatest success possible.
Conduct a Background Check
There’s nothing wrong with completing due diligence as you look into the agency building your custom software. In fact it would be irresponsible not to. Check out testimonials from past clients on Google or social media, or ask for the contact information of someone from a past project. Find out what past clients liked about this company, what was frustrating, and how pleased they were with their final product.
Determine the Process
It’s not just enough to vet a potential software agency to build application software for your company. Find out exactly what their process is, what will be expected of you and your team, how many opportunities you have to make edits, and what you are able to do with the final product once everything is complete. It’s critical that you be 100% sure you can live with the entire process before you make such a commitment.
Do They Care About Your Money?
You know the saying, “There’s more than one way to skin a cat”? While it’s quite bizarre (and inhumane), it does apply to building custom software. While there are multiple angles from which a developer can build application software, the best option for businesses is probably to create a web application development designed for mobile. The agency you work with needs to know this and know how to help you get the most bang for your buck. Working from a mobile-first direction allows developers to use the same code across multiple platforms and provide access to people on phones, tablets, and computers. This means you save a little money and time upfront, and if the app is well designed, you can easily open the APIs up to allow iOS or Android apps to integrate as well.
If you’re anything like me (which means you don’t speak computer code), you might feel a bit like your head is swimming with all of this information. While it’s easy to see how application software can benefit your business, your team, and your customers, it’s a bit daunting to think about the actual end result.
But we can help clear the waters and decide exactly what your company needs. Set up a consultation with our team to learn more.