Risks Every App Developer Needs To Know In the App Business

The thought of having a business, solely based on simply creating mobile applications through our creative minds to then be pushed off to a driven company that handles the transactions and logistics is simply amazing. 


The Opportunity


According to Internet Advisor “Across the world, about 3.5 billion people have a smartphone today”


That’s over 3.5 billion people using smartphones every single day! Just take a moment to think about this. There are over 3.5 billion people who are a tap away from downloading your app. If this doesn’t make you excited, as far as seeing a great opportunity, then I don’t know what will. In another view, we can examine what it’s like for a retail store to get exposure. The store is stuck at 1 location in one city. Unless it’s able to open new stores and be online, it still has a problem with people not being able to find them. Now for apps they still have a discovery problem, this is where niche apps come into play. If your app fills a need it is better positioned as all it takes is a tap away rather than needing to drive to a single located retail store which seems inconvenient.


The App Store Risks


If your apps are only available in one app store, or even all the top 5 app stores (iTunes, Mac App Store, Google Play, Amazon, and Microsoft), you are at mercy to them. 


Any policy changes they make, which they do quite often, can either, raise your profits, keep them steady, make app discovery harder, or put you out of business altogether, overnight, most of the time without notice. Not to mention some stores require annual fees to have the “privilege” to sell on their app store with of course a 30% cut from each app sale. The 30% cut the app stores take can be a bit hefty but for indie app developers like myself, I see it favorable since they are taking care of the app transactions, refunds, and an online marketplace.


Because of the many risks, it is always better to diversify through different app stores, or if you are brave enough, sell direct to consumers through your own personal website. Although you need to set in place a merchant account to accept credit cards, transactions, refunds, ways to fight off pirates, more expensive website hosting services to handle the traffic, withholding taxes for every jurisdiction including overseas (app stores handles these), and advertising.




So the opportunity of over 2.1 billion smartphone users globally, is definitely a great opportunity to be in for app developers. As with any type of business, there is always some kind of risk, the risks outlined here are the risks associated with app developers. It is really easy to get into this type of business and if you have the drive and consistency to do it, I don’t see why you wouldn’t be successful. You need to create valuable apps but not depend on just 1 app. I’ve read plenty of developers complain about how it doesn’t work for them or blame other circumstances instead of their own. It takes hard work and dedication to create new apps. There are apps that make money, ones that don’t even get 1 download but based on your situation the best solution is to just make a better one and move on. Complaining about a situation doesn’t get us anywhere or make us into a better person either. Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed but what is, is what we can control and that is our mind and how we respond to challenges, and if we have the courage to solve them, results will show up. 


Build out your app empire and watch the market grow with your app journey.