7 top tips for choosing a mobile app development company

12 min read
November 20, 2023

Developing a mobile app can be great for your business.

But, you need to do it right.

And for that, you need to find the right mobile app development company to partner with.

That’s why we’ve written this guide to help you make that choice.

Let’s dive in!

Define your mobile app development goals and requirements first

Before you begin looking for a mobile app development company to partner with, you need to define your goals and your app’s requirements.

You need to define:

  • The goals you want to achieve with your app
  • The features you want your app to have
  • The type of team you’re looking for

If you don’t have a clear idea of what you want your mobile app to do, even the best development company won’t be able to help you.

Think of these requirements as the selection criteria by which you’ll judge your prospective app development partners.

And that’s why you need to clearly define them before looking for a development partner.

You should start by setting clear goals for your mobile app.

The SMART goal framework is a handy tool you can use to define your goals.

SMART goals

source: ProductPlan

Once you know what you want your app to achieve, you can start thinking about the features you want it to have and the type of team you’re looking to hire.

If you’re struggling to narrow down your feature list, use feature prioritization methods like:

  • MoSCoW
  • Kano
  • RICE 
  • Value vs effort

And finally, you need to decide the type of team you’re looking for – a dedicated team or an extended team.

Your choice depends on your specific needs.

An extended team is a good choice if you’re looking to plug skill gaps in your in-house engineering team.

But, hiring a dedicated team is the better choice if you’re building a complex app and are looking for a long-term development partner.

Dedicated team

A good dedicated team will care just as much about your app as an in-house team.

It functions just like any in-house team, except it’s formed by a third-party agency or service provider.

And that’s why hiring one is a good idea.

Why it’s important

Now, let’s discuss some main reasons why defining your goals and requirements first is so important:

  • It’s essential for strategic planning – without clear goals and requirements, you can’t make any long-term, strategic plans for your app 
  • It helps you avoid misunderstandings – if they’re clear and well-defined, you’ll avoid confusion and miscommunication when choosing a mobile app development company
  • It helps you reduce risks – clear requirements will help reduce the risk of hiring the wrong company

Once you’ve defined them, you can start looking for an app development partner.

And the best place to start evaluating possible partners is by reviewing their portfolio and case studies.

Review their portfolio and case studies

Reviewing a company’s portfolio and case studies is essential when choosing a mobile app development company.

It should be your first step when evaluating a potential partner company.

Their portfolios and case studies will show you:

  • Their previous work and experience
  • The types of mobile apps they’ve built
  • How they approach their work
  • The problems they’ve solved for their clients

And all of these factors will show you if they’re the right fit for you.

Let’s say you want to build an internal communication app for your business.

Royal Caribbean employee communication app

You’ll know a company is the right fit if they’ve already developed similar apps before.

Also, their case studies should be detailed and cover:

  • The problem they’ve helped their client solve
  • How they solved it
  • The impact their solutions had

If they’re not, that’s a red flag and shows they might not have that much experience developing mobile apps.

And that should be a dealbreaker.

Why it’s important

Now, let’s go over some reasons why reviewing a mobile app development company’s portfolio and case studies is important:

  • They show their problem-solving skills – a good case study will give you an idea how they solve complex problems for their clients
  • They show how adaptable they are – you’ll get an idea how they adapt to new technologies and trends in mobile app development
  • They’re a showcase of the quality of their work – you’ll be able to see if their development and design are up to your standards

But, keep in mind that the companies write the case studies themselves.

And they want to present themselves in the best possible light.

So, if you want to confirm their accuracy, you need to check their reviews.

Check their reviews

A mobile app development company’s reviews are one of the most important factors you should consider when choosing a development partner.

Think about it like this – would you go to a poorly-reviewed restaurant?

Of course, you wouldn’t.

And choosing the company that will develop your app is a much more consequential decision than choosing a restaurant.


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That’s why their reviews are so important.

They’re an accurate reflection of their work from the client’s perspective.

So, where can you find their reviews?

Many companies will feature reviews from their clients on their website.

Of course, those reviews are cherry-picked, and you won’t find any negative reviews, but they can still be a valuable data point.

But, you’ll find the most valuable reviews on third-party websites like:

The reviews on those sites will give you a clear idea of what it’s like to work with a company.

DECODE Clutch reviews

source: Clutch

And the best part?

These sites verify posted reviews and require their users to login with their business email address or LinkedIn profile.

You don’t have to worry about their authenticity.

And that’s why they’re so valuable.

Why it’s important

Let’s go over why checking a company’s reviews is important when choosing a mobile app development company:

  • They show their reliability and trustworthiness – a company’s reviews will tell you if they reliably deliver projects and if you can trust the agreements you sign with them
  • They show their communication skills – their reviews will tell you if they communicate well with their clients and give regular updates
  • They show their technical expertise – the reviews will show how well they handle complex projects and the quality of the apps they develop

Once you’ve read a company’s reviews, the next step is reviewing their mobile app development process.

Review their mobile app development process

A company’s mobile app development process is the most important factor when you’re choosing a development partner.

You should choose a company whose process aligns with your specific needs.

And you need to know what to look for to get that right.

So, what should you pay attention to when reviewing their development process?

First, check if they offer services other than just app development, like:

A company that offers full-service engineering and can build and design your mobile app from scratch is a better choice.

That’s because you won’t have to worry about hiring other vendors.

You also need to check which types of apps they build, like:

If you want a native Android app, a company that specializes in native iOS apps obviously isn’t the right fit for your needs.

Also, make sure to check the development methodology they use.

You should look for a company that uses an Agile methodology like Scrum or Kanban.

They’re the best fit for complex modern apps – here’s what DECODE co-founder and CEO, Marko Strizic, had to say about why Agile is so important:

Agile development methodologies are the best fit for building complex, modern apps.

And that’s why you should go with a company that uses them.

Why it’s important

Let’s talk about why reviewing a company’s mobile app development process is important:

  • It shows how transparent they are – having a clear and well-defined development process builds transparency and trust, which is essential for a successful partnership
  • You’ll see if they’re efficient and cost-effective – understanding their process will show you how efficiently they work, which can affect your project’s timeline and cost
  • It shows how flexible they are – reviewing a company’s approach to developing mobile apps will show you if they’re flexible enough to adjust their process to your specific requirements

Once you’ve reviewed their process, you should check if they offer post-launch support next.

Check if they offer post-launch support

Building a minimum viable product (MVP) and launching your mobile app is just the first step.

Your app’s development doesn’t stop at launch.

That’s why you should check if a company offers post-launch support and can iterate your app further.

What you should be looking for is a company that can be your long-term partner that will build on your MVP.

That’s essential to your app’s long-term viability and success.

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But, why exactly is that the case?

One key reason is that once you launch your app, you’ll inevitably run into unforeseen issues and challenges.

And having a long-term partnership with the company that developed your app will help you resolve them quickly.

Also, your app needs to evolve, and you need to regularly update it to keep up with your competitors.

Post-launch support is essential for making that happen.

And that’s why you should always make sure the company you partner with offers it.

Why it’s important

Now, let’s discuss some key reasons why checking if they offer post-launch support is important:

  • Your app needs regular maintenance – it’s essential if you want your app to function properly and stay secure
  • It will help your app keep up with user needs – post-launch support is essential if you want your app to stay relevant to your users
  • It will optimize your app’s performance – it will help you continuously improve your app’s performance and improve its user experience (UX)

And the final step before you choose a company to partner with is looking into their pricing.

Look into their pricing

The last thing on your checklist when choosing a mobile app development company should be their pricing and pricing model.

You need to check that their pricing fits your requirements and budget.

Of course, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to pricing as every mobile app has unique requirements.

And a number of factors will influence the cost of your app, such as:

  • The type of app you’re building
  • Your target platform
  • Your app’s complexity

You’ll need to contact the companies directly to get an estimate of your app’s total cost.

But, what you should pay close attention to is their pricing model.

The 2 most common models are fixed price and time and materials.

The fixed price model is a solid choice if you want to build a simple app with well-defined requirements.

But, if you have a more complex app, the time and materials model is a better choice.


  • Flexibility
  • Control over the project
  • Scalability
  • Budget management
  • Quality


  • Over budgeting
  • Risk of a bad contractor

It’s the fairest compensation model for both the client and the company.

And here’s what Benjamin Huskic, founder of The Quality Gate, had to say about both pricing models:

That’s because it reflects the actual hours and resources used to build your mobile app.

And that’s why you should go with it.

Why it’s important

Now, let’s go over why it’s important to look into a company’s pricing when choosing one to partner with:

  • It will help you with long-term financial planning – you’ll be able to plan your long-term financial goals if you know how much your app will cost
  • Helps you estimate your app’s ROI – knowing the cost of your app’s development will help you estimate how much you’ll get in return
  • It can be a sign of quality and expertise – higher prices can mean that the company has higher quality standards and experienced engineers

Once you’ve checked the pricing, you can make your final decision.

How to choose a mobile app development company: FAQs

Here, we’ll answer some questions we’ve seen popping up about choosing a mobile app development company.

What should I consider when choosing a mobile app development company?

You should consider: 

  • Your mobile app development goals and requirements
  • The company’s portfolio and case studies
  • Their reviews
  • Their approach to mobile app development
  • If they offer post-launch support
  • Their pricing

How can I check a company’s technical expertise?

You can check their expertise by reading their case studies and client reviews as well as reviewing their development process.

Where can I find their client’s reviews?

You can find client reviews on sites like:

  • Clutch
  • G2
  • Goodfirms

And these reviews are verified and trustworthy.

Which pricing models do mobile app development companies usually offer?

The 2 most common pricing models they usually offer are the fixed price and time and materials models.

Need help developing your mobile app? 

Developing a mobile app isn’t easy.

And finding the right mobile app development company is even harder.

That’s where we come in.

If you need help building your mobile app, feel free to get in touch with us and we’ll help you bring your app idea to life.

Written by

Ivan Trogrlic

Android Team Lead

An Applied Sciences graduate and a true connoisseur of tech, Ivan is a software developer with a genuine love for exploring new technologies. QAs love his code, and his fellow developers always value his input. For Ivan, there is no issue too small to talk over, and no problem that can’t be solved together. When he is not coding, Ivan is usually hiking or playing football. His ideal workspace? Probably a cottage in the mountains, with a serious gaming setup and fast internet connection.

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