A good and efficient messenger is certainly the tool every smartphone must have. Despite the fact there are plenty of offers at some leading app stores including Skype, Viber, WhatsApp and others, users are still in search of a messaging application able to provide some more essential features to keep in touch with people around the globe.
The competition in the mobile app industry is growing rapidly. Developers come up with some prize-winning messaging solutions that are easy-to-use on various mobile platforms and free. Establishing fees for messages is no longer a trend. All you need is a portable device connected to the Internet.
What features define a good messaging app?
With a growing number of messaging apps, users are more likely to opt for applications that come with a set of essential features. Whenever you want to build your own app, you should take them into account as well.
Data Formats. The times of text messages have gone. Modern messengers are now far from SMS services we were used to a decade ago. People want not just send text messages but also other files and documents. They are eager to share photos, music and videos as well. For this reason, developing a good messaging app means it should support all major format types. Viber is a good example of such application. It supports such formats as spreadsheets, PDF files, video, text and images.
Increasing the popularity of your app may appear to be easier than it seems. All you need is to add some features like photo editors, sound filters and other tools to create bright and eye-catching content. The more entertaining your app is the higher ranking it will get.
Cloud Service Synchronization. This feature is also a must for a good and efficient messaging service. You can take the example of such award-winning services like Dropbox or Evernote.
Chat. Chats are another vital feature every messaging app must have. People want to communicate in groups. They should have a chance to create private and closed chats no matter if they follow casual or business purposes. Security and privacy have turned into a new trend. In other words, taking your application to high positions among competitors, means considering the following security features:
- Secured user’s data and encrypted messages;
- Messages that are self-destructed within a certain period.
You can follow the example of some leading free open-source chat apps available for both iOS and Android platforms. They include such popular applications as Chatsecure, Cryptocat and Telegram. The last one brings the highest level of privacy with the help of its Secret Chats feature. Users have an opportunity to take over control their messages on both devices establishing the exact time for self-destruction. The tool can be used for not only text messages bit also other file formats including videos, images and more. The app ensures that a particular user will receive the content.
Developers can use various options to upgrade their chat services. For example, some apps let users organize messaging schedule as well as postpone some messages. The feature is not very popular now though it should not be underestimated. On the one hand, you do not need to download a separate application as a reminder. On the other hand, you can always track and control the messages you send.
Calls and Video Chats. The opportunity to keep in touch with friends and family 24/7 is the key feature delivered by smartphones and other portable devices. Now users have a chance to developer their smartphone functions and tools with the help of such award-winning apps like Skype or Viber. They boost contacting capabilities of any device connected to the global web via WiFi or any other network. It lets you benefit from not just personal video calls, but also group chats and conference calls.
At the same time, these features are not the only ones to consider when developing a successful and popular messaging application. You also need to follow modern trends that shape the mobile app market greatly. The main idea is to make the product as entertaining as you can.
Snapchat is a good example of such an app. It gained a huge popularity thanks to some of its unique options. For example, users can benefit from a great facial recognizing tool that lets them proceed with face transformation when using smartphone’s front camera. The app offers a range of filters and visual effects making it easy to create avatars, 3D images and more while chatting with a friend using a camera.
Manage Your Calendar and Events. According to the latest tendencies, users are more likely to have all necessary options in one app rather than using several screens at the same time. It means that combining a messaging app with calendar and event-managing features will certainly be a good idea. It may contain an organizer or schedule like WhatsApp. However, you are supposed to think of something unique in case you want to compete with a popular messenger.
Here is the least of key features based on SWOT analysis you should pay attention to when building your own messaging app. They include not only users’ engagement but also the amount of active users, retention and more. Here is an easy guide for how you can increase the rate of those features.
Messaging app active users
Whenever you need to increase the number of active users, you need to make them invite their friends. This is possible only in case your application has a set of unique and beneficiary propositions if compared with other services available on the web.
For example, Slack is certainly the leading app when it comes to team messengers. It offers some essential features as well as secured messaging aimed at making users’ lives easier. Slack developers follow the only goal, which is providing a fast and efficient way to share and exchange various types of content. All you need is to determine your targeted audience for group chats.
Considering social networks is vital. You need to offer some features that will let users share content via social accounts as well. Instagram and Twitter appear to be a good example of messaging and hashtag combination. On the one hand, you will benefit from a larger number of channels. On the other hand, you can create good feedback to promote your messaging app.
Messaging app retention rate
User retention rate may appear to be even more important than the level of acquisition. For example, Viber makes it easy to synchronize the messenger with the phone book and its contacts. Moreover, the app sends notifications whenever a new user from your list starts using the app. Push notifications come as an efficient tool to manage events and remind others of someone’s birthday or special event. It will keep your app in the center of attention and result in a higher retention rate.
Messaging app users’ engagement
The more entertaining your app is the more users it will attract. Messaging application is not just about communicating and chatting. It is also about fun. Great design is a must for the product. You should work on a selection of funny and unique stickers that will attract not only adults but younger users as well. You can add gifs or mojis that have become extremely popular over the days.
Messaging app monetizing strategies
As soon as we are done with the KPI features, it is high time we learnt how to make money from your messaging app. You can opt for several efficient ways to make a profit. The most popular ones include:
- Mobile ads, banners and in-line advertising;
- In-app purchases including gifs, emoji, themes and stickers;
- Subscription fees for a certain usage period.
A growing number of users and popularity will certainly attract the attention of a serious tech company to your messaging app. The same thing has happened to WhatsApp that was eventually absorbed by Facebook. The price of the deal was $19 billion.
In other words, no matter what strategy you opt for make sure that you follow a long-term value of your application turning it into a recognized and well-established brand in the niche. Avoid too much involvement into advertising. Many reputable services use only low subscription fees or provide their apps free.