Almost half of mobile app development projects fail, because they are poorly planned, managed, or run due to the team’s lack of knowledge and competence.
No matter if failure means to you a poor quality of the delivered product, growing technological debt that prevents further growth, lack of stability, low security, or too high operating costs. From our experience as an app development company, we can assure you that most of your problems can be avoided.
We are here to give you insights from our daily betting software developers‘ work. Reading them from cover to cover may literally pay off, as a product built with these tips in mind is more likely to be reliable, secure, and delivered without unnecessary delays.
These suggestions are applicable in relation to betting apps, or apps for any other industry. It also doesn’t matter if you outsource your mobile app development or work with an internal team.
So if you have high-tech expectations and discern a lack of technical expertise or particular know-how in the team, make this article your bible. Even walking through the valley of shady software development process fear no fuckups, as we listed in this article our best practices and hints crucial for its success. All this knowledge was gathered during years of providing app development services so make the most of it.
Make a sports betting mobile app on solid foundations
Driving a technological vision of the product often means balancing the desire to deliver the best possible ROI without sacrificing the quality of the developed mobile app. To build or enhance, for example, a sports betting app successfully, you need to make the right decisions. Bad ones will cost you money, time, and a lot of frustration. Unfortunately, as software developers, we have to fix incorrect choices much too frequently. Therefore, we wrote this article to prevent such situations in the future. Let’s consider the first issue.
Mobile application development – who’s gonna do this?
The first thing before starting the development process is deciding who is going to perform the work. If you have internal resources in the form of a development team skilled enough to create and expand your mobile app, you are halfway there. With such a strong team of developers who understand the vision and can bring it to life, you can actually drive the change of the legacy system to cutting-edge technology.
Yet, bear in mind that it may require supplementing the team with additional employees, which might be time-consuming and increase operational costs. Also, you will need to keep your team highly motivated and focused on the project by providing appropriate working conditions, remuneration, and benefits.
In case you lack experts with the particular knowledge and skills required for igaming app development on board, you will need to outsource the project. There are two possible ways of doing it.
The first scenario is when you hand over your project to a mobile development team that handles it from A to Z, taking care of the management and the final success of the product. Another option is hiring a developer with specific competencies to fill the knowledge gap in your team. Both alternatives have pros and cons, and depending on the project, each can work.
Product Development Team
Building a custom sport betting app with an external Product Development Team is quite convenient. Such a team takes care of the project comprehensively, leading the development process from the ground up. Let’s break down the pros and cons of this solution to find out if it’s right for you.
Pros of a Product Development Team:
- Software companies offer comprehensive supervision of the whole process, including development, design, and team management.
- There is no need to complete recruiting and onboarding processes for new employees, which saves the company’s resources.
- A Product Development Team has its PM, who draws up a roadmap of the project and controls the development process, saving your time and decreasing the number of responsibilities.
- Since developers collaborate on a daily basis, they are well acquainted with one another and communicate more effectively, which improves the workflow and speeds up the development process.
- A team experienced in sports betting projects can organize your backlog and indicate the most needed features to implement first.
Cons of a Product Development Team:
- More often than not, you will have to wait for a whole team to be available, which extends the time of the project’s start.
- You need to hire a complete team of specialists, each with a higher hourly rate than your regular staff. However, because you are not required to execute the recruitment process or manage the administration, you spend less money overall.
- It is difficult to select the right software development company, but we explain how to approach this issue later on in this article.
Another strategy for sports betting mobile application development is Staff Augmentation. This outsourcing strategy is often applied to fill the knowledge gap in given technology or industry by hiring individual specialists in the field.
Does it seem like a plan to consider? Look at the benefits and drawbacks of this solution to check whether it suits your needs.
Pros of Staff Augmentation:
- Instead of recruiting candidates that eventually may not fit the position, you select an expert with a certain skill set from our talent pool, saving a considerable amount of time.
- A developer can jump right into a project and bring value from day one due to previous experience in sports betting app development. There is no need to introduce such a person to the realities of the industry and translate the terminology, which will be another timesaver. Being well-acquainted with a sports betting background, they can quickly identify critical aspects of a project and evaluate business assumptions to provide a viable solution.
- It enables you to get an expert who brings value to the company without organizing the recruitment process and incurring insurance and taxes costs.
Cons of Staff Augmentation:
- It is problematic to verify the competencies of the developers to which we outsource the project.
- You have to build communication channels to ensure the proper flow of information between external experts and your company.
- It might be cost-ineffective in the case of long-term projects, as you have to pay a contractor more than you would spend on the training and remuneration of a permanent worker.
How to choose a betting software development partner
We admit that choosing a suitable partner can be tiresome and tricky at times. Since you may find the process a bit overwhelming, we have prepared a short list of factors you should take into account while selecting a company for cooperation.
Look for a team of developers who have already created solid sports betting products in the past. Based on their portfolio, you may determine whether they can provide you with the functionalities and design you are looking for. It is, in our opinion, a crucial factor that may prove a specific company has the necessary set of skills to assist you in completing your dream project.
It is a good sign when the partner prepares a step-by-step plan to complete milestones. Ideally, they should propose product workshops before the project starts, during which you will be a part of the design process. If there are any technical threats ahead, it would be wise to investigate them further and amend concept solutions. Such workshops allow you to grasp the background of the project and help the team prepare more accurate estimations.
Developers engaged in the planning process
From our point of view, developers should actively participate in the design and feature planning processes. Why? Well, the reason is quite simple. They may find loads of UI improvements and detect problematic issues that can be fixed right away during the design phase and save themselves a lot of headaches in the subsequent stages of the project. Thanks to this approach, the development process can flow smoothly, saving your budget and other valuable resources.
Smooth internal cooperation
They say that teamwork makes the dream work, so make sure the team can collaborate with no sweat, keep a great flow, and catch an edge case quickly. Also, the cooperation between mobile, web, and backend teams needs to be continual. They should challenge each other during meetings to find the best solutions in a given context.
Up-to-date with necessary requirements
Lastly, a fine sports betting application development company should be in touch with the latest updates concerning the requirements of the App Store and Google Play stores and keep you informed. Otherwise, your application may fail to meet the criteria of two major app distributors, which can decrease its popularity and profitability.
How should you prepare for cooperation with a software agency?
Before starting the development process, the company you outsource your project to will typically ask you several questions to determine key aspects of the cooperation. Preparing the answers to these queries in advance may help you decide on the right partner for the development of your brand-new gambling app.
Business aspects that need to be discussed at the outset of the collaboration include budget, authority, need, and timeline. Going through these issues helps to establish the client’s finances, decide on the responsibilities within the project, identify the functionalities, and sketch out the timeline of the development process.
If you are able to specify the scope of the project, decide on the type of cooperation and define the budget required for the operations, you are more than welcome to provide an RFP to the software company.
A Request For Proposal is a document that benefits both parties. On the one hand, it may help the company understand the product’s vision and suggest suitable modifications if needed, allowing it to estimate the costs and time required for the project. On the other hand, it enables the client to present their idea of a product clearly, including all functionalities it should incorporate to ensure that it will serve its purpose as defined.
Technology in sports betting app development
Now, it’s time to look at the most complicated part of the project – the technology. A mistake in that field can lead to delays, overextending the budget, or in the worst case even an unfinished project. That’s why it’s crucial to understand your needs and adjust solutions to them. Let’s go over the greatest challenges concerning the technology of a mobile sports betting project.
You can create your own sportsbook from scratch, but it will definitely increase the workload and extend the timeline. To avoid that, you can make use of ready-made solutions.
Certain companies, recognized as providers, offer off-the-shelf services for online betting applications. You can supply both betting data and UI from third-party providers or choose only one of them and create the other on your own account. Check out which approach is better for you.
Only data provider
It is the most flexible way to build your app since you do not have to worry about technology and infrastructure and still customize the User Interface according to individual needs. But you should be aware that creating UI from the ground up is a real challenge, which demands huge investments and a great amount of time.
Data & UI provider
Some of the providers can offer UI components along with data feed. It can radically decrease the time needed to build the app. Is it a magic solution though? Of course not. If you go for this option, you have to keep in mind a few crucial points:
- It’s harder to build a standalone brand and unique product with a basic UI to which you can make only minor adjustments.
- Most providers reuse web components, so the app created on their basis may lack a native feeling and can be a bit buggy. No wonder mobile users don’t enjoy web solutions on mobile devices and make it clear by submitting low app store ratings.
- Integrating the components into the iOS or Android app might not be so straightforward, so make sure that the provider has an easy step-by-step guide on how to do it.
- You will have to adjust the branding of the components.
Things to consider while choosing a third-party provider
Regardless of the type of services you want to obtain from external sources, there are several critical factors to consider when selecting a provider. Thus, we have compiled a list of things you should bear in mind during the decision-making process and listed them below.
Software Development Kit
First, ensure that a given provider has SDKs tailored to the platform for which you wish to create your application. If you develop two native apps, separate SDKs for both are required. In the case of cross-platform applications made with Flutter, there is a small technology loophole since it is possible to base them on native SDKs by coding a bridge. Yet, it may require more time to cope with.
Ideally, the third-party supplier should have documentation with appropriate guidelines regarding SDK integration into a particular platform. Such files are often well-organized and regularly updated, giving the developers access to code snippets that may speed up their work.
The SDK should be configurable, meaning some functionalities and design elements can be adjusted to your app’s needs. Any options for customization should be thoroughly described in the SDK documentation.
From our experience, difficulties with integrating third-party SDKs are extremely typical. In more difficult cases, attempts to fix the problem on one’s own might be futile. Therefore, the services provider should offer easy access to support that will give developers a hand in resolving difficult issues.
Aside from the above factors, it is crucial to select external services that you can easily afford so that the project’s cost is not increased needlessly. Hence, consider how vital the functionality given by the provider is in your product. If it is critical, select the best solution, as it will pay off in the long run in a profitable product. In case of some trifling features, save your resources and look for more affordable alternatives.
Cross-platform vs Native apps
We have already prepared a thorough examination of native and cross-platform technologies, including a list of the pros and cons of each solution, so you can easily get acquainted with them by reading our article. However, we should take a closer look at this topic from sports betting perspective to decide which technology is more applicable in this case.
One of the biggest requirements for the gambling app is that it must be able to transfer a huge amount of data per second. Not only should the app maintain high performance but also keep low battery usage and stay responsive all the time. It may be a bit of a problem for cross-platform solutions since most of them are designed in the single-thread model. Although there are some tools to achieve a multithread-like environment, native technology comes with a set of multithreading solutions ready to use.
Theoretically, UI/UX design is an area where the cross-platform should benefit, but in a real-world scenario, it doesn’t. The main advantage of a cross-platform solution is “write once, run everywhere,” but it may become a problem in sports betting apps. That’s because users of an iGaming platform expect a solution adjusted to specific functionalities typical for such applications. So instead of reusing the UI and UX model between different platforms, you should rather create a separate one for each to maintain a native experience.
Complex and scalable architecture
Betting projects are typically quite extensive and demanding as regards the architecture and employed tools. It is often due to the variety of platforms it may operate on, the need to integrate with external APIs, and the demand for fast processing of data collected from different databases. In addition, gambling apps often involve the possibility of dashboard customization, an extensive reward system, comprehensive client verification, an option for deposits and withdrawals of funds, and many more features.
With such complex projects, proper maintenance is indispensable. Your team needs to ensure that the app runs smoothly on each platform and that every module is updated. The procedure will be easier and less time-consuming in the case of cross-platform apps, as there is only one base code to be fixed and updated. With native applications, especially if there is more than one, the maintenance is more complex and requires more devs to be engaged in the process, which results in higher operating costs.
Sportsbook provider’s components
Keep in mind that, most probably, you will be forced to use some components of your sportsbook provider. This part can be a bit problematic for cross-platform apps, as most providers don’t even prepare documentation concerning this type of development, focusing only on the native approach.
All in all, the native development is probably a better choice for a betting app. The cross-platform solution has not said its last word yet, but for now, we do not consider it a better fit for this kind of app.
What about the web&backend stack?
Although this article focuses on the mobile side of the betting app project, in this section, we provide you with a few tips on what you have to keep in mind when adding the web to the stack.
- Adjust the authentication methods for mobile use. Your system needs to be ready to handle biometric, Two-Factor Authentication, or other verification tools.
- Be prepared that some of the web pages will be reused on the mobile as well, so they have to be modernized to be a standalone piece of the system.
Workshop & design process in sports betting app development
Product Design workshops are an inevitable part of every sports betting app development project. It is not only due to the demanding gambling industry but also because of the challenges that mobile development brings about in general. In order to design a functional and user-friendly betting app, we have to discuss the UX/UI design solutions and determine how to implement them.
What are the signs of a great workshop?
- Developers are actively involved in the design process, validating all of the UX/UI flows, sharing their thoughts, raising a warning about possible issues, and proposing time-saving solutions.
- UI/UX designers prepare your user profile research.
- Work is performed in iterations validated after each period.
- You get clickable mockups with all crucial flows as a result of the design process.
- In case of any technical challenges encountered by the team, a proof of concept is prepared for that issue to ensure it won’t be a deal breaker for your project.
Key features to consider in UI/UX design
- The flow and placement of the bet search – As the sports betting app’s UI/UX can be a bit overwhelming, you need to improve the flow to ensure a smooth betting experience.
- Deposits and withdrawals – Money-related features are critical for building users’ trust. Even if you have to rely on third-party web components, you should strive to create seamless deposit and withdrawal procedures.
- Support – Provide your customers with support to help them resolve the most troubling issues. It will make your app appear to be a solid ground for wagering large sums of money.
Pick your sports betting app development company
As you can see, there are loads of things to attend to before and during the gambling app development process. Selecting a proper development team, collecting crucial information regarding the project and discussing it prior to the start, deciding on technological aspects, as well as participating in workshops can allow you to avoid failures and contribute to the final product’s success.
If you are all set to get into the game of sports betting, check if CrustLab is your fit. Wish to create a soccer betting app? Or maybe develop software that enables users to gamble on some fantasy sports? Whatever your requirements are, our experienced and skilled team will assist you in developing the finest sports betting software solution.