How to make a social media app like Instagram. This is the most curious topic search ever in social media. Instagram is a world popular photo-sharing app and many startups would like to build a similar mobile app with a unique idea.  Instagram is an ideal platform for many photo & video startups. Because Instagram gains enormous popularity in the last few years. Instagram is not only a photo & video sharing app but it is an effective marketing tool with ‘Social Commerce’ concept.  Through this blog, we will find out together on how to make a social media app like Instagram. If you really want to build an Instagram similar clone app, you need to know what is trending on Instagram and what are the new features launched. It would be great if you understand the Instagram business module.

app like instagram

The following checklist will help you to build the Instagram similar robust and user-friendly mobile app.

Look for competitors

App Stores are fully loaded with Photo & Video sharing apps.  Before finalizing anything, you must go through the competitive photo-sharing apps to see how they are providing service to users. What activities the user is enjoying while using the app? What is trending on these apps?  This quick research will help you in finalizing your app features and services you will be proposing to users.

Finalize Your App Concept, Strategy, and Design

This is a very crucial part of the project. A mobile app with a unique concept and design goes popular and featured on the app store. You should strictly use paper and pen to work out on the concept and vision of your business. Building photo sharing app is very common but making an app with the different concept will bring success and value in the market. After finalizing functional and non-functional requirements, defining vision and app development goal, you should prepare some sort of wireframes. It would be appropriated if you use a software tool like Balsamiq or Microsoft Presentation to create wireframes of the app. Design is a key success of photo sharing app, if you can not create user-friendly responsive designs, you should contact a design agency to create an intuitive user experience for your app.

Prepare Monetization Strategy

Being a social startup company, you should be focused on revenue generation and app monetization. Before you jump into the development with a company, you should prepare app marketing and monetization strategy. This would work as motivation and you should start marketing with a launch date of your app. This is the best way to engage people with your app. While working on monetization strategy the following options you would consider from:

  • Advertisements: Instagram business model generates its big part of revenue through advertisements. Carousel ads, Video Ads are very popular features for business to promote their product and services. You must include this in your business model.
  • Sponsored Post: the Sponsored post is simple as the normal post with description and photo/video but it has a tag ‘sponsored’. Business creates a sponsored post that reaches out to thousands of targeted audiences in the selected region. It is more popular on Instagram that Facebook.
  • Stories: Story is also a very popular feature on Instagram. Business creates a story and their followers watch it know what is new.
  • In App Purchase: Your social app can have premium features like photo filters, effects, membership to sell and generate revenue.
  • Social Commerce – Deals/Coupons: Your app can allow the business user to post deals and coupons for users.

Evaluate How Much Does It Cost to Develop an App Like Instagram

Being a startup company, it is important to evaluate the cost of app development. An app like Instagram takes more efforts in terms of time and cost. There are several modules of app development and each one need a different set of technical skills and they cost accordingly. You might need a creative designer, iPhone or Android App Developer, Web Developer, Backend Server Developer, and Testers. A well-funded startup or established company also hire a CTO who monitors the quality of the project. You should look at some of the points below to evaluate the cost of the project:

  • Compare quotes from onshore and offshore teams.
  • A number of development hours and hourly rates proposed by different vendors. Hourly rates may vary from $60-$150/hour in case of an onshore team. If you work with an experienced offshore team, they may charge $25-$60/hour.
  • In the initial stage, your goal should be building a minimum viable product (MVP app) with a set of defined features. Strict the budget for MVP.
  • It is appropriate to start with one platform like iOS or Android and get some user feedbacks and work on those in future versions.
  • Also, check the cost of native app versus hybrid app development. The hybrid app will not take high cost and you will have app on both iOS and Android platform.

Find Social Media App Developer

There are several companies who are specialized in social media app development. You would like to review their portfolio and go through social media apps to find out if they have developed a similar mobile app. It is recommended to partner with an expert mobile app development company because the Instagram clone is not a simple app to build in a month or so. Building Instagram clone app needs years of expertise in the mobile domain. If you are in the USA, you will have the following two choices:

  • You can hire in the USA: Hiring an onshore development team is an appropriate solution. There are several expert app development companies in the USA. A local team will support you throughout the project. There are several benefits to hiring an onshore development company. They will provide you excellent support and communication. You can meet them in person and discuss the progress of the project. You should request a quotation from multiple teams to evaluate the cost of onshore development. It may not be too high and within your budget.
  • You can hire Offshore Team: If you have a strict budget and looking for a highly expert team, you can hire an offshore team from India, Europe or China. The offshore team who also have an office in the USA is a much better option. You can communicate with their project managers, BA and sales team in the USA. Also, you will not need to compromise with the quality of code and they can complete your photo-sharing app within the budget.

Instagram Business Model

Before building an Instagram similar mobile app, you must know the business model of Instagram App. Instagram has bought by Facebook in 2012 and they are the backbone of this business. Other than Facebook, there are several big investors who have invested in Instagram. Instagram is available on the major platform and it has a vast network and user base. The app is now more popular since it has introduced several new features like Story, Messaging, Business Promotion, Product Selling, Live TV and Advertisement.

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