Fitness App Development - Learn How to Get it Right the First Time
fitness app development

Fitness App Development – Learn How to Get it Right the First Time

Who doesn’t want to get fit? I know that my couch-hugging, binge-watching, serial-coding, startup-enabling self definitely does. For most of us in the IT world, fitness was a resolution that had been pushed to the nice-to-have bucket—permanently. But when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, going out and hitting the pub each weekend—or every night became impossible. This is also somewhere around when we had a good look at our bodies and decided to devote this sudden bout of free time to fitness. Around this time, search volumes for how much it costs to make a fitness app increased dramatically—signalling an entrepreneurial beeline to create the next disruptor in the fitness space.

Nearly everyone attributes fitness to spending hours in the gym. With this free time on our hands and gyms being out of reach, many of us started to download fitness apps to understand how we could fix our bodies after years of abuse and neglect.

What are fitness apps? Are they still popular today?

Fitness apps are mobile (or wearable) applications that help you to stay fit by setting fitness goals, helping you monitor and log what you eat, and starting targeted fitness regimens. These apps have seen a sudden spurt in their adoption rates, with the number of fitness downloads rising by 46% worldwide. Developing countries like India saw fitness app adoption rates increase by 156% in 2020 alone, adding over 58 million users to the fitness bandwagon. 

A survey by OnePoll found that at least 74% of Americans used at least one fitness app during the quarantine. Over 60% of these users enjoyed using these apps so much that they cancelled their gym membership permanently. With extended work from home timelines, the number of those choosing virtual fitness classes and home gyms has doubled, making it an extremely lucrative industry to be in.

The online fitness and fitness app industry is growing at a healthy CAGR of 23.5% and may breach the $14b mark by 2027—or earlier! 

Why should you build a fitness app?

According to the WHO, nearly 39% of individuals over 18 are overweight—and over 15% are obese. The report also stated that 39 million children under the age of 5 are obese in 2020. This makes fitness a primary concern for the world—and fitness apps are a perfect way to address this concern. A report from Reports and Data expects the fitness app market to grow from $4b to $18 billion by 2028. 

The revenue from fitness apps will cross $14 billion by 2021—with an ARPU of $22.21 per user, making it an extremely viable option for any entrepreneur. Apps such as MyFitnessPal, Strava, Step Counter, Six Pack in 30 Days, and We Do Pulse are extremely popular today, with downloads breaching the 3 million mark in April 2021 for Step Counter alone. So if you’re thinking of developing a fitness app, this is the perfect time to do so!

What problems do fitness apps solve?

We have always strived to long a long, healthy life, and fitness apps help us to do just that from the comfort of our home. With no trainers to meet in person, fitness apps are perfect for those who wish to stay fit and stay at home at the same time. Social features in these apps have given rise to fitness events, virtual treadmill marathons, virtual cyclothons and fitness challenges that are immensely popular. 

What are the various types of fitness apps?

Entrepreneurs build fitness apps to suit specific requirements. Many individuals use just one app to stay fit, and some use a combination of apps to suit their various needs. Types of fitness apps include:

  • Fitness Coaching apps: These fitness apps provide their users with a workout plan, a controlled exercise technique and a meal plan—somewhat like a personal coach. Popular apps include FiiT, Daily Burn, Seven, and FitBod.
  • Workout management apps: Workout apps help users to choose and track workouts from a list. The app also provides activity related data and can even connect to smart wearables. Top workout management apps include MyFitnessPal, JEFIT workout planner, BodySpace, Cody and Nike+.
  • Nutrition apps: These apps focus on our dietary behaviour and help users to log their food consumption data. Some even provide diet plans for targeted weight loss, muscle building, and calorie data. Notable examples include Fooducate, HealthifyMe, Calorie Counter and Diet Tracker, and SuperFood.
  • Activity trackers: These apps track activities such as walking, running, steps, cycling, rowing and can offer data such as routes, calories burned, distance, time and more. Popular activity trackers include Google Fit, Apple Health, Strava, and MyFitnessPal.

What are the top features of a fitness app?

Fitness apps offer many unique features, which help them to become the top choice for their users. These features include:

  1. Wearable connectivity – As the adoption of wearables has skyrocketed, your app must connect to popular wearables such as the Apple Watch, Fitbit, Garmin, Samsung Watch, Huawei Watch and more.
  2. GoalsA fitness goal is essential to ensure that you’re on the right path. Your app must help users to set goals, reward accomplishments and stay in shape.
  3. Workout listsA wide range of workout types is essential to ensure that users like your app. If your app is restrictive in the type of workouts, it will become challenging to increase adoption rates.
  4. Calorie counterCalorie counters are essential for fitness and nutrition-focused apps as they allow users to see how much they are eating and how much they burn. This feature takes 100 hours to develop.
  5. Push NotificationsPush notifications such as “Get up and move for 5 minutes” or “It is time to go to bed” are popular amongst fitness app and wearable users. These features make your app engaging and take about 120 hours to develop.
  6. Social media integrationJoining a vibrant community and sharing achievements is essential for any app user. Adding this feature will take nearly 200 hours.
  7. GamificationFor a fitness app, gamification means adding features such as badges, high scores, levels, challenges and other motivational means to keep your audience engaged. This feature can take up to 200 hours to develop.
  8. Logins and SSOCreating user accounts, profiles, and social media login is a basic necessity for any app. These features help users log in using social media accounts or email accounts and create their user profiles. The app also uses this information to create workout regimens and recommendations. Login systems take 150 hours to develop.
  9. Educational content and video lessonsFitness apps also feature instructor-led content and training videos that help users to follow instructions and exercises better. This feature will take nearly 200 hours to develop.
  10. Geolocation and mapsMost outdoor workout apps require geolocation data and map integration for route planning and analysis. Adding this feature will take around 200 hours.

How much does it cost to create a mobile fitness app?

Creating a fitness app needs more than just a list of features. Here’s what impacts the cost of your fitness app:

  • Requirement analysis and project management

Considered one of the most important parts of the mobile app development process, our consultants and project managers will help you create a long-term vision for your app. We will then finalize a list of components and understand what your application’s must-haves are. This takes nearly 100-200 hours. 

  • User experience design

Designing an effective user experience for your mobile app is essential to ensure that users stay engaged from the get-go. User experience design involves multiple iterations to develop a UX that works best for your target audience. This can take nearly 100-250 hours.

  • User interface design

Your app’s user interface involves designing the various elements that make the app, including graphics, buttons, and other design elements. An attractive user interface or UI design ensures that your app looks appealing.

  • Development

The time taken in the development of your app will depend on the number of features it includes. This will include back-end development, front-end development and readying the app for deployment to the app stores. Time taken to develop the app will vary. Add the number of hours indicated against the feature list. 

  • Testing

Quality is an essential aspect of any mobile app. Our QA teams will ensure that your app is high-quality and bug-free so that your users enjoy using it. Testing can take up to 100 hours to complete.

  • Deployment and integration

Deploying the app to the App store includes readying the app and ensuring that it adheres to all guidelines laid down by Apple and Android. Additionally, setting up the subsystems (DevOps) can take up to 100 hours.

To get a ballpark figure of your app’s cost, simply add the features and the time taken along with the fixed project costs (listed above) and multiply it with the going hourly rate of your development provider. The hourly rates of development providers can vary according to their geographical location. Note that these rates are for a single platform. If you wish to have an app developed for iOS and Android, your costs will increase. However, the fixed project costs will remain the same.

How to create a mobile fitness app?

Here’s what you need to do to create an engaging fitness app:

1. Perform market research and finalize features

Performing diligence and market research is essential to develop a fitness app. Market research will help you to answer questions such as:

  • Who is your target audience?
  • What are their underserved needs?
  • What needs does your app serve?
  • How can you monetize your app?

And more. Once your market research is complete, you will find yourself with a list of must-have features for your app.

2. Get a good development team on board

There are many ways to get a development team for your app. These include:

  • Hiring your personal teamThis is the most expensive option as you need to hire project managers, developers, testers and support staff for your app.
  • Finding freelancers in your areaFreelancers can offer a good rate, but often are a one-person army that promises a lot and cannot deliver at par with an entire group of individuals. Best for small projects, but not for complex apps like a fitness tracker.
  • Outsourcing your project to a third-party development agency

This is the most cost-effective option to help you find the right person for the right job without breaking the bank. World-class outsourcing companies such as Volumetree can help you get the talent you need to succeed.

3. Analyze and discover requirements

The discovery phase builds upon your market research to perform an in-depth analysis of your project. Here’s what it includes:

  • Analyzing requirements

Project consultants and business analysts perform a detailed analysis to determine what your app needs. They analyze features, business goals, and the monetization strategy in place for your target audience.

  • Creating wireframes

Wireframing is essential to see how one element of the interface interacts with the other and how the app “flows”. 

  • Performing pre-development QA

Pre-dev QA analyses your requirements and wireframes to ensure that no logical or flow issues exist in the wireframe and nothing is amiss in the requirements.

  • Final quote

Your development partner will create a final quote for you based on the discovery phase. If you choose to hire your own team, you will get a cost analysis to check if it meets your budget.

4. Develop the app

This is the easy bit. Once all the bits and bobs are in place, developers, testers, designers and DevOps engineers work in tandem to create a world-class fitness app for your users.

That’s it. Once you develop, test and deploy the app, you can roll it out to your users. Additional tasks that follow or work concurrently with development include marketing activities, audience outreach, building hype for your app and creating a community of early adopters. 

Why choose Volumetree to create your mobile app?

Choosing Volumetree as your development partner has several advantages. Being a truly global company with offices across three continents, we can offer you a price-quality advantage that few can match. With our vast industry experience of creating apps used by millions of people every day, along with a vast talent pool to choose from, we know what it takes to create an awesome app. What’s better is that we have the workforce to make it happen for you! 

Contact us for a free consultation today to know more about how much it costs to make a fitness app. Our project managers and consultants will help you to create an app that fitness enthusiasts will love!


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