Fitness App Development For Early Stage Founders

The fitness app market is very versatile these days: there are different apps for diverse sports, health conditions, age groups, and purposes. And the market continues to evolve and grow. According to the Reports and Data report, the fitness app market is expected to reach $14.6B by 2027.

As a result, many companies choose to develop their own app to compete in this fertile field. But what are the peculiarities of fitness apps, how much does it cost to create one, and how to monetize fitness apps? We tried to answer these and other questions in this article.

Fitness App Market Overview

Being healthy and fit is definitely in, so the fitness app development can be very profitable and rewarding. But what types of fitness apps are out there? What features to consider while developing? Let’s find out.

First off, five basic types of fitness apps prevail in the app market. They are:

High-intensity interval training applications

This kind of fitness app offers its end-users short-period (10-15 min) workouts with high intensity. High-intensity interval training apps are all about exercises that require a lot of energy and burn many calories. These workouts are very effective; however, they call for a certain level of training from a user. If you have an idea of developing such an app, you have to indicate that it isn’t safe for a beginner.

Examples: 7 Minute Workout; Walk, Jog, Sprint!; Tabata Tracks.

Diet and nutrition apps

Such fitness applications help their users track consumed calories. Usually, users compile a list of the products they have eaten, indicating the product’s weight. An app calculates the number of calories and tells them if this number corresponds to their goal - lose, gain, or control weight.

If you decide on such a fitness app development, you have to remember that it is a good idea to add a barcode scanner to your diet app. That will help users while grocery shopping, thus makes them use your app more frequently.

Examples: FatSecret, YAZIO, MyFitnessPal.

Activity tracking apps

The main peculiarity about this type is that they can cover both a specific sport and many of them in one app. There is a bunch of applications for cyclists, runners, swimmers, etc. Simultaneously, there is an even bigger bunch of fitness apps that track overall activity, body rates, and other crucial information about your body.

Also, activity tracking apps give more precise insights if connected to a wearable device (for instance, fitness bands). If you decide on such fitness app development, make sure that your app is compatible with other devices. It is a must for the marketability of your application.

Examples: Nike Run Club; Life Cycle; Google Fit.

Personal training apps

Such fitness apps are tailor-made for specific fitness studios or trainers. The functionality of the personal training application differs a lot between the cases. Some of them work as an organizer, where the customers can arrange their training schedule or get updates on their studio’s work. Others, at the same time, are designed to stream workouts online. Using this feature, the trainers can show exercise to their clients and watch how they perform.

Examples: ProFit; VGFIT.

Meditation application

Meditation applications have the highest retention rate among other fitness apps, as the meditations are usually daily. So, it is an essential feature that such apps send reminders to their users.

Also, these apps provide a range of sessions suitable for different levels of users. So, if you choose to develop a meditation app, keep in mind that the array of meditations has to be rather broad.

Examples: Zen, Headspace, Meditopia.

We have briefly mentioned what features can be added to different types of fitness apps. However, there are some general tips on the functionality set of the compatible fitness app.

Features You Should Consider During Fitness App Development

  1. Log-in and personal account

Fitness apps are highly personalized, so there should be an option to create an account linked to your Facebook or Google+ or social networks. It is a good idea to add both options to your app. A personal account will help users track their progress with the ability to switch between different devices.

  1. Social integration

Nothing motivates you more than communication with people that are in your shoes. So, it is a good idea to add a social integration feature to your fitness app. This will help your users find likeminded people and track each others’ progress, so they will frequently come back to your app.

  1. Device connectivity

We have already mentioned that fitness apps work better connected with wearables that track body rates. So, we do not reinvent the wheel here: it is a good idea to add compatibility with as many devices as possible.

  1. Activity tracking

This feature depends heavily on the previous one: fitness apps are all about tracking the results. So, your application should show as many insights as possible: a number of calories burnt, steps taken, kilometers run, etc.

  1. Notifications

Regularity is the key to success when it comes to sports and fitness. So, your app should send reminders to its users. However, as these notifications can be annoying, give your users the capacity to switch them off or customize their frequency.

  1. Goal setting

This feature concerns nutrition and activity tracking apps in the first place. Yes, the end-user of a nutrition app should be able to set his goal: if he wants to gain, lose, or control weight. The app then will count the number of calories needed for each purpose. In the case of activity tracking, one should be able to set the number of steps they want to take each day, for example.

  1. Workouts

Workouts may differ depending on the fitness app type. However, no matter what fitness app you choose to develop, it is a good idea to add the feature of tailor-made workouts and mere selecting from the list of offered pieces of training.

  1. Settings

Last but not least, make your fitness app convenient and customizable. So, you may add as many points as you want. Not too many, though, as the menu should be user friendly.

These eight fitness app features are of great importance while developing. All of them take time to add, though. 

So how much does it cost to develop a fitness app after all?

Fitness App Development Costs

Many factors influence the fitness app development cost, including the cost of hosting the application, publishing it, and the cost of updating and maintaining the app. However, the most expensive part is the development itself, as it depends heavily on your developers’ rates.

Here are the main stages of fitness app development that take a certain number of working hours.

  • Analysis, specification, and design prototypes (50 hours);

  • Designing (80 hours);

  • The development itself (400-470 hours);

  • Back-end development (400 hours);

  • Testing (70 hours).

So, the hourly rates of the developers you hire contribute the most to the final cost. Yes, the developers from the USA make 60-260 USD per hour, whereas the developers from Eastern Europe make 70-170 USD at the same time.

Also, you have to remember that not all outsourcing vendors offer testing services. So, it is a good idea to look for an agency that will perform the testing stage for your fitness app.

Read more=> Software Testing Services

With that being said, the fitness app development cost depends on a vast array of factors, so each case is unique. More standard, however, is the ways of monetization. So, here are the main monetization models you can benefit from.

Monetization Models In Fitness Apps

  1. Advertising

The first and the most usual way of app monetization is in-app ads. There are various types of advertisements that you can add to your application, but we will mention just a few. They are:

  • Full-screen ads that pop up between the workouts or when the user switches between the available features;

  • Banner ads (which are the most usual type of in-app ads) have a fixed position in your application (most commonly bottom of the screen). The main disadvantage is that the majority of users do not pay attention to them;

  • Native ads that blend into application design are now in high demand, as they do not interrupt the user journey, so do not irritate the user.

  1. In-app purchases

In-app purchases make it possible for users to get additional features while using a free application. They can test the application first to understand whether they like it and choose if they need other features afterward. This monetization model’s main advantage is that you give your users a choice: they can either use a basic set of features or benefit from the additional ones.

  1. Subscriptions

Similarly to in-app purchases, this model presupposes that users can test the application’s basic features before subscribing. Some fitness apps offer trial periods that last from three days to the month. There are two types of subscriptions: non-renewing and automatically renewing.

In the first case, the user pays once and uses the app for a specific subscription period. When this period is finished, users decide if they want to renew their subscription.

In the case of automatic renewal, the money is charged automatically once in a certain period (usually monthly).

  1. Paid applications

This is one of the least popular monetization models for today, and only a small percentage of applications are paid. Yes, out of 2.2 million applications on the AppStore and 98% of them are free or with in-app purchases.

So, we have clarified how to develop a fitness application and monetize them. But how to test such an app?

Fitness App Testing Workflow

Every application testing workflow is pretty simple and consists of test planning, requirements testing, functional and non-functional testing, regression testing, and reporting.

However, there are some aspects you have to consider while testing a fitness app specifically. They are:

  1. Compliance with HIPAA law

All health and fitness-related applications need to comply with HIPAA law to prevent medical data breaches. Fitness apps are highly personalized and may contain various body rates and medical information. This sensitive data should be encrypted, so the QA engineers have to check the process of data encryption/decryption as well as make sure that the keys are correctly stored.

Also, QA professionals should automate data backups. Although such automation is not obligatory (in terms of HIPAA law), we highly recommend introducing it, as manual backup takes more time and can be forgotten.

  1. UI/UX

The main aspect that makes a fitness app popular is its user interface. The more accessible and more understandable the app is, the more people will use it. So, your QAs should pay close attention to the roles, usability tasks, metrics, and goals and make a testing plan with that in mind.

Also, they need to perform usability tests to check how long it takes a user to complete the fitness app task. To do this, the QA team chooses a group of users who are asked to complete some actions in your fitness app. Such teats help QA professionals find inconveniences that make your application difficult to use.

  1. Incompatibility with wearables

Fitness apps perform way better in combination with wearables, such as smartwatches, fitness bands, etc. So, your QA team has to test how well your application works with other devices, if it can be easily connected to other devices, how quick data transfer between devices is, and so on.

Apphawks professionals have profound knowledge of the fitness apps peculiarities and their testing. Here are the reasons why you should choose Apphawks for testing your fitness app.

Why Choose Apphawks For Testing Your Fitness App?

  1. We are based in Poznan, Poland, we offer top-notch testing services for various industries, such as healthcare, e-commerce, finance, education, and insurance. We have experience working with clients from the USA, the UK, Sweden, Dubai, and the Netherlands;

  2. We adjust to your business needs: you can both hire a professional QA Engineer from us or outsource the whole testing process, we take full responsibility for;

  3. We cover a wide array of mobile app testing types, including functional testing, regression testing, usability testing, manual testing, compatibility testing, configuration testing, integration testing, system testing, and more;

  4. We can help you with testing native apps, mobile web apps, as well as hybrid apps;

  5. We are 100% testing services-oriented, fully immersed in the process.

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Grzegorz Kłos
Grzegorz Kłos - Apphawks Co-founder
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