The 6-Step Process For Building Effective Custom Web Applications

As your business evolves, you may find you need a web application to serve your software needs. For many common business goals, there are pre-built applications that work well, but off-the-shelf applications may not always meet your unique needs.

That’s where custom web application development can be useful. Working alongside a development team, you’ll create a one-of-a-kind application designed just for your business goals. 

Curious about how the development process works? Here’s what to expect as you’re creating a custom web application.

6 steps to expect during custom web application development

1. Kick off with a discovery call

At Polyglot Labs, we understand that every business has its unique needs and objectives. So, we start the process of developing a custom web application with a discovery call.

On that initial call, we focus on gathering information about your goals and requirements for your application, but we’re also collaborative partners throughout the conversation. Rather than listening to your initial description of your needs and sending a quote, we’ll help guide and shape your project to achieve the best possible outcome.

During this introductory stage, we’ll also discuss project objectives and key performance indicators (KPIs), workflows and timelines, and any likes and dislikes that may shape your design or user experience. Our goal is to understand all your needs and preferences to ensure that we can create the perfect custom application for your business. 

2. Evaluate your current systems

Next, we’ll spend some time evaluating any current systems you have in place to meet your software needs. For example, some businesses will have a legacy system that served the company well in the past. If the system is just outdated and needs a bit of a refresh, we’ll take a different approach than if we’re building a new system from scratch.

To make that distinction, we’ll evaluate whether any of your current systems can be repurposed, updated, or added onto instead of being discarded altogether. This approach often speeds up the project timeline (and potentially reduces costs), and it’s a great way to gain additional value out of past tech investments. 

3. Design your app’s wireframes

Once we have a clear understanding of your needs and requirements, our designers turn those requirements into wireframes. Wireframes are a critical component of the design process as they help to determine the basic content and general placement of information. 

This step ensures that the look and feel of the application’s interface is on brand and attractive to the end user. To make sure we’re all on the same page, you’ll have the opportunity to share feedback on the wireframes and approve the design before we start implementation. 

4. Develop a functional prototype

After the design is approved, our developers start coding a functional prototype. A functional prototype is a working version of your application that includes all the critical features and functionality. The goal at this stage is to create an application that works, which means it can process data, display information, and perform all your required tasks.

Our prototypes are typically created using the Agile methodology, which means that we work in sprints and can make adjustments and modifications as we code. Throughout the coding process, every element of the application is also tested in a demo environment to ensure that the features are running smoothly. Once the testing is complete, we perform a final review to ensure that the application meets all your initial requirements.

5. Deploy the application

With every detail of your project perfected, your application is ready to deploy! At this point in the process, it’s time to celebrate. The tools you’ve been waiting for are finally here! 

Our goal at this stage is to get your application ready to use with minimal downtime, but we’ll always work with our clients to understand the specifics of what that might look like. If we need to disrupt your day-to-day business to get your application up and running, we’ll do our best to minimize the disruption and get you back on track. 

6. Request support

At Polyglot Labs, we believe in building long-term partnerships with our clients. We understand that businesses grow and change, and their software needs evolve as well. Once you’ve deployed your custom web application, we’ll remain available to add new tools or features and keep everything current and functional.

Not all custom web application developers include support in their project scope, so if this step is important to you, make sure to work with a team that can offer long-term guidance.

Ready to build your custom web application?

Custom web application development is the best way to ensure your software tools do exactly what you’ve always wanted them to do. If you have ultra-specific requirements or want a tool that just doesn’t exist in the market, it’s always worth a conversation about how a development team can build the right solution.

Have your own custom project in mind? Contact the Polyglot Labs team, and we’ll get you scheduled for your discovery call. We can’t wait to learn more!