Why and How the Mobile App Development Project Fails?

Discover why app development project fails. Learn the top reasons behind mobile app failure, despite some being successful.

By Lokesh Dudhat

Last updated on: February 21, 2024

Why and How the Mobile App Development Project Fails

Most businesses across niches have tried building an app of their own. Even though having an app is all fun, are they all successful? Mobile app development project fails are not uncommon, with many apps failing to attract an audience. The success ratio of apps is merely 0.5%, but with proper planning and execution, it is possible to launch a successful app. Learn from othersโ€™ mistakes to avoid failure.

There are approximately 5 million apps cumulatively on the App Store, many of which still need to be downloaded. We could explain why they didn’t attract an audience, but we are not here to pull anyone down.

Our motive is to highlight the brutal reality of the app world. Many experts believe that the success ratio of apps is merely 0.5%. That means 1 in every 1000 apps. The market is highly competitive, and your app might be dead if you didn’t shoot your trigger at the right time.

But having said that, there are still apps hitting hard and reaching new heights. You have to do your homework and avoid people’s mistakes while building their mobile apps.

We won’t confuse you with many stats, but talk on-point; let’s dive in and understand some primary reasons mobile app development projects fail and how you can save yourself from doing the same.

Some Major Reasons Mobile App Development Project Fails

What is the most common cause for the failure of development projects? We won’t confuse you with many stats, but talk on-point; let’s dive in and understand some major reasons mobile app development projects fail and how you can save yourself from doing the same.

  1. Unable to find the proper market gap

    Mobile apps are either built on a brand-new idea or result from a repurposed concept of an existing app. In both cases, you require a detailed study to understand whether or not people would value your platform. Unfortunately, many businesses make the mistake of replicating their competitors’ apps, thinking to gain interaction.

    But that’s not how things work. For any app to be successful, it should have an extra reason to encourage users to take the initiative and download your app. Copying makes the process easier, but the outcome does not match.

    Start by identifying a market gap that will differentiate your mobile application from any other platform. In short, define your USP, something that sells your app like hotdogs.

  2. Didn’t know their target market

    “If you try pleasing everyone, you please no one.” Period.

    In business, it’s not about your target audience but about who isn’t. So your mobile apps can only be for some.

    You must have a particular group of people in mind while developing your mobile app. Go deeper into understanding the market size, demographics, user app behavior, and what these people like to serve on the internet. Write down the characteristics of your audience from head to toe. The more detailed it is, the better.

    Having explicit information will give you a better perspective and further guide your app development partners into making an app that represents your target market better. These are necessary for your app to be structured, trying to find a soft corner for everyone, which may or may not be your ideal audience.

  3. Unclear requirement

    Having an unclear requirement is among the top reasons why mobile apps fail. Businesses often have many ideas and keep adding or removing them while building a mobile app. Therefore, while creating a mobile app, the business owner should know what will go into the app, what problem it will solve, and who its audience is.

    A lack of clarity can then pass on to the developers as well. They need to understand clearly what you are trying to do here. It can lead to a better-coded mobile application that might serve a different purpose than it should have done.

  4. Lack of resources

    Building an app requires a handful of resources, including software, tools, app development partners, and money to get everything done. However, with inefficient resources, you tend to exceed your deadlines and compromise on the quality of your app, which automatically increases your chances of making a successful app.

    So, before writing your first code, decide on the app’s funding. Make a clear plan of where you want to pitch your ideas to get the appropriate funds; otherwise, everything will fall apart, including your chances of launching a mobile app. The discovery phase should only analyze your app’s blueprint, allowing you to make proper budgets.

  5. Unrealistic deadlines

    We tend to over-pressurize ourselves when we set our goals. The same goes for making a mobile app.

    Building an app could take you anywhere between 3 months to a year, depending upon the complexity of the platform. But, if you try developing an app that should have ideally taken a year in just 6-8 months, you will find a massive difference in the quality of the platform.

    Setting unrealistic goals means pushing everyone to the extent that they start missing out on things. For example, developers would try to cut out on pre-decided necessary codes or features. As a result, your team will feel continuous pressure, which will kill anybody’s creativity.

    A correct approach would include adding extra time in each mobile development phase. It will allow you to have a stronghold of time without hampering the efficiency of your mobile app.

  6. Selecting the wrong platform

    Choosing the right platform defines the future of your mobile application for Android vs iOS vs others (web app or hybrid).

    Mobile operating systems market share in selected countries, as of july 2020


    Both are incredibly different, with unique user groups, buying behavior, app priority, income status, and many other factors influencing the decision to build an app. For example, if you want a premium audience that invests in paid apps, iOS would be a great choice. However, if your main earnings consist of third-party ads and sponsorships, then going with Android will help.

    Not all apps gel well on a platform; you must research what works and what does not. It will save you a lot of time and money that might get into building an unstructured mobile app.

  7. Hiring inefficient workforce

    Hiring experts who can handle app development for you is a task. However, finding the right person can tenfold your chances of releasing a robust mobile application. As a result, most businesses either build an internal team, hire mobile app developers, or get help from freelancers for quality software solutions.

    All three options have pros and cons, but you must be smart enough to select the one that will fulfill your requirements. If you are unsure of your decision, then asking these questions might help-

    • What is their experience in the field?
    • What is their mode of communication?
    • How do they structure their mobile app development process?
    • What do their clients have to say about them?
    • Are they strict on deadlines?
    • What software will they use?
    • Can they incorporate the decisions suggested by your team?

    There are many such questions that you can curate yourself according to your requirements and then hire professionals for your mobile app development.

    Note: Building an internal one can be an option if you are looking for dedicated attention to your project. However, hiring freelancers would be appropriate if you have a limited budget and can manage some delays.

    If you need help with them, opting for a top mobile app development agency is the best option. Here, your project will receive undivided attention without hindering project deadlines and overdoing the budget.

    Turn Failure into Success. Hire dedicated mobile developers from SolGuruz to rescue your project.

  8. Lack of communication

    Two-sided communication creates a strong base for your mobile app. The success of your project depends on how accurately you can communicate your ideas to the developers and vice-versa. Establishing a mandatory communication channel speeds up the development process, decreases unnecessary costs, and allows you to launch your app on time.

    You must confirm their communication process while hiring mobile app experts to complete your app. You don’t have to be hanging around in the middle; who has no idea at what stage your mobile app is? Ask them to have weekly or bi-weekly meetings to ensure that things are at pace; plus, you can ask for changes as the development progresses.

  9. Insufficient time was allotted to testing

    A mobile requires at least 3-4 weeks of testing, but developers often need to pay more attention to such intricate details and make the app live. People who install it find bugs, app defects, interface inconsistencies, and other troubles while navigating the platform. They uninstall your app and leave a negative comment.

    All this is just because you tried saving a month of your time.

    Statistics show that 71% of users uninstall an app because it crashes. You want to keep people from using your mobile application. Instead, give your platform time to marinate so you find the tiniest thing that can go wrong.

    Mobile app development can fail if Insufficient time was allotted to testing

    Use dedicated tools that simplify the testing process and automate most tasks. Perform all types of testing, including functional, performance, usability, security, compatibility, and localization testing.

  10. Poor User Experience (UX)

    The User Experience of an app defines the efficiency of navigating through the platform. The harder it is, the more chances of people uninstalling your mobile app. If you slip here, there is no chance for revival. Statistically, 90% of people have stopped using an application because of its poor performance. If your mobile app struggles with any of the issues mentioned here, then it’s because of a poor UX-

    • Slow loading time
    • Using the app is complex
    • The app is having performance issues
    • It doesn’t do what it says
    • Only clickbait content
    • Complex design frame, etc

    All successful applications make sure that they provide an excellent user experience to the people. You need to think less as a marketer and more as a user to understand what they want. Easy things might be more complex for the consumer.

    Elevate User Experiences with Stunning App Design.

  11. No customer support

    For a person to trust your platform, you must invest in providing a customer support station. It will allow you to track customer feedback and make regular upgrades. Word-of-mouth publicity is the biggest marketing tool, and that’s available for free. Having robust customer service guarantees loyalty and encourages users to upscale their offers.

    Providing robust customer support gives your app a soft corner against such cut-throat competition. People only listen to them, who first listen to their problems. Moreover, statistics show that “fully customized customers” offer at least 2.6 times more revenue than the less satisfied ones. So, having customer support is a win-win for both sides.

  12. Not applying the right market strategies.

    “Stopping advertising to save money is like stopping your watch to save your time.” -Henry Ford

    Building the most fantastic app without proper marketing will not guarantee its success.

    The app world is highly competitive; you must always be a step ahead. It is where mobile app marketing helps businesses. Incorporating the right strategy creates buzz around users and encourages people to install and use it.

    Many businesses make this rookie mistake of not investing enough resources in their mobile app marketing after its launch. But this is where things can go wrong. You must continuously initiate strategies to enhance your app’s visibility among potential users. It ensures proper communication between the company and the user, increasing engagement.

  13. Lack of timely updates

    Sometimes, users question why they need updates, but as business owners, you are responsible for incorporating the latest technologies that cut off bugs and improve user experience.

    You have to be on your toes and bring out updates that take your mobile app ahead in the market. Experts believe that free apps need to be updated once every 20 days and paid ones after 50 days.

    However, updates are very subjective. Therefore, we cannot answer in straight lines. However, updating your mobile app occasionally will help fix issues that bother users.


These are some of the most common rookie mistakes businesses make, resulting in apps not performing well. You have to make strategic decisions and develop a foolproof plan that makes your app stand out in the market. The best way to do this is by connecting with professional mobile app developers specializing in building applications that earn more than they spend.

If you are thinking of building an app that meets all your requirements, we can help you achieve it. SolGuruz is a team of top mobile app developers who can help you at every mobile app development phase.

What are you waiting for? Reach out to our experts and see your app idea turn into reality.


What's the importance of thorough planning in avoiding app development failure?

A very well-prepared project plan plays a vital role in the success of any mobile app development project. It helps set clear goals, define requirements, allocate resources effectively, plan out the budget efficiently, and anticipate potential challenges, reducing the likelihood of failure.

What role does communication play in project failure?

Poor communication among team members, stakeholders, and developers can lead to misunderstandings, missed deadlines, and misaligned expectations. Effective communication ensures everyone is on the same page and reduces the risk of failure.

How do a lack of user and client involvement lead to project failure?

When users and clients are not actively involved in the development process, the resulting app may not meet their needs or expectations. It can lead to low user adoption rates, frustration among client team members, wastage of time, energy, and efforts, negative reviews, and ultimately, project failure.

What impact can technical challenges have on project success?

Technical challenges, such as compatibility issues, feasibility studies, performance bottlenecks, unavailability of the required developers and designers team, and security vulnerabilities, can hinder the app's functionality and user experience, potentially causing project failure.

How can setting realistic timelines prevent project failure?

Setting realistic timelines helps manage expectations and ensures the development team has adequate time to address challenges, complete tasks, and fix issues to deliver a quality app. Unrealistic timelines can lead to rushed development and subpar results.

What is the role of regular testing and quality assurance in project success?

Regular testing and quality assurance are essential to identify and address bugs, glitches, and usability issues before it goes to the production stage over the app stores. Neglecting these aspects can result in a flawed app that fails to meet user expectations.

How does a lack of post-launch support contribute to project failure?

Once an app launches, ongoing maintenance, updates, and user support are crucial. A lack of post-launch support can lead to unresolved issues, frustrated users, and the eventual decline of the app.

Can involving a third-party mobile app development company mitigate the risk of failure?

Involving a reputable app development company like SolGuruz with expertise and experience in mobile app development can significantly reduce the risk of failure. Their insights, resources, knowledge, skill set, domain expertise, and best practices can contribute to a successful project outcome.

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Written by

Lokesh Dudhat

Lokesh is a Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer at SolGuruz, a senior technical consultant with over 10 years of experience in exploring the horizon of the software development industry. He has worked closely with startups and enterprises, mentoring them in engineering their tech solutions. With a hands-on experience of 10+ years as a developer, he has delivered solutions using a wide range of technologies such as iOS, Android, Angular, Node, RTC, React, MongoDB, PostgreSQL, Python, and many more. At SolGuruz, we believe in delivering a combination of technology and management. Our commitment to quality engineering is unwavering, and we never want to waste your time or ours. So when you work with us, you can rest assured that we will deliver on our promises, no matter what.


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