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Does The Size of an App Have an Impact on Download Decision? Here's why the decision of having the right app size needs to be taken before the app is launched

By Mehul Rajput

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So, you have finally decided to introduce your business app, and everything about it seems to be perfect. You have double-checked the features, call-to-action buttons, app performance, fonts, texts, pictures, color, speed, etc.

You are finally ready to launch your own app in the app store and also feel confident about it as every feature and function seems to be working seamlessly.

However, are you sure if the size of your app is appropriate for your audience? Does the size of the app actually matter? Well, the truth of the matter is that the size of the app can keep your users from using your app and thus can have an effect on their download decision.

The buzz around 'apps' and what you can expect

Long gone are those days when mobile apps were exclusively reserved for large businesses and corporations. In the past few years, this trend has changed dramatically. Today, even smaller companies are entering this big market and serving their customers with better services and products with the help of different apps. Simply put, they are able to acquire bigger return on investments and are relying more on mobile apps for the success of their business.

We, humans, are wired as social addicts. And mobile and other similar electronic devices are an excellent way to keep up with our social activities. The bottom line is that in this technology-driven era, every business needs an app.

But is the idea and conception the only two things you need to pay attention to? Not really!

Factors that translate into successful business apps

The two most common elements that are taken into account when designing a mobile application are identifying the problem that the app is resolving and deciding the unique features of your app.

What most businesses don't care about is the size of the app. In fact, it is one of the last things to be discussed or is mostly highlighted when the app is in its final stages of design.

However, besides providing tangible benefits to customers, it is important for a business to ponder over the fact whether their app is downloadable by an ordinary user. If the target audience fails to download the app, the goals of enhancing productivity, earning new revenues, and improving the overall customer experience will obliterate.

Thus, for starters, it is crucial to identify your target users, so that you can figure out the type of device they use. Some questions that you should focus on are:

  • What category does your target audience fall into?

  • What kind of an electronic device can they afford?

These questions will not only help you decide on the devices and platforms that can support your app but will also help you determine its preferred size.

As far as mobile devices and platforms are concerned, they should be chosen keeping in mind the ruggedness, hardware performance, battery life, available storage space, and required peripherals. Other factors include software performance, device support, and coverage.

App size and why does it matter so much

Big businesses have continuously been working to reduce the Software Development Kit (SDK) bloat in their apps. It's an entire project in itself, which can take up to months to complete.

While businesses are investing time in reducing the bloat, a major concern that surfaces is that why does it matter so much. If you dig deeper into this idea, you will find out that there are three significant reasons because of which the size of an app has an impact on download decision:

  1. It is ideal to keep the app size below 100 MB to follow the cellular download limit. This means it is essential to figure out ways this can be done without taking a hit on the downloads.

  2. Large apps often mean their SDK vendors will have bugs that will constantly keep crashing the app - which ultimately translates into lesser downloads and consequently bad reviews.

  3. More often than not, their SDK vendors are not ready for upgrades towards better iOS versions, which can block their opportunity for big announcements and key releases.

How many times have you found yourself stopping a download midway because you think it is way too bulky or it is taking a lot of time? The exact could happen with your target audience as well.

Now, let's assess the quantitative impact these reasons could have on the installs and how it can be taken care of.

App size does matter - The research

Many factors can increase an app size, and these things can be as simple as a bunch of fonts, an introductory video, or a beautiful picture used as a background image for your loading screen. However, any factor that bloats the app without really adding value to the purpose of the app can negatively impact downloads.

Large and bulky apps do not only take longer to download - which can be a little frustrating for the user - but can also have an impact on the overall efficiency of the cellular device.

Not every person in your target audience may own a super fancy phone or device with extensive storage space. This is where the majority may decide against downloading your app. After all, its huge size will not only interfere with the rest of their device's functions but also affect the overall efficiency.

Any app above 100MBs can be a major turn off for users. Even if your audience downloads the app, they may not keep it for long. For businesses striving for growth, the wrong app size can be a costly mistake.

The decision of having the right app size needs to be taken before the app is launched. In case you earn bad reviews and critical ratings because of the app size right in the first go, it may stick around forever and may not let your app strive, even if you manage to reduce the size or fix the problems later.

In short, lack of right measures and decisions before the app hits the Play Store or App Store can semi-permanently damage the app, and you may never be able to see the real download conversion rate for your app ever again.

How to make an impactful app

The idea is to keep your approach more focused. Stop investing the MBs of your app in fancy fonts and high-definition images unless you really need them as a part of your app. Add videos only if they are necessary to go with your app.

At the same time, it is essential to make an impactful app without losing its real essence. There are many ways you can reduce the size of your app without compromising on its quality and that's where the professionals come in.

You can find mobile app size calculators online that can help you determine the size of your app. You can even discuss this aspect with the experts right from the start so that you don't face challenges later on.

Last but not the least, once you have taken care of the size, make sure you market your app in the most effective ways possible to ensure its success in the app industry.

Mehul Rajput

CEO, Mindinventory

Mehul Rajput is the CEO of Mindinventory, a mobile app development company. He loves to write on mobile technologies, Startups, Entrepreneurship and mobile applications.

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