At first, it might seem that the idea of creating a mobile application for a newspaper does not make sense at all. Why would people use the application if they are looking for news, right? However, it is no secret that the vast majority of people surf the web today using mobile devices. Therefore, the development of an application makes sense both for large and well-known media outlets, as well as for smaller newspapers. Such an application will allow users to view news even offline and receive personalized notifications. However, this is not the whole list of advantages that a mobile application provides. We will talk about them in more detail below.
Speaking specifically about development, it is important to understand that you will need to invest in a React Native development team, testing, design, and advertising. Why React Native? Because it is the most agile framework, which covers all the essential requirements for a mobile application.
Newspaper & magazine mobile app benefits
Print media have long died and the news is now generated and distributed in digital space. This explains the need for a website. But what about a mobile app? Here are a few key benefits it will give you:
- Exclusive functionality. One way or another, a mobile application is a completely different product. The unique functionality that it provides, using the power of the customer’s device (e.g. memory, camera, and so on), allows you to achieve advanced interaction with users;
- Speed. Often, mobile applications run faster than websites (especially, those that are loaded with content and data). This is a huge advantage for customers;
- Detailed analytics. A mobile application allows you to collect more relevant and personalized user data;
- Push notifications. At the moment, this is the most efficient way to inform users about new articles on your website or application. When launching an app, all users agree to receive notifications — especially, when it comes to a news application;
- Offline mode. We mentioned this important point at the very beginning of the article. Even if the user doesn’t have access to the Internet, they will still be able to review the content downloaded earlier. This increases involvement.
What features should your app have?
The news app is not very different from the rest in terms of the necessary features, but there are several that are worth mentioning:
- Profile. This is important because using a personal profile, readers can perform actions like commenting, subscribing to interesting topics, and so on;
- Search bar. Nowadays, there is a lot of news and more info appears every day. Therefore, a search bar is an indispensable element of any news & magazine mobile application. Using it, the reader can find the latest news on the topic of interest;
- Social aspect. Social networks are an integral part of modern life. Give your users the opportunity to spread your news and post updates on their social profiles;
- Proper feedback. This is important for any application but is much more crucial for news & magazine one. That’s because your user may witness the event that you would want to write about. Do you want to share this first? Your application should allow users to send videos or photos directly to you in a few clicks.
How to develop a proper app? Tips and tricks
In the end, we would like to point out some tips on how to make a proper news mobile application. Of course, if you are a developer yourself, or you have a good team of professionals, then you do not need anyone’s advice. But you did open this article, right?
- It is important to keep the image of your user in mind during the development process. Your target audience is unlikely to be the whole world. So, focus on the chosen country and age group.
- Start with an MVP. Most likely you already have a website. If so, you must have a database of users who trust you. This is a great audience to test your mobile application in action. Create an MVP with the most basic features and show it to your users. Let them express their opinion on what needs to be removed or added.
- Do not forget about analytics. Statistics on the use of the application, especially if you have many users, are extremely important. You do not need to collect data manually, there is a huge number of tools that will help you.
- Advertising is rarely superfluous unless you are the Washington Post newspaper that is already well-known globally. Therefore, do not spare money for a good PR campaign.
Is it worth it?
Once you make calculations, you may find that creating a proper application with the help of development companies or individual programmers can be quite expensive. Keeping in mind all the features that you want to add to your app, you can try to calculate the approximate cost.
However, in the end, it all comes down to the following question: Is it worth it? It all depends on your resources and your aspirations. You have obviously asked yourself the question highlighted in the title of this article. It means you are ready to allocate some resources for development. But what are your aspirations? A mobile app is a good way to stand out. Only the best outlets like The New York Times allocate funds for their own mobile apps. This indicates that they cater to the modern needs of their users.