If you are planning to create a mobile app that will compete with Instagram, you need to understand that it will be a very complex project that requires significant effort and investment. Especially if you want to create something unique. But this is not the only way. Instead, you can clone Instagram functions, do a little work on the uniqueness of the design, add something of your own and present the result as an improved version of the program everyone is familiar with.
At first glance, such a project may seem dubious and even a failure, but do not rush to draw conclusions. Think of WhatsApp and Vibe, Grub Hub and Eat24, Firefox and Chrome, and other apps you use all the time. Almost all of them have very similar counterparts, and yet they are all extremely popular. Based on this, we can conclude that cloning an idea and even an entire application is not always a bad thing, provided that you can stand out and attract an audience.
In Instagram comparable in popularity rivals clones no (Pinterest is very much behind), making this an attractive niche for launching new projects. And if you plan to go down this path, below you will find detailed instructions on how to create a mobile app clone of Instagram (a), make it unique and make money on it.
# 1. Market review and analysis
For your photo-sharing app to be successful, you should research the main competitors of Instagram. Thus, you can understand why such projects managed to gain a foothold in the market and use this knowledge to increase the competitiveness of your own platform.
Here are a few of Instagram’s competitors to analyze:
- Interest. The service is popular with women who use it to share photos of dresses, home furnishing ideas, recipes and handicrafts. That is, Pinterest is mostly about “things”, while Instagram is mostly about “users”.
- Flickr. A social network with the ability to batch upload a fairly large number of photos and export them to separate albums with a single click. Very handy if you are a photographer or designer.
- Eyed. A platform for those who are engaged in photography professionally. Here you can upload photos and encourage users to share them with their friends, as well as sell photos to brands.
- Igor. Service for sharing funny content: photos, memes, gifs, anecdotes and comics.
Even the smallest analysis of the above services indicates that they can compete with Instagram by targeting a specific niche, while Instagram is a service for everyone and everything. Therefore, if you want your mobile application to be competitive as well, then you also need to bet on a specific target audience.
The simplest example is a business application exclusively for companies, professional photographers and designers (as there is regular WhatsApp and there is WhatsApp Business). Other examples:
- Social network for architects and constructors.
- An app for gardeners, botanists and other professionals in the field of plant growing, landscape design and the like.
- Service for scientists and science enthusiasts (each study is dozens, if not hundreds of applications in the form of photos, illustrations, tables and graphs).
- An artificial intelligence app where digital personalities share their creations with each other and with meat bags.
In addition, you can bet on a specific country (unless it is the United States or Western Europe) by creating a design for the application taking into account ethnic, religious, historical and other local traditions. By the way, there is still no service focused on religious communities (all or some separately).
# 2. Marketing strategy
In order for the application you have created to be popular, you need to develop and launch a marketing campaign in advance so that by the time of launch you already have users who want to register in it. If we talk about Instagram, then it became popular thanks to word of mouth: individual people tried a new application and shared their impressions with friends and subscribers on other social networks.
To start talking about your photo-sharing application, use:
# 3. Development of MVP
Even if you create a clone of a well-known Mobile App Development Services, the concept of which is confirmed by the original, development still needs to start with a minimum viable product (MVP). It is more efficient in terms of cost, risk, testing, and potential market growth. In this case, one should start with the implementation of the main functions and only after testing them, proceed to additional ones.
# 4. Testing
The MVP created needs validation. Technical verification is carried out by QA engineers who check the performance and speed of the application, and are also responsible for finding errors, bugs, and the like. Conceptual validation is done through focus groups and beta tests. It is needed for validation: the correspondence of the functionality with the design to the needs of the selected target audience.
# 5. Launch
After testing the MVP, the next step is deciding whether you want to improve it or leave it as it is. Improvement can be made by creating better designs and by implementing additional features that will make your project stand out from the competition. These include:
- Video effects and beautiful transitions.
- Uploading long videos (appeared on Instagram in 2018).
- The ability to conduct video broadcasts (stream).
- Integration with payment services.
- Business elements.
Once you decide that your Instagram clone is ready for the official release, you need to schedule your app deployment. Depending on your strategy, you can release the app with all the features at once, or do it in stages to draw the audience’s attention to new updates.
The cost of creating an Instagram clone
Ready-made solution. There are many offers on the network for selling almost complete clones of the Instagram application, the cost of which varies from 20 to 5 thousand dollars. These are template solutions with little design and functionality customization. Choosing these can save you a lot, but there can be security, privacy and copyright issues. In addition, purchasing a template solution does not eliminate the need to develop a backend.
Anticipation of posts. Instagram, Klink and other photo sharing apps get the most of their revenue from promoted posts that users can post in stories, posts, or carousel ads.
In-app purchases. In early 2019, Instagram added the Checkout feature, allowing you to make purchases without leaving the app. You can follow Instagram’s example by building a similar feature into your app and charging a commission on every order and / or for providing this feature to stores.
Premium features. In 2016, Instagram added a Business account feature for small and medium business owners. This account gives you access to additional features that help increase customers and sales. You can do the same by entering a fee to access or use premium features.
Selling data. They don’t like to talk about it, but many applications are created with the expectation of monetization through the sale of personal data of users. They are very expensive, especially if it is data about a specific target category.
Advertising. Regular contextual advertising of third-party services or store offers outside the platform.
This is David work as a digital content marketer at folio3 app like Instagram, Besides that, I love to read and love to play video games and I like to ride a sports bike too.