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Create a mobile app with Geolocation and Google Maps in 5 minutes

  Anyone can build an app. It's our philosophy at AppSheet, and we want to support our citizen developers as they create their own customized apps for their businesses. In our continuing "Build an App" series, we're highlighting some of the most popular uses of our platform. In this post, we're creating a simple app with geolocation and Google Maps. Using your data, you can use this app to identify important locations and how to navigate to them. This app can be utilized in many ways, especially for those businesses that travel to multiple locations to perform services. If you've already created an AppSheet account, you can click on "My Apps" and "Create New Mobile App" to get started. If you haven't signed up yet, click the "Start for Free" button. Next, choose your data source. In this case, we're using Google Sheets, but you can use data from Excel, Dropbox, SmartSheet, Office365, mySQL, and a number of other programs. Click on the data you want to use and upload it into AppSheet's platform.     Everything that will go into our app comes from our spreadsheet. The spreadsheet we're using here has the name of the property, its latitude/longitudinal coordinates (you can also use standard addresses), an image, and any notes about the location (i.e. what services need to be performed there). AppSheet's platform will pull the data and automatically create the app. If you click on the "map view" you can see all the different locations noted with blue dots, indicating all the locations a field service technician would need to visit on that day.     If that's all you need, you can stop there, and you've made your own geolocation app. But if you're looking to add features and expand your app, keep reading. AppSheet has literally hundreds of options available to app creators, so they can build the best app for their business.     For example, you can use the "columns" feature in the app editor to specify what types of columns you have in your spreadsheet and how you want them to function. If you want different columns to act differently (like if you want a column to be searchable or if it has sensitive data) you can customize that. You can learn more about columns here. You can also create "slices" or subsets of the data. Slices can be used in a number of ways, like if you only want certain employees to see certain parts of the app, or if you want to create a UX view with only part of the table data. You can learn more about slices here.     You can also customize how your app looks. If you prefer a list or table view, you can change it in AppSheet's platforms to what makes the most sense for you. You can change the colors and branding to fit your business, and create "formatting rules" that will dictate how current and future data will look in your app. Click here for a step-by-step guide on changing your app's appearance. The "behavior" tab will also tell your app how to respond as tasks are completed. You can customize it to add or delete rows or jump to different views, depending on your preference. You can also create workflows. For example, when a task is completed the app can send out an email notification. It can also generate daily reports for supervisors. You can generate an instant messenger conversation within the app for all employees involved. If you need extra security, you can create a user sign-in feature and determine who has access to the app. You can connect it to various authenticators, like Google or AWS, to ensure the most secure access. You can use as many or as few of these features as you want to make your app uniquely suited to your needs. Learn more about what you can do with the behavior tab here.     Once you've customized the app to your specifications, you're ready to deploy it. On the left side of your screen, click the "Not Deployed" link, and then the button that says "Move to Deployed Status". Your app is now ready to use, and any users you've designated will receive an email notification and can download the app for their mobile or desktop device. Check out this video tutorial for a more in-depth look at the process. If you're not ready to build your own app from scratch, AppSheet has dozens of sample apps you can copy and customize for free to get started.         

Top 8 Digital Signature Apps

Capturing signatures for forms, documents, and deliveries is a process that has been revolutionized by technology over the past 15 years. Just as email made the fax machine obsolete, smartphones and cloud-based software tools are quickly replacing or supplementing email as go-to tools for digital signature capture. For any business that requires signatures on a regular basis, developing efficient and secure processes for signature capture can not only save money, but increase productivity and revenue. Below, we've outlined eight of the top digital signature applications that can transform the way you work. AppSheet HelloSign Adobe fill and sign SignNow DocuSign SignEasy OneSpan Sign PandaDoc 1. AppSheet AppSheet allows users to record signatures in custom-built apps that can easily be configured without code. While other providers may focus solely on digital signature capture, AppSheet functions primarily as a no-code application development platform that enables users to create mobile and web apps directly from their cloud-based spreadsheets and databases. These apps can leverage the natural features of smartphones (such as touchscreens) for hand-drawn signatures. Using the phone's camera, these apps can also be used to scan and capture barcode, take and upload images. AppSheet allows app creators to bypass the traditional challenges incurred by vendor lock-in to build custom applications and adopt a flexible platform which can meet the changing needs of an organization. To date, organizations like Solvay and Husqvarna have chosen AppSheet to handle many of their most critical internal operations and approval processes. Pricing: Free for simple, individual use apps with plans increasing to $5-$10/mo per user for access to build, deploy, and share apps on the full application development platform. Lots of AppSheet sample apps have the signature capture feature. The following Audits App is just an example. 2. HelloSign HelloSign brings a different angle to the world of digital signatures as a leading player, particularly in the web integration space. HelloSign counts companies like Instacart, Climb Credit, Tech for Campaigns, and Lyft as customers who rely on HelloSign to accelerate contractor applications, speed loan approval time, and automate NDA signatures. With a variety of plans for every type of user, HelloSign works hard to satisfy a diverse user base. And for companies with a sizable budget and a willingness to invest resources in configuring APIs or integrating with systems like Oracle or Salesforce, the HelloSign platform can serve as a functional signature capture platform for the enterprise.  Pricing: Ranges from $13-$40/mo per user for basic plans. 3. Adobe Fill and Sign Adobe is a popular and trusted player in the digital/mobile signature space. Adobe's Fill-and-Sign application is optimized to work well with PDFs and documents that can be captured as a PDF. Users only have to take a snap of the document using their phone cameras, crop and sharpen the image, and sign it instantly. Another great thing about Adobe Fill and Sign is its ease of integration with 3rd-party tools as well as its compliance with global e-signature rules. Adobe Fill and Sign is a bit pricier than some other options, mainly serving business users. Still, rest assured knowing there’s a 14-day trial period waiting for any interested users. While Fill and Sign works great for users who are accustomed to PDF-centered workflows, users seeking to bypass or work in parallel to PDF-driven documents may be better served looking for more holistic options. Pricing: Ranges from $12-$30/mo with significant variability depending on monthly or annual pricing and other Adobe-package related bundles. 4. SignNow Formerly known as CudaSign, SignNow is another solid choice for electronic signature capturing. SignNow is an award-winning app, known for its simple, clutter-free and user-friendly UI. SignNow boasts a number of unique features. Users can pre-fill a document with text, copy existing fields to a new documents, and generate templates that can be used multiple times.  For individuals and small businesses, SignNow rarely disappoints. And starting at $8/month, SignNow undercuts many of its competitors based on value alone. Pricing: Ranges from $8-$15/mo per user.  5. DocuSign With over 200,000 downloads and a 2018 IPO, DocuSign is an industry heavyweight known for its intuitive, easy-to-use user interface and a wide array of features that make it easy to integrate with a host of third party tools. Another unique feature of DocuSign is its digital transaction management system where documents can be easily signed, sent, and managed. Perhaps DocuSign's greatest drawback is that its premium reputation comes with premium pricing. Even the cheapest plans which can only handle 5 signatures per month start off at $10/mo per user. For organizations that need every bell and whistle associated with digital signatures, DocuSign may be worth consideration, but for many, if not most organizations, other cost-effective alternatives may be worth primary consideration. Pricing: $10-$40/user per month. 6. SignEasy SignEasy offers another minimalist take on the digital signature space. With a suite of iOS, Android, and web-based tools, SignEasy makes document signage possible in a range of on-the-go and fixed environments.  This e-signature app employs drag-and-drop functionality, making it easy for users to sign documents and customize documents on their phones. SignEasy also offers options like adding checkboxes and images to a document. As with other vendors, the price points can be challenging for a small business or businesses expecting substantial user volume.  Pricing: Ranges from $10-$60/user per month. 7. OneSpan (formerly eSignLive) OneSpan Sign is a digital signature solutions provider that focuses primarily on the enterprise space. Their website presents the platform's industry solutions specifically for credit unions, financial services, government, healthcare, and insurance companies. They count larger companies such as IBM, US Bank, and Wells Fargo as customers and position themselves as leaders in the platform security space. Their integrations also favor enterprise tools such as Salesforce, Box, Dynamics CRM, and Sharepoint.  Pricing: Starts at $20/user per month.  8. PandaDoc   PandaDoc is another leading digital signature app for both iOS and Android devices. This app’s streamlined interface and overall ease-of-use make it a strong pick for many people. Beyond digital signature capture, PandaDoc's document management toolbox includes tools for automated workflows, drag-and-drop signing, and audit histories. By integrating with your existing CRM, payment, and file storage apps (e.g. HubSpot, Zoho, Salesforce, and Basecamp), PandaDoc seeks to create a unified platform to handle your document needs. As with other software providers, PandaDoc's higher-than-average pricing may be a consideration for people seeking a cost-effective solution. Pricing: Starts at $49/user/mo A Final Note As workflows continue to move from paper and pen to the cloud, businesses in every sphere will need to adapt to a world where digital signatures are not simply a luxury but an expectation for B2B and B2C companies.  To account for this, it's important for operations and IT leaders to consider not only the present requirements for digital signature capture, but also the changing needs that may arise when choosing which applications or application platforms to adopt. Rather than seeking to find a specialized digital signature for every challenge, it may be worth considering building a suite of customized, easily modifiable applications using a secure and no-code platform. 

Top 5 Manufacturing Apps — Manufacturing & Warehouse Management Tools for iOS & Android

The manufacturing industry is highly automated, and the right technology is essential for safety and efficiency within manufacturing businesses. Many businesses in the industry credit their success to the use of state-of-the-art manufacturing apps, which keep employees accountable, efficient, and mobile. Ranging from universal CRM software to real-time equipment monitoring, manufacturing apps are incredibly fine-tuned for key tracking and record-keeping. Like a well-oiled machine, these apps make day-to-day operations flow seamlessly, wasting less time, and more importantly, promoting safety and organization. According to a recent survey, up to 48% of all inspection tasks today are done via mobile apps. Manufacturing apps are a low-cost technology to integrate into your business—and pretty soon, you'll be boosting your ROIs. Our team at AppSheet has curated a list of our favorite manufacturing apps—ones that'll get you more productive and agile. Our List Our list is sorted by usability, flexibility, easy management, and other factors we find important. I'm starting with the best of the best (although we might be just a little biased). 1. AppSheet's Equipment Inspection App                                                          Equipment Inspection Sample App   Although we might be a little biased, thousands of professionals in the manufacturing industry use AppSheet to automate processes, record inspections, flag items, and assign tasks. AppSheet isn't an app in itself; it's an app development platform. If you don't know how to code but would love a custom app for your business, you've come to the right place. All you have to do to create your first app is to upload a spreadsheet, doc, or form (from Google Sheets, Excel, Dropbox, Salesforce, or some other data collection system) and let AppSheet do the rest. You can even choose from a sample app like an equipment inspection app or an inspection checklist app, and AppSheet will convert your data into that particular format. You can easily customize the features, data, logic, and UI of your app. It's completely free to prototype and you could get your first app up and running in minutes. Primary functions included in the Equipment Inspection app: Location-based items with pre-filled fields. Tabbed inspection forms, with barcode, signature and photo fields. Historical inspections associated with items. Employee directory with related locations and inspection history. Charts with a quick overview of percentage values of Passed and Failed inspections.   2. 5S Audit App This simple app makes it easy to conduct and report audits in particular areas. 5S Audit is the best way to benchmark your 5S programs and systems. Ideal for manufacturing areas, offices, and work sites, this app comes preloaded with a great template to begin improvement activities in your organization. Although this app is fairly simple, it's extremely easy and effective—a pretty nifty tool to document audits on-the-go.  3. MRPeasy Brought to you by Intuit Quickbooks, MRPeasy is a product planning software for manufacturers. This handy app lets you create manufacturing orders, schedule and assign tasks within a production schedule, and much more. The app's smooth interface allows comprehensive viewing of key metrics for your manufacturing processes and any information that is needed to improve your efficiency. Managerial statistics, sales statistics, cost control, critical on-hand reporting, and equipment utilization reporting are all available.  4. Manufacturing 360 Created by automation superstar Siemens, Manufacturing 360 is a comprehensive app that lets you experience digital manufacturing in an interactive factory environment. With this app, you can learn how to compete more effectively with next generation manufacturing technology, including advanced robotics and logistics simulation, closed-loop quality solutions, and the latest CAD/CAM software. This app is meant to inspire and innovate, helping users streamline their own operations and strategy. 5. ManageTeamz Delivery Tracking   ManageTeamz offers a robust delivery tracking system, especially helpful for those who are looking to track material delivery and warehouse receiving. This software is available both on desktop and as a mobile app for iOS and Android. The ManageTeamz Delivery Tracking app helps keep your team on track, and makes it easy to manage employees, orders, and timelines. AppSheet also has a delivery tracking app (see below). This app tracks packages from pickup to delivery. The package is tracked by updating the record when it is picked up, when it is delivered to the site, and when the driver returns to base. The app has a dashboard view, map views, and table views. Overview, the dashboard view, shows all vendors and construction sites on a map, active and complete packages in table and deck views. Click on a construction site icon on the map, you will see brief information about this site and all relevant packages. A Final Note Choosing a manufacturing app can be difficult. If you're having trouble determining what mobile solutions would work best for your business in the manufacturing industry, check out our Manufacturing Solutions page for some great app ideas and templates. It's important to equip your business with the right resources, and our team at AppSheet is dedicated to helping individuals and businesses achieve their goals. Need more ideas for apps for your business? Checkout the AppSheet blog for useful tips, free templates, and more.  

Sweden’s FlorCert: Using AppSheet to Improve Floral Certification Exams

Editor’s note: In addition to his role at the Flower Academy, Mikael serves as Chairman of Sweden’s Florist Association of Professional Industries, an organization that provides training and certification for upper secondary education students. He also plays an integral role at FlorCert, a European-wide quality assurance program for vocational training and education, and coaches Sweden’s national florists competing in the Euroskills and Worldskills games. Here is how Mikael is using AppSheet’s app maker platform to improve the floral certification process in Sweden: Visitors to Sweden are often surprised to learn that our country offers so many interesting and beautiful flowers. Some of these include the popular Hibiscus, the dramatic purple Pasqueflower and of course the Sorbus Hybrida with its distinguishable red berries. Sweden is also a great place to launch a floral career. I started here in 1976 as an apprentice, and have since worked as a shop owner, operator and business consultant. Much of my success can be attributed to my early days as an apprentice, where I received the necessary training and guidance for continuing in the industry. Now, I am working to improve the process for the next generation of incoming florists. Our Challenge At FlorCert, we provide final onsite examinations for about 20 different secondary education schools across Sweden. These examinations critique students for competency in multiple categories like composition, color, variety and technique. If students pass the exam, they can use this certification to help get a job at a flower shop. So it’s an important test, and one that we want to make as fair, efficient and comprehensive as possible. Awhile back, it became apparent that we needed to overhaul the way that we collect data during examinations. At first, we were using a paper-based system which was very inefficient. Paper exams, after all, can get lost, damaged, stolen or manipulated. So eventually, we moved on to Google Sheets which was far more efficient. But there was still a problem: Google Sheets is not easy to use on a smartphone or tablet. And during a floral examination, it’s very inconvenient for our assessors to use a laptop or desktop. We needed something that our team could use while walking around. We found AppSheet’s app maker platform and everything changed I found AppSheet in an advertisement while using Google Sheets. I clicked it, and was immediately sold. We selected AppSheet because it’s easy to use, even for novice designers like me with little to no coding experience. But we also selected AppSheet because we are a small, independent organization that does not generate any income. AppSheet matched our sensitive budgetary requirements, and allowed us to move forward with a high quality mobile solution. We made a simple application that allows us to collect data during examinations and then come together to compare notes after as a team. AppSheet also lets us store photos, which is very helpful when assessing floral arrangements. A work in progress Right now, the app is still in its early stages and there is still some work to be done. I am in the process of communicating with team members, assessing feedback and tinkering with the app to make it more intuitive and user-friendly. So while I do not have a great deal of results to report on, I do want to mention the design process — because I think that is one of the most powerful parts of this program. If I were to work with a private developer, I would — in addition to paying a lot of money — have to wait a long time for changes to come back. But now, I can simply open the AppSheet portal and make changes in real-time. Say, for instance, there was an important last minute update to an examination that we needed to incorporate. Without AppSheet, it would be very difficult to change our process. We would have to collect some of the results in the app, and other results manually. But with AppSheet, we can go in and add a field if it’s necessary in no time at all. Best of all, AppSheet is secure and tamper-proof. So students can rest assured that their data is protected and backed up in AppSheet’s cloud-based servers. Looking back, I wish we had something like this when I was a student. By streamlining the examination process, we are improving the way that students can receive floral certification in Sweden. AppSheet is a platform that any global organization can use to improve the way that they collect and process data during examinations.  

How to Make a Project Management App in 10 Minutes

  You check emails on your phone in a taxi, at an airport or even in a grocery store. You may also edit documents in word, spreadsheet or PowerPoint while you are on the go. But have you ever thought about managing your projects on your phone?     Project management apps are one of the most popular functional areas for AppSheet creators. That’s because pretty much all of us, at one time or another, manage a project or a number of projects. I am no exception to that rule as my role here requires me to manage a ton of projects and project owners! My project management app helps me to ensure that deadlines are met and that work is distributed evenly. After reviewing many project management apps and creating my own, I’ve realized that there are three critical features every project management app must have. Now your project management app may include a number of “other” bells and whistles but these three features are key to project management success: Group projects by field options such as Owner and Time to easily track projects; Automate schedule notifications to increase productivity; Control access to data so that project owners only see what they need to see, improving the user experience. Data Grouping Makes Tracking the Progress of Projects Easier If you’re like me, a project management spreadsheet might look like pretty similar to the one below. It contains a ton of data but is very difficult to navigate due to the number of columns you are traversing. But in reality, you don’t need to see all the columns—you simply need to access those columns that need to be reviewed or updated based on an action. That’s why you need an app. With it, you can group and view your data by Project Owner, Project Start Time, Status, or even Project Category. So instead of eyeballing and mining data, you can effortlessly navigate to the group you want to check. Data grouping can also help to identify the number of projects by time period (in this example, week) and Owner. That way you can easily determine owners that are tasked with too many projects, and if necessary, redistribute the projects or change the time period to ensure that all projects are completed. For example, in the following app, John and Mary each have three to four projects, but Matt has only one project. You may want to redistribute the load so that Matt is working on more projects. To make status tracking even easier, use visual cues. Depending on the level of detail, you may want to use two different types of cues. For example: A pie chart to indicate whether a project is Completed (Full), In Progress (Half) or Not Started (Empty). A color bar to indicate whether an owner has Completed a project (Green), is In Progress (Yellow) or has Not Started (Red). With this feature, in the field or in the office, you can easily locate the projects that need attention and decide what actions to take. Automatic Deadline Alerts Keep Projects and Owners on Track The last thing you want to see is a project delay. To keep everything on track and on schedule, why not automatically send a deadline alert to a project owner when his or her deadline is approaching? You can set up your app to do this for you with some simple settings. For example, I can set up a workflow (you can do this under Reports in AppSheet App Editor) to send an email at a scheduled time. In this case, send deadline alert emails at 8am PST to project owners whose deadlines are two days from now. So, for example, if today is December 14, 2017, anyone whose deadline is December 16, 2017 will receive the Deadline Alert email at 8am today. The default email body can show project details and you can customize it to make it more personal. Below is an example of an automatic notification that is triggered based on a schedule deadline.   Another way to do this is to show all projects whose deadlines are two days away on a separate page, and decide if you want to send deadline alerts through pressing a button.      In either case, instead of manually reminding owners about tasks and deadlines, you have set up an automated process that does this for you. I don’t know about you, but this simple feature has made me so much more productive—no more manual tracking of deadlines! Controlled Data Access: Project Owners See Only What they Need to See Whether you’re working on one complicated project or a number of projects, you can control what project owners can access and update. This has two advantages: Uncluttered user interface for project owners as they only see information about the projects they are responsible for. Higher rates of adoption as the app is easy for project owners to use and update as they see only the information they care about. I’ve set up my app to work this way: all project owners can access my app but they can only see the projects that they own. I am the only one that can see all data in the app. For example, on Ryan’s Owner view/page (Left screenshot), he can only see four projects because those are owned by him but I can see all projects (Right screenshot) including Ryan’s.       Download my project management app below, check my expressions and make your own app!   That’s it for today’s post. As you build your project management app, keep these key features in mind. And please let me know: what other management features do you think are critical? What other function-focused articles do you want to read? Leave your comments below—we are always interested in your point of view! For use cases in the real world, please visit our AppSheet Creator Spotlight. For step-by-step app making instructions and new features, please go to Features, Tips & Webinars.

DIY Gift List Organizer: The Gift that Keeps on Giving!

  Just in time for the holiday shopping season, we have a small (free!) gift for you. One of our very talented University of Washington interns, Madeline Clarke, created a DIY gift list organizer using our platform. We liked it and decided to White Label the app (in the Google Play Store) so that anyone can use it to manage their gift giving. Why a gift list organizer app? We were brainstorming the useful apps that anyone can create to make their lives (business or personal) easier. The gift giving list app was one of our top two contenders (we’re working on the other one for next quarter) and since the holiday season is right around the corner, the DIY Gift List Organizer won! Here’s what I love about this app: I can access it from my phone (or tablet or browser). Since it’s on my phone, the app travels with me—when I see a possible gift that someone would like, I digitally note the information. No more hunting for a pen and piece of paper! It keeps a running gift list. Use the app to keep a running list of things that your friends and family might like. Then, when the occasion arises, you’ve already done the hard work of finding that perfect gift. It “remembers” the gifts I’ve given. Have you ever gifted someone the same thing for a different event? Use this organizer to record who you gave a gift to, when you bought and sent the gift, and the holiday or occasion it was for. End accidental repeat gifting! There’s lots of other great things about the app—like seeing store locations, storing photos of gift ideas, and including addresses of the recipients for fast shipping—so go to the Google Play Store and check it out for yourself. How did Madeline create the app? Now that’s a great question. Madeline produced a step-by-step walkthrough of how she created the app so that you can build one yourself. At the end of major steps, she’s thoughtfully provided a link to an app version so that if you run into problems, you can always refresh the version and continue the walkthrough. And when you install the app, you can copy her app, add any features that you might like (the DIY part) and deploy it. You’ve just created your own gift list organizer! Why is this app the gift that keeps on giving? That’s an easy question: from now on, this app will keep all your gift giving organized! No more excel spreadsheets, paper lists or photos (unorganized) of gift you gave to “someone.” Happy holidays everyone! For Android users, get the DIY List Organizer App on Google Play. For iOS users, go to our DIY Gift List Organizer page, select Copy this app and you'll be ready to go in a few minutes. Some of the Great Things You Can Do with the Gift Organizer Related Stories: How to Make a Smart To-Do List How to Make an App

How to Make a Smart To-Do list

  Smart todolist from AppSheet Nowadays, everyone is a busy bee with lots of activities, tasks, and events to keep track of. To keep on track, we leave countless sticky note reminders on our laptop, books, desk… pretty much everywhere. Our phone is filled with reminder notes and daily tasks are piling up in our calendar. Yet, we still tend to forget things. Reminders are often ignored as we’re too busy working or studying. For example, we get a reminder notification on our phone. We swipe right on the notifications and hide it because we’re in a meeting. The tasks in our calendar that we intended to finish after class remain “undone” because we had to catch the early bus. They, too, live in the abyss of forgotten things. What can you do to get all these activities and tasks completed? Why not make your own personal app! Build an app that reminds you of uncompleted tasks at the end of each day. You might be thinking, “I don’t have time for that! Building an app could take weeks and months!” Would it surprise you to know that building an app takes only ten minutes? Yep, ten minutes. Just follow this brief tutorial on building your own personal “smart” to-do list apps with SMS reminders sent right to your phone. Set your timer to ten minutes. Walk through the slides below and your app will be completed before the timer goes off. I’m not kidding! You might even beat my record. When you’re finished, tweet @appsheet and tell us how long it took you to build your app with #MadeAppUnderTenMinutes. Stay tuned to Features, Tips & Webinars for more new features and tips of making powerful apps.  

The 9 Best App Analytics Tools

Ever wondered why the number of people using your app suddenly dropped? Or why your app isn’t generating as much revenue as you thought it would? Blind guessing will not help. But if you implement an analytics tool in your app, the answer could be revealed to you quickly and effectively. Just like analytics tools for websites, app analytics solutions track a huge number of metrics that help you to understand the behavior of your users and to improve your app accordingly. But with so many available, it can be difficult to know where to start. We take a look at nine of the top app analytics tools.For ease of use, we will only be looking at analytics platforms that work for both iOS and Android apps, and that are available to use without paying hundreds of dollars a month. 1. Firebase Firebase is Google’s free, unlimited mobile app analytics solution which provides all the tools you need to improve your app and grow your user base in one place. Once installed, it will automatically start collecting data on insights such as who your users are, how much time they spend using the app and how much revenue they have generated. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Google includes 500 distinct events that you can use to drill down into your users’ behavior which will help you to improve your app as a result.Price: Free for unlimited use 2.  Fabric Fabric is a real-time mobile analytics platform that combines an intuitive dashboard with events tracking, crash reporting, payments tracking, growth reports, user segmentation and more to deliver an all-in-one solution. Acquired by Google in January of this year, Google will continue to run the platform alongside Firebase.Price: Free 3. MixPanel MixPanel is another great, all-in-one option that lets you easily track assigned events, create user funnels so you can see the journey of your users at a glance and carry out A/B testing to help you improve the performance of your app. All of this data can be displayed in dashboards and in charts which can be as simple or as detailed as you like. The platform comes with a free mobile app that sends custom alerts to your smartphone.Price: Free to track up to 25,000 data points per month 4. Flurry Flurry is the analytics solution from Yahoo! that is used by over 800,000 apps. Like the previous platforms, you can track events, create user funnels, segment your audience by demographic and interests, and track ad performance. It can be used on apps for Blackberry smartphones, as well as Android and Apple phones, and has unlimited free use. With this free app, all of your app’s metrics are available on your own phone anywhere, at any time.Price: Free 5. Countly Countly provides a 360-degree view of your customers’ journeys through your app. Similar to the other solutions, it offers a suite of tools that will enable you to track events, user retention, advertising performance, user journeys and crashes. The only downside with this solution is the price tag. It is free to use for non-commercial apps, but using it for any business-related app will require you to purchase the Enterprise Edition which starts at $250 per month.Price: Free for non-commercial use / $250 per month for Enterprise 6. Amplitude Amplitude’s analytics offering focuses on user behavior to help you to improve your app, rather than other vanity metrics. It is easy to install and will let you track things such as drop-off points in your conversion funnel, retention drivers and detractors as well as customer journeys.Price: Free for up to 10 million monthly events 7. Apsalar Unlike the other apps discussed so far, Apsalar focuses on improving the return on investment (ROI) of your app through effective advertising. It still provides all of the tracking features you’d expect, but the focus is on making your advertising and marketing campaigns as profitable as possible. Unfortunately, Apsalar puts a two-year cap on data retention, so it may not be the best choice for long-term projects.Price: Free 8. Appsee Appsee is another all-in-one platform that lets you track a huge range of events, understand your audience better, and optimize your A/B tests. What separates Appsee from the other solutions listed here, however, are some of the features provided. Appsee lets you record users and provides touch maps so you can understand exactly how your users use the app and the problems they are experiencing. Unfortunately, these extra features mean Appsee is not available for free. Still, there is a 14-day free trial that will give you a taste of the platform.Price: 14-day free trial. After the trial, pricing will depend on number of platforms and estimated number of events per month. 9.  Localytics Localytics provides all of the user insight data you could need (session tracking, retention rates, funnels and user profiles) but the focus here is on marketing. Localytics lets you reach your users with highly target campaigns that utilize push notifications, in-app advertising, personalized messages and A/B testing. Price: Free for up to 10,000 eventsSo, use one of these tools to optimize your app and expand your digital footprint. If your app is live, every second you waste without analytics is costing you data that could be used to improve your app. If you don’t know which to choose, start by installing Firebase and go from there.

The 6 App Development Best Practices To Follow When Using AppSheet

AppSheet gives you all the tools you need to create an awesome app. Unfortunately, hooking up your data to our online software and clicking deploy is rarely going to result in success. There’s still a bit of work needed on your end to create an app that you and your users are going to love. In this post, we’re going to talk about the six app development best practices to follow when using AppSheet and what you should be doing before, during and after app development to make sure your new app is a success. Plan Before Development Every great app starts with a great blueprint. This doesn’t just mean how it is going to work; you also need to know what you want to achieve with your app. After all, there’s no point hooking up your data to AppSheet if you don’t have a clear plan in your mind of why you need the app, what you want the app to look like, how you want it to work and how you are going to attract users. Before you start using AppSheet, sit down with a pen and a pad or device and work out your game plan. Sum up in one line why you need the app and what your goal for it is. Keep this sentence in front of you throughout the development journey. It will help to keep you focused on your goal. Next, brainstorm ways of attracting users. Who are you creating the app for? How are you going to bring the app to their attention? Again, sum this up in one line and keep referring to it when you start creating your app as it may help guide your decisions. If you can only think of one or two ways of getting users, check out this article on how to boost your adoption rate. Know Your Audience In order to help you to plan, identify your audience and get to know them. Are you creating the app for employees or colleagues? Is it meant to help clients? Who are your target users? Once you’ve defined who your users are, consider the app from their perspective. Are they technical? Will a particular color scheme appeal to them? What do they want to achieve by using the app? Answering questions like these will help you to design the app in a way that is as beneficial as possible to your users. Make It Clear During Development All of the best apps on the App Store and Google Play have one thing in common: they are all incredibly simple to use. Follow their lead if you want to create an awesome app, too. When it comes to creating your data and customizing your app, always be guided by one principle: KISS. Keep it simple, stupid. That means keeping the purpose of your app simple, don’t try and achieve too much. Keep the layout clean, don’t add a lot of clutter. Make sure you include clear instructions where necessary. In short, don’t make your app so complicated that your audience won’t want to use it. Get User Feedback The beauty of using AppSheet is that you can create an app in hours, not days. This enables you to get feedback and make changes much faster than if you were to use a developer. Don’t worry then, about making your app perfect straight off the bat. Create a minimum viable product and then conduct a limited release to see how well the app will work for your target users. Once feedback is received, you can rapidly tweak the app and iterate whilst you scale. AppSheet makes this process easy by including a feedback form to collect feedback from users. Ultimately, this process of getting feedback and tweaking your app shouldn’t stop if you want it to become as useful to your employees/clients as possible. Incorporate App Analytics Make sure you install an analytics platform in your app before you send it out into the world. There’s no point going through all of the effort to plan and customize your app if you are not going to track its success. It’s not just a case of tracking how popular your app is, either. Analytics platforms can help you to improve your app for your users and identify any bugs or issues that may be causing users to delete it from their smartphone. As a Pro customer, you get app usage analytics included free of charge. If you aren’t a pro customer consider upgrading or use a free app analytics solution such as Firebase. Test After Development You’ve created your app using AppSheet. It looks sweet and works on your phone. Now what? Test it. Test it again. And test it some more. Test it on different phones with different screen sizes. Test every journey through the app you can think of. Try and break your app. Before you tell anyone about your creation, you should make sure that it works without a hitch. It’s impossible to guarantee that it will work perfectly every time, of course. But the last thing you want to do is to notify your clients of your new app, only for it to crash as soon as they start using it on a different phone. Take action Knowing the best way to develop your app is great, but it’s no use if you don’t put it into practice. Take the first step by reading our comprehensive guide on rapid mobile app development. You’ll learn why no-code citizen developers are changing the way they live, work and play. Discover best practices for rapid mobile app development and find some real world examples of how apps built with AppSheet have transformed businesses. Download the guide for free here.