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Online booking systems are at their absolute peak right now. Numerous industries can benefit from this software, including travel, transportation, healthcare, hospitality, and food.
These businesses actively invest in оnline booking app development to streamline their processes. As a result, we can see rapid growth in the market for this software. From 2021 to 2025, it will reach over $633 million and show annual growth of 19% during this period.
Online booking app development can help keep up with modern customers’ demands. According to GetApp research, 60% of American consumers schedule appointments online. And only 3% are ready to do it in person.
Thus, modern businesses will lose if they don’t launch their scheduling software. With this in mind, Softermii experts have prepared a comprehensive guide on booking application development. We’ll tell you about the main features, technologies, design practices, and the cost of creating such a product.
Our company has significant experience in booking app development. Building products like Farelogix, DogVacay, and Cococure has given us a deep understanding of the market for such software. You’ll get valuable insights to help your booking app thrive.
Why You Should Create a Booking App
Companies build a mobile booking app considering the benefits that such software offers. It not only increases the business’s overall productivity but also helps it generate significant profits. It’s especially noticeable considering that about 82% of customers make bookings via smartphone.
Just look at the success of Airbnb. Having received $600,000 in seed investments in 2009, the company’s value has grown to almost $79 billion this year. Additionally, this software gets over 170 million monthly visits and has been downloaded over 2.5 million times in the last 30 days alone. It’s just one of many notable success examples from Airbnb-like app development.
See what other advantages you’ll get from developing online booking applications.
Get Loyal Customers
Customers make about 54% of reservations on the go. Online booking software opens up such an opportunity for them. So, if your business offers such convenient and fast services, it will help you gain many loyal clients.
Enhance Your Marketing Approach
By developing a booking app, you can access extensive analytics of user data: customer behavior, demographic information, etc. All of these you can use to improve your marketing efforts, helping you attract even more customers.
Increase Your Brand Recognition
A booking app can be a customer’s first point of contact with your business. High-quality, convenient and safe software will help you make the right impression on your user.
Boost Your Income
Statistics show that 67% of consumers prefer online booking if the business offers this option. Developing a booking app gives you access to new customers who don’t want to make reservations in person or by phone.
Also, with such software, you can use various monetization strategies, such as subscriptions, advertising, or booking fees. Thus, you will open new revenue streams.
The booking app is primarily a convenience for customers. Users can quickly book and get help from your support team. Thanks to the analysis of user data, you can also deliver customers more personalized offers and increase your sales.
Types of Online Booking Apps for Various Businesses
Want to develop an online booking app for business? First, find out what types of such software exist. Then you can create a solution that will meet your company’s needs.
Here are the key types of online booking software:
On-Demand Booking Apps
On-demand booking apps are software that instantly provides services according to the client’s needs. As a rule, the user chooses the required product or service, places an order, and waits for delivery.
On-demand online booking software development is suitable for the following industries:
Taxi or Ride-Hailing Services
Customers may quickly and conveniently request a driver using such apps. It can be software with a list of taxi services or a platform connecting individual drivers with passengers.
The development of such software is suitable for the following businesses:
- Companies that have their own automobiles
- Companies that don’t have cars but do have drivers (like Uber)
Delivery applications connect couriers with product suppliers and enable the delivery of these goods to end consumers. Such software is suitable for many industries. You can engage in the instant delivery of food, flowers, heavy goods, and even medications. An example is software for logistics transportation by Landtran.
In today’s world, you can even book laundry! In such software, users enter their addresses and specify the desired service time. After that, a courier picks up the laundry and turns it back once cleaned. Such services are available in ByNext and Rinse.
In-Advance Booking Apps
In-advance booking apps allow users to schedule appointments in the calendar for the most suitable time and date. Such software is best for the following industries:
Food and Beverage Industries
Food delivery is a market worth more than $150 billion. It works for many businesses, such as restaurants, cafes, bars, etc. Applications providing such services are currently receiving increased attention from consumers.
As a rule, such applications work as follows. There are three parties: the food venue, the courier service, and the customer. The consumer orders the food he needs, and then the app sends that order to the restaurant. The food establishment, in turn, confirms the order, completes it, and searches for an available deliverer through the app. The courier accepts the order and delivers it to the client.
Booking apps offer a huge range of services for the travel industry. It is an opportunity to order tickets for any transport type. To do this, the user specifies the destination and place of departure and the application searches for available offers. This ticket booking app development is in high demand. An example of such software is our Farelogix product for booking airline tickets.
Booking applications for the hotel industry enable you to connect customers with hotel owners. The user enters data on the desired housing, and the platform presents available offers to him. Examples of such software are Booking.com and Airbnb.
Events and Entertainment Industries
There is also a need for booking apps in the event and entertainment sectors. Such software allows you to book an event location or, for example, buy movie tickets. The Softermii team has developed the platform for organizing hybrid and online events, Events10X.
Read Also: How to Make a Hybrid Event App
About 70% of salon and spa appointments are booked from mobile devices. So, the beauty industry will also benefit from such software. Now customers can make an appointment for a haircut, manicure, or cosmetic procedure simply through a specialized app. An example of such software is Treatwell.
More than 58% of healthcare providers already use doctor appointment scheduling software. Such platforms allow patients to schedule an appointment with a physician through an online calendar. Some applications enable telemedicine services, that is, virtual meetings with a doctor through video or audio communication.
Must-Have Booking App Features
To learn how to create an online booking system, you first need to determine the main functionality of such software. Here are the must-have features for booking software to include, regardless of industry:
User Registration and Profile
First of all, enable your users to log into the app. Then, let them have a profile where they provide basic information about themselves. Also, ensure the application’s security by biometric or two-factor authentication.
Advanced search for services and products in the booking app is a must. Your users should also be able to explore available dates and hours for their appointments.
How to make a booking app without its core feature? Exactly. Add the possibility of booking services and goods, and display all the information and details necessary for users in the booking window.
Your users should be able to pay for goods or services directly in the app. To do this, add the ability to pay by credit card and several payment gateways.
Reviews and Ratings
This feature will be useful for your customers because, thanks to it, they can choose the best service provider.
Your user should also be able to cancel a reservation. When implementing this feature, carefully consider the booking cancellation policy.
Push notifications will be helpful for your users. Thanks to this feature, your customers will receive reminders about an expected delivery or a planned trip.
Take care of the customer support feature and hire specialists to provide such services. It is necessary, so your customers can get an efficient solution to their problems and questions anytime.
UI/UX Design Tips for Your Booking App
Your booking application will likely be used by people of different age groups and with distinct technological backgrounds. Therefore, you must also consider your product’s UI/UX design.
Here are the main tips on how to create a booking app of utmost convenience:
Minimalistic User Interface
Make sure your app’s user interface is simple and clear. Your UI should display only the most necessary information and not overload your customers with extra details.
Thoughtful User Experience
How to gain the loyalty of your user? Make its path through your app as smooth as possible. All this is achievable thanks to thorough UX research and subsequent implementation of its outcomes into reality. Remember that navigating your app should be intuitive.
Your design should be consistent across all screens and pages to avoid confusing your users. After all, how else will they love your brand if they cannot distinguish it from the crowd?
Tech Stack for Online Booking Applications
If you aim to build your own online booking app, you also need to take care of the tech part. So here’s our proposed technology stack for iOS, Android, and cross-platform applications.
- iOS development: Swift or Objective-C
- Android development: Kotlin or Java
- Cross-platform development: Xamarin, React Native, or Flutter
- Backend development: Python or PHP
- UI/UX design: UIKit or SwiftUI for iOS, Android UI or Jetpack Compose for Android, Figma for cross-platform apps
- Calendar integration: Google Calendar or Zoho
- Payment integration: Stripe or Braintree
- Feedback integration: Twilio or Lumoa
- Push notifications integration: Pusher or OneSignal
- Maps integration: Google Maps API
How Much Does It Cost to Build a Custom Online Booking App?
The cost to build online booking system will vary depending on the characteristics of each application. The following factors influence the final price:
iOS, Android, or a cross-platform app? Each platform and development technology has a different cost. Therefore, this is the first thing you should consider.
Number and Complexity of Features
The cost of booking app development will also depend on the functionality that you implement in the application. Some features, such as smart search, are time- and resource-intensive to develop, while push notifications can be easily integrated thanks to third-party APIs.
The cost of development will vary depending on the chosen technologies and the salaries of experts familiar with them.
Dev Company Rates
Depending on the cooperation model, the location of your vendor, and the number of employees involved, the cost of your booking application will vary.
As a rule, you’ll need following specialists for online booking app development:
- Project manager
- Business analyst
- UI/UX designer
- Mobile developer
- Backend developer
- QA specialist
Usually, they are all provided by the ticket booking apps development company (and other types of booking apps). To calculate the software cost, you should consider the main stages of booking application development. Let’s take a look at these stages and their approximate cost:
1. Discovery phase, estimation & UI/UX design
At this step, business analysts conduct thorough market research. They define your audience and the problems your software will solve. Here, the team also selects features and creates the UI/UX of your product.
Time: 280 hours
Cost: $8 400
At this step, the developers use the chosen tech stack to develop your booking application with all the necessary features.
Time: 640 hours
Cost: $25 600
3. Testing & Launch
Next, the finished product must be tested to identify all limitations and bugs. This step involves making your RPM software perfect. Testers identify bugs and limitations, these issues are corrected to make your product perfect and ready for launch..
Time: 240 hours
Cost: $6 480
4. Writing technical documentation
The development team ensures a smooth launch of your booking app. Further, experts can work on continuous improvement of your product.
Time: 40 hours
Cost: $1 600
This step is necessary to create a single document that includes all the information and instructions for your product.
Let's summarize our considerations in a summary table below.
Estimation, Research & UI/UX design
Creating technical documentation
1 200 hours (5 month)
Our Expertise in Booking App Development
Softermii is the real pro when it comes to booking application development. We create such software for various industries, including travel, healthcare, events, and entertainment.
We have experience working with small businesses and large companies. Our team has helped to launch over 25 startups and completed over a hundred projects. We guarantee a quick delivery time and the use of exclusively advanced technologies.
Speaking of online booking app development, we would like to share our three successful projects:
Farelogix is an app for booking airline tickets. Our team implemented the following functions: buying tickets, scheduling, building the shortest routes, and ordering food for the flight. Among our special achievements is a super-short development time of three months.
DogVacay is an online dog owner community app that lets you find pet sitters near you. Our team has implemented functions of geolocation, ratings, booking, and online communication in this application. DogVacay has already got over 50,000 downloads.
Cococure is a networking app for Africans in the UK that connects people attending the same events or locations. Our team has added chat features, geolocation, buying and booking event tickets, and standard social networking functionality. The app currently has over 5,000 downloads on Google Play.
Online booking applications are software that is suitable for many industries. We assume that your business may also need such a platform.
We hope our guide on how to create an online booking system was useful for you. Now you can choose the type of application that meets the needs of your business and make it real.
You may also have noticed that booking app development requires much effort. Here you need to remember about user-friendly design, key features, and the tech stack. In this regard, you should gather a team to bring your idea to life.
If you are interested in online booking app development, then Softermii can help. Having created numerous similar products, we can easily realize your concept. Are you interested in our offer? Contact our team as soon as possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does it take to develop an online booking app?
The development time depends on the overall project scope. For example, we built the Farelogix app in just three months. If your product is of greater complexity, it may require more time.
What tools can be integrated with the mobile booking app?
You can integrate various third-party APIs. Those may be maps, push notification providers, calendars, and payment systems.
How much does it cost to build a mobile booking app for a small business?
The development cost depends on various factors like chosen tech stack, features, design, and dev company rates. Please get in touch with our team to get an exact estimate of your project.
Could you set up a dedicated team for my online booking app development project?
Yes, Softermii has over 120 professionals that can handle this job. If you have a booking app idea in mind, just give us a call.
How do I know my business is suitable for booking app development?
Booking apps can help companies in various businesses. Consider the services/goods you provide and think if you can deliver them online.
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