Last Updated on September 4, 2023
Software development cost is one of the most pertinent factors for both the software house and its clients. However, it is the one element that can turn a once-sweet deal sour. Software development cost in 2023 is pretty correlative. This means that usually, you will not come across a fixed price margin. Why? Because software houses will count several variable components when they draw up your total cost. In fact, it is subject to change even when you get a congealed quote from your software partner.
With so many advancements constantly erupting throughout the IT industry, you can certainly expect changes in software development cost in 2023. Hence, keep your basics aligned.
This is why we have developed this blog. Here we will dissect each element that accounts for software development prices. Let’s start with a short and a long answer.
The short answer
First things first, there is no such thing as “fixed” software development rates. However, we can tell you that there is a software development costs “range”. Usually, the software development services you acquire will run up anywhere between $25,000 – $250,000.
But this is just the price of custom-made software. Therefore, if you want to lower the costs, then tailor-made software might just be a dream you dare to dream. Bespoke software solutions take time, research, tools, and experience. Hence, you will be charged accordingly, too. So, if you do not want an off-the-shelf product, then embrace yourself for the incoming software development cost.
The long answer
While there might be a basic range, we believe you deserve to know the factors that make them up.
Size's impact on software development cost
The size of your company
Your software development partner should know your company’s size. In fact, YOU should be aware of your company’s size. Supposedly, if you have many employees using the software, then there will be a hefty price tag on that. Similarly, your software development cost in 2023 will differ if your target market pool is deep. As we said, it’s all relative!
For instance, a small company can acquire CRM software development for just $100,000. However, a significant and complicated CRM solution will incur a software solution starting from $600,000.
Usually, company size classification is divided into three categories: startups, small and mid-size enterprises, and large enterprises. How complex your technological solutions are will depend on the size of your company.
The size of the software house
Moreover, IT services vendors are different according to countries and industries too. But more on that later. In fact, there are software developers who do not work on projects less than $500,000. Then, there are mid-level companies whose software development rates start at $50,000. You will also find infant software companies that would go lower than the $50,000 cost of software development.
While it might seem like common sense that the bigger the software house the higher the quality, it’s not set in stone. With a little more research you might come across a software development agency that produces high quality for a low price. Several clients incur hefty costs of software development but are left with low-quality products.
Therefore, it is necessary to not let the bigger names, and even bigger price ranges fool you. Take more time to do your research.
The industry you operate In
Your business domain will have a major impact on the software development cost in 2023 you incur. Different industries will have different goals. Some might ask for a multipurpose software application, while others might go for two different products. For some, simple software with a couple of features might do the trick, whereas others would need a more nuanced product.
But that is not it. Your industry’s demand and supply of software products will also affect the cost to develop software. Therefore, make sure to do thorough research on how your industry perceives software products and budget accordingly.
between $75,000 and $250,000+
between $85,000 and $300,000+
between $50,000 and $200,000+
5 Factors that make up software development cost
While some factors might be standard when it comes to software development, others depend on various factors. Though you can further divide the software development cost in 2023 according to whether you want a mobile application development or web application development – we will just cover the basics in this article. These could be your industry, your target users, etc. Similarly, their prices would also vary based on duplicate factors and possibly more.
Here are some aspects you can keep in mind:
1- Are you going for a custom or TSS-the-shelf solution?
At the surface level, all technological solutions can be classified into either custom or commercial software. However, you can expect a smaller expense margin with the latter since you only pay when purchasing the product.
While impressive in terms of software development rates, they don’t compare to custom software solutions. Where they lack in terms of price margins, custom software products make it up in business fit and customization. However, commercial software products do not meet business ROIs as impressively as custom solutions do. At least not for long, anyways. This is why many firms go for custom software development, especially when they have long-term goals in mind.
2- The structure of your team
The team architecture that your potential software development partner utilizes will have an impact on the price. This is especially true if you want to build custom software. Not only does your software partner come up with winning combinations for tools and technologies, but they also hire and construct an indomitable team to use them.
Typically, your partnering custom software project team would consist of:
- UI/UX Designers.
- Product/Project Manager(s).
- Quality Assurance Engineers.
- Back-End Developers.
- And a Marketing Team if you opt for that.
Every single team member is chosen after a lot of thought so that they can contribute quality skills to your project. Hence, this is why a diverse team of experienced professionals will be massive contributors to your final price.
3- Are you building from scratch or modifying your old software?
As opposed to a new product, upgrading your software would mean updating a specific feature in its architecture. This could include software UI enhancements, integrations, and/or other additions. Hence, these modifications will help a company better serve its target market’s current and emerging needs.
Since the requirement of the software upgrades is limited, it would also lie at a lower margin. However, creating software from scratch might result in a mightier price tag. This is typically due to greater hours invested in brand-new projects.
4- Are you choosing a third-party agency or an in-house department?
You can either choose to hire an in-house development team or work with a software house. Both approaches have their pros and cons.
Your in-house team will be within reach, making communicating with them for changes easier. However, it is important to remember that in-house app development will come with a heftier price tag. Therefore, working with a third-party agency will be far cheaper in comparison to an in-house mobile department.
The pros of working with a software house are that you are guaranteed the contribution and assistance of an experienced team. Your product will be assured of quality, and your ideas will be understood quickly. However, one con that comes with hiring a software house is that communication becomes a hassle. A lot can be lost in communication with time-zone differences and delayed replies.
While working with a software house can be immensely rewarding, it will take a bit of diligent planning to get around correspondence issues.
5- How complex is your software?
Complexity usually hints at the number of screens, automation methods, deployment process, and workflow streamlining. The cost to develop software for your product will depend heavily on how complex the process is. Hence, the more codes implemented in the features the greater the complexity of your software.
Each feature will require better seamless compatibility with the other and the database. This will lead to greater attention to detail required on the software development team’s part.
Here only the main features are applied. The design of the product is not extravagant, instead, the application just solves a pain point of the target audience. This means that the product can be built on a small tech stack with few integrations necessary.
This application consists of other useful additions other than the core features. This means that the software development will have to do more integrations, work on complex screens, and develop tailored UI elements.
This is a multifaceted application that houses more advanced features such as chatbots and live streaming. This requires a bigger number of screens, and several user roles, along with complicated APIs and integration.
What are your software’s core features?
The functionality of your software application will be one of the first determinants behind its pricing. Therefore, the greater your feature vault is the more manual and technological resources it’ll need. the more diverse the functionality of your software the more comprehensive its procedures and production phases. Thus, there will be greater coordinated team processes, higher detailed testing, and a more strategized user experience.
How do we estimate software development costs at Digital Auxilius?
At Digital Auxilius we try to combine quality with price. On top of that, we are always thinking about the future, your future. This is why we keep adding to our team in more ways than one to match the rising software development costs in 2023.
Usually, we use a two-step framework:
A rough estimate is considered the amount most faithful to the nature of labor and technology used in the project. Yes. As ironic as that seems, usually a rough estimate has a precision of 75% to 25%. This is usually delivered to the customer for the sake of alignment. This in turn would prevent any mishaps in the future.
By providing a rough estimate we alert the customers on the budget they should be setting for the product. This is also where we highlight the phases the project will go through. We do that to help the customer decide whether they can collaborate with the software team.
Our detailed estimates are based on delivering 100% accuracy in terms of cost to our clients. This estimate is created in collaboration with our senior developers to make sure everything is accounted for. These developers will be directly overlooking the project which is why we find it best to include them in the construction of our pricing.
Digital Auxilius’ detailed estimates detail platforms, wireframes, specifications, and other related documents. We even let out clients speak with our developers and managers to get a more thorough understanding of our pricing strategy.
FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
Usually, your software development costs depend on where your developers are located. That is the base of the pricing strategy, at least. In the USA, the hourly rate on average for a mid-level software engineer will be anywhere between $120 – $127. In Western Europe, a mid-level software engineer can get between $50 and $65.
There are different factors a software development company utilizes to come up with the average hourly rate. They will take the hours each professional dedicates into consideration. How these hours are accounted for monetarily will depend on the region your software development partner hails from.
Factors like the hours spent by each software professional will dictate the hourly rate of a software development process. This in turn would rely on the region and type of software house you are partnering with.
The complexity of the project, the hierarchy of professionals, the platforms the software is developed for, hiring options (freelancer, agency, in-house), and so much more.