How to create shopping app in Android: valuable insights, features, costs and process

Wondering how to create shopping app in Android? As you know that, eCommerce app development is becoming popular lately. Users especially like purchasing products through mobile store apps. Around 85% of shoppers use their mobile phones instead of both a physical store and a online store to shop. Customers like making purchases through their mobile devices as it is convenient and can be done very fast.  In this article, we want to show you a step-by-step guide on how to create shopping app in Android that will help you attract customers, increase sales, and make your business more successful overall.

Best shopping apps you may learn from

The best solution to decide the right strategy on how to create a shopping app for your own website is to regard several existing apps on the market that seem successful. Even though most of the above-mentioned apps are marketplaces, there are still a lot of things you can learn from them. Analyze their design, how they engage with users, figure out the way their payment process is worked, etc.

Top shopping appsAvailability
ShopstyleiOS and Android
PoshmarkiOS and Android
ZaraiOS and Android
AmazoniOS and Android
Rent the RunwayiOS
ASOSiOS and Android
EtsyiOS and Android
GILTiOS and Android
ShopbopiOS and Android
The Real RealiOS and Android
Keep ShoppingiOS and Android

Such a small competitive analysis might offer you with tons of insightful information you could apply for your own shopping app development.

Also read: Remote android developer: The ultimate guide to hire the great one

How to create shopping app in Android

How to create shopping app in Android

Step 1: Analyze the market and your main competitors

Before we start discovering different aspects of how to create shopping app in Android, an in-depth market analysis is needed. Analyzing will help you in knowing about the last trends and changes in the market. Without having a right market insight, you will not be able to build an app that truly adds some value to your startups. Furthermore, you need to list down the competitors to study the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors. This will support you to understand what you should and what you should not. It will also help you to know what can make you and what can break you.

Step 2. Select what specific features the app should have

Just like with any other mobile application, it is essential to determine on the MVP to start an online shopping app. Here are some must-have functions that will permits users to get what they came for and have a great purchasing experience.

Login options

While signing up often means more convenient shopping in the future, it is crucial not to force customers to generate an account as soon as they open your app. Many retailers allows users browse and even check out as guests. The login option to register with an email or existing social media account is worth adding in an online store application.

Moreover, visitors need to know whether the company can deliver the purchased products to their country, so an ability to select your location at the first launch of the app is important.


The search function is an important element for any shopping application. This is the main feature for customers to search what they want on the app. The results should be displayed at once, and there should be plenty of filters and sorting options to make the search more convenient for the users.


Since the wide range of items shops provide nowadays, many users may spend some time selecting the product they want to buy. Wishlist is an useful feature in this case. Such a feature permits users to quickly purchase the products they ended up choosing and can be an amazing solution to boost sales, too.


This is a feature that allows users be 100% sure about the purchase they are about to make. It is also proven to boost sales. Also, reviews and ratings not only support customers to find out more information on the product and make a shopping app more reliable. More importantly, they frequently offer the retailer with valuable feedback about the things that can be enhanced


In online shopping apps, notifications may serve a few purposes. Firstly, notifications are the best solution to remind users about the products in their cart or Wishlist, especially if those have been marked down. Secondly, shops can notify the app users about sales or new products in stock. Finally, if someone has not used your app for a while, a notification about a personal discount or coupon might be an effective solution to engage with shoppers.

Customer support

As most of the customers often have some questions about specific products, shipping, or other topics, customer support is one of the core functions required to create a store app. A frequently asked questions page is great, but an interactive solution to have the desired information at any moment is much better. In-app chat is easier to apply yet requires real support agents to be available at all times. Meanwhile, a chatbot takes more time to develop but permits users to get automated answers, for example, at night.


Easy and quick checkout is what affects the final purchasing decision of the shoppers. If this process is broken down into steps, customers can better know how long exactly it will take them to complete their online shopping trip.

There is no need for unnecessary steps and too much personal data entry. Therefore, enable users to checkout as guests with minimum effort. Lastly, a clear price breakdown is important. Whether you applied a discount or an additional shipping fee, customers should see the final cost they have to pay.

Optional functions

For those who want to generate an online website app that truly stands out, some extra features will be crucial Look no further than AR and AI. These technologies can include majorly to the development of a truly groundbreaking shopping application.

Augmented reality brings in functions like 3D preview of products or even an interactive fitting of clothes or accessories, like with an app we generated Print My Glasses. Artificial intelligence permits accurately showing products similar to those the user has viewed.

Step 3. Decide on the preferred platform and technological framework

Writing shared code for both iOS and Android not only means the application will be available to more users. Such a practice also permits involving a smaller team, thus supporting you cut down the costs. Also, native apps are easier to take the control in the future, as, just like with the initial development, adjusting something or using new functions will only have to be done once. The below are are some tools if you select the develop a cross-platform app using the React Native framework: 

User authorizationJWT Authentication, Auth0, Social authorization
Push notification moduleFirebase Cloud Messages
In-app communication/ChatTwilio
Payment integrationPayPal, Stripe, Apple Pay

As most online shopping apps store ask the waterfall development model, it may take longer and be way less cost-efficient to generate two separate applications. Also, using shared code means handling less with platform-specific problems, so there is more time to focus on UI/UX design, some additional functions, and improvements

Moreover, cross-platform development also ensures consistent layout, design, and interaction, meaning customers will be familiar with the app if they change devices and operational systems.

Furthermore, main factors such as search, product view, and customer support should also operate smoothly on any phone or tablet. This is to insure users will be satisfied with their shopping experience. And, as mentioned before, upgrading with new functions to one cross-platform app for both iOS and Android is more convenient than two separate applications. Lastly, after the initial development process is completed, the app should be tested to make sure that it features work properly.

Step 4. Implement Professional Design

Á you know that, impressive designs is an another robust tool to attract users. Most customers form their opinion of online shops deepened on visuals alone. Moreover, the professional design will allows you to increase the app’s popularity and brand recognition. Here are a few important tips for a newly released app.

Creating a clear-cut logo is the very first step which helps a potential customer sees before he or she choose to use your app. Commonly, users will remember 80% of the information they see and only 20% of what they read. Therefore, to make your pictures stand out:

  • Use a white background.
  • Have quality pictures made from every angle.
  • Show large photos to attract viewers’ attention.
  • Enable the option to zoom in seamlessly

On top of that, you may also use short videos to show the products, a strategy proven to draw more attention than even the best of photos. And don’t forget that your design should highlight all available product info including photos, descriptions, in-store availability, selection of color, size, etc.

Step 5: Take care of product growth and support

After successfully releasing your app, it’s time to enhance your product.
This stage includes gathering user feedback, doing additional research, and determine what functions to apply in the next cycle of development. So, here’s tasks you should focus on after launching an MVP.

  • Speed up your app. In 2012, Amazon calculated that each extra second of loading time would cost it 1.6 billion USD or 1% of annual profits. Newer data shows that each extra second can cut down your sales by 7%. This speed is most crucial when loading the app’s home screen, product page, and checkout.
  • Organize top-notch customer support: At some point, something will go wrong and you’ll have to handle with discontented shopper. Most customers prefer to communicating their frustration without leaving an app or making phone calls. Therefore, it’s essential to have a page for complaints and propositions. Moreover, we suggest you to have a comprehensive FAQ, a list of contacts, and a staff ready to resolve user complaints 24/7. Besides, there is a way to make your customer service more efficient is to build a specialized chatbot.

Step 6: Promote the app

A lot of online shopping apps fail because they don’t understanding the importance of early marketing. We suggest you to spend at least twice as much time for marketing an app as developing it. Moreover, the first work you should do to promote your app is to make it visible in the App Store. Some of the optimization techniques can make users 2-10 times more likely to install your app. Furthermore, you don’t ignore social media. Facebook and Twitter are now mandatory for promoting your online shop app.

The Time and Cost to create shopping app in Android

How to create shopping app in Android

The below calculations are approximate and depended on creating a mobile app for one platform.

FeatureMobile app dev timeBack-end dev time
Registration via email & password13 hours5 hours
Login screen (forgot password, log out, etc.)19 hours13 hours
Main screen (list of products, popular products, last purchases, add to cart, search screen, etc.)44 hours49 hours
Catalog screen20 hours9 hours
Product details screen (share product, add review/rate, etc.)38 hours19 hours
Cart screen (purchase item, checkout screen, checkout by PayPal/credit card, etc.)107 hours83 hours
Profile screen (edit, list of orders, repeat order, etc.)54 hours27 hours
Help screen (feedback form, terms and conditions, etc.)18 hours8 hours
Push notifications14 hours14 hours
Total hours327 hours to build an app for one platform227 hours to build a back-end

Besides, the price for the task of each software development company is also different, normally depended on its location and the seniority level of the staff. You can take a look at the below calculations

RegionHourly rateBasic level shopping app
The USA$100-180$80,000-160,000
Great Britain£100-180$120,000-170,000
Western Europe€80-150$130,000-160,000
Eastern Europe$30-70$40,000-55,000

If you want to find a Mobile Application Development Service that is highly-skilled and trustworthy, look no further than Arrowhitech. Our team has experience in building iOS, Android, and cross-platform store apps. With over 14 years in mobile app development have enabled us to build development process that ensures high productivity and efficiency

Team Size

The size of the required team also affects the cost of development. Commonly, a team required to make an online shopping app containing an iOS/Android developer, a back-end developer, a QA engineer, a UI/UX designer, and a project manager. Here, a cross-platform app permits involving fewer people and spending less time than when building multiple apps for different platforms.

Wrapping Up

This article highlighted the most crucial steps of how to create shopping app in Android. These are market research, deciding on functions and developing the application, and promoting it. Hopefully, we offer you with some useful information on the topic.

For those, who see online shopping app development as something challenging, Arrowhitech is ready to help you. Don’t hesitate to contact us and tell us about your ideas and requirements for a new online store app.