If you are a small business seeking to build a mobile app, the process may seem overwhelming. Often, small businesses do not have the expertise in-house to build a mobile app, and working with an app development firm or other outside resource may be too expensive.

There are other options that allow you to offer a mobile app to your customers, though.

One of these options is using a do-it-yourself (DIY) app builder to create an app yourself. In a recent survey on small business mobile apps, 38% of small businesses said they used a DIY app builder to help with their mobile app.

DIY app builders can be a good option for small businesses, but you should first know their pros and cons before deciding to use one.

In this article, you’ll learn what exactly a DIY app builder is, what small businesses they are suited for, and when they should not be used.

What is a DIY App Builder?

A DIY app builder is software that enables people with little to no coding experience to build mobile apps.

They often feature drag-and-drop functionalities and pre-set templates that allow someone of any experience level to design an app.

For example, here you see how an app builder software allows users to select themes and design their app.

Typically, app builders make you pay per month or year to publish your app. This can range from a few dollars to hundreds or even thousands of dollars, depending on the complexity of the app and the features the app builder software provides.

However, there are several different monetization strategies that these tools employ, so be sure to research to find the best one for your small business.

What Should You Be Aware Of?

Building your own app with little to no coding experience for typically substantial cheaper prices sounds like a dream – shouldn’t every small business use this route to build their mobile app?


DIY app builders work well for some small businesses, but they shouldn’t be used by every small business.

You should use a DIY app builder if:

  • Your mobile app goals are simple.
  • Your app doesn’t need much customization.
  • You are comfortable with an app that may look similar to competitors.

You should also be aware that DIY app builders create apps that have a higher risk of being rejected from the app store. Recently, Apple’s App Store began cracking down on templated apps in an effort to combat spam and cloned apps.

If a DIY app builder is creating apps that look very similar to many others, you may risk facing consequences for duplicated content.

If you app only needs to meet some basics needs for your industry, then you can potentially find success using the software.

When Shouldn’t You Use a DIY App Builder?

You shouldn’t use a DIY app builder if you have more extensive goals for your mobile app, you need more complex features, or you need a truly original app.

In this case, it’s better to turn to outside expertise if you don’t have the staff in-house to build a custom app.

App development firms can be expensive, though. You can potentially find cheaper services by outsourcing to a different country. Costs for app development in Eastern Europe and India are cheaper than the United States, though communication can be more difficult.

There are perks to choosing a local app development firm, though, such as quicker communication and more close guidance, so be sure to research thoroughly to make sure you are making the right choice for your small business.

You can also look into a specialty app development firm. These companies create apps only for specific industries. Because of that niche focus, they can offer cheaper prices and more efficient service.

For example, YinzCam offers mobile app development specifically for professional sports teams and sports venues.

Lastly, sometimes an up-to-date Google or Yelp listing can work just as well for your small business’s mobility needs. Be sure your small business’s SEO strategies are working efficiently before deciding whether or not to build a mobile app.

DIY app builders are a good resource for many small businesses who may not otherwise be able to build a mobile app. Be sure you do the proper analysis beforehand to make sure it’s right for your small business.