I have a few apps on the AppStore, Quotegram, Islamgram, PrayerTi.me, and I would love to build more as there is no end to great ideas for Apps. Given the broad International reach of the AppStore without any overheads of cross-currency issues and such it feels best to be on the AppStore. At the same time, there is not much money that I can make with these smaller apps unless some of those make it huge. I don't want to slap ads on these apps as that would ruin the user experience. On the other hand I've been toying around with a SaaS business idea that would possibly bring in monthly revenues but the market segment is not great at doing online activities but certainly there is a need. I'm confused on which of this segment to choose to spend my time and energy on. Any suggestions?
I would say don't let the revenue be your deciding factor. Build the idea that you enjoy the most. If you'd really like to try both then go for it.
Just be careful to validate your SaaS business idea early and often, as it can easily become a much more complex project than what it sounds like you've put together on the AppStore. Also, something critical to keep in mind here is how you will obtain customers. You mention that the market for this app isn't very used to working with online tools, how will they find you? A benefit of the AppStore is that it can provide a lot of the traffic on its own. With a SaaS app you need to generate traffic yourself.
I have had experience in both of these arenas and both have their pros and cons. Regardless of the platform FOCUS is key. Apps can be developed at a much lower cost than a SaaS platform. Easier to sell and support. But can be difficult to monetize and reach you market. However, if the app and monetization model is right then then the income spike can be massive in a short period of time. SaaS : Much more investment required up front, but customer retention and long term growth more probable. Both models are risky and both need large marketing budgets. If you need any more assistance feel free to give me a call.
Certain concepts work a lot better as apps and don't make a lot of sense as web services. I would strongly encourage you to read how Trevor succeeded with his Spanish Bible app - as niche as you get:
And don't be afraid to charge money for your apps (either upfront or as an in-app purchase). Advertising doesn't work for every vertical.
That will depend on the business model, target market and expected cash flows. Also if the deliverable will be a one time purchase or a recurrent purchase.
If you are targeting mass scale clients, I recommend to go for SaaS . That will help increase your sales very fast, where people can try , pay a monthly fee or per license fee..etc.
If your market is small and you are delivering a high end expensive project, very specialised, I then recommend to go for app .
and you may not even go for a store app. You may then be delivering an on platform app , with even a hardware token or something for licensing , either per user , or a corporate license.
If you want a detailed study I can help you , based on your business plan ( I can help you prepare one ) and assess then and help make models for which one can be better.
Good Luck !