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Cost of developing a banking app: All expenses you need to be aware of

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(© Worawut – stock.adobe.com)

There has been an increase in the number of people conducting online transactions worldwide in recent years. Brick-and-mortar bank offices are slowly becoming a thing of the past since most financial operations are being carried out online. This switch to mobile banking has elevated the fintech sector because of the significant rise of multifunctional apps that make the niche competitive.

The development of mobile banking apps has become popular in recent days. To build one from scratch, the first thing to do is evaluate the costs. We will look at different factors that influence the cost of developing a banking app and calculate the expenses of developing a fintech app.

What is a banking app?

This is a simple mobile application that grants clients access to their bank account details and performs transactions directly from their mobile devices. The range of features in a banking app depends on the banking institution and the app’s functionality.

Here are some classic features you will get from mobile banking applications:

  • Scheduling payments
  • Authorization
  • Paying bills
  • Viewing card information, transaction history, and current balance.
  • Opening a new account and ordering a new card
  • Initiating secure person to person transfers

These are the basic features of a mobile banking application. However, with the rapid transformation and competition in the sector, additional features will elevate the position of your app in the market. These include:

  • Cashback service
  • QR code scanning
  • Booking third-party services
  • Integrating one-click payment methods (Google Pay, Apple Pay)
  • Splitting bills ( enables groups to share their bill when they dine or have drinks together)

What affects the cost of developing a banking app?

The total costs of the app also include post-release charges like marketing, customer support, and other expenses unrelated to the actual development (design, testing, analytics, and management).

The cost of developing a banking app depends on four primary factors. They include:

  • The complexity of the app. The number of features and their complexity can affect the development costs to a certain extent. If you start by developing an MVP, you will part with half the price compared to a scaled product.
  • Tech stack used in the development of banking and finance apps. The choice of APIs, programming languages, and libraries also affect the cost of developing a banking app. Some applications need particular programming languages and skills that supersede a classic approach despite most app developers opting for native languages (Kotlin for Android and Swift for iOS). For example, most developers prefer Java in fintech because of cross-platform capabilities and improved security. Ruby on Rails is also picking up because of its high storage database.
  • Development team location. The geolocation of the development team is another determining factor. A perfect example is how developers in the US charge about $100 to $150 per hour, while you may pay $20 to £30 per hour if you outsource development services in India.
  • Type of cooperation. There is a big difference between the cost of employing an in-house team and hiring freelance services. The cost of freelance services is relatively lower, but there are many risks to the quality of the code.

Primary features of a banking app: Time & costs

Let’s look into detail at the costs and time required to create core features of a banking application.

Sign-in (authorization)

Registration and authorization is the starting point of any application. These procedures should meet the necessary security standards (2FA, passwords, and other biometric checks)

  • Approximate time required: 480 hours
  • Approximate cost: $48,000 to $72,000

Access to card details

Banking app users should access all their essential details like balance, card numbers, account details, payment system, and their name. This feature may also comprise card-related services like card re-issuing.

  • Approximate time required: 240 hours
  • Approximate development cost: $24,000 to $36,000

Transactions and payments

Sending and receiving money should be an intuitive, secure, and simple process. Users must confirm transactions either by SMS code, biometric verification, or typing their password.

  • Approximate time required: 480 hours
  • Approximate development cost: $48,000 to $72,000

Transaction history

Banking app users should also have access to their spending history from their linked bank accounts. The report should be detailed for improved user experience.

  • Approximate time required: 240 hours
  • Approximate development cost: $24,000 to $36,000

Spending analytics

This feature is always included in most banking apps to help users evaluate their financial behavior and set new financial goals. The feature always includes customized reports, budget categories, and saving goals.

  • Approximate time needed: 240 hours
  • Approximate development cost: $24,000 to 36,000

Notifications

Notifications are essential in mobile banking apps because they alert users about transactions, special offers, and required authorization.

  • Approximate time required: 120 hours
  • Approximate development cost: $12,000 to $15,000

Customer support with an in-app chat feature

Should be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to promptly help users solve their problems. It is best to use a combination of voice or chatbots, which will take over the processing of typical requests. Whereas living trained specialists will solve atypical problems and tasks.

  • Approximate time required: 480 hours
  • Approximate development costs: $48,000 to $72,000

In summary

The total time required for overall banking app development is 2,280 hours, and the total costs range from $228,000 to $342,000.

Additional Features of a banking app: Time & costs

We have reviewed the time and costs of developing a basic mobile banking app. Let’s now look at extra features you can add.

QR-code scanning

Over 27% of banking app users in the US and UK prefer using a QR code as a mode of payment. This is according to findings by Statista. Including this feature in your banking app development guarantees fast and secure payments.

  • Approximate time required: 120 hours
  • Approximate development cost: $12,000 to $15,000

Cashback service

It is one of the best features among different users. This feature allows them to get back a certain sum of money spent. Developers set several cashback categories, and they also enable placing returns on a different account.

  • Approximate time required: 240 hours
  • Approximate development cost: $24,000 to $36,000

Integration of one-click payment methods (Apple Pay, Google Pay)

Integrating

Google Pay and Apple Pay are vital for high payment conversion and improved user-friendliness, especially now that one-click payment methods have taken over.

  • Approximate time required: 480 hours
  • Approximate development costs: $48,000 to $72,000

Third-party service blocking

This is another effective feature that is usually part of mobile banking app development. It is usually intended to uplevel the app. Adding this feature allows users to book hotels, purchase tickets, and many more without leaving the application.

  • Approximate development time: 480 hours
  • Approximate development cost: $48,000 to $72,000

Splitting bills

It is a feature that makes routine transactions super convenient. You don’t have to worry about debt repayment when having dinner or to enjoy drinks with friends in hotels or restaurants. Everyone will cater for their share.

  • Approximate time needed: 480 hours
  • Approximate development cost: $48,000 to $72,000

ATM and office locations

This feature allows banking app users to easily search bank branches and ATMs closer to them. Developers usually integrate Google Maps and other GPS tracking features like Apple Maps for iOS or Android to enable this feature.

  • Approximate development time: 120 hours
  • Approximate development cost: $12,000 to $15,000

In summary

The total time required to develop extra features for a banking app is 1,920 hours, and the total costs range from $192,000 to $282,000.

Security costs

Increased level of security should be a priority when developing a banking application. You should set aside a separate section in your app development work plan for security issues of the future banking app. Utilizing the latest technologies to ensure the security of data and transactions stored in the application is another item you should pay attention to during the development process. Here are measures that will help you enhance the security of the banking app.

  • Risk-based authentication
  • Use of biometric data
  • Limited session time
  • One-time passwords for user identity confirmation
  • Password check implementation (to avoid too short and simple situations)

You should understand that the price of various security features differs depending on the integration and development time needed and the kind of technology used in a solid feature.


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