Post-launch Mobile App Maintenance and Updates: Importance, Best Practices, and Cost

Yogesh Pant
Apr 29, 2024

Post-launch App Maintenance

With people moving towards a mobile-centric world, mobile apps have evolved into a basic necessity for human life. For instance, if you need food but don’t want to cook, just use the food delivery app; if you’re getting late to the office, just book a cab from Uber, or if you need groceries, just order them from the grocery delivery app. These are just a few examples, the world of mobile apps has expanded to the extent we can’t even imagine. With app stores overflowing with millions of apps, even hundreds of them being added every day, it’s not enough just to develop an app and get it launched. You will need to give attention to post-launch app maintenance and updates to keep it going. 

Most businesses make the common mistake of forgetting the app after its release. They think just having a mobile app is enough, underestimating the need for post-launch app maintenance and updates. But that’s absolutely a misconception! What’s the point of investing thousands of dollars in mobile app development just to see it get deleted in the short run? No one would like to go through this situation. 

In 2022, the Apple App Store sent a warning email to the respective developers of 3000+ apps that aren’t updated for a significant amount of time. The email has warned developers to submit the latest version of their apps within a 30-day timeline, or else they will be removed permanently. According to the latest guidelines of the Google Play Store and Apple App Store, every app must be up-to-date. So, now you might have understood what makes post-launch app maintenance and updates a crucial element of the development cycle. If not, then you need to read this blog till the end as we will explore the importance of post-launch app maintenance and updates, best practices, and the cost of such an endeavor. 

Key Statistics Showing the Importance of Post-Launch App Maintenance and Updatfes

  • The market for Application Management Services was worth USD 160.1 Billion in 2023. It's expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 21.51% from 2024 to 2030, reaching a projected value of USD 711.1 billion by 2030. (Source: Verifiedmarketresearch)
  • 72% of users anticipate that any bugs they report will be fixed within a day. (Source: Moldstud)
  • Unfortunately, 85% of software failures are attributable to preventable bugs, highlighting the importance of regular maintenance. (Source: Moldstud)
  • Investing in continuous improvements can positively impact customer retention, with businesses seeing a 10% increase in retention rates. (Source: Moldstud)
  • Notably, 80% of an app's total cost is incurred after its initial development and launch, underscoring the substantial investment required for post-launch maintenance. (Source: Zucisystems)
  • Despite a negative first experience with an app, 16% of users are willing to give it a second chance. (Source: Zucisystems)

Mobile App Maintenance

What Is Mobile App Maintenance?

Mobile app maintenance refers to the process of refining and enhancing the app’s existing features and services to meet user needs. This is not a one-time endeavor but a continuous process. It includes updating the app, rectifying errors, and enhancing the app's structure and performance post-launch. 

Furthermore, it involves ensuring that the app remains compatible with evolving operating systems and devices. It offers comprehensive technical assistance to users and guarantees the app's safety and dependability.

Reasons Why Your App Needs Regular Maintenance and Updates?

There are many signs that indicate the need for regular post-launch app maintenance and updates, including

1). Cyberattacks

No matter what security measures you take, your mobile app is still under the threat of cyberattacks. Hackers are always on the lookout for vulnerabilities to exploit. Unfortunately, the frequency of successful attacks has seen a slight uptick recently. According to the data from Business of Apps, 80% of apps are vulnerable to cyberattacks. 

As hackers keep finding new ways to dupe online users, applications are becoming more susceptible to breaches. Over time, even encrypted applications can become obsolete. That's why it's crucial to regularly update your app to ensure its security.

2). Rectifying Bugs

In the rush to launch an app, minor bugs can sometimes slip through the cracks. But the work doesn't stop once the app is live. Post-launch maintenance is essential and includes rectifying these bugs. Bugs can also crop up due to changes in the platform, framework, or version upgrades. 

Regular maintenance involves reviewing the app code to identify any errors. Quick resolution of these errors under maintenance ensures the smooth functioning of the app. However, avoid hasty bug fixes as it could lead to users switching to a competitor's app.

3). Version Upgrade

The key to a successful app lies in not only attracting a large user base but also in retaining them. Effective marketing can help initial user acquisition, but keeping users engaged with the app over time is equally crucial. 

Regular updates and version upgrades can help with it. These updates introduce new features and functionalities and enhance the app's efficiency, scalability, and overall performance. Users appreciate these updates as they show that a dedicated team is continually working to improve the app.

4). Avoiding App Store Blacklisting

Adhering to the app store's guidelines is a must for businesses before they submit their app. These guidelines evolve over time, and without regular maintenance, the app may fail to stay updated, leading to its blacklisting from the app store. Regular maintenance can prevent your app from being removed temporarily or permanently. 

5). Changes in App Marketplace Guidelines

The AppStore and Google Play regularly update their guidelines for mobile apps to ensure a safe and engaging environment for users. They employ a team of developers and a unique algorithm to scrutinize and assess every app that gets published on their platforms. You'll receive a notification if they identify any bugs or performance issues in your app. 

The AppStore provides a 30-day window for you to update your apps. Ignoring the warning, missing the deadline, or failing to maintain your apps post-release could lead to temporary removal from the marketplace until you submit an approved update.

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Benefits of Post-Launch App Maintenance and Updates

The benefits of maintaining a mobile app post-launch may not be immediately apparent, but it's an ongoing process that involves a series of tasks that might seem insignificant from a product standpoint. However, when you pay close attention, it becomes clear that maintenance significantly enhances app performance and user feedback. 

Let's see how post-launch app maintenance and updates prove beneficial based on the points we've discussed above.

#1. Minimizing App Uninstalls

Statistics reveal that 53% of users uninstall apps within the first month. The reasons vary, but the most common ones include frustrating onboarding and registration processes, excessive push notifications, subpar usability and user experience (UX), and technical glitches. 

However, an effective mobile app maintenance strategy can address these issues immediately. After launching the app, it is crucial to collect user feedback to understand their experience and identify areas of improvement. The app development team then works on bug fixes and UI/UX improvements and releases updates to make the app more user-centric. 

#2. Enhancing Brand Reputation

When users notice your commitment to their needs and convenience, your brand image is positively impacted. App maintenance is akin to parenting. You've brought the app into existence, and now it requires nurturing and care to mature into a product that commands respect. Users assess your potential in mobile app development and gauge the benefits they can derive from interacting with your app.

#3. Minimizing Downtimes

An app that is well-maintained is less likely to crash frequently. Businesses can incur significant losses due to app downtimes. The more the app crashes, the more losses there are. Proper app maintenance can enhance the app's performance, thereby reducing downtimes and contributing to business growth.

#4. Boosting Revenue

App downtime can lead to significant business losses and reduced sales, posing financial risks. In contrast, the costs of maintenance are more manageable. Maintenance helps minimize the financial impact by reducing downtime. 

As mobile app maintenance prioritizes improving UI/UX, the interface becomes more attractive and user-friendly. A flawless design boosts the retention rate and encourages in-app purchases, thereby potentially increasing ad revenue.

#5. Boosting Your App's Ranking in App Stores

Consistent troubleshooting and regular updates can significantly enhance your app's standing on platforms like AppStore and Google Play. These platforms take into account the level of post-launch support when determining an app's rank. Lack of maintenance can be detrimental, leading to the potential removal of your app from these platforms.

Properly planned and executed post-launch support can open new possibilities. It provides a chance to establish a robust product vision and brand identity, generate income, and expand your business in terms of quality and scale. The benefits are far more valuable than the cost of maintenance.

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Types of App Maintenance Services

Maintenance is a broader term in the context of mobile app development. It includes everything from fixing bugs and tweaking designs to integrating new features. After an app is released, we categorize the support services into five main types.

Corrective Maintenance

This type of maintenance deals with small issues that don't significantly affect the user experience. Quality Assurance (QA) experts monitor the app's performance, identify potential issues or areas for improvement, and create reports. Developers then address these issues, and the updated app undergoes another round of checks.

Preventive Maintenance

Preventive maintenance is all about preventing problems before they happen. Developers may reorganize the code, update documentation, and bolster security measures as part of this process. While these activities might go unnoticed by users, they are essential for preventing future issues.

Adaptive Maintenance

The Google Play Store and the App Store regularly update their guidelines, which cover safety, performance, business, design, and legal aspects. Regardless of whether your app is cross-platform or native, it must comply with these standards.

The aim of adaptative maintenance is to ensure the app remains compatible with the stores' requirements. The development team reviews these requirements and releases new versions of the app to ensure it remains accessible to users.

Emergency Maintenance

Every business should understand the truth —apps can crash at any time. This could be due to server glitches, unexpected surges in usage, or even a bug in the push notification system. Downtime can lead to losses that are much more difficult to absorb than the cost of maintenance. 

In app maintenance, you require a team of developers who can swiftly step in to fix the issue. These individuals can apply a quick fix and restore the app's functionality. All these responsibilities fall under the umbrella of emergency support.

Perfective Maintenance

Support isn't just about finding the problem and start solving it. The development and enhancement of the app are equally important. During enhancement maintenance, developers introduce new features, incorporate services for ease of use, and adopt cutting-edge technologies like AI or chatbots. 

Both the users and the app owners gain from improving the UI/UX design. Maintenance services in this context may involve redesigning certain parts or elements of the interface, updating banners, or refining the existing design. For users, these changes signify the developer's dedication, while the developers earn appreciation from users and app stores.

Best Practices for Post-launch App Maintenance and Updates

Effective mobile app maintenance goes beyond just periodic updates. It demands a strategic plan to keep the app operational, efficient, and attractive to its users. 

Here are some best practices for maintaining your app effectively:

Scheduled and Strategic Updates

Set a regular timetable for updates, including security fixes, performance improvements, or introducing new features. This approach helps manage user expectations and promotes consistency.

Moreover, create and uphold a plan for upcoming updates. This plan should be in line with user feedback and your business goals, assisting in prioritizing the most significant updates.

Incorporating User Feedback

Make it a habit to keep an eye on user reviews and feedback on various platforms. These are valuable sources of information about what users appreciate and dislike about your app.

Based on user feedback, make modifications to show users that their views are important and aid in tailoring the app to better suit their requirements.

Monitoring Performance and Enhancing Efficiency

Use analytical tools to monitor your app's performance and users' behavior. The information gathered can pinpoint areas that need enhancement. 

Concentrate on improving your app's efficiency, such as reducing loading times, to improve the user experience. Even the smallest enhancements can significantly boost user satisfaction.

Active Measures for Security

Carry out frequent security checks to detect and rectify any potential weak points. This is vital for the protection of user information and for maintaining their trust. 

Stay updated with the most recent security risks and patterns. You can protect your app from new threats by incorporating the most recent security protocols.

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Effective Management of Bugs

Adopt a robust system that can swiftly detect, classify, and prioritize bugs. This will facilitate their speedy resolution. React promptly to urgent issues. The quicker a problem is fixed, the less it will affect the user's experience.

Constant Evolution and Learning

Stay updated with the newest trends and progress in app development and maintenance. This can open doors for the integration of novel features and enhancements.

Be ready to adjust to market shifts. This encompasses changes in user tastes, emerging technologies, and alterations in the competitive scenario. Remember, flexibility is key in the dynamic world of app development.

Automating the Tasks

Where feasible, incorporate automation into routine maintenance tasks. This could encompass automated app testing, deployment, and performance monitoring, freeing up the team to tackle more intricate tasks. 

Use continuous integration and deployment (CI/CD) pipelines to simplify and expedite the development and deployment of updates. This approach can minimize errors and accelerate the release process.

Maintaining Open Lines of Communication with Stakeholders

Keep users in the loop about impending updates, particularly those that bring significant changes or enhancements. Being transparent can foster trust and help manage user expectations. 

Regular interaction with all stakeholders, including team members, investors, and users, is crucial. Keeping everyone up-to-date and engaged can ensure support and alignment for maintenance tasks.

Average Cost of Post-launch App Maintenance and Updates

When it comes to the expenses associated with maintaining an app, several elements like managing servers, sending push notifications, and handling payment gateways are involved. 

The post-launch maintenance and updates phase often brings about extra costs, which can amount to as much as 50% of the overall development cost in the first year. This percentage typically drops to around 15-25% in the following years.

Furthermore, if your app is compatible with multiple operating systems, such as Android and iOS, the maintenance costs may slightly rise. On average, app owners should be prepared to initially shell out approximately $2,000 to $2,500 per month to ensure the app functions at its best.

A common rule of thumb is to allocate 20% of the initial development cost for maintenance. For example, if the development costs of your app were $200,000, you should anticipate spending about $40,000 annually on maintenance.

Here are some typical ongoing costs during the maintenance phase:

Expense Head

Cost ($) per month



Push Notifications


Payment Gateways

Up to $149, plus a certain percentage of each transaction

Emergency Maintenance

Depends on the nature of the Emergency

App Stores Developer Fee

$25 for Google Play Store, $99 for Apple App Store

When considering the expenses associated with maintaining an app, there are a few key factors to bear in mind:

Server Hosting

The cost of server hosting is a significant part of app maintenance. As your data grows, you'll need more server resources like CPU, memory, and storage, which will increase your expenses.

The monthly cost of an app hosting server can vary widely, from around $70 to as much as $320. This largely depends on the nature of your content, the number of active users, and your anticipated growth.


Keeping track of issues like bugs, crashes, and other hiccups in your mobile app is essential. Tools such as Google Analytics can provide valuable insights to inform your decision-making process. While there are many free tools available, some more advanced ones may come at a cost. These tools can offer crucial insights, but remember that monitoring and decision-making also require time. 

Bug Fixing and Updates

Maintaining your app with frequent updates is crucial for fixing bugs and improving the user experience. Every app you see undergoes updates, the cost of which can vary based on several factors. 

Suppose there's a bug that needs a quick fix in the code; it might set you back around $50. But what if there's a functional aspect that needs updating? This could take a few weeks to address, and the cost could range from $1,000 to $2,000.

Customer Support Service

Think about going to the movies. If there's an unexpected interruption, you'd have upset customers. The same applies to app users. If they have issues, it's beneficial for them to have a platform where they can express their concerns and have them resolved satisfactorily. Investing in customer service might be an ongoing expense, but it can lead to positive reviews and improved user satisfaction.


Overall, post-launch app maintenance and updates are a must for businesses that want their app to be in the app store’s top charts. Additionally, regular maintenance keeps users engaged with the app by improving its user experience and adding the most desired features. 

In this write-up, we have discussed the importance of post-launch app maintenance and updates after the app release, along with answering the most crucial question: “How much does it cost for app maintenance?” Hope you have understood everything about the app maintenance process.

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