Blockchain technology is rapidly gaining recognition and acceptance with different industries adopting and implementing it in their business processes to leverage the multitude of benefits it brings along. The hype created by blockchain is so much that the demand for blockchain-based applications has surpassed the availability of professional and skilled developers. However, that hasn’t discouraged entrepreneurs from building ingenious applications based on this disruptive technology for smarter business operations. Therefore, if you are looking to harness the power of blockchain in your business, here’s a small guide on how to build a blockchain application step by step.
These steps require you to not only understand the development process but also to ensure that your idea is a solution to a problem prevalent in your business and to analyze your competition before getting to the development process.
Step 1: Ideation
You have an idea for your blockchain application but have you thought it through? Before getting deeper into the blockchain application development process, you should ensure that your idea is a solution to a problem prevalent in your business or industry. Evaluate your idea, design the workflow, and prepare a roadmap for the post-development activities. You also need to decide if your application will be built on a permissioned or a permissionless network.
- Permissioned Network – On this network, the owner can decide who joins the network and only a few members can verify blocks.
- Permissionless Network – On this network, there is no restriction to join the network for anyone and everyone can verify blocks. Bitcoin and Ethereum are built on permissionless networks.
Apart from this, you would also have to decide the programming language for frontend, servers and external databases.
Step 2: Choose a blockchain platform
The next step requires you to choose from one of the blockchain platforms to build your dApp, which will depend on the problem your app will solve and the consensus mechanism. The platforms you can choose from are as below:
- Ethereum – The Ethereum platform is perhaps the most popular one which enables you to create smart contracts as well as a blockchain application with your own ecosystem using Solidity as the language.
- Ripple – Ripple is the best choice for creating financial tools as it supports up to five transactions every second. The platform facilitates easy transfer of money to any location globally, and to connect with payment providers and banks.
- R3 Corda – Thi platform is great for businesses in the healthcare, supply chain, trade, finance or commerce sectors who are looking to build a blockchain-based app. Corda platform is used for building permissioned blockchains which can also be integrated easily with legacy systems.
Step 3: Weigh your options
From the technical viewpoint, you need to weigh the four options you have to build your decentralized application. These four ways are:
- You have the option to create a private network for your application.
- You can also create your application using an open blockchain.
- Choose the most suitable platform to build your blockchain network.
- Select a Blockchain as a Service provider such as Amazon, Microsoft, Azure. Use the cloud services of the BaaS provider you choose to integrate the cloud service within your app.
Step 4: Hire a Blockchain Application Development Company
If you have an in-house development team, you can start the development process once you have gone through the first 3 steps. However, if you don’t house blockchain developers, you will have to search and hire a blockchain app development company that has experienced blockchain application developers. You can find numerous app development companies on the internet and other platforms such as LinkedIn, Clutch, etc. You can also find many blockchain developers at events and conferences such as Hackathon, held regularly in various cities.
Shortlist a few companies, have a look at their experience, their clients, any blockchain applications they have created previously, and schedule a consultation with them to understand more about their development costs and quality of services.
Step 5: Development process
The development process would be different depending on your choice between creating your own blockchain or using an existing one. However, the development process would consist of the following stages:
- Analysis – At this stage, a technical specification is created after analyzing business requirements. The technical specification document will be like a blueprint of the development plan and process consisting of details about people involved in development, frameworks, operating systems, and libraries used.
- Design – The next step in the development process is the design of the app. The blockchain application development company you hire will create a design for your app based on your business requirements. The design costs 8% – 20% of the total development cost based on complexity.
- Development – At the development stage, the frontend, backend architecture, and APIs are set up by the developers. A QA engineer simultaneously tests the app for errors and bugs so as to deliver a well-functioning app.
- App Launch – The app is then delivered and launched in app stores as per the required rules and the performance is analyzed thereafter.
- Support & Maintenance – If you have hired a blockchain application development company, the developers provide you support even after the launch such as necessary updates or implementation of new features.
Now that you know how to build a blockchain application step by step, you are all set to build your blockchain-based application to take your business to greater heights. It is advisable to not hire freelancers if you don’t have an in-house development team, as there is a risk of delays or poor quality of work. Hire skilled blockchain app developers from a reputed app development company that would provide you professional services and build a quality blockchain application for your business.