We live in a world where almost anything can be brought to our front door. It’s no wonder many logistics and transportation companies plan on creating a delivery app to support their services.

Now is a great time to do it. The number of busy people with smartphones is growing, and so is the market for delivery apps in different sectors.

The market for delivery apps in different sectors

Successful delivery app development begins with a clear understanding of the development process, challenges, and best practices. As a company with experience in transportation and logistics software development, we’re here to help. Keep reading to learn:

  • How to identify your niche
  • What business model to choose
  • Which features to include

Let’s start at the beginning.

Market Research and Identifying Your Niche

So, how do you create a delivery service app?

First thing’s first: before you invest in building a delivery app, you need to understand if there’s a market for it and identify your unique value proposition. After all, it’s a red ocean out there, and users have plenty of apps to choose from, especially for consumer goods and food delivery.

Here’s what you need to do to thoroughly research your market:

  • Analyze market size and growth potential: Consider the overall market size and growth trends for delivery services and identify expansion opportunities and target markets.
  • Define the goals of your delivery app: What problems does your app solve? How can it bring value to users? Is it B2B or B2C? What makes it special? Why should consumers or businesses choose your app over an existing one?
  • Analyze your competitors: Identify and analyze the delivery apps on the market. Evaluate their strengths, weaknesses, features, pricing models, and user feedback. Understand what they’re doing well (and less well) and where your app can shine.
  • Identify and analyze the target audience: Who are your potential users? If it’s a B2C app, consider user age, location, preferences, and delivery service usage. If it’s B2B, look into the target businesses and stakeholders, their industries, preferences, pain points, and expectations of delivery services. Ideally, create surveys or conduct interviews to get information first-hand.
  • Consider different platforms: Will it be a mobile app people will use on their smartphones, tablets, or wearables? Or will it be a more extensive desktop app or web app? Consider your audience and target features to get the answer.
  • Explore the sectors/niches: Identify the business niches where your delivery app could be helpful. Examples include restaurant delivery, delivery from retail stores, medicine delivery, grocery delivery, or general deliveries for businesses or consumers. If you have the capacity, you could focus on large-item or cross-border delivery.
  • Understand the regulatory environment: Research the legal requirements and regulations for delivery services in your target regions.

Each of these steps will require careful consideration and frequent consulting with a team of professionals. When you get the answers you’re satisfied with… you’ll see it’s just the beginning.

Choosing a Business Model

The next question in delivery application development is: How will your app make money? It’s time to work out your pricing strategy and how it aligns with the perceived value of your app. Here are the main options:

  • Commission-based model: Businesses pay a percentage of the cost of each order placed through the app.
  • Subscription for users: Users pay a recurring subscription fee to keep using the app.
  • Freemium model: The basic services of the delivery app are offered for free, while users can pay for premium features, faster deliveries, or additional perks.
  • Flat fee model: Businesses pay a fixed fee for each delivery, regardless of the order value or distance.
  • White-label solutions: You provide the app as a white-label solution for businesses, allowing them to use the app's infrastructure for their own delivery services.
  • Subscription for businesses: Businesses pay a subscription fee to be listed on the delivery app.
  • In-app advertising: Businesses can advertise within the delivery app.
  • Data licensing: You monetize user and delivery data gathered in the app by licensing it to other businesses, researchers, or advertisers.
  • B2B delivery services: The delivery app serves the logistics needs of companies, wholesalers, or manufacturers.

In short, there are plenty of ways to make a delivery app profitable, but as our table shows, each model also has its downsides.

Ways to make a delivery app profitable

Whichever business model you choose, the next step in creating a delivery app is mapping out its functionality.

Planning Your Delivery App Features

Regardless of niche and revenue strategy, all delivery apps share similar core features that you’ll need to develop. You can also plan for advanced features to differentiate your offering.

Essential features of a delivery app

  • User registration and profiles: Allow users to create accounts, manage profiles, and save delivery preferences to provide a personalized experience.
  • Search and browsing: Enable users to easily search for products or services, filter results, and browse through available options.
  • Product listings: Display detailed information about products or services, including images, descriptions, prices, and user reviews.
  • Shopping cart: Allow users to easily add, edit, and remove items before confirming their order.
  • Checkout and payment: Provide a secure and user-friendly checkout process with multiple payment options, including credit/debit cards, digital wallets, and other payment gateways.
  • Order tracking: Offer real-time order tracking with live delivery status updates.
  • Push notifications: Send timely notifications to users regarding order confirmations and status, promotions, and more.
  • Customer support: Integrate a customer support system, including chat support or a helpline.
  • Delivery scheduling: Enable users to schedule deliveries at a preferred date and time.
  • Order history: Maintain a comprehensive order history for users to track past orders and re-order items.
  • Secure authentication: Implement secure authentication methods to protect user accounts and sensitive information.
  • Geolocation services: Use GPS to enable accurate location tracking for both users and delivery personnel.
  • Multi-platform or cross-platform functionality: Support multiple devices and platforms, including iOS and Android mobile apps, and a web-based platform.

These client-side functions are usually simple. The operator, however, often requires a broader set of more advanced features for user engagement and operating efficiency.

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Advanced features of a delivery app

  • Personalized recommendations: Use AI to analyze user preferences and order history and create personalized recommendations.
  • Augmented reality (AR) integration: Help users visualize products in their real-world environment before purchasing.
  • Voice commands: Allow users to place orders, track deliveries, or perform other actions hands-free.
  • Social media integration: Enable users to share their orders, reviews, and experiences on social media platforms. This also enhances brand visibility.
  • Gamification elements: Introduce loyalty programs, badges, or rewards.
  • Offline mode: Allow users to browse and add items to their cart when offline and sync data once an internet connection is restored.
  • Data analytics dashboard: Give businesses and administrators a comprehensive dashboard for insights into user behavior, sales trends, and operational efficiency.
  • Predictive analytics: Forecast user preferences, optimize delivery routes, and manage inventory efficiently.
  • Integrations with IoT devices: Connect with IoT devices like smart home systems or wearables for a seamless and integrated user experience.

Overall, it’s good practice to check in with your future users as you create the delivery app, since if you’re not the primary audience, you can miss some less obvious but more valuable features.

Design and User Experience (UX)

Delivery app development is a broad term. But whether you’re planning on a mobile or web application, user experience matters. After all, the look and feel of an app, an attractive logo, intuitive onboarding, and a cohesive color scheme all support your brand image.

What does this mean for delivery app development? Essentially, you’ll need to ensure that, as well as a visually pleasing interface, your app has the following features:

  • Intuitive navigation: Clear and concise menu structures, easily accessible buttons, and a straightforward flow streamline navigation and contribute to a positive user experience.
  • Responsive design: Mobile delivery apps must adapt to different screen sizes and resolutions for a smooth experience on smartphones and tablets. The same goes for web apps, which also need to be optimized for different browsers.
  • Seamless onboarding process: Use progressive onboarding techniques that guide users through key features of your app without overwhelming them.
  • Consistency across platforms: To maintain a unified brand identity, ensure a consistent look and feel across mobile and web platforms. Users should be able to switch devices without experiencing a significant shift in design.

You may also want to consider real-time feedback (to keep users informed about their actions), enhanced customization (to tailor users' experience to their preferences and requirements), and accessibility (e.g., text-to-speech, adjustable font sizes, and adherence to web accessibility standards to cater to a diverse user base).

Remember that while some UI/UX features remain the same across sectors, others can be quite specific.

  • Retail delivery: Emphasize high-quality images, product details, and an easy checkout process. Visual appeal is crucial for this type of delivery app, and the user journey should be optimized for browsing and shopping. The UI should be clean and bright, as in this platform we designed and developed for a client in the hospitality industry.
  • Courier services: Prioritize clear tracking features, simple order forms, and easy communication options between users and couriers. Focus on efficiency and reliability.
  • B2B delivery services: Provide a professional and organized interface with features catering to bulk orders, invoicing, and business accounts.

Finally, if your project is extensive, you may want to build a delivery app with a client module and a user module, so be sure to take their needs into account. For example, the user module might focus on a clean design with only a few elements, while the client module might include more complex views of stats and graphs, maps, and GPS coordinates.

Choosing the Right Technology Stack

The next step in creating a delivery app is approving the technology stack. In most cases, your tech team or software development partner will choose the stack for you, but as a guideline, here are the languages and tools we recommend at Techstack to ensure a delivery app is robust and scalable.


  • Native mobile app development: Swift for iOS and Kotlin or Java for Android
  • Cross-platform app development: React Native
  • Web app development: JavaScript, React, AngularJS


  • Server-side programming: Java, Go, .NET, C#, Node.js
  • Databases: PostgreSQL and MySQL for relational databases and MongoDB or Cassandra for NoSQL databases
  • RESTful APIs: Express.js (Node.js), Spring Boot (Java)
  • GraphQL: Apollo Server (Node.js), GraphQL Java (Java)

Third-party services

  • Authentication and authorization: Auth0, Firebase Authentication, OAuth 2.0/OpenID Connect
  • Payment gateway: PayPal, Stripe, or any other platform that’s popular with your target users
  • Maps and location services: Google Maps Platform, Mapbox
  • Push notifications: Firebase Cloud Messaging (FCM), OneSignal
  • Cloud: Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP) are the three most popular cloud service providers
  • Content Delivery Network (CDN): Cloudflare, Amazon CloudFront, Akamai

These technologies are the gold standard in delivery application development, for either mobile or web. As an example, the tech stack we used for an automated delivery and pick-up platform included JavaScript, Node.js, React, MongoDB, Express, Angular, AWS, and MobX.

However, you should also consider the capacity of your tech team members when creating a delivery app. For instance, if the Go team is busy and the Java team is free, your delivery app will be developed using Java.

Development Process

With all the preparations done, it’s time to get down to coding. Agile is an excellent methodology for building a delivery app or an MVP, as it brings you iterative development, collaboration, and flexibility.

Six key stages take your delivery app from ideation to a marketable solution.


This phase is often considered optional, but we only recommend skipping it if you’ve done all the preparations. These include:

  • Market research: Thoroughly research the market to understand user needs, competitor offerings, market trends, and potential niches.
  • Defining objectives: Clearly outline the project's goals and scope, target audience, key features, and business requirements.


The overall aim of this step is to clarify your goals and make sure the whole team is on the same page. Here’s what you need to consider:

  • Product roadmap: Create a product roadmap outlining the features and their priorities based on importance, feasibility, and potential impact on users and business goals.
  • Sprint planning: Break down development tasks into smaller, manageable units and plan sprints (usually two-week-long development cycles) accordingly.

UI/UX design

Once your features are settled, it’s time to design the user experience and app interface. There are two main tasks:

  • Wireframing and prototyping: Draw wireframes and prototypes to see app layout, user flow, and interactions.
  • UI/UX design: Design a user-friendly interface with intuitive navigation, clear visuals, and seamless user experience.


In Agile, features are implemented incrementally during sprints. A sprint is a two-week period that starts with planning the sprint scope (or backlog). Then, around the middle of a sprint, the tech team gathers for a mid-sprint review (sprint grooming) to discuss whether they’re on the right track or if some feature plans need to change. Finally, there are post-sprint reviews where the team analyzes what has been done and what could be improved in future sprints.

Agile software development also includes:

  • Continuous integration: DevOps practices automate build processes and testing, ensuring that new code changes are integrated smoothly and tested thoroughly with minimal manual intervention.
  • Testing: Automated and manual testing are performed as the sprint progresses. They’re often combined to test features against test cases and ensure they work as intended.
  • Bug fixing: Developers address any issues or bugs identified during testing, ensuring a smooth and bug-free user experience.

With the right implementation, all these Agile practices make delivery app development more efficient and manageable.


Unlike in the Waterfall development methodology, where each phase follows the other, testing in Agile is done iteratively. This means that while QAs can run general smoke testing when preparing for launch, most of the testing is done iteratively within each sprint. This includes unit testing, functional testing, usability testing, performance testing, and security testing.

But before any testing takes place, QA engineers need to develop testing documentation such as:

Our Techstack blog dives deeper into best practices for creating a test plan and strategy.


With the functions you outlined in the project scope developed and tested, it’s time for deployment. Plan the release of the MVP or app around your target audience in terms of timing, marketing strategy, and user acquisition channels. When you’re all set, deploy the MVP to relevant app stores.

And that’s how you build a delivery app! Yes, it does look like a lot of work, but Rome wasn't built in a day. With an experienced software development company in your corner, the development process should go without a hitch.

Post-Launch: Analytics, Feedback, and Iteration

The post-launch phase of delivery app development is your opportunity to refine user experience and plan for future enhancements. Here's how to manage it:

  • Monitor app performance with performance metrics (app crashes, response times, server uptime, etc.) and set up feedback loops between developers and support teams to quickly resolve issues and optimize performance.
  • Gather user feedback via surveys, feedback forms, and in-app prompts to understand user experiences, preferences, and pain points. Also, keep an eye on user reviews and ratings on app stores.
  • Create a roadmap for future updates and enhancements based on user feedback, market trends, and competitive analysis.

As you can see, creating a delivery app is more than just coding. The steps you take before and after the development are just as important for the app’s success.

Delivery App Development Starts Here

How to create a delivery app? The process is pretty straightforward.

  • Start by researching the market. Does it need an app like yours? What does your audience want? How will you monetize your app?
  • Then, consider the features you’d like your app to have and start with the essential ones.
  • When you’re done, it’s time to start coding. Use Agile sprints and continuous integration to stay on the right track.
  • Post-launch, remember to monitor analytics and customer feedback to improve your application.A reliable software development vendor can help at each stage, freeing you up to focus on your business and more creative tasks. If you work at a logistics and transportation company and are considering developing a delivery app, don’t hesitate to contact Techstack! We’d love to work with you.