How to Create a Custom Fitness App for Free in 4 Easy Steps
Creating your own app can have a huge positive return on your training business, but at what cost? Apps, especially of high quality, are often expensive to build and the cost can vary drastically. According to Wave Digital, a quality mobile app can cost between $50,000–$250,000AUD or more, which is A LOT of money to invest before you even begin to generate revenue from the app.
At Fitter, we wanted to give trainers and other health & fitness professionals a better solution to take their business online — and to make the process of creating your own app quick, affordable, and accessible to anyone regardless of their technical or design skills.
Here are the 4 easy steps you can take to create your fitness app for free.
1. Determine Design & Structure
To get started, it’s best to do some research and discovery. Planning will play a huge part in how efficiently you can get your app live. We recommend taking inspiration from some of the best fitness apps out there.
Start by downloading apps like Sweat and Centr that have a free trial, so you can browse their structure and content to get ideas for you’d like to structure your content. If you have an iPhone or iPad, check out Apple Fitness+ inside the fitness app. Take note of the aspects you like about each app you review, and take screenshots for reference.
Begin mapping out a structure for your content using pencil and paper, the Notes app, a Google Doc or whatever you have freely available to you. The better idea you have of how you’d like to structure and lay out your app, the easier it will be when you’re ready to start building.
2. Plan Your Content
Once you have an idea of how you’d like to structure your app, it’s best to start planning your content. There are multiple components you might want to consider here, we recommend starting with a high level view, and then breaking it down.
So, you might start by planning what programs you are going to offer & how you are going to sell them (e.g. Subscription / One off purchase).
Consider, how are they structured? Are they broken up by week? day? phase? It’s important to break your content up into sections so that when it comes time to put it into an app, your users easily digest the content.
Once you have that nailed down, it’s time to break it up into the components of those “sections”. These are typically as follows:
Articles - blog posts or informational content you’d like to include
Meals - recipes or nutrition plans that might supplement your workouts, or form a meal plan
Exercises - will you film your own exercise content or are you happy to use a ready made library?
Workouts - workouts are typically built upon exercises, as a series so it’s good to plan your workouts
Each section of your program may consist of 1 or more of each of these components.
Don’t get too bogged down in the details, but having a good idea of what is going where will help you fly through the build process. You’ll have already done the hard work.
3. Source High Quality Imagery & Video
Imagery can have a huge impact on creating an amazing-looking app, so it’s important you get this one right. If you spend time reviewing the top training apps, you’ll notice that high quality imagery is a constant. But you don’t need to spend money hiring a professional photographer, with freely accessible photo sites like Unsplash and Pexels that give you millions of stunning snaps instantly. These two photo heavyweights are seamlessly integrated into Fitter, so you can pull beautiful free imagery into your app without ever leaving the builder!
With imagery, it’s important to remember that you should maintain a sense of your brand visually. And, the key to maintaining your brand is being consistent.
For ideas on how to display your brand with your imagery, you can:
• add your logo in the same place to each of your photos (ie. bottom left)
• choose photos that incorporate your brand colours
• add a colour overlay to your photos
• add a filter or Lightroom preset
If you’re looking for more tips on creating great photography with minimal or no budget, check out our 5 Secrets for Taking Better Photos with Your Phone.
As with imagery, the quality of your video content will make or break your app. It’s important to maintain consistency and minimise distractions in your exercise videos, so try to ensure your filming is executed with a similar setup, including backgrounds, lighting and more.
For more guidance, have a read of our tips on recording better workout videos.
4. Launch Fast & For Free
Now that you’ve done all the hard work of planning and creating your content, it’s time to drop it into your app and get set to go live! By this point, you’ve likely scoped out various app builders or development platforms. If you opt for a platform like Fitter to create your app, you can launch faster and completely for free.
Launching your app with Fitter is a lot faster and easier than launching a traditional app. You don’t need to involve costly developers or deal with the headache that comes with building something from scratch. Just plug in your content, add your branding, and you’re live!
Most people falsely believe that a successful app should or must be on the App Stores. App Stores can simply be a source of wasted time and energy. Each app for both the Apple App Store & Google Play Store must go through a review process. This can sometimes take up to a month! What’s worse is that the smallest thing–ie. a typo or a broken link–can send you all the way back to the start of the review queue, wasting valuable time that you could have used to generate revenue or obtain feedback.
This is just part of the reason as to why Fitter provides you with a web app. Web apps have a number of advantages over a native app, including:
- There’s no need to build different apps for iOS and Android — your app works automatically on all devices (even desktop!).
- Your users can get access to your content simply by clicking your link. No download required means higher conversion & usage.
- Your app is instantly updated, avoiding the need to go through the app stores & their approval processes.
- Your users are still able to save your app to their home screen, just like other apps on their phone.
- If you are selling content, you don’t need to pay Apple 30% of every transaction.
- Since your app is web-based, your content is automatically indexed by search engines giving you organic traffic that is not possible on the app stores.
- Your app can be accessed offline.
Additionally, Fitter provides a selection of pre-designed templates to get you up and running quickly. It’s simply a matter of picking your favourite template and dropping in your crafted content!
Launch for free
Not only is Fitter free to sign up and start creating, it’s free to launch your app! Our Free plan is free forever, and allows you to have an unlimited number of paid subscribers. There is a 15% transaction fee on subscriptions sold, but you won’t be charged a cent until you start making money yourself. If you’d prefer to give away your content for free, there are paid plans that you can upgrade to when the time suits.
So, ready to create your app?
Whether you’re ready to start building or you just want to have a look around in the builder, head to our website to see how Fitter can help you expand your business online.
Fitter is a multi-purpose health and fitness platform that enables trainers, coaches, gyms and influencers to create and deliver programs, workouts and nutritional content to anyone, anywhere. Fitter provides a platform for users to create and distribute their content via their own custom, self-branded web app.
Find out more or sign up for a free account here.