DEV Community


Posted on

How to Make a Social Networking App

how to create a social media app

The number of social media apps continues to grow, though, they have already taken up a great part of our lives and the application market. In the whole world the usage of smartphone has increased, as a result, appeared the opportunities for social networks with more advanced features.

Nowadays a lot of entrepreneurs want to be a part of the prosperous market and consider building new social media platforms.

To understand what niche you want to enter and what big competitors will be waiting for you there you should realise what categories all social media apps are divided into:

  • Social network apps

They help to connect and communicate with other people online. They are used for personal needs (Facebook, Twitter) or for professional communication (LinkedIn).

  • Media sharing networks

These apps let users share all kinds of media files (photos, videos, GIF files, etc.). The most famous among them are Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, Vimeo, and Imgur.

  • Networks for consumer reviews

They are used by customers to find and review businesses they’ve had experience with. The best example here is Yelp.

  • Community and discussion forums

These are used for asking questions and receiving answers, sharing news, ideas, insights, and experience. The most prominent apps in this category are Quora and Reddit.

  • Bookmarking and content curation networks

With the help of these apps, one can share his own content and discover the content of other users and save it. Pinterest, Mix, and Flipboard belong to this type of social media apps.

  • Blogging and publishing platforms

Such media platforms let users create their own blogs and publish their content there. Tumblr and Medium are extremely popular now among these platforms.

  • Interest-based networks

They help to unite people with common interests. Such platforms allow users to share their hobbies and related experiences. Wonderful examples of these networks are Goodreads or

  • Anonymous social networks

This kind of social networks is very popular with teenagers because it allows them to communicate anonymously with each other. The most used ones are Whisper,, and After School.

Next, let's review the latest social media trends.

Current Social Media Trends

Latest trends in social media are important to watch out for and to follow in order to make your social media app up-to-date and viable.

If you want to create a social media app, here are the social media trends 2018 to pay attention to

  • Augmented reality and face filters

The trendsetters here are Snapchat and Instagram. It seems they will not go anywhere, as people still enjoy the funny face filters.

  • Artificial Intelligence and chatbots

These social media trends are not new, but they still enjoy the demand.

  • Live streaming (live videos)

This feature is essential for the most popular social media apps, as users prefer watching live videos to reading posts on social media.

  • Video is growing

Nowadays users prefer watching to reading that is why video content is more popular than written posts. It is connected with the lack of time they have and with the fact that visual information is easier to perceive.

  • Ephemeral content

This content that is live for up to 24 hours and then disappears from your feed. The leaders here are Snapchat and Instagram. People spend more time on these social apps daily because of these stories. It is a nice thing to attract users.

  • Focus on Generation Z

If you think how to create a social media app now, make certain you take into account the need of the new influential group - Generation Z (people born after 1998).

  • Publishing content on social media

As websites are not the only place for creating content any more, good social media apps already have publishing opportunities for their users.

Best Practices of Social Network Design

All social media apps should stick to the following simple rules:

  • Use blue color as it is not considered annoying.
  • Use the same navigation bar with search functions, notifications, and profile icon throughout the app on every screen where they are required.
  • The design of the whole application should be adapted to a specific platform. Besides your app design should have its key features in common with all platforms. It is important to provide equal user experience and feel if a user changes iOS to Android or vice versa.
  • Smooth switch from a web app design to a mobile app design to make user experience similar on any device.
  • Focus on a user’s face with the help of round profile pictures, which makes it easier to remember them or distinguish them from the list of others.
  • Infinite scroll of posts.
  • Focus on user content and design simplicity.
  • Possibility of self-expression in design (like changing a profile picture, cover image, or even profile colors).
  • Relevant content and simple search of users.
  • On the first stages provide a quick sign in or app entry without signing up to give an opportunity for users to find out more about your product.

The above mentioned best practices are sure to help you find the happy medium between what you want your design to be and what it should be.

It is necessary to make designs for the full app version, to look at your project globally, plan possible interactions, and set a correct app architecture. As soon as your development team sees the complete picture, it becomes clear to them how to create a social media app you request.

Learn more here

Top comments (2)