Recently, someone contacted looking to discover innovative ways to communicate with his audience in the digital age. In particular, he was searching for a free or affordable way to build an app for his organization. Truth be told, mobile apps used to be for Fortune 500 businesses with large budgets. Nowadays, small companies and non-profits can create their own apps for free or at a very low cost.

There are many companies and services that offer to build you an app. Below, are the three that are not only highly reputable, but that we’d recommend.

Please note: All three services allow you to create apps for the iPhone and Android platforms, which together comprise more than 85 percent of the smartphone market.

1. AppMakrThis service helps you build a simple app for free. You are given the option to add push notifications, your Twitter updates or RSS feed, and a customized icon. The only downside is that you’ll also have to host advertisements placed by the company. That said, if you upgrade to a premium account for $79 a month you can create an ad-free app!

2. ConduitConduit is great and even provides analytics to track your app’s reach. The downside is that the free option only permits twenty-five downloads of your app. For $29 per month, you can offer it to up to 5,000 people. In addition to an app for the IPhone and Android, Conduit allows users to create Windows Phone apps as well.

3. UppsiteThis site is our personal favorite. It works across every mobile platform and best of all, their free version should be more than enough to suit your needs! If you are looking for a bit more, Uppsite does offer a Basic+, Advanced, and Pro version. You can learn more about Uppsite by watching the short video below:

Another Option: Hire a Programmer

In a future blog post, we are going to highlight some apps that kiruv organizations and shuls have already built. This will allow you to turn to these organizations and ask them questions about how they conceptualized the design, promoted it, and how many of their congregants and students are using it on a daily or weekly basis.

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