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How Much Does It Cost To Create An App Like Costco?

Create An App Like Costco

So finally you decided to create an app like Costco, but not sure how much it costs to develop a mobile app. With so much information available over the internet, if you have landed on this on this blog, surely you have yet to get an answer!

On average, the “Cost to create a shopping app like Costco ranges from $30,000 to $50,000+ and for advanced versions, it can go beyond $100,000+.” Before we get into the details of what exactly contributes to these estimations, let’s understand “What excites you to develop an app like Costco?”.

In the fastly moving world, CONVENIENCE is the KING. Whether it comes to ordering food online, streamlining daily tasks, or simplifying shopping experiences, people constantly look for smarter ways to make things easier. And that’s where an e-commerce shopping app like Costco comes as a game-changer. 

The reports say that the number of people making purchases online is ever-increasing. The e-commerce sales are expected to exceed $6.3 trillion in 2024. As five billion internet users worldwide make online purchases, the e-commerce industry soon will be at new heights in the coming years. 

create an app like Costco

Ready to boost your chances of success in the thriving e-commerce market? Our mobile app development services in Dallas can help you remain at the forefront of the market by customizing apps with all-new modern features!

If you are still in a dilemma, then here’s what we have covered in our blog…

  • What Makes Costco a Trendsetter in an E-commerce Industry?
  • How Much Does It Cost to Create an App Like Costco?
  • Understanding the Business Model of Costco to Make Money
  • Must-Have Features To Create an App like Costco
  • Xicom Technologies’ Approach To Develop a Shopping App Like Costco
  • FAQs

Let’s get into the details of each point for better understanding…

What Makes Costco a Trendsetter in an E-commerce Industry?

The Costco app is a mobile application developed by Costco Wholesaler’s CFO- Richard Galanti. It is a mindfully designed app, that aims to provide members with a seamless shopping experience. Though it is not known for being a digital innovator in retail, but still it is becoming bigger by gradually updating and improving the user experience for the customers who want to use their phones to shop inside the store. 

This app is available on Available for download on both iOS and Android devices, the app serves as a digital companion to the Costco warehouse shopping experience.

At its core, the Costco app offers a range of features aimed at enhancing convenience, savings, and access to Costco’s products and services. Some key functionalities of the Costco app include:

  • Product Catalog: Users can browse through Costco’s extensive catalog of products, ranging from groceries and electronics to furniture and appliances. Each product is listed with detailed descriptions, images, and prices to provide precise information and help in making informed purchasing decisions.
  • Membership Management: The app allows users to manage their Costco memberships directly from their mobile devices. This includes renewing memberships, upgrading to higher tiers, and accessing their digital membership card for easy entry into Costco warehouses.
  • Warehouse Locator: The Costco-like shopping app allows customers to find the nearest warehouse based on their current location or by entering a ZIP code. The app provides directions to the selected warehouse. Moreover, it provides the details of the warehouse’s operating hours.
  • Online Shopping: In addition to such functionalities, the app comes with the feature of browsing products available in-store. Customers can shop online through the Costco app and able to leverage exclusive deals and promotions on sales. 
  • Order Tracking: For online orders placed through the app, users can track their shipments and view their order history in real-time. 
  • Digital Coupons: To keep their customers coming back to the app, Costco frequently offers digital coupons for additional discounts on various products. App users can browse and redeem these coupons within the app. They can be automatically applied during checkout.
  • Photo Printing Services: Now this is an exclusive feature of Costco that exclusively allows their customers to access Costco’s photo printing services. Customers just need to upload photos from their mobile devices and order prints for pickup at their local warehouse.

All these exclusive features make Costco stand apart in the market. But these are not crafted overnight. The app has gradually expanded and improvised. If it comes to calculating the estimated cost to build an app like Costco, then you would need a budget of around $75,000+.

Looking for a detailed cost estimation of the app?
Connect with our App consultant to discuss your project details and set the budget as per your requirements.

Now let’s crunch some stats and facts about Costco that make it trending…

Market Overview Of Online Shopping App Like Costco

If you are looking to create an app like Costco and are willing to invest a budget of $75,000 to $100,000 to create such a huge app, then it is worth knowing the facts and stats about your ideal app…

Costco Wholesale Corporation Business Overview:

  • Costco uses a membership-based approach where customers pay yearly membership fees to shop at Costco stores. This model works in both ways, allowing customers to tap on exclusive offers. And in other ways, it boosts customer loyalty and keeps their customers engaged to an app.
  • Costco is recognized as the third largest retailer in the world.
  • The major operating departments of Costco include grocery, appliances, baked goods, electronics, apparel, books, and more.
  • Exclusive Costcos services include access to the food court, optical services, gas stations, tire garages, and photo processing services.

Financial Performance and Competitors

  • Costco has marked its global net sales of 248.828 billion dollars in 2024 which is already 6.16% higher than the previous year. 
  • The US is the major profitable market of Costco with availability in 604 locations. 

create an app like Costco


Stores and Customer Memberships

  • There are over 800 warehouses of Costco across 14 countries.
  • 300,000 people are working under the umbrella of Costco.
  • Costco boasts around 128 million club members worldwide. 
  • The majority of its stores are located in the US and California has the highest number.

This is where you can directly complete Costco-like apps by hiring mobile app developers. A major advantage of hiring local professionals is that they enable you to build an app that your target audience needs. Along with looking into the right skills, it is equally important to hire experts who have local market knowledge. 

Let’s closely evaluate the cost breakdown of an app like Costco…

How Much Does It Cost to Create an App Like Costco?

With such impressive market stats and facts, it is clear that Costco-like apps have a potential market scope. Building an app like Costco would require you to approach a leading mobile app development company in California, USA like Xicom Technologies, or look for e-commerce developers. But the central question is “How much does it cost to create an app like Costco?”.

Estimating the average cost to create an app like Costco is quite challenging especially when you are not sure what functionalities you need to include in your app. There are various factors involved in affecting the ultimate cost including app complexity, features, and functionalities,  UI/UX design, app testing, the hourly cost of app developer, and their location.

If concluding all such factors and setting the estimation then it must range between $30,000 to $300,000+. Let’s make it simple for you to understand the estimations. 

App ComplexityDescriptionPrice Estimate
Basic FeaturesA simple app with essential features such as product browsing, basic search, store locator, simple account management, and integration with Costco’s API for product data.$10,000 – $30,000
Moderate ComplexityAn app with additional functionalities like personalized recommendations, in-app purchases, integration with social media, advanced search, and basic analytics features.$30,000 – $100,000
Advanced FeaturesA sophisticated app with advanced features like augmented reality (AR) for product visualization, advanced analytics, IoT integration, chatbots, loyalty programs, and more.$100,000+

These are the rough estimations that could greatly vary depending on business needs which can be directly discussed and negotiated with the app developers. But before that, you would be more interested in knowing how Costco has become a billion-dollar generating business model. 

Understanding the Business Model of Costco to Make Money

There is no run-on-a-mill formula to generate money from any business app. Whether you are a startup or a leading business firm, you always have to put yourself into the perspective of Costco’s business model to unlock the magic mantra. 

Long back, Costco smartly expanded its revenue streams by using multiple monetization models. Here you can get an idea about the best monetization strategies that Costco is already using to make money:

1. Earning Membership Fees:

The major revenue of Costco depends upon the membership fees. It uses tiered-based membership plans boasting different prices and options. Depending on the location, the sales taxes are applied to the membership plan. So they have three major categories for membership:

  • Business Memberships: The business membership starts from $60 per year for Costco which offers access to global stores of Costco. In addition, it enables you to enjoy a complimentary household card and facilitates additional discounts on various services like photo printing, insurance, pet insurance, and more.
  • Gold Start Membership: It also starts at $60 per year and offers almost the same benefits and perks that come with a business membership subscription.
  • Exclusive Membership: It starts from $120 per year and offers all the above benefits along with the ability to purchase items for resale. 

2. Merchandise Sales Volume:

Costco’s 90% of revenue stems from selling in-store “Store Keeping Units (SKUs). With this strategy, Costco manages to generate over $150 billion annually. 

3. Auto Sales Program:

Costco boasts a partnership with over 3,000 dealerships to buy or sell used cars which contributes to their annual revenue generation. 

So these are the few major ways of generating revenue from the app like Costco. Before you fall for these monetization strategies, it is worth knowing that there is no use in creating a cloning app like Costco. So additionally you can try these monetization strategies:

  • Offering membership plans on a monthly, quarterly, or yearly basis.
  • Generate money with third-party advertisements.
  • Make money with product listing.

Above all these facts, make sure you provide unique features in the app that attract users to look for membership cards. 

Did you know that the e-commerce market is expected to hit $5.8 trillion?
Become a part of this thriving market by hiring skilled mobile app developers to customize the app with an innovative approach.

Must-Have Features To Create An App Like Costco

To create a mobile app like Costco, make sure you include a comprehensive list of features that cater to the changing needs of the buyers and sellers. Here are the few major features that need to be included in the shopping app:

  • User Authentication: Make sure you have a feature in the app that allows users to get registered by using their email ID or phone number and able to manage their profile securely. 
  • Product Listings: The app should have clear product listing features that display products with clear images, descriptions, prices, and availability.
  • Search and Filters: Allow users to quickly search and filter products by category, brand, or price range by using advanced filtering techniques.
  • Shopping Cart: Allows users to quickly add items to their cart, view/edit quantities without having to leave the existing page, and ensure a smooth checkout process.  
  • Checkout Process: Provide a seamless and secure checkout process with multiple payment options including credit/debit cards, digital wallets, etc. along with the address management feature.
  • Order Tracking: With this feature in the app, customers can track the status of their orders in real time, from processing to delivery.
  • Wishlist: Don’t skip this feature as it allows users to save products for future purchases or share with others.
  • Push Notifications: Now this feature can be used as a marketing tool. Using customer insights, prefer sending personalized notifications about offers, price drops, promotions, or new arrivals to boost user engagement.
  • Reviews and Ratings: After shopping allow users to rate and review products. This feature can allow users to make further purchase decisions.
  • Social Sharing: Enable users to share products or their shopping experiences on social media platforms.
  • Personalization: Provide personalized product recommendations based on users’ browsing and purchase history.
  • Customer Support: Offer a 24*7 customer support system and try resolving the queries through multiple channels. 

These are the basic features of creating an online shopping app which are good to follow when you creating an MVP of Costco. It would be an ideal option for startups who are looking to get started immediately although under a limited budget. Getting started with an app would require a budget of around $30,000 to $50,000+ but it can go down or above depending on your requirements.

Xicom Technologies’ Approach To Developing A Shopping App Like Costco

Online shopping apps took a centeral stage in recent years and have become a stronger business platform for multi-marketers. If you are also looking for ways to expand your business online and stay competitive, then reach out to the tech team of Xicom Technologies which treats each of their projects equally important.  

Being a top e-commerce mobile app development company in Dallas, they adopt a unique and strategic approach to developing an app. With their in-house tech engineers engaged in creating feature-rich shopping apps can help you get an edge by adding such advanced features in it. They include:

Integrating AR/VR Based Try-Ons

Boost the customer shopping experience by embracing the richness of Augmented and Virtual Reality in the shopping app. Let users virtually try on apparel, accessories, furniture, and more to immediately get an idea about the look. Moreover, this approach can minimize cart abandonments and enhance buying decisions.

AI-Powered Image Search

Just snap a picture of the desired product and let the app find the relevant product for your customers. To make this feature work, the app uses an AI algorithm and search history to closely match the products. 

If you are all set to build a shopping app like Costco and are not yet able to decide where to start and how to manage the app development process, then you can contact us and let our team handle the end-to-end process. 


How Much Does It Cost to Create a Shopping App Like Costco?

The average cost to develop a shopping app like Costco ranges from $30,000 to $100,000+ depending upon your business requirements. But it can be greatly negotiated by discussing your project requirements with our consultants.

How To Develop an App Like Costco?

To create a shopping app like Costco, it requires you to follow these steps:

Conduct a market research
– Verify your target audience
– Set your requirements
– Look for skilled app development team in Dallas
– Customize features and functionalities
– Look for simple UI/UX design
– Test your app and deploy it on the app store

How Does Xicom Make Sure About Data Security?

For any business, its user’s data security is the top priority, and at Xicom we value that. To begin with any project, we sign NDA and adhere to security measures to keep your data secure.

How Would Xicom Technologies Ensure The Project Quality?

Before releasing any app, we conduct rigorous app testing on various operating platforms to ensure 100% bug-free coding. Moreover, to ensure that your app will remain updated, we ensure project maintenance and support services.

Do You Offer a Flexible Engagement Model?

Yes, we understand that each business has different project requirements, therefore, we let our clients choose from the pool of talent on different engagement models such as hourly, monthly, or fixed billing. If you are in doubt about what level of team you would require, then you can contact us. 

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