How to Build a Next-Gen Beauty App: Creating a Nykaa-like App in 2024

In today’s digital age, developing a successful app like Nykaa requires careful planning and execution. From understanding the app development process to selecting the right agency for your project, there are key considerations to keep in mind. Cost of app development can also vary significantly depending on the features and functionalities you wish to include.

Nykaa, one of India’s leading beauty and wellness online retailers, has set a benchmark for success in this sector with its innovative app.  Nykaa, the popular beauty and lifestyle e-commerce platform, has witnessed impressive growth in its turnover over the past two years. In the third quarter of FY24, Nykaa’s revenue from operations reached Rs 1,788.8 crore, marking an 18.7% increase compared to the previous quarter. This growth trajectory showcases Nykaa’s strong performance and position in the market.

In this article, we will delve into the process of developing an app like Nykaa, including key considerations such as app development, product development, cost of app development, and how to choose the right agency for your project. If you are looking to tap into the booming beauty and wellness market with a cutting-edge mobile application, read on to discover how you can bring your vision to life.

History of Nykaa

Nykaa’s inception was sparked by founder Falguni Nayar’s visit to a Sephora store, where she experienced exceptional personalized service. Recognizing a similar need in the Indian market for an e-commerce platform dedicated to beauty and wellness products, she established Nykaa in 2012. The platform received its first order on October 24, 2012, and quickly gained traction by offering a vast selection of authentic Indian and international beauty brands.

By 2015, Nykaa expanded into physical retail, enhancing its presence through an omnichannel approach. This strategy fueled rapid growth, resulting in the platform handling over 1.3 million orders per month and selling approximately 104 products per minute.

Nykaa History

Nykaa Success Timeline

As of 2021, Nykaa has successfully built a loyal customer base, boasting a 72% repeat customer rate each month. It has emerged as a leading on-demand e-commerce platform, offering a diverse range of services:

  • Nykaa: Specializes in beauty and wellness products, including body care, makeup, and personal hygiene items.
  • Nykaa Man: A dedicated e-commerce app for men’s grooming products.
  • Nykaa Fashion: Focuses on branded and designer fashion items such as clothing, accessories, and footwear.
  • Nykaa Pro: An exclusive membership program providing special offers and educational content to salons, beauticians, and makeup artists.
  • Nykaa Luxe: Deals in luxury products from premium brands.
  • Nykaa On-Trend Stores: Physical stores offering makeup and beauty products from trending brands, staffed by professionals to assist customers in finding the right products for their needs.

Nykaa’s Key Milestones to Becoming a Unicorn:

  • 2012: Nykaa is founded and launches its e-commerce platform.
  • 2015: Expansion into physical retail stores begins.
  • 2023: Nykaa achieved a significant milestone by increasing its gross revenue by 36.3% to INR 5,144 crore for the fiscal year, despite a challenging economic environment. This included strategic acquisitions and investments in companies like Little Black Book (LBB), Earth Rhythm, Nudge Wellness, and KICA, further expanding its market presence.
  1. Rapid Growth: Increased order volume and product sales, becoming a dominant player in the beauty and wellness market.
  2. Unicorn Status: Nykaa’s consistent growth and innovative strategies culminated in its recognition as a unicorn startup.

Nykaa’s journey from a nascent startup to a leading unicorn showcases its strategic market positioning and commitment to delivering quality beauty products and services to Indian consumers.

Understanding the market demand for beauty and wellness apps 

The market demand for beauty and wellness apps has seen a significant rise in recent years, fueled by an increasing focus on self-care and personal wellness. As consumers become more health-conscious and seek convenient solutions for their beauty and wellness needs, the demand for apps that cater to these requirements has surged.

To truly understand the market demand for beauty and wellness apps, thorough market research is essential. This research should encompass analysis of consumer behavior, industry trends, competitor offerings, and technological advancements. By gaining insights into what consumers are looking for in beauty and wellness apps, businesses can identify opportunities for innovation and growth within this market segment.

Furthermore, staying attuned to market demands and continuously evolving to meet consumer needs will be critical for businesses looking to succeed in this competitive landscape. By leveraging data-driven insights and adopting a customer-centric approach, companies can develop beauty and wellness apps that not only meet market demand but also deliver value to users, ultimately driving growth and profitability.

How Nykaa Works-Business Model of Nykaa

Nykaa’s Multi-Faceted Business Model

Nykaa operates on a diverse and integrated business model that combines e-commerce, retail, private label brands, and more. Here’s a detailed breakdown of how Nykaa functions:

1. E-commerce Platform

Nykaa primarily functions as an online beauty and lifestyle marketplace. It offers a vast array of products across various categories, including:

  • Skincare
  • Makeup
  • Haircare
  • Fragrances
  • Wellness

Customers can browse through Nykaa’s website or mobile app, explore numerous brands, and make purchases conveniently from their homes.

2. Retail Stores

In addition to its online presence, Nykaa has established offline retail stores in major Indian cities. These stores provide customers the opportunity to:

  • Experience products firsthand
  • Seek expert advice
  • Make in-store purchases

These physical stores complement the online platform, enhancing the overall shopping experience.

3. Private Label Brands

Nykaa has successfully launched its own private label brands, offering a range of high-quality beauty and skincare products. These include:

  • Nykaa Cosmetics
  • Nykaa Naturals
  • Nykaa Bath & Body

By developing its own brands, Nykaa expands its product offerings and maintains control over quality and pricing.

4. Beauty Services

Nykaa has ventured into the beauty services segment with Nykaa Salon & Spa. Customers can book appointments for various beauty treatments, such as:

  • Haircuts and styling
  • Facials
  • Manicures and pedicures

This diversification allows Nykaa to cater to customers’ beauty needs beyond just product sales.

5. Influencer Collaborations

Nykaa collaborates with popular influencers and celebrities to create exclusive collections and limited-edition products. These collaborations help:

  • Generate buzz
  • Attract a wider audience
  • Create a unique selling proposition

6. Customer Loyalty Program

Nykaa’s loyalty program, Nykaa Rewards, allows customers to earn points on their purchases, which can be redeemed for discounts on future orders. This program encourages:

  • Customer retention
  • Repeat purchases

Nykaa Business Model and Growth in 2024

Target Consumer Base:

  • Active Product Seekers (19-25 years)
  • Busy Schedule Shoppers (27-45 years)
  • Beauty Conscious (25-45 years)
  • Brand Seekers (various age groups)
  • Expansion into New Consumer Bases:
  • Nykaa Man:
    • Targets men seeking grooming products with convenient access.
  • Nykaa Fashion:
    • Offers a wide range of fashion products from diverse brands and designers.
  • Nykaa Pro:
    • Serves professionals such as salons, beauticians, and makeup artists with professional beauty products at discounted prices.
  • Nykaa Luxe:
    • Caters to customers looking for premium and luxury Indian and international brands.
  • Revenue Generation:
  • Product Sales:
    • Revenue from sales of partner brands and Nykaa’s own product range.
  • Banner Advertisement:
    • Income generated from banner advertisements of partner brands across Nykaa’s platforms.
  • Commissions:
    • Income from commissions on sales, reported as INR 8.8 crore in FY19.
  • Parallel Services:
    • Additional revenue streams through Nykaa Man and Nykaa Fashion.

This strategic expansion and revenue model diversification position Nykaa for continued growth in 2024, tapping into broader consumer demographics and leveraging multiple income streams from product sales, advertising, commissions, and new service offerings.

Why Nykaa is Popular?

Nykaa stands out in the ecommerce landscape with its distinct features and customer-focused approach:

  • Extensive Product Range: Offering a diverse selection of beauty products from leading global brands.
  • Nationwide Shipping: Nykaa ensures prompt delivery across India, with over 95% of orders reaching customers within 3-5 business days.
  • Loyalty Programs: Attractive referral programs and a rewarding loyalty scheme contribute to a strong and loyal consumer base.
  • Credibility and Expertise: Nykaa has earned trust by providing professional beauty advice and personalized product recommendations.
  • Secure Payment Options: Multiple payment methods through integrated, secure payment gateways ensure convenience and trustworthiness.
  • Rewards Program: The Nykaa rewards program incentivizes repeat purchases, enhancing customer retention and satisfaction.

These factors collectively contribute to Nykaa’s popularity among consumers seeking reliable, affordable, and comprehensive beauty solutions online.

Identifying key features and functionalities 

When it comes to identifying key features and functionalities for your product or service, it’s important to approach the task with a strategic and systematic mindset. Start by conducting thorough market research to understand the needs and preferences of your target audience. This will help you prioritize which features are essential for meeting customer demands and expectations.

Next, consider benchmarking your competitors to see what features they offer and how you can differentiate yourself in the market. Look for opportunities to innovate and introduce unique functionalities that will set your product apart from the competition.

Additionally, collaborate with cross-functional teams to gather input from different perspectives and ensure that the features and functionalities align with your overall business goals. By taking a comprehensive and analytical approach to identifying key features and functionalities, you can develop a product or service that resonates with customers and drives success for your business.

Choosing the Right Technology Stack

Choosing the right technology stack for your project is crucial in ensuring its success and scalability. A technology stack is essentially a set of tools, languages, and frameworks that work together to build and run your application.

When selecting a technology stack, you’ll need to consider factors such as the project requirements, scalability, performance, security, and developer expertise. You’ll want to choose technologies that are widely supported, have a strong community, and are known for their reliability and security.

Some popular technology stacks include the LAMP stack (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP), MEAN stack (MongoDB, Express.js, AngularJS, Node.js), and MERN stack (MongoDB, Express.js, React.js, Node.js). However, the best technology stack for your project will ultimately depend on your specific needs and goals.

By carefully assessing your project requirements and conducting thorough research, you can confidently select the right technology stack that will help you achieve your project’s objectives. Remember, choosing the right technology stack is a critical decision that will impact the success of your project in the long run.

Designing a user-friendly interface 

Designing a user-friendly interface is crucial in today’s digital age where user experience is paramount. A well-designed interface can make the difference between a successful product and one that is quickly forgotten. To create a user-friendly interface, it is essential to consider the needs and preferences of the target audience. Conducting user research and usability testing can provide valuable insights into how users interact with the interface and what improvements can be made.

When designing a user-friendly interface, it is important to keep things simple and intuitive. Clear navigation and visual hierarchy can help users easily find what they are looking for. Consistent design elements and familiar patterns can also enhance usability. Additionally, incorporating user feedback and continuously iterating on the design can ensure that the interface meets the needs of users and provides a pleasant experience.

Ensuring seamless payment and security systems

When it comes to ensuring seamless payment and security systems for your company, there are several key steps you can take to protect both your business and your customers. First and foremost, it is essential to implement secure and reliable payment processing technology. This means working with trusted payment service providers that offer encryption and other security measures to protect sensitive financial information.

In addition to secure payment processing, it is also important to regularly update and maintain your systems to prevent vulnerabilities and potential security breaches. This includes regularly monitoring for any unusual activity or potential threats and implementing strong authentication methods to verify the identity of users.

Finally, educating your employees and customers about best practices for online security is crucial in maintaining a secure payment system. By providing training and resources on how to recognize and avoid phishing scams, malware, and other cyber threats, you can help protect your business and build trust with your customers.

Overall, by prioritizing secure payment and security systems, you can ensure a smooth and safe experience for both your company and your customers.

Testing and launching the app

Testing and launching an app is a critical phase in the app development process. Before releasing any app to the public, thorough testing must be conducted to ensure that the app functions as intended and delivers a seamless user experience. This process involves various types of testing, including functionality testing, compatibility testing, performance testing, and security testing.

Functionality testing focuses on making sure that all features and functionalities of the app work correctly and as expected. Compatibility testing ensures that the app runs smoothly on different devices and operating systems. Performance testing assesses the app’s speed, responsiveness, and stability under various conditions. Security testing is essential to identify and address any vulnerabilities that may compromise user data or the app’s integrity.

Once testing is complete and any issues have been resolved, the app can be launched to the public. A successful app launch requires effective planning, marketing, and communication to generate excitement and attract users. It is also crucial to monitor the app’s performance post-launch and gather feedback to make any necessary improvements. By following a strategic approach to testing and launching the app, developers can increase the chances of creating a successful and well-received app.

How to find right App Development Company

When it comes to finding the right app development company for your business, there are a few key factors to consider to ensure you make a well-informed decision.

First and foremost, you’ll want to take a look at the company’s portfolio and track record. Look for a company that has experience developing apps in your industry or niche, as they will have a better understanding of your target audience and business needs.

Next, consider the company’s expertise and skill set. Make sure they have a team of experienced developers, designers, and project managers who can bring your app idea to life.

Communication is also crucial when working with an app development company. Look for a company that values transparent and open communication, and keeps you updated on the progress of your project every step of the way.

Finally, don’t forget to consider the company’s pricing and payment structure. Make sure you understand how much the project will cost and what is included in the price. It’s also a good idea to inquire about any additional fees or charges that may arise during the development process.

By carefully considering these factors and conducting thorough research, you can find the right app development company that aligns with your business goals and objectives.

Which development model best for product development for non-tech founders or tech founders

When it comes to product development, choosing the right development model is crucial for the success of your project. Whether you are a non-tech founder or a tech founder, selecting the appropriate development model can make a significant difference in the efficiency and outcome of your product.

For non-tech founders, an Agile development model may be more suitable as it allows for flexibility, adaptability, and collaboration throughout the development process. Agile is known for its iterative approach, which enables continuous feedback and improvements based on user input. This can be particularly beneficial for non-tech founders who may not have as much technical expertise but still want to be involved in the product development process.

On the other hand, tech founders may lean towards a more traditional Waterfall development model. Waterfall is a sequential approach to development, with distinct phases such as planning, design, implementation, testing, and maintenance. This model provides a clear structure and timeline for the project, which can be advantageous for tech founders who have a strong understanding of the technical aspects of product development.

Ultimately, the best development model for product development will depend on various factors such as the complexity of the project, team dynamics, budget, timeline, and individual preferences. It is essential to evaluate these factors carefully and choose a development model that aligns with your goals and objectives to ensure successful product development.

Hiring Dedicated Developers and Designers

Hiring dedicated developers and designers can be a strategic move for your company, as it allows you to have a team of skilled professionals solely focused on your project. When looking to hire dedicated developers and designers, there are a few important factors to consider.

First and foremost, you’ll want to clearly define your project requirements and objectives. This will help you identify the specific skills and experience you need in the developers and designers you hire. Additionally, consider the size and scope of your project, as this will determine the number of developers and designers you’ll need on your team.

When it comes to actually hiring dedicated developers and designers, you have a few options. You can choose to hire individuals directly, either as full-time employees or on a contract basis. Alternatively, you can work with a reputable development and design agency that can provide you with a team of dedicated professionals tailored to your project needs.

Regardless of the route you choose, be sure to thoroughly vet the developers and designers you’re considering hiring. Look for individuals with strong technical skills, relevant experience, and a track record of delivering high-quality work. By taking the time to carefully select the right team members, you can set your project up for success from the start.

Estimating the Price to Develop an App Comparable to Nykaa

Here is a breakdown of the estimated costs involved in developing a clone of an app like Nykaa for someone at different stages:

1. Idea Stage:

– Market research and analysis: $500-$1,000

– UI/UX design: $1,000-$2,500

– Prototype development: $1,000-$2,000

– Initial app development: $5,000-$10,000

– Total estimated cost: $7,500-$15,500

2. Refinement Stage :

– Further market research and analysis: $500-$1,000

– Refinement of UI/UX design: $1,000-$2,500

– Prototype iteration: $1,000-$2,000

– App development and testing: $10,000-$20,000

– Total estimated cost: $12,500-$25,500

3. Industry Experience Stage:

– Advanced market research and analysis: $1,000-$2,000

– Professional UI/UX design: $2,500-$5,000

– Iterative prototype development: $2,000-$4,000

– Full-fledged app development and testing: $15,000-$30,000

– Total estimated cost: $20,500-$41,000

It is important to note that these are rough estimates and the actual costs may vary based on several factors such as the complexity of the app, features included, development platform, developer rates, and location. Additionally, ongoing maintenance and updates will incur additional costs.

Marketing and promoting your Nykaa-like app

When it comes to marketing and promoting a Nykaa-like app, it is essential to have a strategic plan in place to reach your target audience effectively. Start by conducting thorough market research to understand the needs and preferences of your potential customers. This will help you tailor your marketing strategies to appeal to your target demographic.

Utilize a mix of online and offline marketing channels to increase brand visibility and attract new users to your app. Collaborate with influencers and beauty bloggers to create buzz around your app and reach a wider audience. Utilize social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to engage with your audience and showcase your app’s features and benefits.

Invest in search engine optimization (SEO) to improve your app’s visibility in search engine results and drive organic traffic to your app. Consider running targeted advertising campaigns on platforms like Google AdWords and Facebook Ads to reach potential customers who are actively searching for beauty and skincare products.

Measure the success of your marketing campaigns by tracking key performance indicators (KPIs) like app downloads, user engagement, and retention rates. Use the data insights gathered to refine your marketing strategies and optimize your app promotion efforts for maximum impact. By following these steps, you can effectively market and promote your Nykaa-like app to attract a loyal customer base and drive growth for your business.

Continuously updating and improving the app

In today’s rapidly evolving technology landscape, staying competitive hinges on the continuous enhancement and refinement of your app. Regularly gathering user feedback through surveys, reviews, and testing sessions is essential for pinpointing areas needing improvement and prioritizing updates. It’s also crucial to stay abreast of industry trends and technological advancements to integrate new features, enhance usability, and optimize performance. By actively monitoring app analytics and responding to user insights, companies can ensure their apps not only remain relevant and user-friendly but also demonstrate a commitment to delivering exceptional user experiences. This proactive approach not only maintains competitiveness but also fosters long-term user satisfaction and loyalty.

Why Choose CloudTrains for Your App Development Like Nykaa?

At CloudTrains, we bring a wealth of expertise and experience to ensure your app development journey is seamless and successful. With a dedicated team of over 70 developers, we have successfully delivered more than 120 apps, demonstrating our capability and commitment to excellence. Our founders bring invaluable experience from their tenure in various enterprises and startups, with accolades including recognition from Silicon Valley and selections by prestigious programs like Y Combinator and Microsoft Ventures.

Our versatile development models cater to diverse needs, offering flexibility whether you require end-to-end app development or dedicated developers on a contract basis. We pride ourselves on agility, capable of assembling a dedicated team for you within just 7 days from initial contact. With a bench pool of over 5000 developers, we ensure that your project receives the expertise and attention it deserves, delivering high-quality results that meet your business objectives effectively. Choose CloudTrains for your app development needs and experience innovation, reliability, and excellence firsthand.


In conclusion, developing an app similar to Nykaa requires careful planning, attention to detail, and a focus on delivering a seamless user experience. By incorporating features such as user-friendly navigation, personalized content recommendations, easy search functionality, and a visually appealing design, you can create a successful app that attracts and retains users.

Ultimately, building a app like Nykaa involves a combination of technical expertise, creativity, and strategic thinking. By following best practices in app development and staying up-to-date with industry trends, you can create a valuable platform that resonates with users and drives success for your business.

Team CloudTrains

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