How to successfully submit your mobile application to the App Store

When all the stages of mobile development are passed, it is time to finally deploy your application to the Google Play Market or an App Store. But, it can be not so simple as it may seem at the first look. Publishing your application in the stores requires an extra working process and supplementary materials. In this article, we want to share with you our experience and hidden unexpectancies that could be faced while adding your application to the store.

As a software development agency, we developed plenty of mobile apps for different clients from all over the globe within our 10 years of commercial development experience. Today we want to break down on the App Store and tell you how to avoid some major and minor mistakes with your application’s publishment.

Over the years Apple’s App Store has grown into a full ecosystem for iOS mobile applications. That is why every publisher should have a clear understanding of its rules to make the process of application submission as smooth as possible. Even a small mistake can prevent your mobile app from publishing.

Rules and Restrictions

One of the biggest reasons for app rejection is inappropriate content. It won’t matter how good the quality of your mobile application if it is simply do not follow the rules of Apple and contains inappropriate content. Remember, that such content as bigoted, racist, sexist, or homophobic references, sexual or pornographic material, comments inciting religious intolerance, erroneous and false information will not ever be submitted to the store under any circumstances. Here’s a list of all of the Apple’s App Store restricted content.

Before You Submit

Another issue which many of the entrepreneurs might face at the mobile application store upload phase is a copycat restriction. You must be aware, that if your mobile application copies another already existing app it will never be accepted by the App Store review team. Apple’s team carefully reviews all of the applications that are being published to the store and won’t never allow publishment of similar to already listed apps. This point must be assumed at the very beginning of the mobile app development stage, cause it may lead to an unreasonable waste of money for the mobile app development. Before making an app you need to ensure that your design and functionality do not fully copies any of the already existing apps in this category to prevent facing of such denial from the App Store.

Also, the second way to ensure that your mobile application will not be rejected is to test it on any bugs and glitches. Through the testings you can check if the functionality of your app is stable and everything runs as supposed to. Apple’s review team won’t allow your mobile app to join their market if they will find any bugs or glitches in it. In addition, you need to make sure that your application fits well and do not have any bugs on different screen sizes. Even if the reviewing team won’t find any bugs, we highly suggest to make sure that everything works well to prevent negative feedback from your mobile application users.

Register your Apple Developer account

In order to submit your mobile application for a review you need to register an Apple Developer account. Registration, by the way, is not free and will cost 99$ per year for an individual developer and 299$ per year for a team membership.

The Apple Developer program offers not only the ability to publish your application into the Apple Store, but also provides such features as analytics of your mobile app, beta testing and more.

Appstore icons

Prepare the materials

Before preparing the materials for the App Store, you should understand the structure of the store and how it works. Also, you must understand that the marketing of your application within the market will rely on the quality of the prepared materials, especially if you would like to hit the “Featured” tab. Apple select applications based on the variety of factors, all of which amount to a great product that customers will love. There is no paid placement or checklist of requirements for applications they write about or feature.

Your mobile application should have a detailed description and all the necessary information about its functionality. Remember, that if you are going to use some other brands in your content, it is important to provide all the materials that will prove your rights to use them. The metadata of your app must include: name, version, category, detailed description and additional keywords. Apple provides very detailed information about the required metadata for the app. Be aware, that the description of your application could be a potential pitfall if you will not take it seriously.

As much as metadata you will be required to prepare some additional content for your application’s page. The following  content should be prepared: icon, up to 3 videos, and up to 5 screenshots (all localised to user’s region), promotional banner, short subtitle, description.

Uploading your mobile application

Once you prepared all the required materials, you can finally submit your application for a review via Xcode or Application Loader. Then you will need to upload your application into the iTunes Connect After you will load the app to your  account it will be displayed for an upload. In order to start uploading in, you need to mark the status “Prepare for Submission”. If everything was done according to Apple’s specifications the app will be sent to their servers for a review.  After that, your mobile application will be verified for a validation.

Before submitting your mobile application for a review we recommend using TestFlight to distribute a beta version and test the app until the user experience reaches its highest point.

After the initiation of the review procedure your application will get a “Waiting for a Review” status. The review of your app may take from 1 to 3 days, but sometimes it can also take even up to 2 weeks if some unexpected difficulties will happen. You can check current average App Store review time here. Pre-submission process always increases a chance that your mobile app will not be rejected.

If your mobile app however will be rejected, you can solve the problem by contacting the Apple’s reviewing team directly through the Resolution Center.
Also, Apple provides a list of common reasons and statistics for app rejections.

Releasing your mobile application

Once your application is successfully reviewed, you can request manual or automatic publishment to the store. Manual release is always available when your app is reviewed and ready for release. The automatic release will launch your app to go through all of the stages from review to release by itself. This option is available when you are releasing the new version of your mobile app and don’t want to do all the processes manually.

The key of successful submitment to the App Store

The submitment of your first iOS mobile application may be both exciting and unnerving process. To successfully submit your app to the store you must be flexible as much as attentive to all the details of Apple’s review. However, if you are working with an experienced mobile application development team they should be aware of every hidden gem that could be faced during the review of an application. Despite potential risks of mobile application’s delayment, reaching the millions of App Store users is a rewarding process. 

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