Blog, iOS

How to Publish an iOS App on The App Store – Practical Tips

Barbara Rogala

Preparing to publish your iOS App on the iOS App Store? Perfect! We gathered for you practical tips, useful links and crucial checklists, which will help you to submit your app to the iOS store. All you need in one place!

At Droids On Roids, we help our customers with publishing apps on the iOS App Store, but we know that someone could be lost in this long list of things to do. You can find a lot of sites with detailed instructions, but this article is not one of them. Instead, we have gathered all the practical tips, crucial checklists and even helpful links to more information – all in one place!

You can also find out, how to publish an Android App on the Google Play Store!

# 1 Setup your iTunes Connect account

At the beginning of the iOS app publication process you need to have an active and paid account in iTunes Connect, as well as an active iOS Developer Program. Once these are set up:

  • Configure the account (read more)
  • Choose an iOS Developer Program (not Enterprise – it can only be used for internal purposes) in the Apple Member Center – (read more)

#2 Gather everything required to release the app

First of all, you need to create a new app for your product in your configured iTunes Connect account, which we’ve just discussed (see a detailed guide here). Secondly, you must prepare the app page and – for the purposes of making this process as smooth as it can be – below you can find the list of required things to prepare.

  • Categories for the app (max. 2) (read more)
  • An app icon in the proper resolution (1024 x 1024px)
  • The name of the app that will be displayed in the App Store. It is not the title that appears below the app icon on the user’s device (see an example here)
  • URL to the Privacy Policy of the company
  • URL to the Support page of the company
  • Pricing (info if app is free or paid)
  • Countries where the app will be distributed (e.g. the whole world/Europe/Poland only)
  • An app description (e.g. most valuable features, short instructions on how to use the app) (see an example)
  • Keywords for the app (they will be used to search applications easier)
  • The name of your company
  • Contact Person from your company (Name, Surname, State, Country, Zip Code, Telephone, E-Mail)
  • App Screens – there are two possible styles for screens and it can be prepared in a 1242×2208 format (for iPhones), and other images will be scaled automatically. A .png file is a preferred format.
  • (Optional) Info about in-app payments (yes/no)
  • (Optional) Info about advertisements
  • (Optional) Promo Video
  • (Optional) Demo account (required when the app requires signing in to see all functions)
  • (Optional) Promo Video if there is hardware that is required to use the app correctly (e.g. wireless earbuds, drones, virtual reality headsets)

Now we are moving to the third step which you need to remember when submitting your iOS app to the App Store.

#3 Upload the app

Just like the previous steps, you must have an iTunes Connect account or have the owner add you as a Developer. You can read more detailed info about these roles in iTunes Connect. You will also need the Apple Member Center account (created one step before) and some of Apple’s app development tools, such as Xcode, at your disposal.

To prepare the proper application file, you have to establish a few crucial things that will be connected to your app for the length of its availability in the App Store.

In the Apple Member Center:

  • Assign Access for developers to the Apple Member Center (see guide)
  • Generate a Distribution Certificate (more info)
  • Create Distribution Provisioning profiles (more info)
  • Create an app ID with a unique bundle ID. Caution: Once you upload your app to iTunes Connect, you cannot change the ID. The bundle ID defines your application’s identity so, if you change it, then it is considered to be a different app and users of the previous version cannot update to the new version (more info here and here)

Using the things listed above, you can generate a proper build ready for uploading. It’s a good idea to ask your developer to do that for you, especially if you are only a businessman (generating an .ipa file requires some technical knowledge and so on).

In iTunes Connect:

  • Upload an .ipa file to the existing app in iTunes Connect (read more)

TIP: Don’t be afraid when your app will not become immediately visible, iTunes Connect needs some time after uploading an .ipa file to process it on Apple’s servers.

#4 App review and release

When your app is prepared to be published on the iOS App Store and all the information has been added to the account, you have to decide when you want to publish. You have three options to consider:

  • Automatic release (will be published just after Apple accepts your app)
  • Automatic release, no earlier than (will be published just after Apple accepts your app but not earlier than a chosen day and time)
  • Manual release (you have to choose the proper moment, so everything remains at your discretion)

TIP: Check the Test Flight functionalities. It is a good alternative if you want to send your app to the group of testers before final release.

Wrap up & free PDF

Et Voila! I hope these tips will help you in publishing your iOS App to the App Store. You are now ready to send your app to Apple for review, which is required before the app will be available in the App Store. The review process can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days, but keep calm and be sure that when Apple finds something wrong with your app, you will be informed about it as soon as they find an issue.

We prepared for you also handy checklist, so you can easily use it whenever you want. Be in the swim in your app publishing process! Sign to our newsletter below.

Happy publishing!

You can also find out, how to publish an Android App on the Google Play Store!

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