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Christine Kern
October 26, 2016

Breaking Into the App Stores: How To Get Your New Mobile App Recognized


You’ve done the research, you’ve scoped out your potential users’ needs, and you’ve developed a killer mobile app. Now you need to get that app into the app stores. How do you do it?

When it comes to choosing a potential app store to house and distribute your new mobile app, you have choices. But how do you get them to accept your new creation? 

Selecting the Right App Platform

Choosing the right platform to launch your app is essential to its success.You have several options, with Apple and Google Play being among the most popular.

Apple reports that it has sold over 590 million iPhones between 2007 and 2014, and another 10 million iPads, which makes the Apple App store an attractive location for your new app. It’s also an extension of the iTunes store, which also makes placement of an app there a tacit endorsement of the technology giant.

But Apple is not the only game in town. More than 1.6 billion Droid phones have been sold worldwide, with an average of 355,000 Android phones activated every day, and Droid phones hold 46.7 percent of the smart phone marketplace.  Add to those figures the fact that 15,000 new Android apps are released each month on average, with over 1.7 million Android apps in circulation, and the Google Play store becomes another great location for launching your new app.

Google Play also offers support and advice for launching new apps. Google Play is the premier store for distribution of Android apps, with an audience of more than 1 billion active Android users in more than 190 countries and territories around the globe. They even offer the Playbook app for developers, which allows them to “stay on top of the features and best practices you can use to grow your app or game business on Google Play.”

The Apple approval process is a complex and rather murky process that can be difficult to penetrate, particularly compared to Google’s Android Market.  Alasdair Allan, a developer and author of the O’Reilly book Learning iPhone Programming, calls this Apple “wall of secrecy” the most difficult challenge facing developers. On the Google Play Store, basically app authors just need to read this launch checklist, to ensure that they are meeting Google guidelines.

Getting Your Apps Approved

To ensure acceptance of your new app, here are some quality tips:

Make sure the app really works.

Then add a helping of prayer. No one wants to accept an app full of bugs or problems. Apple does reject app that is in beta, test, trial, or demo phases, so be sure it’s a completed, market-ready app.

Remember that Apple is not the only game in town.

Android and HTML5 are also significant options for offering mobile apps, and in contrast to Apple’s rigorous acceptance process, Google’s Android Market is simple for developers to enter.

Keep it deceptively simple for first rollout.

Bells and whistles can always be added later. “Usually the best strategy is to just do whatever you can to get it approved the first time,” explains developer Gen Kiyooka, since the response time for updates tends to be faster than for initial submissions. “And then once it’s been approved, then you can start exploring, like, ‘Oh can I put this feature in?’ It’s definitely its own learning process because it’s so opaque. You hardly get any feedback about what’s going on.”

Make sure your app loads quickly.

Your app’s load time is the first chance to impress users, so long load times are a no-no.

Be original.

Do your research and offer up an app that does not duplicate dozens of others already on the market. Make it unique and proprietary. Apple explained, “We have over 250,000 apps in the App Store. WE don’t need any more Fart apps. If your app doesn’t do something useful or provide some form of lasting entertainment, it may not be accepted.”

Follow the rules, to the letter.

The Apple Submission Guidelines are quite clear and explicit.  “When it comes down to it if you want to sell in the app store you play by people’s rules,” Mr. Allan said. “And to a certain extent I could see why people might want different rules, but it’s Apple’s ball and if they want to pick it up and go home they can.

If your app does get rejected, don’t panic. You have the opportunity to address the issue and resubmit it for consideration. Obviously, studying submission guidelines and creating a high-quality app can help avoid rejection in the first place. AppSheet offers a whitelabel option for the Google Play Store. A whitelabel version of an AppSheet app is a native mobile application with your own branding, that you can publish directly in an app store or distribute on your own.

Let AppSheet help you create a customized mobile-app that will pass the review process with flying colors! Your users will thank you for it. 

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