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How To Submit An App To The App Store

 

App submission is often an afterthought. But ensuring you submit your app to the App Store properly (a service included in our end-to-end development) is an important first step to ensure exposure and entice users to download.

 

That’s why we made this step-by-step guide to App Store submission. This guide contains all the steps required to properly submit an iOS app to the App Store.

 

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Prerequisites

  1. Project that is ready for submission and passes Apple’s App Store Guidelines
  2. Valid Apple developer program account (not the Apple Developer Enterprise Program)
  3. Computer that runs Mac OS X
  4. The following programs installed:
    1. Xcode
    2. Keychain Access

Step Overview

Below you will find a list of guides, each describing how to do one of the steps required for submitting an app.

  1. Assemble App Store Information
  2. Create a Bundle Identifier
  3. Create a Certificate Signing Request
  4. Create an App Store Production Certificate
  5. Create a Production Provisioning Profile
  6. Create an App Store Listing
  7. Create a Release Build
  8. Fill in the Version Information
  9. Submit Version for Review
  10. Release

1. Assemble App Information

It is very important to collect all of the information you need to submit before you start the process.  More Information Here.

 

Requirements Notes
Screenshots You need at least one for every supported device screen size.  The screenshots cannot contain transparency
Name Name of the app as seen by users
Description A description of your app, detailing features and functionality
Keywords Separate keywords with a comma
Support URL A URL with support information for your app
Marketing URL A URL with marketing information about your app, optional
Privacy Policy URL A URL containing your app’s privacy policy, optional
App Icon This icon will be used on the App Store and must be in the JPG or PNG format, with a minimum resolution of at least 72 DPI, and in the RGB color space. It must not contain layers or rounded corners.
Categories Secondary category is optional
Rating Generate your rating based on the questionnaire  More Information Here
Copyright Use the format: YYYY Company Name
Trade Representative Contact Information Only appears on the Korean App Store, optional
Demo Account “The username and password for a full-access account for your app. Include details for additional accounts in the Notes field.”

2. Create a Bundle Identifier

The bundle identifier is the name of your app, as seen by both the App Store and iOS devices.

  1. In your browser, navigate to Apple’s Developer Portal
  2. Log in
  3. Click Identifiers
  4. Click the “+” in the top right of the screen
  5. Name the App ID the same as your app
  6. Make sure the Bundle ID follows the standard naming convention: com.yourcompanyname.yourappname
  7. Check any App Services the app needs, click Continue
  8. Verify the services are correct, then click Submit

3. Create a Certificate Signing Request

Certificate Signing Requests are used to link your computer to your Apple developer account.

  1. Open a program called KeyChain Access
  2. In the top left menu, click Certificate Assistant
  3. Click Request a Certificate From a Certificate Authority…
    User email: Enter your email address
    Common Name: We recommend using the name of the app
    CA email is not actually required
  4. Check Saved to Disk, click Continue
  5. Save the Certificate Signing Request for later

4. Create an App Store Production Certificate

Code Signing Certificates are used to link iOS apps to your Apple developer account.

  1. In your browser, navigate to Apple’s Developer Portal
  2. Click Certificates
  3. Click the “+” in the top right of the screen
  4. Click the App Store Production
    Currently named “App Store and Ad Hoc” under Production
  5. Click Continue
  6. Upload the Certificate Signing Request created earlier
  7. Download the Certificate
  8. Install the certificate on your computer by double clicking
  9. Keep this file somewhere safe

5. Create a Production Provisioning Profile

Provisioning Profiles are packaged with iOS apps so users devices can install them.

  1. In your browser, navigate to Apple’s Developer Portal
  2. Log in
  3. Click Provisioning Profiles
  4. Click the “+” in the top right of the screen
  5. Click the App Store Distribution option, click Continue
  6. Select the Bundle ID created earlier, click Continue
  7. Select the Certificate created earlier, click Continue
  8. Make sure the Profile Name follows the standard naming convention: App Name App Store Distribution
  9. Click Generate
  10. Download it
  11. Install the provision profile on your computer by double clicking
  12. Keep this file somewhere safe

6. Create App Store Listing

Reserve a slot in the App Store for your app for users to see.

  1. Start in your browser, navigate to iTunes Connect
  2. Log in
  3. Click My Apps
  4. Click the “+” in the top left of the screen
  5. Click “New iOS App”
  6. Bundle ID: choose the one created on Developer Portal
  7. For convenience, make the SKU match the Bundle ID created earlier
  8. Click Create to create the first version listing

7. Make the release build

Package the actual binary that users will be uploading to the store.

  1. Start Xcode
  2. Open the project or workspace
  3. Update the version and build numbers
  4. Open Build Settings
  5. Make sure All settings is selected
  6. Scroll to Code Signing
  7. Use the provisioning profile created earlier
  8. Use the code signing identity created earlier
  9. In the top menu, select Generic iOS Device as the build destination if no actual device is connected
  10. Menu, Project, Archive
  11. Click Distribute
  12. Sign in as your apple developer account
  13. Submit to app store
  14. Wait for the confirmation

8. Fill In Version Information

Users will decide whether or not to install your app based on your store listing.

  1. Enter all of the information assembled in step 1
  2. Select the build you wish to tie to the version (Note: This usually appears 10-15 minutes after sending from Xcode)
  3. Fill in pricing information
  4. Click Save
  5. Fit any errors based on the messages that appear and save changes

9. Submit Version for Review

Every app that is submitted to the store has to be reviewed by the Apple team before release.

  1. Select the release type
    Manual release – after the app is accepted, a Release button will appear
    Automatic release – as soon as the app is accepted, it will be released
  2. Wait for approval
    This process usually takes 2-3 weeks for a new submission
  3. If your app was not approved, review the notes in the Resolution Center and make any necessary changes to the app or version information then resubmit

10. Release

Enjoy the final, most satisfying step.

  1. If you selected Manual release, click Release your app when ready
  2. Wait for the green “Ready for Sale” version status (This might take from 1 hour to 1 day after release)
  3. Search for your app on the App Store
  4. Celebrate!

 

When submitting a new version of your app, you will only have to repeat steps 7 through 10.

 

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John Ziolkowski