Apple’s invention of the iPhone in 2007 heralded the smartphone and app regime. It is estimated that by the end of 2018, there will be 2.5 billion active smartphones worldwide. Consumer data firm Statista, estimates that there were 3.8 million Android apps on Google Play Store in the first quarter of 2018. On the other hand, Apple’s App Store for iOS reached a record 2 million apps. With so many options to choose from, smartphone users are overwhelmed with a variety of apps for their daily tasks. The saying goes, “There’s an app for that”.
As an app publisher, there are things you need to figure out before you publish to Apple’s App Store or Google Play Store. This checklist will help you ensure you’re ready for app primetime.
1. Publisher Requirements
Before your app gets pushed to the public, it’s important to read through the publisher requirements for the respective platform. Google and Apple manage two of the world’s biggest mobile app stores and have different requirements before your app will be accepted onto their platforms. You can read Apple’s app developer guidelines here and Google’s guidelines for Android here.
2.App size and Compatibility
How large is your app? If you’ve built a game or other robust app, you might get away with an app in gigabytes but if you’re providing a service, you want to make your app as small as possible so users can download it faster.
Your app also needs to be built to run on multiple devices. iOS apps are easier to build in this aspect because Apple controls the standard of a few devices while Android phones are in the millions. You should build your app to support a majority of devices on either platform. Alternatively, develop your app for the devices your target customers use.
You can test your app during development with real-world devices or use emulators to simulate life-like situations and devices.
3. Business Model
How do you intend to monetise or maintain the app’s services? There are several options to monetise apps including in-app purchases, upgrades to more features or subscription to content. It’s important for you to figure this out before you launch so it’s clear how you want to make money and if your business model is sustainable in the long run.
When your app is published to the app store, how would you get its intended users to find it? There are several distribution channels you could use to market your app and get users to download them. Some channels include paid adverts on the app store or on social media and reviews on app review sites like Android Authority.
5. Managing Customer Feedback & Complaints
Google and Apple both have a comment section beneath each app. This section helps users to rate apps and leave their complaints or feedback. Feedback is great because it’s a direct connection between app developers and users, allowing them to share ideas they have or just telling you how you could make your app better.
You also need to set up a process for handling complaints from failed purchases, signups and bugs within the app.
6. Marketing Visuals
App Stores want users to see what is promised before they download and have provided a section for screenshots and videos. You can take advantage of this by highlighting the most important features of your app and include a walkthrough video.
Zoto’s video below introduces the app as the fastest way to recharge in Nigeria. The video simple, uncluttered and easy to understand.
7. Optimise for Search
Like I said earlier, there are billions of smartphone users around the world and they are searching for apps to meet their needs. If your company or app name isn’t popular, you can take advantage of these searches by describing your app in the title section. You basically need to state what your app does or what problem it solves. This improves discovery for your app and leads to more downloads.
8. App description
Your app’s description is one of the most important sections on app stores. Ensure your app’s features accurately describe what problem your app solves and how it solves the problem. If there are any paid features or upgrades required to access certain features, you should state it plainly.
The description section helps potential users decide if you provide the services they need and help prevent uninstalls due to disappointment with your app.
8. Upgrade Plan
Now that your app is ready for publishing, you need to make plans for upgrading the app. Apple and Google refresh iOS and Android annually; adding new features, designs and capabilities. Your app should be designed in-line with the OS’s design language and could also take advantage of technological advancements in smartphones.
Following this checklist will get your app ready for downloads and app store success. Thinking of building a business via your app? Download our guide to product development here.