Understanding the App Review Process
Before your app is available for download in the Apple App Store and Google Play store, it must be approved by Apple and Google respectively. To get your app approved, there are several guidelines that you must follow in regards to your app’s appearance and functionality.
After submitting the VisitApps ‘Build & Submit’ ticket, it can take between 4-10 business days for us to build, provision, submit, and gain store approval of your app. Therefore, you’ll want to be sure you follow the guidelines below for the best chance of having your app approved by both Apple and Google without issue.
Common Issues with App Store Approval and How to Avoid Them
Do Not Have Empty Items/Containers
You cannot have any items or containers in your app that are empty. All items and containers must contain content that is useful in order to be approved.
Do not include any "Coming soon," or "Under construction," wording within the app. If there is a container that you would like to expand upon later, delete the item/container from the MAS for the time being. You can rebuild it after it has been approved by stores.
Do Not Mention Google Android
To get through Apple’s review process, do not make any mention of Google Android or "other phones/devices," in your app. Also, check any stock images that you may be using. Do not use stock images that include Android phones or headphones.
Do Not Make Edits While the App is in Review
Once you submit the VisitApps approval form, do not make any changes to your app for at least 24 hours. The app stores need to review the app in its current state. If you make any changes during the review process it can extend your review time or cause it to be rejected.
Do Not Have Internal Transactions
If your app includes any sort of monetary transaction option, be sure that it is conducted outside of the app. The Apple App Store does not allow for any transactions to be processed within the app. Be sure to use the "Open Externally" option when linking to transaction pages.
Can I Test My App on a Device Before I Launch It?
Once you have completed the creation of your app in the VisitApps MAS, it is sent for approval by the Apple App Store and Google Play. Once approved, your app will be live.
That means you won’t be able to download a test version, but you can control how many people find or use your app by not announcing it until you’re ready. One way to do this is by setting up a soft launch.
How to Manage a Soft Launch of Your App
A soft launch refers to setting aside a designated amount of time for your team to test the app before distribution. We recommend keeping this group small. Typically only the members of your organization that have worked in purchasing or contributing to the content of your app.
Invite this group of people to download the app and test it. Solicit any feedback on design, layout and functionality. This information will be very helpful, because it’s possible that some of the things you built in the VisitApps MAS won’t translate the way you expected in the live app. This gives you the opportunity to make changes before promoting the app to the rest of your audience.
How long should it last?
We recommend allowing 1-2 weeks for soft launch. This is enough time to test the functionality of the app, as well as make substantial content changes if necessary.