Iubenda logo
Start generating


Table of Contents

App Development 101 – From Idea to App Stores

Want to create your own app? Want to get a general overview and some resources for app development? We’ve got you covered! There are a number of steps to take (and in many different areas!) when developing your app.

👀 In this article, we give you a quick overview of all the things you need to do for successful app development!

Using iOS or Android? Checkout some best practices here →

App Development Stages: How do I Start Developing my App?

📌 Research and Planning

You probably already have a clear idea in mind, but don’t overlook research and planning before you get into the technical part. Make sure to define the concept of your future app in detail: what makes it unique? Are there already similar apps on the market? What is your target audience?

You also need to clarify budget questions. It can vary depending on the complexity of your app (i.e. 2D or 3D), the number of people needed (developers, designers)… That’s why it’s important to figure this out from the very beginning!

Can you build an app for free?

Developing high-quality apps comes at a cost, since they most likely require high-performance tools and specialized people for design, mechanics and programming. Know, however, that plenty of free resources are out there, including open-source software, no-code app builders that can help build a low-complexity app and control costs.

👉 How to Create an App for Free and Make Money

Learn everything you need to know!

🔍 Want to more about planning and creating a mobile game? Check out our beginner’s guide here.

📌 Programming and App Development Tools

If you don’t decide to outsource the technical process, you will need to refine your app development skills! Here again, there are plenty of resources on the internet, from forums to tutorials. Listed below are some key topics you’ll need to get into:

  • Programming languages: most popular include JavaScript, Java, Kotlin, Dart, C++, C#, Python, Swift. Make sure it’s adapted to the platform you’ll be developing and has a strong community support;
  • Development tools: common examples are Android Studio, Xcode and Visual Studio. They help with writing, testing your code, and debugging (they provide integrated development environments).
  • Development platform: Android, iOS, or cross-platforms like React Native or Flutter. Choose one that best fit your needs.

📌 Design, UX and UI for App Development

Design plays a crucial role in the success of an app. User interface (UI) refers to the overall look and feel of your app, including layout, colors, fonts, placement of elements. User experience (UX) makes sure performing actions is easy, quick. Some tools you can use: Sketch, Adobe XD or Figma.

Both ensure users find it easy to navigate your app and have an overall positive experience when using it. For doing so, wireframes and prototypes are great for testing before starting to code.

💡 A big part of your app’s success will be defined by how intuitive, engaging, easy-to-use and visually appealing it will be. For best performances, make sure to look into native vs. hybrid apps.

app development

App Development Stages: How do I Publish and Promote my App?

📌 Plan for Launch and Marketing Activities

In your app development timeline, after testing phases and when you’re perfecting your app, you need to find ways to reach your target audience. This includes how to:

  1. Understand your target audience. ➡️ What channels/media do they use? What do they need?
  2. Monetize your app. ➡️ Will you offer your app for free? Will you display ads? Will you put a subscription model in place?
  3. Launch your app. ➡️ You can use social media such as your YouTube or Instagram channels, send emails, create your own website with more information, running ads. This comes after you have made your app available on app platforms (see section below);
  • Promote your app. ➡️ This requires continuous effort on your side! Social media, website, forums and communities, blogs, influencers, etc. Make sure your product page on app stores is updated and engaging.

👋 Looking to start your own website/blog for promoting your app?

🚀 Make sure to check out our website launch checklist!

📌 Publish Your App on App Stores

Did you know there is a tough submission process before publishing your app on app platforms like Google Play Store or Apple App Store?

Even if you think it’s ready, functioning, free of bugs, your app needs to meet a certain number of requirements and will probably need to be optimized… In many different areas. Apple breaks it down in their guidelines as follows: safety, performance, business, design and legal.

🔍 Ask yourself the right questions with our pre-submission checklist for the App Store!

📌 Is Your App Protected? Does it Follow the Law?

We give special attention to the legal aspect in this article because it is commonly overlooked, and it could have your app get rejected by app stores.

First, you should strongly consider having a Terms and Conditions or EULA (End User License Agreement) document for your app. They protect you (the owner) by setting legally binding rules on how users can interact with your product/service. They are a crucial document as they cover things like user conduct, restrictions, intellectual property, and limitations of liability.

🔍 Find out How to Write Terms and Conditions for an App.

Most importantly, as it is a requirement by app stores including Apple and Google Play, you need to have a privacy policy before starting the submission process.

Your privacy policy should be easily accessible within the app, and mention: what user personal data, if any, the app collects, why, and how. If shared, with whom. If stored, for how long. Plus, the means for users to withdraw or request deletion of their data.

💡 If you don’t have a privacy policy in place, you risk getting rejected from app stores. Google Play Store and Apple App Store are also companies that are subject to privacy laws and must comply as everyone else. As a result, they require app developers to comply with applicable law and provide a valid privacy policy when submitting their app.
Not having a proper privacy in place will not only be a violation of their terms, but will also likely result in app store rejection.

Don’t risk your app being rejected by app stores

Generate a privacy policy for your app

About us


Attorney-level solutions to make your websites and apps compliant with the law across multiple countries and legislations.