Building an iOS mobile app from scratch isn’t easy, especially if you don’t know how to code and still don’t know about mobile app builders. Either way, there’s lots to do.
Apps name, visual feel, textual content, and many other details are only some of the ideas you need to prepare. Then, after lots of revisions and iterations, after you cement all of those details, you’re ready to start building your iPhone app. To help get you started — and save you time and money spent on app development — we created a guide on how to make an iOS app without any coding knowledge at all. Here are our tips and tricks.
Apps for iPhone
If you have an app idea but aren’t sure how to realize it, follow these steps to create your iOS app as quickly as possible.
Why do businesses build mobile apps? What’s wrong with a website? Well-designed apps with intuitive user experiences out-perform traditional websites with their portability and speed; apps store data locally instead of remotely like on a website.
Check out these Apple App Store statistics on why you and your business should have an app:
- There are nearly 4.4 million apps available in the Apple App Store (July 2020)
- On average, more than 30,000 new iOS apps are released in the Apple App Store every month
- Of all the mobile apps in the Apple App Store, the most popular category is gaming apps
- Mobile apps hit $581.9 billion in revenue in 2020
Did you know the average mobile user spends 3 hours and 40 minutes using mobile apps per day? This is a 35% global increase in mobile app usage compared between 2017 and 2019. Chances are your users will look at your app many times per day and enter your app even if they don’t engage with it. The main takeaway here is that even if your users don’t actively use any given app on their phones, they’ll still see your brand or logo multiple times throughout their day. Don’t miss out on this kind of mobile advertising with Shoutem’s mobile app builder.
I have an app idea, where do I start?
There are some things you should consider before making a mobile app for iPhone
Start thinking about your overall goals and strategies and how creating an iOS mobile app would benefit your business. Starting with a mobile app is not easy, but be careful not to forget about things you must do before you start with the mobile app development.
Mobile App Competition
When you’re starting something new and realizing your vision, study the market to find out what products are already out there, similar or opposite to your idea. Make sure to download several apps to get a sense of what your potential users are expecting — this is critical research for your business’ app without coding.
When you’re ready to research the good and the bad on the market, it’s necessary to:
1. Study similar mobile apps related to your business
2. Determine what features are ‘must’ for such an application
3. Research your competitors and their mobile strategies
4. Read reviews of applications in your niche. Here you can find what works and doesn’t work from users’ perspectives for creating your no-coding mobile app,
5. Do a SWOT analysis of your business and competitors to inform your next steps
We know we already mentioned this, but it deserves its separate step. When you audit your competitors’ apps, write down what functionalities they have, and determine how important each one is for your application.
Each application has its own import, but the most important is to create another market value with the answer to the question: what problem(s) does the app solve for users?
Mobile apps can dramatically affect your overall business and are most often created to generate additional earnings or improve a brand’s user experience. Mobile apps can also serve as brand awareness tools or as a step in your overall sales funnel.
Think about mobile app monetization opportunities before building an app, it will spare your time later.
Apple App Store Guidelines
Apple is quite strict when it comes to publishing mobile applications, it has criteria that are important to read and implement. The guidelines relate to safety, app performance, design, business model and legal requirements.
Before you even publish an app to the Apple App Store, make sure that, in addition to the instructions above, make sure that you:
- tested your app for crashes and bugs
- ensured that all app information and metadata is complete and accurate
- have update your contact information in case App Review needs to reach you
- provided an active demo account and login information
- enabled backend services so that they’re live and accessible during review
- included detailed explanations of non-obvious features and in-app purchases (including supporting documentation where appropriate)
Hooray! So you decided to build your iOS app by yourself with Shoutem’s mobile app builder. Let’s go through the steps you need to take to create your iPhone mobile app.
Build your codeless iOS mobile app in just 6 steps
1. Go to the builder and build a blank app
If you want a mobile app for news, events, travel, and small businesses, or to showcase your products or even an app for school, use one of our templates — feature-rich to save you time. If you choose a template, you can still change your app’s theme and navigation.
Here is how to do so:
Also, if you want to skip this process, and see what features would suit best your iPhone business app, try to find your niche in our Showcase Apps section.
2. Choose Your Main Navigation style (Menu)
When you enter the builder, you can choose between seven different navigation styles. The navigation styles will define your mobile app’s first look because here your customers will be able to see all of your app’s features. You can modify your navigation, item height, text settings, background images, etc.
Find the steps here:
Choose the icons you want your features to have. Placing icons next to your text or features increases your mobile app’s readability, and they give a visual representation of what’s written, making your app memorable and eye-catching. Icons make the text easier and faster to consume.
With different features, you’ll find many that are commonly used, like a location icon with the Places feature; each icon can be personalized and changed.
For the Navigation Bar, choose a background image that will always be displayed (you can change that, too). The best practice is to use an image with your logo or brand name.
3. Modify Your App’s Theme
Here you can change your app’s colors! Yay! You can choose between four existing themes: Prime, Bleu, Noir, and Rose, but if you want to play around a bit, you have many other options.
Change featured color, background color, typography, drawer layouts, overlays… Whatever you desire. Here is the video on how to create a News app, but also how to change the screen layout:
To understand these options better, here is a showcase and manual on how to change each. After you choose what colors and styles you want to have, it’s time to add extensions that your customers will enjoy.
4. Add Your Favorite Features
All Shoutem features are basically developed as extensions. If you have News, Photos, or Analytics features in your app, they are extensions. The Shoutem app dashboard comes with some basic extensions installed that are immediately available for use.
How to add them?
Features are divided into sections. For better readability, so you can see Content features, Media features, Commerce, Users, More, and Custom.
Also, third–party extensions are available so you can implement your own extensions. You can write an extension yourself or (coming soon!) purchase and find free extensions in our Extension Marketplace.
Click Extensions (the left sidebar) to access the Marketplace. Here you’ll see a list of the extensions you already have installed. Need a manual or tutorial? Here it is: Install Extensions on Your App.
5. Add Content to Your iOS App
Adding content is as easy as it gets with Shoutem. Here is a great video tutorial on adding content to your app (it’ll save you time reading and us typing).
(the builder is slightly different now, but the functionality remains the same)
6. Publish Your App
Before clicking on that blue Publish button, there’s one more section to read before your app is store-ready: App info (the app’s name and Store metadata section).
The Store metadata section is where you enter your app’s information required to publish on the Apple App Store. It’s critical to have the Developer info section completed to ensure timely delivery during the publishing process. We also prepared a manual on how to do that.
After clicking the Publish button, our publishing team automatically receives your publishing request, and we prepare each app for publishing manually. If all the pieces of information are populated in the Apple App Store metadata tab, the app will be published (manually as well), but if something’s missing, you’ll be notified.
Apple Store optimization
An app’s success in either app store depends upon knowing the differences in each market’s algorithms.
The first crucial thing for the optimization of your app for the Apple App Store is to provide the app’s metadata. Setting this helps your app’s visibility and helps your app get discovered on App Store.
The main ranking factors for the App Store are:
- App icon: Focus on creating something eye-catching and well-suited to other industry standards within your app’s genre.
- App name/title: Your app’s title is one of the strongest ranking factors in either app store, so it’s best to include the most relevant keywords as your ASO starting point.
- Visuals and video: Screenshots and videos placed in both stores should represent the app’s main features. Best practices dictate that your screenshots must tell a story.
- Short and long description: Write what your mobile app is about to help both search engines and users understand your app’s functionality and purpose.
There is also a Long Description that matters. If you’re thinking about creating both an iOS and Android app, read about the Differences between App Store Optimization on Google Play vs. App Store.
Promote your iOS app
Marketing was always and still is a crucial segment of every business. Mobile apps are no exception. Advertisers poured more than $240 billion into ad spends in 2020, up 26% from 2019. Because of this, we implemented AdMob into Shoutem. This is a year of massive mobile advertising because brands continue to embrace mobile’s unprecedented reach and value.
If you don’t know the steps for your app’s marketing campaign, read our beginner-friendly Mobile App Marketing Guide that goes through each marketing process phase. It’s a step-by-step guide covering the basics of mobile app marketing so that you have the tools and know-how to reach your target audience and turn that audience into active app users.
FAQ for developing an iPhone mobile app codeless
- How much does it cost to build an iOS app?
Shoutem has a free trial, but after that your iPhone mobile app will cost you $59/month (there is also a Yearly plan, that will cost you $79/month).
- How much time do I need to build an iPhone app?
It depends on how many features you need and how much content you will enter. Usually, it would be best to have one working day to manage functionalities and enter content. So, yes, you can do it all in one day!
- Can I create an app all by myself?
Yes! We created our builder so only one person — without any coding knowledge — can build an app.
4. What if I get stuck?
You can always contact our Support team, or hire our professional team to create an app for you!
Ready to build your own iOS mobile app?