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Make your first app

Create an app in six steps

1. Pick the type of app

  • What is the story you're trying to tell?
  • Who is your audience?
  • How knowledgeable is your audience about your topic?
  • Decide on the essential components of your story: maps, videos, photos, or a gallery of maps and apps.
  • Which app best suits the story you are trying to tell: a map-based app or a group-based gallery app?
  • Do you want to use an out-of-the-box wizard to customize the application?

2. Build maps or groups

  • If you decide on a map-based app, create a map with the map viewer, or incorporate maps from your own organization or that you've made using ArcGIS for Desktop. You can also create point features from spreadsheets.
  • If you decide on a group-based app of maps and apps, create a group and share items to it or select an existing group from your organization.

3. Assemble your content

Make sure the supporting material you need—photos, video, audio files, and text—are organized. Text should be as brief as possible. Most people don't like to read more than a few sentences.

4. Choose a template

  • For a map-based app, open the map viewer, click the Share button, click Make a Web Application, click Configurable, and choose the configurable app that best suits the story you want to tell.
  • If you want to use a wizard to create a configurable app, click the App Builder tab, provide information for the application, choose where to create it and how it will be shared, and click Get Started to open Web AppBuilder for ArcGIS.
  • For a group-based gallery app, open the group, click the Share button, click Configurable, click Make a Gallery Application, and choose the configurable template that best suits the story you want to tell.

5. Refine

Creating an effective app is an iterative process. In most cases, you'll want to repeat one or more of these steps, returning to your app and its map or group to add, delete, or change features, edit your text, choose new photos, and so on.

6. Publish

When you publish, the apps can reside on your own organization's servers or you can use third-party resources like Amazon.