Every mobile app entrepreneur knows that 5-star ratings are the holy grail of marketing. Receiving great reviews creates a positive feedback loop. Users base their download decisions on high ratings, while those good reviews increase your visibility on the app store’s search results. Furthermore, if your app has great ratings, some of those fans will share their likes on social media networks. Here are the five key points you need to know to reach for the marketing gold of five-star ratings for your app:
1. Design a great app that people love! Of course this is your starting point, because no amount of marketing jujitsu will counteract people’s responses to a poorly constructed app.
2. Use beta testers. Once you have your stellar app ready to go, distribute it to a set of beta testers. While these people won’t be able to leave you an official app store review, they will send you crash reports and tell you what they love and hate about your app before you release it to the general public.
3. Build your review numbers: Over 60 percent of the apps on Apple’s U. S. App Store don’t have any reviews at all, so even one good review will put you ahead of the crowd. Unfortunately, Apple’s App Store Review Guidelines and Google Play Developer Program Policies specifically prohibit rewarding users for leaving good reviews. However, you are allowed to incentivize the in-app watching of a video ad, in which you suggest leaving a good review. Another helpful approach is to encourage users to review and rank your app whenever you communicate with them. Include a “Review” button on your website as well as links from within your emails, newsletters and social media pages.
4. Use analytics to find dedicated users: Analytics tell you how your app is trending in the app stores, and provide demographic data about your users. When you notice users that show “positive behavior” within your app, opening and engaging with it frequently, prompt them with an alert to leave a review at the app store.
5. Respond to user feedback: Read all of your reviews and integrate user suggestions into your designs for future versions. When you upload a newer version of your app, it erases your current global rating and starts you off with a clean rating slate.
As an app marketer, you mainly rely on the intrinsic quality of the app itself — but by following these five recommendations you can definitely make sure that more people discover and talk about the extraordinary qualities of your app.