16 Ways To Increase Your iPhone App Ranking


App Builder Appy Pie, February 02, 2018: So you have made an awesome iPhone app and have already published it on the Apple App Store, but so have another 2 million app owners! You have checked and re-checked that you have an app that is stellar and has a real high performance, but then why aren’t people downloading your app? One of the most probable reasons for that is your app’s low ranking. If you have a low ranking app then you are going to get lost in the thousands of apps in your category and never see the light of day. But still, app development and design is probably one of the most lucrative markets today with massive scope and opportunities. The correct information and knowledge about ways to get your app featured and optimized is what will set you apart from the rest and help you get the app ranked higher.

In this blog post we will talk about the different ways you can get your iPhone app ranked higher on the Apple App Store. Appy Pie helps you keep on top of the charts with a series of blogs.

1. Advertise Smartly

Advertising in today’s times is one of the key factors for any product to succeed or be noticed. Hence, it is important to understand that most part of your efforts to get a higher ranking for your app depend upon how you market it and the key to successful marketing is great advertising. Make sure that you design your advertising campaign and make every effort possible to get the attention of your targeted users. Make sure that you apply yourself and come up with innovative ideas in your efforts to offer to your users an entirely novel experience of your app. Design effective promotional campaigns for your app and take measures to get your app the right kind of public attention. When you continue to run this kind of a campaign for a couple of days, especially over the weekend, it brings in the most amount of benefits. It is the weekend traffic that is heaviest when compared any other day of the week. This is one of the ways which can give you the maximum advantage to promote your iPhone app. Apart from this an early bird discount, special introductory offers, or discounts go a long way in helping you push your app up higher in the ranks. At this point, your intent should solely lie in attracting the attention of as many users as possible towards your app. Once they have seen your app, used it, and liked it, they are going to do the promotion for you through word of mouth.

2. Define & Target The Right User Group

The basic question you have to ask yourself here is, who is it that you are building the app for, or who is going to use your app? Research is of prime importance and you need to do a good amount of it and delve deep in figuring out what it is that makes the top apps rank higher? At this time, you need to dissect the apps on the top to understand what it is that the users are looking for in their apps. After this research you must get into the details like planning the right title, description, and keywords for the promotion of your app. In case you decide not to charge anything for your app, it is important that you mention that it is “Free” at the right spaces and highlight it.

It id of great value to know who is it that you are going to target your app for, and once that is defined, put in considerable resources in studying them and understanding the way they interact with your app category and the kind of features, pricing, and other factors that they expect and/or are looking for in an app that they are considering to download on their phone.

3. Build A Good Website

Having a superb app is not enough when you want it to be featured in the top charts, it is important that you get a well-designed web page in place. A website that has been designed well and has clear images of your app in it, increases your professional quotient and your trust quotient among the users. On this website apart from some great screenshots for your app, also add some tutorial, instructional , or introductory videos and some genuine and stellar reviews from your clientele. This website should not only be rich in professional visual content but also must be made in a way that helps the users navigate through it with great ease so that he whole experience is positively engaging for them. Once this is done, you can also use the website as a medium to promote your app on all the leading social media networks and the website can also become a great place for all the users to leave you some great feedback as well.

4. Design An iTunes Web Preview

It is not just about creating an iTunes Web Preview, design it. This is one of the most vital steps to attain success for the ultimate success of your iPhone app in the Apple App Store. You should design the iTunes Web Preview with a clear intent for it to be perfect. This preview should also have with it, the right app description, keywords, meta description and meta keywords for your app. In doing so, remember that these pages are indexed in search engines and when this information is provided correctly, your app will automatically attain a higher visibility. For this preview you can either hire a professional copywriter or work on your own writing skills to create quality content. The right words will go a long way in helping you generate the right kind of interest among users for your app.

5.  Throw A Spotlight On Your App

“What you see, is what you covet…” and nothing can be more true when it comes to your app’s performance in the Apple App Store. Make sure that your app receives the maximum possible amount of media attention. Send out a press release or a series of them announcing the release and then the unique features or any other developments about your app and request various media channels to cover them. Take advantage of these press releases and let the users know what it is that makes the apps worthy of their time, attention, and money and also help them discover the different ways in which they can draw benefits from the app. This media buzz that you generate through a number of different measures goes a long way in driving a lot of attention towards your new iPhone app. Another way to do this is cross-promotion for your app. Build relationships with fellow developers or app owners and you can try to barter in-app advertising with them which will bring you both measurable benefits.

6. Get You App Launched At Trade Shows

Do a little pre-launch or promotional launch before the actual launch of the app at key events like trade shows and you would be amazed by the kind of promotional benefits this can bring for your app. Events like these are heavily covered by the media and there is a lot of buzz that attracts the right kind of users. When you do a promotional launch at an event like this you automatically garner the media attention that is needed for your app, and you wouldn’t have to put in too much of effort or expenses in it. This media attention can actually work wonders for you when you do an official launch on the Apple App Store, thus helping you get a higher ranking on it.

7. Make Sure Your Keywords Stay Within 100 Characters

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When you launch or publish your app on the Apple App Store, it lets you add keywords in your App Store listing. These keywords are used by the search algorithm to display your app in the search results. It is for this reason that you choose the right kind of keywords for your app and that they should describe your app well. The limit of characters here is 100, hence it is advisable to refrain from using long tail keywords, plurals, your iPhone App name, or from misspelling the keywords. These keywords can be separated with commas and it should not contain any spaces.

8. Make Your App Title Descriptive & Stay Within 50 Characters

Since you are not a big brand yourself, your app is not really a popular or recognizable name yet. Hence, you must use the App Title space to use keywords that best describe the core functionality of your app which would help the users have a clear idea about what they can do with the app that they are downloading. These keywords too can be put to great use in improving your search rankings while keeping it all under 50 characters which is the limit.

9. Don’t Use Generic Terms Or Names Similar To The Existing Apps

This is often ignored and is responsible for more damage than you would think. When your app title has a generic word like “music” or “game” in it, you are keeping it way too vague for any potential user to have any interest in it whatsoever. One more thing to remember while naming your app is to refrain from using names that might be similar to other prominent apps. This not only might lead to your app being rejected by Apple App Store, but it will definitely make you look like one of those shady developers and lower your credentials among the target user group and they would definitely avoid downloading your iPhone app. Make your app stand out not blend in.

10. Include Keywords In The Title

We talked about the title including the right keywords to help the users understand what they are downloading and get interested in what you have to offer. Additionally, it is worth knowing that when you add descriptive keywords to the title it actually increases the app’s visibility or discoverability by at least 11%. This is something that needs to be taken into account because in getting your app ranked higher every single percent is of great value.

11. Publish App In The Category That Best Describes Its Core Function

When you publish your app on the Apple App Store, you would have to choose the right category and keep focused on the core functionality of your app and not on the secondary functions. If you choose the wrong category, you are making your app available to the wrong kind of people. If your core functionality is related to photos and videos, but you also offer sharing, like Instagram does, then you would categorise it under the Photos and Video category and not Social Networking, which might be more suited for apps like Facebook.

12. Let The App Description Be User Friendly

The app description is what the users will look into, if they want to know what your app actually does. This is an extremely important part of your app as this is what would introduce them to the functions and benefits of using your app. Some of the most important tips that need to be kept in mind while developing an app description are as follows:

  • Write the description in a bullet format or break it down into short paragraphs to make it more readable.
  • Make use of social proof like press coverage, user testimonials or reviews etc.
  • Offer a list of benefits and relevant case studies.
  • Keep updating this description by adding information about the version number and the changes made in the new update, bug fixes, new features, change in design etc.


13. Make Sure Everything On Your App Listing Is A/B Tested

Every aspect of your listing including your app icon, the screenshots, description, the keywords, videos matters for App Store Optimization. It has also been established through research that changing videos and screenshots delivers about 25-30% of conversion lift. At the beginning, test the app title, description, video and the images before moving on to the other sections of the entire listing.

14. Request The Happy Users To Rate & Review Your App

Consider this, you are going to buy an electronic item that you are interested in, wouldn’t you first go and ask the people who have used such items before you and ask for recommendations? In the digital world, it is even more important because you probably have lesser idea getting into it. Hence users tend to look at the ratings and reviews of the apps before buying or downloading it on their devices. In fact studies suggest that from among the apps where every other factor is at par, 59% of the users would opt to download an app that has higher rating and better reviews. After studying the top rated apps, we have narrowed down their process for a positive feedback from users.

  • Observe the users’ in-app behaviour and wait till they have derived some kind of a value from your app.
  • At this point ask them a simple Yes/No question about whether they are enjoying the app.
  • Prompt the Yes cohort to rate & review, and to the Nos offer an option to leave an internal feedback.


15. Target Keywords that Have Low Competition & Low Search Volume

When you are just starting out, it is a better idea to become a Big Fish in the smaller pond instead of becoming a Small Fish in the bigger pond. Either employ keyword research tools or manually find keywords that exhibit a lower search volume and a lower competition. In this scenario try and rank them well. After you have built up some kind of a social proof and credibility, move in for an attack on the bigger goals and higher competition.

16. The First Two Screenshots Should Show The Best Features

It has been established through quite a few reliable studies that more than 60% of the users only se the first two screenshots. Hence it is important that you pay ample attention to the first two screenshots and their design. It is imperative that you keep the following things in mind while designing the screenshots:

  • Submit only high-resolution images
  • Make use of overlay text and annotations to improve the message
  • Showcase only the best features
  • Use plain background for stronger aesthetics & visibility

Keeping these points in mind will offer a better user experience for your app.

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