09-07-2010 08:43 PM
Popularity is determined entirely by the reviews: neither sales nor downloads affect this ranking. If you get hit by even one bad review, it kicks your app down possibly numerous places in the ranking. And we all know that apps that are low-ranked will never be viewed by most App World users.
Thanks for that useful piece of information. The main category in which my apps appear seems to follow that rule more or less.
Frankly it's crazy (though I have a free app that clearly benefits and has 75 reviews). The higher the position, the more downloads. The more downloads the more possibility for positive reviews.
Are you sure about the negative reviews affecting position though? Or is it just having a higher number of positive reviews that affects position?
I've found that free apps receive a considerably higher percentage of positive reviews(unsolicited), than my paid apps.
It's as though because the app is free, users want to express appreciation, but when they pay next to nothing for a complex app they're content to leave it at the cash. This means even a paid app with substantial downloads can have few reviews.
For free apps, I think it's fair that reviews be the basis of the position. For paid apps it surely should be based on average paid downloads per week or similar.
In addition, some means of balancing the positions of apps to give all apps a chance must be worthwhile.
And how about resetting negative reviews following an upgrade?
RIM really needs to provide an easier way to provide reviews. Grades of 3 stars and above should not need to be commented. Grades 2 stars and below should require a word of explanation.
And considering that RIM benefits financially from sales, I'd have thought it was in their interest to improve the position of paid apps. Right now in the category for my apps, the top three are all free.
Has anyone seen a decent guide to marketing via App Stores?
09-07-2010 11:09 PM
Yeah, I'm fairly certain negative reviews will hurt your app's ranking. My reasoning is that a negative review means a low star rating, which in turn drags down your average star rating. Lowering the star rating will reduce your app's ranking. The rankings seem to be a function of both the number of ratings and the average rating. I.e., it doesn't help you to have 9857 one-star reviews.
It's a wacky, frustrating system, I agree. Frankly, I don't know what I can do about this: my apps deserve better, but will remain obscure.
09-08-2010 06:10 AM
I'd say the popularity sorting isn't that bad an idea but RIM should add more sorting options to the subsections, i.e. create a top paid list for all the sub categories.
But you don't have to think this will change your sales that much - what creates sales is visibility + good reviews + quality + demand (the better the combination the more the sales). But visibility is the most critical factor and if you sort by the number of sales it's going to be a very similar, static list because most users simply look at the charts and buy one of the apps in the charts. And that's where the real sales in AppWorld are too - if you're in the OnDevice paid charts you chances for good sales are the very best.
It's the same with the iOS store ... half the list is populated by the same apps/games since a many months and inbetween for a short time some new apps but very primarily those with a frontpage feature from Apple or with a huge sale like the typical EA/Gameloft 79cent offers.
So no perfect way to sort exists ... there's always a drawback. If it's only sales of the last week and you got a few bad reviews not matching the real value/quality of your app but you lose the good ranking until the reviews got denied you're doomed?
How about sorting by the name? You'll soon see apps named "aaaaa bbbbest xyz".
A random list each time you visit the store? This would make customers crazy and the overall sales will drop by a significant amount.
It's just the way it is - the only two additional views I'd like to see is a top paid/downloaded section for each subcategory which will drive sales a bit for good apps but with less sales to fit into the top 25 OnDevice (the list should include the top 100 - just as visible in the webstore too), and maybe a kind of intelligent list suggesting apps you may like based on your previous purchases etc.
09-08-2010 04:09 PM
Hi Gareth (and everyone else on the thread),
We've been looking at the feedback on the review system and we're actively working on changes to make sure we're addressing your concerns. There are a number of common complaints with the review system that we need to correct - most importantly is the one you mentioned - removing the negative star rating for a rejected review.
I don't have the exact details for you yet, but I will respond shortly with an update.
09-09-2010 02:54 AM
Please also consider other review issues as in the petition by Gareth in another thread.
I would say one of the reasons why App World customers tend to post irresponsible, irrelevant, and unfair reviews (including bad review threats) is because App World reviews are anonimous.
Note in other online stores from Handango to Amazon reviews are never anonimous. As a result their customers are inclined to write reviews more carefully and responsibly.
09-17-2010 06:21 PM
I had all 5 star reviews for a while. Then I got a 0 star review and it tanked my sales.
There has to be a way to remove these bogus ratings and there has to be accountability for the people leaving them too,
09-19-2010 09:53 AM
Do any app stores have "Editor" or "Expert" reviews?
1) Are conducted by experienced, unbiased reviewers.
2) Take into account supported devices.
3) Provide the developer an opportunity to respond or correct and resubmit.
4) Possibly, publish results of compliance testing
5) <Your _constructive_ ideas here>...
Perhaps RIM could partner with such a site or adopt some of these ideas.
08-10-2012 11:32 AM
I don't think having expert reviews would be such a good idea, because then we will all complain about favouritism.
What needs to be fixed, is the zero star reviews that require feedback, let's take a look some examples of zero star reviews for my app:
Rating: 0 stars
Title: F i
Rating: 1/2 star
Title: New version not working
After upgrading today, im getting a pop-up error: Error starting com_xxx: Error loading module 'com_xxx' VerifyError. I uninstalled the app, battery pull restart BB9780 and reinstall the app, error keeps pop-up. Please help what to do.
The user never got in touch with support. If they did I would have asked them to upgrade their OS to an official release, which has always been the cause of that problem.
These negative reviews *SERIOUSLY* (deliberately capitalised) impact sales, someone who is angry just makes you loose business. In fact sometimes I get a feeling their are some cheeky devs on the App Store who would quite happily jeopardise others competetiveness with these tactics.
1. When a developer denies a review why does it take a day or two for it to get processed?! If a user gives a 3 star review and the dev decides to deny it, fine, just leave it in the queue, but if a vexed user gives a zero star review, it stays on there for too long impacting everything.
2. Why do reviews have to be permenant? i.e. if a user upgrades to a new version of the app, shouldn't they be given a chance to re-review the app? Version 2.5 of my app is significantly different to the older versions.
Please sort this mess out. The more sales we have, the more money you guys make too.