Creating an app and sharing it all over the Internet is not enough. You need to put yourself in users’ shoes and see what they expect. Most people check the reviews or testimonials of a product/service. When a product comes with amazing reviews, users are more likely to purchase it.
Having as many 5-star ratings and reviews as possible is essential. They will make new users trust your app. And after they download it they can recommend it to others. Word of mouth is not dead; the social media just reinvented it.
To help you get more reviews, we are going to show you:
- How to customize your AppStore and Google Play app page to increase the conversion rate
- How to obtain more reviews from users
- How to engage with users
Let’s start with the basics. The first thing to do after creating an app is to put it on Google Play and App Store so users can try it out. While the rules might seem simple, the simple stuff is the one that usually makes the difference.
How to customize your App Store and Google Play page
Imagine the app’s page on the App Store and Google Play as a store shelf. What are you searching for when you look at a store shelf? First you look at the object. Considering that this is an app, screenshots from the app and videos are crucial. Nobody is going to download the app without seeing it first.
Photos need to be relevant. Show the main features, share professional photos every time you update your app. We also suggest adding a short video as it will help people understand your product. It could be a demo video or a presentation video.
Then, make sure to add a description for your app. It should contain the most important features, what the mobile app does, and its benefits. Try to be as creative as possible to catch users’ attention.
By far, the most important thing to consider on Google Play and App Store is the rating/review section. When a person recommends a mobile app, users are more likely to download it compared to when they see bad reviews. The power of a recommendation is much bigger than a discount or a demo video.
Now you know that reviews and recommendations are powerful, but how do you make customers leave a review on your app? In the next part of the article we will share some of our tips on how to gather more reviews.
How to obtain more mobile app reviews from users
1. Make it easier for users to leave a review
Consider those reviews as a great service from your customers. If they can do it quick and easy, you are more likely to get those reviews or ratings. However, when you make it hard for them, the likelihood of them taking the time to write a review decreases.
Just imagine that you are in a store and the cashier asks you for a review of her services. At first you agree, but then you find out you need to walk through the whole store, enter some obscure room, and then answer a million questions. That’s how your users feel when you ask for a mobile app review but you don’t make it easy for them to respond and when they finally find the reviews section they find out they have to answer 15 predefined questions.
We found out that the best way to ask users for a review is to use push notifications. To make it easier for users, always include a link that sends them directly to the review section of the app in Google Play or App Store.
2. Redirect reviews from Facebook and other channels to Google Play and App Store
If you promote your mobile app on Facebook and other channels (if you’re not, read this article), you might want to check for reviews on these channels too. Every 5-star rating should also be on Google Play and App Store.
How can you do that? Well, first you should thank the user for downloading, using, and reviewing your app. Then, you can ask the user to leave a review or a rating on Google Play or App Store. Make sure to include links for both of these options to make it easier for the user to leave the review.
3. Simply ask
Although it seems strange, the easiest way to get reviews is to ask for them. Not all users will leave a review, but they will know that they can do so. At first, you can have a push notification in the app. We recommend waiting a while after the user has downloaded the app before you pop the question. Give them time to see the benefits and maybe the things they don’t like about your app. We speak from experience when we say that it is best to show the push notification in the app after the user completed an action successfully. If you pop the question right after the user created an account he or she won’t give a review. Never, and we mean never, ask the user to review after completing an action which resulted in failure. We all know what the review is going to look like.
4. Write a follow-up email
Another way to ask them is via email. A newsletter to thank them for using the mobile app and to ask them for a review is a great way to connect with the users. Every time you update your app, send them another newsletter and ask them if the update fixed the bugs.
5. Use incentives
Getting those first 3-4 reviews is the hardest thing. After that, users will simply leave a rating by themselves. When you pursue the first users, you will need to give them some incentives.
E-commerce websites already do this so why can’t you use it for your app? You can use incentives but we suggest you to be careful. You don’t want it to look like a bribe because it is going to do more harm than good. For instance, if you have a game, you can give them a discount for a locked character.
Now that you have the reviews, what do you do with them?
If you think that getting the 5-star ratings and reviews is the end of the journey, you are very wrong! This is just the middle and you need to be very careful on how you handle each one of them. Below, we are going to show you some of the best practices on how to respond and use reviews to your advantage.
1. Respond to every review
If it’s a good mobile app review, thank the user, mention some of the improvements you want to make, and tell them to enjoy your app. Users will like the fact that you put some effort and time into responding to them.
The tricky part is when a user leaves a negative rating. Although you might think that your app is perfect and it has so many benefits that your competitors don’t have, not all users will agree with you.
There are two types of negative reviews. Most people leave a simple 1 or 2 stars rating. When this happens, make sure to thank the user for downloading and using your app. After that proceed to ask them what was the problem and to promise that you will solve it once they write you back.
The other type is usually given by people who are really upset with your app. Those people who use storytelling and demolish every part of the app. Unfortunately, people love storytelling, and they have a sweet tooth for drama. If you have one review like this, you can be sure that all of the users read it already.
Just like on any other review, you should thank the user for choosing and downloading your app. Then respond to each problem with a solution. Always look at a review as feedback and never get offended. It is not personal; it’s just the app.
2. Take advantage of comments to engage with users
If a user encounters a problem in the app and then they see a post on Facebook about your app, they are more likely to comment, even though the post has nothing to do with their problem. Answer them, explain how to fix the problem and apologize for the inconvenience.
On the other hand, when your followers write a comment where they mention how great the app is, make sure to thank them for using the app. You can do this by replying to the comment or by sending them a private message to establish a relationship with the user.
3. Build a social media campaign around the reviews
Don’t let those reviews go to waste. We recommend you to use them in a social media campaign. Use screenshots from every review and put them together in a nice visual. For instance, you can use a headline like: want to be as happy as our users? Install our app.
4. Post them on social media
From time to time, you run out of ideas for posts on social media. This is a great time to re-use those reviews. Share them if they are already on social media or take screenshots and write a post about the key features of your app and how much your users love them.
5. Use reviews in newsletters
Another interesting approach is to make several screenshots of 5-star ratings and include them in newsletters. User-generated content has a bigger impact on potential customers because it helps them relate to their experience. So using 5-star ratings in newsletters is going to help people trust your app.
Promoting an app is not just sharing content with users and making promos or discounts once in a while. It is more about connecting with users and helping them understand and love your app.
Reviews are the key to success in this business. The power of recommendation is much bigger than we believe and it influences any type of buyer. A happy client always brings more customers.
Remember that people need answers on social media. They are not commenting to increase your Facebook engagement rate. Write them back, put some effort into the response and try to make the app as easy and essential as possible.