No doubt that each user review of an application you’ve recently launched is significant. Admitting this fact is not enough, and the value of such reviews mustn’t be underestimated. Perhaps these reviews are even more important than you think. Here are some things you should know, in order to get the advantage out of the precious words left by your users.

Today a number of specialized app review websites can give a detailed opinion on your product, describe its features and emphasize its strengths. But that’s not the reviews we’ll talk about. The most important reviews are those in application stores. Why? Because they are viewed by everyone who becomes interested in learning more about your app before purchasing. Or not purchasing. Reviews may leave a definitive decision.

If your application is initially free, the best choice for a user is to download the app and try it out for a personal opinion. If the app is paid, a user will definitely think before buying, and read what’s written about it. Here’s the reason why app rating and reviews are not less important than a good description or an attractive app icon, name and screenshots. The page of your application is a showcase, and the reviews can be a part of the first impression of potential users. While some users might pay little attention to reviews, we cannot ignore the fact that a huge majority will do exactly vice versa.

The point is, that there are both positive and negative reviews – and both matter. High rating (4 stars and up) is great for an initial impression. Reviews have a more complicated situation. Perhaps we tend to pay much more attention to negative reviews. Everything that’s good about the application, might be already in the description – the whole multitude of features and benefits. A lot of positive reviews contain a message like ”cool app!”, which can add little to the impression of a potential user. On the contrary, users are interested, what drawbacks there are, they pay attention to unbiased, detailed opinions of paid products. Then they decide whether the app is worth it.

What’s extremely useful for you, is the would-love-to-see reviews, that suggest the features users wish. That’s one of the best ways of receiving customer feedback. For example, there is a review for Google Drive, which says, ”Would love to see: search text within files, presentation editing, easier sharing”, and so on. Follow the wish of the user, and you’ll win loyalty.

As an example, the recently launched Microsoft’s Office Mobile for iOS has been met with much criticism and such reviews as ”very disappointing”, ”minimal editing options, no ability to insert images or create charts, no undo/redo”. If your app receives such reviews, it’s another piece feedback to respond and improve it. Another criticism was the absence of iPad-optimized version of Office Mobile. Although it’s even more logical to create a tablet version of the Office first, Microsoft is likely to ignore the requests. Not a good decision, really.

Remember that high rating is an absolute asset, and don’t forget to ask your users to rate the app, or, possibly, leave a review. Calls to action work – on your websites, social network pages, and within the app itself.

Asking for a rating or a review is a delicate thing. Pop-ups are the most common solution here. Perhaps you shouldn’t send them right away. Let users enjoy the software product – in a pleased mood of having found what they want, they are quite likely to spend some moments and rate the app – or spare a minute and write a brief review. Maybe for an extended review and for sharing reviews, you might announce a reward or discount – that’s good for both sides, especially for you, pushing the product to the market.

The acquired rating and feedback will enhance your software product among the competitive ones. Together with an impressive-looking icon, a simple, catchy name, and other information on the page, your product is able to become the product of choice. A high-star rating, and a couple of good, substantial reviews can amplify the whole eye-catching image and tip the scales in your favor.

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