The Holy Grail of App marketing is still getting featured on Apple’s own App Store. All new products get a few days in the marketing sunshine that is the “New and Noteworthy” section of iTunes. And once that period is over your app’s sales can sink like a rather heavy stone in a deep dark pool, no matter how good or bad your product is. And that is primarily because you are then lost in a rather archaic search engine with another 250,000+ products all competing for attention.
On the other hand you can be deemed by Apple (or Android, or Ovi) to have put enough polish and “technical excellence” into your product that they may ask you to spruce up a few things and get ready to be featured in the App Store.
Waze has today released some figures for their cross platform traffic related social networking app which shows the relative effect that being featured in the Android, Apple or Ovi stores has had on their number of users. Waze describes itself as providing “Real-time maps and traffic information based on the wisdom of the crowd”. So it’s kind of like Foursquare for drivers!
There are a few things that we can glean from Waze’s figures:
Firstly their app is free, which has a massive bearing on the number of downloads they will receive. It’s also well presented and in vogue as its a social networking product.
Being featured on any of the App Stores results in a marked increase in app sales, or user registrations. We are talking about increases in the thousands of users, or unit sales.
Being featured on Apple’s App Store results in a larger percentage increase in sales than any other App Store. Not that surprising when you consider how many more customers Apple’s App Store attracts on a daily basis. And how many devices they sell each and every day globally. But an increase of over 200% when compared to just over 100% for the Android or Ovi App Stores is still a big difference.
There are of course other ways to succeed with your app. Like great marketing, or producing a product which simply captures enough people’s imagination to make it a break out success in its own right. Or you can receive great reviews from sites like Touch Reviews. But being featured by Apple is certainly still one of the most rewarding and potentially lucrative avenues for developers.
Whilst being featured in one of the other App Stores is not as potentially rewarding as being on Apple’s featured list, it is certainly not to be sniffed at. And right now may be a slightly more attainable target for some developers.
In some ways being featured in any App Store is a little bit of a chicken and egg situation. You are only likely to get featured if you are considered to have a quality product and you are already experiencing good sales.
So putting the figures, as interesting as they are, to one side for a moment the moral of this story is still, and always will be, to produce the best product, presented as professionally as you possibly can, and market the hell out of it!
Do you buy Apps based on recommendations from Apple, Ovi or Android Stores? Or rely on other methods to make your purchasing decisions? Like our reviews? Let us know in the comments…