What your users are complaining about and what makes them happy?

In our previous post we’ve already discussed how Customer analysis of your app reviews may be useful to find out more information about users, competitors and to choose the best promotion channels or potential customers. In different app markets app rating and reviews are also the key indicators of whether your customers are satisfied or not, that significantly affects app rank. When the rating is showing a positive developers are pleased and the general perception is that things are well.
Happy mobile app developers

But what to do when the rating is volatile or even negative and you don’t have a good idea why?

How could you, for instance, quickly see what your users are complaining about or which feature in your app makes them so happy that they rate your app five star?

Usually getting the answers to this questions include an irresistible process of reading all the hundreds or even thousands of reviews posted during the last month. Developers know how it may be difficult to find the time and resources to make sense out of all the reviews, especially when there are a lot of them daily and you need to be able to react quickly.

Untitled-1

In order to help app developers to analyze their app reviews MetricsCat is starting to provide its users with monthly Sentiment Analysis Report for the followed apps.

In sentiment analysis MetricsCat categorizes the text comment into relevant categories and determine the sentiment for each category.

Let’s see what Monthly Sentiment analysis report includes and how it is useful for app developers on an example of Drag Racing.

Categories bar charts

The Sentiment bar chart shows the top 20 topics based on volume and it’s sentiment analysis. It shows how much negative or positive reviews there are in this category. Bar chart app reviews analysisBar chart sentiment analysis

Topics sentiment comparison

The bubble chart shows the top 10 topics for each comparison item. It contains for each topic the name, total amount and average sentiment. New comparison report _Comparison item 1_Topicchart_2014_7_22 copy

Comparison tag cloud

The tag cloud displays keywords for all messages in a comparison item. It will also contain all the shown keywords with their respective amounts. Etuma 360 2014-07-12 19-06-59 2014-07-12 19-07-02

Sentiment analysis gives an idea of what drives an app rating. It saves time on reading all the app reviews and gives the concept of what users are satisfied with or not in the app.

As you can see on the screenshots above Drag Racing users are happy because of the app’s coolness, creativity and appearance (they write mostly positive reviews using this expressions). We can also notice that words like “ads”, “updates”, “freeze” and “pricing” are used mostly in negative reviews. That’s what disturb users in this app. Drag Racing developers should review the amount of the advertisement in their app and its pricing. It’s also advisable to look for reviews with words “updates” and “freeze” to understand better, what users are waiting for in the app updates.

Sentiment analysis will soon be available for Publishers in monthly reports.

Want to see how Sentiment Analysis can be useful for you? Contact us, and we will show you what your users are happy and complaining about.

Top 11 websites to review your iPhone and iPad app

As an iOS developer you know by now how important it is to promote, once you develop it. If you rely solely on submitting apps to AppStore alone, you’re doing a mistake. We have already discussed in previous posts how useful may be user reviews to do Customer analysis and Sentiment Analysis that offers MetricsCat. A good part of your app marketing and promotion efforts involves submitting your app to good app review sites online. You should submit your app to as many iPhone and iPad review sites as possible. This gives your app added exposure among the public.

We’re glad to introduce you this great listing of iPhone and iPad app review sites that may be useful both for app developers and app junkies.

  1. The Telegraph Mobile App Reviews reviews the best iPhone apps, Android marketplace releases and BlackBerry App World content as well as any other must have applications for your mobile, whatever the OS. Alexa Rank: 199.
  2. IGN Wireless is an entertainment website, which focuses on video games, films, music and other media. Alexa Rank: 315.
  3. Makeuseof‘s primary focus is software, web applications, and technology. It is a British technology and internet apps blog. Alexa Rank: 677.
  4. AppScout is a subdomain of PCmag, that reviews mobile apps. Alexa Rank: 684.
  5. TechRadar is an online publication focused on technology, with news and reviews of tech products. Alexa Rank: 908.
  6. MacRumors a website that aggregates Mac and Apple related news, rumors, and reports. Alexa Rank: 963.
  7. TopTen Reviews is part of an American online publishing company (formerly known as TechMediaNetwork) – Purch. Alexa Rank: 1033.
  8. Computerworld (Blogs) offers reviews for IT devices, software and mobile apps. Alexa Rank: 3437.
  9. Gizmo’s Freeware collects listings of best freeware apps and  programms with reviews and rating. Alexa Rank: 3451.
  10. Apps Zoom is focused on best iPhone and iPad apps reviews. Alexa Rank: 4738.
  11. 148Apps reviews best iPhone and iPad apps, informs about price drops and some lifehacks. Alexa Rank: 16198.

However, this list is just a drop in an ocean.

So don’t stop looking for more resources, that can provide you with one more deep review. Sites lower than that are likely very specialized, new, or inactive, but any bit of publicity can make a difference and could lead to someone from a larger site writing about your app.

Feel free to share with us and our readers other iPhone apps reviews websites. ;)

5Are you sure you know your users well enough?

A key part of enlarging your apps’ installed base is knowing more about your users — how they discover your app, what devices they use, how they use your app, what other apps they use and how much they like other apps. The most obvious way to get to know your users is to read reviews for your apps in different stores. While the details provided in reviews will vary greatly, in addition to telling you about what users like and dislike in your apps, they can also provide insight into your users’ motivations for using your apps and even some information about other apps they use.

One of our goals at MetricsCat has been to surface this information, and make a single screen that gives you an idea of what other apps your users reviewed and how they liked them. Recently MetricsCat added a new option – “Customer analysis”, that makes it for you.

So what does this great option look like?

As you can see below Customer analysis shows what other app did your app reviewers reviewed, how much of them and how did they rate other apps.
1

What is it useful for?

First of all, it’s a simple way to know better your customers. What they do, what other apps they use, are they also keen on sport or cooking or something else. Needless to say, that it’s crucial for mobile app developers to know everything about who uses their application.

Secondly, it’s a great way to find out who your main competitors are and what do users feel about them. Knowing your competitors, and what they are offering, can help you to make your app and its marketing stand out. You can use sentiment analysis to analyse what your users like and dislike in your competitors apps to create apps that take advantage of your competitors’ weaknesses, and improve your own business performance.
For example, Real Racing 3 developers can see on their customer analysis that their main competitors are not only CSR Racing, Asphalt 7: Heat, but also Subway Surfers, Temple Run 2 and many other non-racing games.
2

One more situation when Customer analysis may be useful for you is when you are looking for new promotion channels. It shows what other apps your users like or dislike (you can see it by Avg Rank) and helps you to choose channels. As we can see on Booking.com customer analysis its users also reviewed Waze Social GPS, Maps & Traffic, Groupon, Google Maps, so why not to think about how to use this information to increase app installs?
3

Or if you find, for example, that your users like some other great app, then why not to partner with it? 

Last but not the least, if Customer analysis helps you to find out that many of your users like another one similar app, but you have no idea of what to do with such information – just buy this app.

And if you have already bought this app, like Facebook did, then it’s a good sign for cross-promotion. It has the potential for a big marketing payoff because partners can successfully expand through each other’s customer base.
4

Have any other thought of what other useful idea you can get out of customer analysis? Share your experience with us!

We are looking forward to hearing from you and hope that customer analysis will be interesting and useful for you.

Have a nice weekend!

Startup Wise Guys participation experience

We’ve recently arrived in Tallinn to participate Startup Wise Guys accelerator and are glad to share our experience with you. Let’s start with the very beginning of MetricsCat story.

Experience with participation in Garage48

We participated Garage48 several times and each time we got ready for the hackathon: we already had the team, we clearly knew what we were going to develop and why and we had the domain name bought previously. So we never spent time on such things and were focused mainly on the product development. Participating Garage48 is also a great opportunity to start working as a team with new people and find out more about them as team members.

minsk2.png

About ChangeAgain.Me

There is one more project, that one of MetricsCat cofounders advise and that is also participating in the Startup Wise Guys acceleration program – ChangeAgain.Me. ChangeAgain is a simple A/B testing tool that deeply integrated with Google Analytics. It helps to increase the conversion of a web site, even a marketer without any knowledge of how to change the code, can transform the website, and start the experiment in minutes.  The complete integration with Google Analytics allows to import goals from GA, create goals using visual editor, and track the results without any additional analytic services using familiar interface.

The project is currently collecting data and doing Customer Development Interview with businesses. So if you have an experience in a/b testing and would like to share it with a young project – fill free to email ChangeAgain team.

The road to Startup Wise Guys acceleration program

After winning Garage 48 we went to Tallinn for the first time. From that time we started doing Customer Development actively. We talked to great companies who were interested in our service like Twitter and booking.com, then we go to Helsinki where we got problem interviews with guys from Rovio, Superсell, Grand Cru and many others. Thanks for that helsinkiventures.com. At one conference we met guys from Startup Wise Guys :) and in early June we applied to the Startup Wise Guys accelerator. After several rounds we were successfully invited to stay at the accelerator for 4 month from August till November.

What is accelerator like? It offers you free workspace at a coworking in the heart of Estonia – Tallinn where you meet from 5 to 20 or even more new mentors daily. They are investors, businessmen, successful startupers and other great and experienced guys. All day long you pitch them your startup idea, they give you advice, feedback and what’s the most important they are open to share their business contacts with you, then you work on your product applying their advice and go pitching your idea to new mentors the next day. It’s a great opportunity to meet a lot of new guys and reach a great number of useful business contacts from all over the world..
WP_20140805_005

Our MetricsCat send you “Hi!” from Estonia and wish you participate everywhere, meet new people and communicate with your customers.

P.S.: If you decided to let us have a problem interview with you or be an early adapter of our service with personal support – feel free to contact us.

How do app reviews influence app store ranks?

Hello to everyone!

MetricsCat couldn’t miss regular industry conference MobileOptimized held in Minsk recently.
Now we’ve decided to share with you the main points of our lecture “App ranks dependence on user reviews” omitting the general information about MetricsCat itself.

“You can not control, what you can not measure” – Tom Demarco

Different analytics tools allow you to monitor and understand the entire ecosystems. The collected information often contains answers to most of your questions. And it can cause even more questions.

Though Apple obviously doesn’t make ranking algorithm work public knowledge, but app developers have come to believe the current iteration works something like this:

Ranking = (# of installs weighted for the past few hours) + (# of installs weighted for the past few days) + REVIEWS (star rating + number of reviews) + Engagement (# of times app opened etc.) + Sales ($)

As you can see, your app success depends strongly on what you app reviews bar chart looks like: “call me” sign or a gun.
     

Naturally, most developers seek to have a revolver, but “call me” sign for the first time will be also ok :)

What happens if your gun becomes blurred and negative?

Let’s study three cases: Facebook, Moves and Twitter.

Facebook

There are three curves on the timeline: average top rank, negative and positive reviews. Such a graph for any app provides MetricsCat.

As you can see on the graph the number of bad reviews jumped from almost 0 to over 4k for several days. Negative ratings exceeded positive 22 times. This triggered the largest drop in the app rank for 11 days over the past 3 months. It dropped in rankings from the 10th position to 21st.

Similar cases you can see on Moves rank anaysis :

and Twitter rank analysis graphs:

What is Google Play Top 25

The top 25 box-office application combines:

  • Most of them have at least 10 million downloads;
  • They are distributed free of charge;
  • Their positions in the overall top has little changes during the week;
  • Their average rating is about 4.3 points;
  • Most of them have at least 500,000 reviews.

How to get a gun in your app reviews bar chart?

Since app reviews influence strongly on app store rankings, you app developers should do their best to get the best ratings and reviews from users, especially at the beginning of sales. And there are several advice on how to reduce the number of negative reviews or even avoid them at all:

  • monitor your metrics;
  • do user segmentation;
  • define loyal users and ask them to rate you;
  • address the negative in a support and use it to make your app even better.

One great way to address negative reviews in your support is to integrate Feedback SDK in your app.
             
If user Rates the app 3 stars or less then SDK addresses his review to the support. So that only good reviews and high ratings get to the app store.

So, do great apps, motivate your users to leave good reviews and get guns!;)
See the presentation on SlideShare and don’t forget share it with your friends!

Looking forward to meet you in the next article!
Have a nice week.

Top 5 Halloween apps 2013 for iPhone, iPad and Android

Hi everyone, whoooo :)

It’s Halloween, and here at MetricsCat we’re already celebrating.

Have you already carved your pumpkins? Took spooky pics of your friends with Ghost Camera? Bought your Halloween costume?

By the way, there’s apps for all that. And games. So much fun! So, let’s dive in. What are the best apps for Halloween 2013 based on user app reviews?

Top 3 best Halloween apps for iPhone and iPad

Eden to GreenFarm Story 2 HalloweenPhotoCrash Fright

1. Eden to Green - a free 3D tower defense game by Zynga, with botanical setting and a lot of Halloween specials. Has more than 1376 reviews in Apple App Store! What people say:

Very good game - Beautiful graphic. Very good game. Fun.

2. Farm Story 2 Halloween – a classical farm game, very addicting and nice. More than 1000 positive reviews in the App Store:

Halloween version - I love the pumpkins and fall decor.

3. PhotoCrash Fright – a Halloween photo collage creator, with a lot of spooky and Halloween themed stickers. Paid app, but only $2.99 (and there’s a Lite version available for FREE)! User reviews speak for themselves:

A Virtual Horror Library! 

So many scary & creepy images in this app. Just like the first Photocrash, I keep coming back and finding something new every time. Perfect for people who don’t want to wait around for an alien invasion or a corpse to finish rotting. Three thumbs up in honor of mutants!

Top 3 best Halloween apps for Android

Bubble Blast Halloween X City 2 Halloween Gun Zombie Halloween Halloween Live Wallpaper

1. Bubble Blast Halloween – a free match-3-like puzzle game with cool Halloween setting, effects and blasts! Also available for iOS! To sum up:

Excellent and addictive fun 

I very much enjoy playing this game and only have 1 complaint and that is its too hard to put down.

2. X City Halloween - a free citybuilder game for Android, full of Halloween specials and stuff. Pumpkins everywhere! And people note it’s:

Best city game on internet Superb I love this game

3. Gun Zombie Halloween – for those who starve for a zombie kill! A great shooter game with Halloween setting. Lots of blood, Halloween-themed enemies and bosses. Also available for iPhone/iPad.
Great shooter experience for relaxation, what users think:
Superb Shooter!! 

Best shooter/zombie game I’ve found in play store. I love the Halloween theme too!!
That’s the Top 3, but I can’t help not to add another one: Halloween Live Wallpaper!
Of course we love these things, draining battery but giving us so much fun! And it’s absolutely FREE.
Great

Amezing this so scary for halloween
Do you like these apps? Feel free to share the list with your friends!
We post the best apps only, that have the biggest number of positive user reviews.
Did we miss a nice app? Let us know!
p.s. Love games with spooky setting for mobile? Support Fright Fight on Kickstarter – a first online fighting multiplayer in fantasy horror setting!

Top of the month: 5 most reviewed and rated apps in August

The summer is over, days are becoming shorter, but we at MetricsCat still remember the hot August. Let’s look at the Top reviewed and rated apps of the month.

So, who was working hard during summer to reach the app store top?

An absolute winner in our chart of the most reviewed apps on the AppStore over the past four months remains the app Candy Crash Saga with over 70k reviews in August and we must say “Well done, guys!” to its developers, King.com Limited.

The other 4 most reviewed apps on AppStore are:

But if you look at the apps with highest rating, you won’t find any of them.

The highest rating in August got:

  1. The Tribez HD – a great citybuilder by Game Insight.
  2. … for Kakao - Koreans love their game makers
  3. Injustice: Gods Among Us - a cool looking fighting game
  4. The Simpsons™: Tapped Out - a famous citybuilder with DONUTS
  5. iHeartRadio – Free Music & Radio Stations - finally at least not a game, but a radio app here

Let’s see which apps were popular on Google Play!

Here top reviewed and top rated apps are absolutely different as well!

Top reviewed:

Top rated:

Twitter and Facebook are no surprise to see here, while Prehistoric Park Builder and Star Girl are definitely nice new apps that made it in August.

As you can see games and social media apps were extremely popular in August.

This is a trend for a long time already, and seems like will stay for a long time: people spend most of their time on mobile playing games and networking in social media.

Stay tuned with our blog, keep track of your app new reviews and reach the Top in Stores with us!

We are writing in our blog about ways of boosting app downloads, app budgets, getting app reviews on the web and give other useful advice on how to promote your app and reach app store top.

 

App Promotion Advice #6: On promotion agencies

So, to boost your app downloads you need to get a lot of user installs.

The more marketing activity you perform in a week after your app is released, the more chances you have to reach the Appstore tops, become featured and so on. Remember, that for Apple App Store if you’re not in the Top – your app is lost.

How do you maximize the number of your app downloads after the release? There’re companies that will help you to drive installs for your app.

One company that would help you with pushing app into the Top is ComboApp.

iPad, iPhone app Promotion _ iTunes App Store & Mac App Store Marketing service from ComboApp Marketing & PR Agency - Google Chrome 2013-09-13 15.25.12The pricing differs for an app and the exact position in the tops you’d like to get, but based on your preferences they will guarantee your app to appear in the Top 10, 25, 50 both for any category or general Top Free and they can do that basically for any App Store country.
Except for pushing into tops service, ComboApp offers a wide range of services for app promotion, including app store search optimization (ASO), PR push and so on.
Pricing information can be found here.

Among other promotion agencies that do great service for apps, we can name:
Appular - is a lean, mean, marketing machine. They help apps with PR, media buying and so on.

Appency is a young app promotion agency, but it shows good results. Established in 2009 as the first app specific full service marketing agency by mobile industry veterans, Appency has worked with everyone from Fortune 500 businesses to small independent developers with success. Except basically media buying and PR campaigns, they offer app store optimization services as well and help with marketing materials.

public relations budget - Google Search - Google Chrome 2013-09-13 15.33.47

If to give a ballpark estimation for the cost of a PR campaign for an app, for a 6-7 week PR activities around launch it starts around 8,000$ and can go up to 10,000$.

For longer term relationships of around 3 months and a few different campaigns it’s around $15,000. So it’s cheaper if you work with the company for a longer time.

How to perform PR on a budget? Consider hiring a freelancer. In in most cases he’ll be much more affordable and even much more effective. The reason is that PR agencies and their staff typically work on multiple accounts which means their time is spread out. Freelancers tend to be more focused and may give you better results.

Except for that, pay attention to success stories for PR of specific type of apps. Some agencies tend to work with games more, and have strong connections in TouchArcade or PocketGamer.

 

App Promotion Advice #5: On Timing. How many app downloads do you need to get into the tops?

There seems to be nothing hard in planning and organizing a PR campaign. You can totally do that by yourself. What, you need 50 bloggers to blog about your app? Just talk to them, huh?

But the problem is, that you will need to plan it in the way that as many blogs, portals and web resources would write about your app simultaneously.

Only when you get a big awareness boost in 1-3 days, you’re able to get an app downloads push that will lead you into the tops. And current App Stores are designed only for the apps in the tops to be successful.

So, how many app downloads do you need to get into the Top 10?

According to recent Distimo’s study your app need to have 23,000 app downloads per day to reach Top 50, and 72,000 app downloads to reach the Top 10.

For paid apps it’s all about both app downloads and app revenue.

So, your app must get 4,000 app downloads and earn $47,000 per day to enter Top 10 paid apps and rank 10 in the grossing charts. And around three times less is required to enter to Top 50 paid apps on App Store – nearly $12,000 per app daily.

The challenge is too stiff? Consider focusing on iPad-only apps. iPad app need nearly one-third of app downloads, required for iPhone app – only 8,200 per day. For paid apps aiming for the Top 50 iPad list, you also need to gross $10,200 per day.

The numbers are even more miserable at Google Play: your paid app needs only $6,600 per day for Top 50 status – it’s half the $12,000 raked in at Apple’s App Store.

apple-app-rev-distimo

Maybe, that competition is too high for you. If so, check out Amazon’s Appstore. It requires 9 times fewer to get into the Top 50 at Amazon than at App Store – only 2,500 app downloads per day.

Another Tip: On timing

Don’t try to break into the Top 10 during weekends, think of it as the App Store equivalent of the rush hour. Weekends mean a crush of competition as apps compete for a slice of a huge audience.

apple-apps-days-distimo-130628-2

Instead, you may have better luck on Thursdays, which requires the fewest number of app downloads to rank on the App Store.

Soon we’ll tell you how to attract users to your app and how to increase the number of your app downloads. Stay tuned for series of MetricsCat App Promotion Advice articles!

In our previous articles we’ve already discussed:

Have a nice week and don’t miss anything! :)

App Promotion Advice #4. Step aside: on budgets

In our last App Promotion Advice we discussed how to get app reviews on the web.

Before we move on with app promotion advice, let’s talk about app development budgets.

How much does it cost to develop an app?

Depends on how it goes, but MetricsCat can give you the following ballpark estimations for that: About as much as a car.

 

A nice infographics from Darwin Apps explains the idea better than any text:

Anyway, what’s there except app development budget?

Normally there is a marketing budget for an app. And you would spend it on all the things needed to attract attention to your app – PR campaign, buying installs, creating a video trailer, SMM campaign and so on.

How big should be the marketing budget for an app? It depends, but if an app costs as a car, marketing expenses are another car. At least another car.

Read other App Promotion Advice:

Or stay tuned for our blog to get even more advice!