ASO Blog

5 Tools to Manage your Users Reviews and Ratings

Mon 4 Aug 2014, 4:03 PM - laurie

Reviews and ratings have a huge influence in any app download decision. People usually trust other users to make their choice among the humongous number of apps on the App Store. Generally, no one would download an app with no reviews at all – or worst – more bad reviews than good ones. It is absolutely indispensable to encourage your users to review your app. In this blog post we will go through 5 online services allowing you to manage and collect your users feedback directly on your app very easily.

Encourage reviews & ratings

We’ve already seen through a dedicated blog article how important and powerful app reviews are. The new App Store algorithm is now taking ratings and reviews seriously into account, and of course, the higher the ranking, the better. Plus, users feedback and opinion have a strong influence on your potential users who are paying an extreme attention to what others think before clicking the download button.

Having good ratings and reviews can therefore be a strong asset and can help you stand out from your competitors. It is however hard to get your users to rate or review your app. It is even harder to get them to rate it positively: indeed, unsatisfied users are more likely to post a review than happy customers. It’s sad but true.

Of course, you cannot expect to have awesome reviews if you app is bad. So please, before doing anything, make sure you have a valuable and well-designed app that’s actually worth downloading.

Once your app is great and working fine, you can start working on your App Marketing strategy and try to get (good) reviews.

There are several ways for users to rate your app. In theory, after downloading and using your app, users willing to post a review have to go back to the App Store, search for your app and rate it in the ratings section. However, in practice, only few users are willing to do this.

It’s not hard to understand, we know that people have so many things to do: why would they bother losing time to rate an app? Again, usually users would only make the effort if they are really mad or annoyed about your app for some reason…

The best thing you can do is to be the most accessible possible. Make sure that you have a support address so that potential unhappy users would be more tempted to contact you directly than leaving a bad review. Be sure to always respond to their questions and frustrations: try resolving every problem mentioned and let your unhappy users know it’s resolved. At that point, you can ask them to leave a review of your app if you feel they’re satisfied with your service.

So, how do you get happy users to rate/review your app easily? 

As I said, there are several ways to ask your users to rate your app but the best way is to make the rating/review path the easiest possible. Of course in your app description or on your app website (which I hope you’ve created!), you can dedicate a section with various call-to-action in order to motivate users to share their experience and opinion about your app. You can also send emails or use social media to encourage people rating your app. These ways work and can totally be used in your strategy…but they’re not the best nor the easiest ways to gather reviews.

It seems that the most effective way to ask your users’ feedback is to use an app rating SDK. Below you will find our selection list of 5 services offering ratings/feedback SDKs ready to be implemented within your app. With this type of technique, your users don’t have to do many efforts. You can also choose the moment you want to contact them; the best practice is to wait for your users to use your app from 5 to 10 times in a small period of time before you ask. Therefore, you know that these users are really enjoying your app and spending time on it. Building strong relationships with your audience is the key to success.

You will find below our selection of 5 SDK tools to help you manage your reviews, ratings and app feedback:

1) Appsfire:

Appsfire, a mobile native advertising company focusing on the best tactics to engage customers in an unintrustive way, has introduced the Appsfire SDK (formerly known as “App Booster”). It is very light and easy to implement within your iOS or Android apps. It also can be integrated with Unity, Cordova and Phonegap.

The main point of this SDK is to capture the user’s attention at the right moment. This in-app notification system allows dialog and feedback within a mobile app. Everything’s made for you to get in touch with your users softly.

People can send their opinion or suggestions in what looks like an inbox with personal messages. Bad reviews and complaints will therefore end up in the inbox and users will less likely want to post a bad review on the App Store after already complaining to you directly.

Good and positive feedback will be thanked and happy customers will be encouraged to leave their review on the App Store.

Give it a try, Appsfire SDK is fully free!

2) Apptentive:

Apptentive offers a great and easy-to-integrate SDK that allows you to collect your users feedback and interact with them. Indeed, you can easily reach out to your users and dialog with them inside your app directly.

You can also ask your users specific questions through a custom in-app survey.  Custom prompts are also available. Of course, you can target any message or notification you want through users, time and activity segmentation. Here also, users are encouraged to rate your app in the App Store if they like it.

Apptentive is available for iOS and Android apps and is available for free (up to 1,000 interactions).

3) Appboy:

Appboy “provides data-driven Marketing Automation for apps”. The whole point is to help you manage your audience life cycle the easiest and the best way possible. This mobile app CRM provides an effective segmentation tool enabling you to deliver personalized message to your users.

Understanding your audience is the key to a successful app. Not only it helps you engage with the right target at the right time, it also helps you identify your customers and analyzes their behavior.

By creating a personalized relationship with your users, you will also have more chances to get them posting their feedback on the App Store. It’s important to get closer to your audience. With Appboy you can engage with your users via push notifications, in-app messages, e-mails or news in their news feed.

Finally, Appboy also provides powerful analytics to track and measure the effectiveness of you actions. Free plan available for up to 1,000 active users.

4) UserVoice:

UserVoice offers both iOS and Android apps SDKs that can be installed in minutes. This native in-app customer service solution helps you collect your users feedback very easily.

Indeed, UserVoice includes:

-  An effective tool for gathering feedback and ideas from your customers. You can prioritize content from anyone you want and start an in-app conversation. -  A Helpdesk service based in a ticketing system and allowing you to resolve issues faster and easier. -  A knowledge base management tools allowing yoo to empower customer support in a single platform.

Multiple plans available starting for free.

5) Instabug

Instabug offers an in-app service for mobile apps. With its easy to integrate SDK (1 line of code) available for iOS and Android apps, Instabug enables you to collect your users or testers feedback and report bugs within your app.

The original part is that users can reach out to you just by shaking their mobile device. When tilting their phone, an automatic screenshot will be taken and your users will be able to draw on it to state their opinion and show what can or should be improved. With this system, you will get less negative reviews and fewer emails.

Instabug also offers you various easy-to-read charts in your dashboard so that you can view and track every reported bug over time with different filtering options.

All features are free during Beta version.

As you can see, there are many different online possibilities to manage your users directly within your app. Just like for any website needing its CRM, your app ideally needs a service like this. It’s essential to understand your audience and to show that you’re listening to what your users have to say. It’s also a very good way to ask for reviews!

Of course this is a non-exhaustive list. There are other in-app services like Trii.be, Opinionlab, AskingPoint and many others…

Are you using one of these tools? What do you think about this way of managing your users? How do you encourage your users to leave a review? Let us know in the comment section below.

By Laurie Galazzo

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App Store Optimization ("ASO") is the process of improving the visibility of a mobile app (such as an iPhone, iPad, Android, or Windows Phone app) in an app store (such as iTunes or Google Play for Android). App Store Optimization is the mobile equivalent of Search engine optimization. Specifically, App Store Optimization includes the process of ranking highly in an app store's search results and top charts rankings. ASO marketers agree that ranking higher in search results and top charts rankings will drive more downloads for an app. - From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.