Why should I watch app store rankings?

by Brook Lenox on November 13, 2009

eagle_eyeIf you are an iPhone app developer, you’ve got lots of balls in the air.

So why have an eagle eye constantly tracking app ranking?

Here are two real world examples of why this is important.

 

#1 – Ranking Changes May Equal Download Changes

Tracking ranking versus downloads will give you critical information.

Say you’re #5 in the Lifestyle paid category and getting 5k downloads/day.  Then you drop off the first page on the device to #7 and are now getting only 4k downloads/day.  It may be time to start some marketing.

If you aren’t watching your rank and equating rank changes to download changes, you’ll have no basis for the decisions you make.

NOTE: I say “maybe” because it doesn’t always follow. If you drop out of the top 100 overall to say 105, it may or may not make a difference that matters. Maybe your category ranking hasn’t moved and is still driving close to the same number of downloads. That’s why it’s so key to track everything.

#2 App Store Rankings do Freeze

Every once in a while the app store has an issue. In December of 2008 and just last week Apple froze the rankings in the app store. Who knows why.

It is crucial to know when this happens, especially if you are launching an app or doing significant marketing!

How come?

If you spend all the time and money to launch or promote an app and the rankings are frozen, all the downloads you’ve generated DON’T DRIVE YOU UP IN THE RANKING!  So track the top 100 when you’re getting close to a launch and make sure the rankings are changing at least every couple hours.

Summary

In a store with lots of products (> 100k now) and limited shelves like the app store, you can’t afford to be unaware of what’s going on at all times.

Use these app store ranking tools to help you stay on top of your apps. Good luck.

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