Harnessing the Power of User Reviews in ASO

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Buse Kanal
Harnessing the Power of User Reviews in ASO

Table of Content:

  1. Prioritize app quality
  2. Optimize performance
  3. Ask for reviews properly
    • Be polite
    • Appeal to the user’s emotions
    • Utilize visuals
    • Target happy users
    • Make the review process easy
    • Personalize Your Request
  4. Ask for Feedback Inside the App
  5. Harness the power of user reviews
  6. Afterword

User reviews play a huge role in the success of your App Store Optimization (ASO) campaign. Most users heavily rely on ratings as a quick and easy indicator of app quality. Statistics show that a whopping 79% of people check reviews before downloading an app.

You will notice that apps with ratings lower than 4 could easily be ignored. Not only that, but even apps with 4.5 stars could still potentially lose out to competitors with higher ratings. That’s the reality that app developers and marketers must face.

Yes, having proper metadata, app description, and compelling screenshots and videos is important, you can’t ignore how crucial user feedback is. What’s more, user ratings and reviews also hold the power to either increase or decrease your app’s visibility in app stores.

As you can see, user reviews can either be your friend or foe. The question now is, “How do you harness the power of user reviews and turn it into the driving engine of your ASO?” That’s exactly what you will learn today!

Prioritize app quality

The success of your app heavily relies on its quality. You can't expect to garner a lot of positive reviews if your app is riddled with bugs and crashes. Thus, you need to begin with your app. The higher the quality of your app, the easier it is for you to secure higher ratings.

Here are some key aspects to consider when building a great app:

  • User-Friendly Design: Design an intuitive and user-friendly interface to make your users happier. They should easily navigate through your app and accomplish tasks without confusion.
  • Value proposition: Clearly communicate the value of your app. Users should understand how your app solves a real problem or enhances their lives. Make your app's value proposition evident in your app store listing and within the app itself.
  • Regular Updates: Stay committed to improving your app by releasing regular updates. Regular updates demonstrate to users that you are actively working to enhance their experience.

Optimize performance

One of the primary causes of frustration among app users is slow loading time, glitches, and bugs. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure the establishment of a robust testing process to identify and rectify bugs early on or, at the very least, to prevent them from occurring.

If possible, implement a bug-tracking system to monitor and prioritize bug fixes. Stay vigilant about user reports of performance issues. This is where the significance of regular updates comes into play. Remember, the smoother and more seamless your app's performance is, the happier your users will be.

Ask for reviews properly

Now, here's the tricky part. You've already fulfilled your end — you've created a high-quality app with no bugs and performance issues, and hopefully, you have satisfied users. Nevertheless, don't be too hasty in asking for reviews. You need to ensure you do it the right way.

Keep in mind that asking for reviews can be disruptive, especially when managing mobile app reviews. Picture this: your users are engrossed in using your app, and suddenly, you're asking them to complete a task that seems to offer no immediate benefit to them. Therefore, there are a few things you need to remember to ensure you're asking for reviews appropriately.

Here are some tips to bear in mind:

Be polite

It goes on to say that since you’re asking for a favor, you need to politely present your request. When asking for reviews, add gratitude to the mix like thanking the user for their time and feedback. For example, you can say, “Thank you for using our app! If you enjoy it, please consider leaving a review.”

Appeal to the user’s emotions

Emotions are incredibly powerful, and you can leverage them when seeking feedback. For example, the Waze app taps into the user's need for belongingness. Take a look at how they ask for feedback:

They straightforwardly state, "Enjoying Waze? Your app store review helps spread the word and grow the Waze community!" Waze emphasizes the significance of community, recognizing that many people value belonging, thus increasing the likelihood of receiving a review.

Utilize visuals

Going back to Waze’s method of getting a review, you can observe that they incorporate attractive images. They feature charming vehicles along with an image of five smiling stars, encouraging users to provide higher ratings.

You can adopt a similar strategy. Be inventive. Select visuals that align with your brand or app.

Target happy users

Utilizing analytics and metrics tools, pinpoint your power users — those who frequently use your app and fully understand its value. When you focus on power users, you increase the likelihood of receiving positive feedback, and conversion rates also rise.

When soliciting ratings, timing is a critical factor. Requesting ratings at the wrong time can irritate even happy users and lead to negative feedback.

There are strategic moments to prompt users for ratings, and identifying them can significantly impact whether the feedback is positive or negative. So, when is the right time to ask for ratings? Here are some suggestions:

  • After a positive interaction
  • After the successful completion of a task
  • After releasing a significant app update
  • After introducing a new feature
  • After providing value
  • When you observe a positive trend
  • After a purchase is made (if you have an e-commerce app)
  • After a customer support interaction
  • When users have had sufficient exposure to your app

Remember, the key is to make the request for ratings feel natural and non-intrusive. Always respect the user experience, and refrain from asking for ratings too frequently, as this can lead to annoyance and potentially result in negative reviews.

Make the review process easy

Simplifying the process of leaving reviews is crucial because a complicated or time-consuming process can discourage users from providing feedback. Reduce the number of steps users need to take to leave a review. The fewer steps involved, the more likely users will follow through. Minimize effort by eliminating unnecessary forms or confirmation steps.

Provide users with direct links to the app store review page for your app. This eliminates the need for users to search for your app on the app store, streamlining the process. Clearly instruct users on how to leave a review. Offer concise and easy-to-follow instructions to ensure users understand the process.

Personalize Your Request

Personalizing review requests involves tailoring your communication to individual users, making the request feel more personalized and meaningful.

When sending in-app messages or notifications asking for a review, address the user by their name. This small touch can make the request feel more like a personal interaction rather than a generic message.

Mention specific actions or achievements the user has accomplished within the app. For example, if your app is a fitness app and the user has completed a certain number of workouts, you could say something like, "Congratulations on completing 50 workouts! We're thrilled to be a part of your fitness journey. If you enjoy using our app, could you take a moment to share your experience with others?"

You get the idea. Personalize your request and see more users giving you positive reviews.

Ask for Feedback Inside the App

The best way to prevent a user from providing negative feedback on the app store is by asking them first. Don't wait until they become so frustrated that they are motivated to leave a negative review.

So, how do you go about this? Take note of BabyCenter's feedback request:

Harness the power of user reviews

Now that you know how to generate positive reviews, it's time to capitalize on them. Here are some effective ways to do this:

  • Improve app ranking: The algorithms of app stores, such as the App Store and Play Store, give preference to apps with higher reviews. Therefore, the higher your ratings, the greater your chance of appearing in search results.
  • Use user reviews in the app description: Highlight positive quotes or testimonials from user reviews in your app's description. This not only provides social proof but also showcases the positive experiences that other users have had with your app.
  • Feature reviews in marketing materials: Incorporate positive reviews in your app's promotional materials, such as app store screenshots, video previews, and marketing campaigns. This can be a powerful way to showcase the value of your app to potential users.
  • Implement user suggestions: If users consistently request certain features or improvements, consider implementing those suggestions. This not only improves your app but also demonstrates to users that their feedback is valued.
  • Utilize keywords from reviews: Analyze the language used by users in their reviews. This can provide insights into keywords that resonate with your audience. Incorporate relevant keywords into your app's metadata (app title, description, and keyword field) to improve discoverability.

By actively managing user reviews, you not only improve your app's reputation but also enhance its visibility in the app stores, ultimately driving more downloads and user engagement.


This is a guest post from ShyftUp, a Paid User Acquisition & ASO Agency. ShyftUp stands out as a premier user acquisition agency, renowned for its proficiency and track record in fostering profitable user growth. If you're seeking expert assistance in App Store Optimization, ShyftUp is here to help. Reach out to ShyftUp for a consultation and take the first step towards maximizing your app's potential.

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