How supporting new features can increase visibility in the App Store
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At the online meetup AppFollow organized in February Apoorva Tyagi, Senior Product Manager at SignEasy, shared a case study of iOS 13 launch and what traction SignEasy app got from the release.
Also, Apoorva gave numerous tips on how supporting new iOS features can help other apps get more visibility in the App Store as well.
About SignEasy App
SignEasy is a leading cloud-based eSignature solution for professionals and businesses, to sign, send and manage their important documents electronically, right from the mobile device or computer. The company has products for iOS, Android as well as a web app.
Over 130,000 customers in 40,000 businesses worldwide trust and use SignEasy to close deals faster, improve customer experience and save costs by eliminating the print-scan-fax routine for paperwork.
The app consistently ranks among the top 100 apps in business category and is rated as #1 in customer satisfaction for eSignature industry on leading review sites for business software.
SignEasy History with Apple
Since 2010, when the first iOS version was released, SignEasy has been investing a lot into the relationship with Apple. In return the app received a lot of love from Apple as well:
- In 2015 SignEasy was featured in Apple Touch ID commercial;
- Featured in Apple retail stores. If you walk into an Apple Store, chances are that you will see SignEasy installed on demo devices there;
- Consistently featured in the App Store;
- Very recently Apple called SignEasy one of their 70 mobility partners (or so) across the globe.
Supporting New iOS Features
SignEasy has always supported new iOS features starting from iOS 9 all the way up to iOS 13. Below you can see every new feature that was released in different iOS versions and the app made it available immediately on the launch day:
iOS 13: Dark Mode, Document Scanner, Multiple Windows on iPad
iOS 12: Automatic strong passwords, iPhone XS form factor support
iOS 11: Drag & Drop support, Files app integration
iOS 10: Peek & Pop, Apple Pencil, Rich Notifications
iOS 9: Slide Over, Multi-tasking with Split View
Case Study: Impact of the iOS 13 Feature
The day iOS 13 went live SignEasy was featured in 151 countries in the Today and Apps tabs, and on both iPhone and iPad devices.
The app got a lot of media coverage as well. There were about nine big-name pickups. This is to highlight that outside of the Apple universe people are also talking about the latest iOS features and the companies that implement them.
Featuring and media visibility had a great impact on the app page visits and conversions:
- 10x increase in the app page views;
- 2.5x increase in weekly installs;
- Similar impact on sign ups, purchases;
- The impact lasts up to this day.
All these happened because the SignEasy team was ready to release new features on the day zero.
How to Get Your App Ready for iOS Release
There is no playbook that you can follow to get featured in the App Store on the new iOS release day. But Apoorva shared a few tips, if not steps, that worked for SignEasy and that other apps can follow to increase their chances to be selected by Apple editors:
Getting your app ready before new iOS release
- Start planning in June to be ready by September 1st. WWDC is usually held in June and it is where new iOS and new features are announced. The beta version becomes available in June as well. That should be the moment you start planning all the way up till your September release.
- Attend WWDC. The other thing I highly recommend, if you have the budget for it, is to attend WWDC. There's a lot happening behind the scenes there: developer meetups to participate in; Apple’s Developer Relations team is very much present as well; Apple Engineers helping you get set up new features.
- Launch Day Zero. I can't emphasize this enough, your app needs to be ready and approved in the App Store the day zero. As soon as the new iOS goes live the App Store is completely refreshed and shows the apps that are ready.
- Work with your developer relations person at Apple. The month of September (when you are ready to release) is not the time you reach out to them. It has to be right from June. Just let them know what your roadmap is, keep giving them frequent updates with images and videos, if possible. Also, provide feedback on iOS. Apple is really looking for developer feedback before they go live in September. It will also strengthen your relationships with the developer relations person.
Gearing up for the marketing launch
- Gearing up for the marketing launch, developer revelations is the best person to work with again. They are the only people who have a direct line to the editorial team and the editorial people rely on them to feature you.
- The other way is to drop a note to the editorial team vai the public link that Apple promotes. Do it at least six weeks in advance.
Now when you are ready to release:
- Update screenshots, as the editorial people do care about screenshots when they are featuring your app. Also, if there is anything new that you want to highlight, definitely put it on screenshots. It is a very effective tactic for increasing views to installs.
- Update What’s New. SignEasy team has seen users relying a lot on What's New to figure out which features the app is supporting now. One tip here: as we are talking about being day zero ready, you will need to submit your app before the new iOS version has gone out. Make sure not to mention the name of the new iOS version yet. Apple will reject your app. The reason behind it is that you can't mention a product that Apple hasn't made available publicly yet.
- Participate in roundup blogs. Before the new iOS release, a lot of journalists look for insights from developers who are supporting the new features. Don’t hesitate to do cold outreach to journalists who wrote about iOS in the past, they will probably do it again.
- The final thought that I would leave you with is to submit EARLY, get approved, and be ready to release before iOS goes out. Keep in mind that a lot of people will be submitting updates at this point, so the review cycle might be a lot longer than 24 hours.
Watch the full video of Apoorva Tyagi’s talk at Mobile Growth Online Meetup by AppFollow: