Starting Sept 7th 2016, Apple will be be making some drastic changes to it’s app store SERP’s (Search Engine Results Pages) in an effort to clean up some of the rampant rubbish currently cluttering up their app store. The changes were spawned from an outcry within the the “legit” app development community that higher quality apps were getting pushed down in the search results due to those who use blackhat or obscure ASO (App Store Optimization) techniques to move up in the rankings. These underminers also used long-tail, misspellings or exact match titles in their app listings to trick unsuspecting users and garner larger quantities of eyes to their apps. In 3 days, if Apple comes across a mobile app that has not been updated since 2012, they will alert the app’s developer of any changes/updates that need to be made. If the requests are not followed in a timely fashion, measures will be taken towards removal from app store.
The search function is one of the main methods customers use to find and download apps from the App Store. With hopes of altering search results, some developers have used long app names which include descriptions and terms not directly related to their app. App names you submit in iTunes Connect for new apps and updates will now be limited to no longer than 50 characters.
In a recent blog post published on Apple’s developer site, the iPhone creator laid out a list of App Store improvements crafted to “make it easier for customers to find great apps that fit their needs.”
Apple also wrote:
“You will be asked to submit an update within 30 days to keep your app on the App Store. If you are unable to make the changes within this time frame, your app will be removed from the App Store until you submit an update and it is approved. Please note that apps that crash on launch will be removed immediately.”
This change is long overdue and we are happy to see these measures being taken to improve the quality of the search results within Apple’s app store.