Friday, July 08, 2016

Rising in the store charts

Are you an app developer?
Do you dream of getting your app high in the charts and all the downloads that will bring?
Maybe you think the new and rising category is a reasonable place to hope to be. If you make something good and it's popular that sounds like a realistic goal, doesn't it?

There are a lot of people monitoring what happens with the iOS App Store and the Google Play Store. The Windows app store seems to get overlooked. So, for the last few months, I've been tracking what's been going on in it and have made some interesting discoveries.

Background: Each day I've been recording the first page of results (top 72 entries) for each of the different device, type, and chart combinations in the US store.

There're lots of interesting things in the data but let's start simple.

The "new and rising" chart is the most interesting to me for a couple of reasons.

  1. Developers tend to think that's where they have a chance of getting their app listed if it's well received.
  2. It sounds like it should be a good place to go for anyone wanting to find new, interesting apps. I'd expect to be able to return there regularly and find new apps that might be relevant.

Here are four stats based on what happened in the "new and rising" chart for mobile apps in the US store between March 1st and June 30th:

  1. Over the 122 days, there were 202 new entries in the chart. That's an average of 1.66 new apps each day. (Mode and Median are both 1.) On 22 of those days (18%) there were no new entries.

  2. Of the apps that entered the chart during that time, 65 of them were re-entries. That is, they entered, left and re-entered. This included some that entered 3 & 4 times. In total, this means there were 209 different apps listed in the chart over the 4 month period.

  3. Apps that entered the top of the chart were there for an average of 39.35 days. (Mode 1 and Median 14.)

  4. There were only ten apps in the chart on the first day of the period in question that weren't also there on the last day. Yes, that means 62 of the top 72 were still in the "new and rising" chart after 4 months.

Some of those figures are very surprising. But, what can we learn from them?

For developers, I think this means you need to be realistic about the chances of breaking into this chart easily. On average, only 1.1 new apps makes it into the top of the "new and rising" chart each day.

For anyone looking to find new apps that might be of interest. The "new and rising" chart is unlikely to be a good place to go to look for them.

As this isn't a good place for people to find new apps, for developers this also means that they need to think about promoting their apps in places other than just relying on the charts.

That the charts aren't a good place to find new apps may  indicate an opportunity for providing somewhere else that is. I'll leave this to your imagination for now.

For me, it makes me unsure what "new" and "rising" really mean. Most of the apps listed in that chart appear to be old and stationary.

Is this interesting?
Would you like to see more analysis of other charts and time periods?
Let me know.


  1. Sad to hear and good analysis. This should reach Microsoft :(

    1. I've asked for comment but not heard back yet.


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