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Yet another search change just rolled out

kmkkmk Posts: 449Registered Users @ @
Some of my apps have suddenly (within the past few hours) had significant changes in search rank. Check your keywords, folks.
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Replies

  • scottwbscottwb Posts: 952New Users @ @ @
    OMG!! We now rank 1ST for 'gem match'. Xmas collapse now ranks 4th for 'collapse game', I'm stunned! What are Apple up to. It almost seems now that the name IS important?
  • TouchmintTouchmint Tempe, AZPosts: 823Registered Users @ @ @
    edited January 2013
    scottwb said:

    OMG!! We now rank 1ST for 'gem match'. Xmas collapse now ranks 4th for 'collapse game', I'm stunned! What are Apple up to. It almost seems now that the name IS important?

    Looks like free apps got another boost as for name having more weight I dont think that is the case almost the opposite. I think they are just weighing free apps higher.

  • scottwbscottwb Posts: 952New Users @ @ @
    Okay, I've done some rough and ready tests and it seems that an app with exact name will rank first over anything else.

    Personally I'm pleased because our new apps tend to follow a standard naming so 'Gem Match', 'Gem Lines', 'Gem Collapse' all now rank 1st.

    There are some exceptions e.g. 'COLLAPSE!' wont rank 1st for 'COLLAPSE' or 'COLLAPSE!'. Perhaps the changes are still propagating.
  • scottwbscottwb Posts: 952New Users @ @ @
    Touchmint said:


    Looks like free apps got another boost as for name having more weight I dont think that is the case almost the opposite. I think they are just weighing free apps higher.

    I'm not so sure, we never ranked ahead of Jewel Mania, Bejewelled Blitz, Jewel Fever, Gems with friends etc for the search term 'gem match'. I just checked todays report - we ranked 37th for 'Gem Match' and now first.

  • scottwbscottwb Posts: 952New Users @ @ @
    The change is NOT on the UK app store. Is that quite normal for search changes, roll out to US first and then other countries later?
  • mastersdommastersdom Posts: 204Registered Users
    scottwb said:

    I'm not so sure, we never ranked ahead of Jewel Mania, Bejewelled Blitz, Jewel Fever, Gems with friends etc for the search term 'gem match'. I just checked todays report - we ranked 37th for 'Gem Match' and now first.

    Wow Jackpot! Personally I am scared to look :) The search system is schizophrenic these days.

  • kmkkmk Posts: 449Registered Users @ @
    Free apps do seem to be emphasized. When searching for the name of my dev account, a free app of mine now appears first even though it probably has less downloads than my most popular app. I need to verify this though.
  • TouchmintTouchmint Tempe, AZPosts: 823Registered Users @ @ @
    It is not totally on names. Before this update my app "Bracket Maker" has always since I created it been ranked first. After this update there is a free bracket making app ahead of mine.

    -Same amount of reviews
    -Same average review
    -My app has been out a few months longer
    -My app grosses quite a bit more according to rev ranking
  • O.C.O.C. Posts: 17New Users *
    Any idea on when this first happened? I've tested all our apps and it appears the name is helping a lot. We are ranking in the top 3-5 on most of our apps when we search the name. That is great for us. Our biggest sales day in our 11 month history was January 1st. Second biggest was January 2nd. I expected this to do with Xmas boost, however I wonder if this change may have helped those days as well.
  • iekeiiekei Posts: 614Registered Users @ @ @
    One of my free apps moved up slightly for the search keywords I believe that are the most important in discovery. Those keywords are in the name. It's been selling better than usual during the last two weeks or so, so that's what I'm attributing the change to, not any change in the ranking system.
  • kmkkmk Posts: 449Registered Users @ @
    iekei said:

    One of my free apps moved up slightly for the search keywords I believe that are the most important in discovery. Those keywords are in the name. It's been selling better than usual during the last two weeks or so, so that's what I'm attributing the change to, not any change in the ranking system.

    No offense but I'm fairly certain you're the only person on these forums that completely dismisses the numerous search changes that have occurred in the past few months. Please stop trolling and provide some evidence for your claims.
  • fouldscfouldsc Posts: 398Registered Users @ @
    I've seen very little movement on my apps, but on rivals I see title is getting more weight (yet again) , and a mild , but nothing crazy upshift on free apps
  • scottwbscottwb Posts: 952New Users @ @ @
    O.C. said:

    Any idea on when this first happened?

    We track our rankings daily, and Gem Match (now ranking 1st for 'gem match') was not 1st on 2nd Jan. Looks like it happened yesterday.
  • Arty TalesArty Tales Posts: 420Registered Users @ @
    No significant changes here.
  • iekeiiekei Posts: 614Registered Users @ @ @
    fouldsc said:

    I've seen very little movement on my apps, but on rivals I see title is getting more weight (yet again) , and a mild , but nothing crazy upshift on free apps

    Evidence in this thread.

  • iekeiiekei Posts: 614Registered Users @ @ @

    No significant changes here.

    More evidence in this thread.

    I wrote a rather long reply to you knk, but the troll flag you put on my previous post seems to have put it into moderation. Anyway, I hope it appears and I'm pretty sure that you'll at least a little bit agree with me once you've understood my position.
  • iekeiiekei Posts: 614Registered Users @ @ @
    kmk said:

    No offense but I'm fairly certain you're the only person on these forums that completely dismisses the numerous search changes that have occurred in the past few months. Please stop trolling and provide some evidence for your claims.

    I'm not saying that there aren't changes, there may have been in some people's cases, what I am saying is that it's not really possible to see into the black box and determine what caused what app to move up or down especially if you yourself didn't make a deliberate change and no one else did. Was it the keywords or the keywords of its competitors? Does the bulk of the app's sales come from keyword searches or from genius or "customers also bought" suggestions? How many come from a link from the dev's website, app review site, or from referrals within the dev's other apps? We just don't know and I believe people are just reading too much into what in a lot of the time pretty much amounts to random fluctuations.

    A lot of the advice since the summer that's been given on specifically the changes were, what caused them, and how to adapt has been wrong. I've already pointed out specifically where I noticed that the keyword advice was wrong and it which stores it was wrong.

    Like I said, one of my apps just moved up a little bit, leapfrogging a competitor who went down a few places. Neither of us made any changes in the last month or so. In fact that particular competitor hasn't changed anything for almost two years. My sales for that app have been going up for the last few weeks, and I believe that's because it's better than those of my competitors. I hope the customers see that and that's why it's been doing better recently. Is that the reason why it's moved slightly up? I don't know.

    I do know that my app is still outranked by another app. The other one is quite a lot like the one mine leapfrogged: non-Retina and hasn't been updated almost two years, etc. so it seems unlikely that Retina, minimum iOS version, or frequency of updates have a direct bearing on these rankings. Those might indirectly influence buyers though, leading them to choose the superior alternative thereby improving the superior alternative's sales and rank.
  • scottwbscottwb Posts: 952New Users @ @ @
    @iekei, I think the evidence is fairly strong for a weighting on app name, how else would 'Gem Match' leap 36 places, passing Jewel Mania, Bejewelled Blitz, Jewel Fever, Gems with friends etc on the way. Come on, Bejewelled Blitz ? BJB main keywords (excluding the name) are 'gem', 'match' and 'jewel', there are also some generic ones we can discount e.g. 'facebook'.

    I agree that there also appears to be something else in play e.g. our app Xmas Collapse is now number 4 for 'collapse game', this time last week it was nowhere and downloads for that app have dropped right off.

    We'll never know for sure - but if app name now forms part of the keyword ranking then I'm happy as we've got 'Jewel Match' on the way as well :)
  • RudyRudy Ottawa, CanadaPosts: 1,787Registered Users @ @ @ @
    My apps have been affected pretty badly by all the changes (the last one really kicked me way down). I'm selling a little bit less than 1/8 of what I was selling over the summer for Tangled (which had solid sales for over 3 years). It's not too bad because I have lots of new revenue sources but it sucks because Tangled has a special place in my heart
  • MarkCMarkC Yorkshire, EnglandPosts: 1,968iPhone Dev SDK Supporter, Registered Users @ @ @ @
    Know how you feel Rudy... :-S
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  • iekeiiekei Posts: 614Registered Users @ @ @
    scottwb said:

    @iekei, I think the evidence is fairly strong for a weighting on app name, how else would 'Gem Match' leap 36 places, passing Jewel Mania, Bejewelled Blitz, Jewel Fever, Gems with friends etc on the way.

    It's reasonable to believe that exact app name searches should highly rank apps with those words in their app names. That's something to be expected and that's what I get when I search for my apps by name. The app store would be very broken if it didn't. The question I would ask is do people looking for match three games similar to yours search using a descriptive search like "gem match", or the name of a specific implementation like "shariki", "panepon", or "bejewelled"?
    scottwb said:

    Come on, Bejewelled Blitz ? BJB main keywords (excluding the name) are 'gem', 'match' and 'jewel', there are also some generic ones we can discount e.g. 'facebook'.

    That game is on Facebook and it's quite probable that a good number of people are searching for something like "Facebook jewel game" or something similar if they can't remember "Bejewelled". A lot of younger people have probably seen only ever seen the Facebook implementation and if that's true then that's what they'd be looking for.

    Would they look for "gem match"? I don't know. It depends on whether they knew what a jewel is or not and if they can spell it correctly or not.
    scottwb said:

    We'll never know for sure - but if app name now forms part of the keyword ranking then I'm happy as we've got 'Jewel Match' on the way as well :)

    Keywords in app names I'm pretty sure have always been important for discovery. There was some confusion about this in the summer and it may have been due to a bug on Apple's side. I wrote a bit about what I saw around then.

    I personally dislike long app names with descriptive keywords tacked onto the end.
  • MarkCMarkC Yorkshire, EnglandPosts: 1,968iPhone Dev SDK Supporter, Registered Users @ @ @ @
    @iekei - plenty of devs on the official forums STILL complaining about exact title matches not showing highly up the ranks, and we've got an app with a unique name, that when searching for that name, shows up in a quite shite 21st place in the search ranking, and only ONE of the twenty above it has the word in the title. Just what is the point? The Chomp algo change screwed title name search results for a whole load of people, end of.
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  • fouldscfouldsc Posts: 398Registered Users @ @
    iekei said:

    fouldsc said:

    I've seen very little movement on my apps, but on rivals I see title is getting more weight (yet again) , and a mild , but nothing crazy upshift on free apps

    Evidence in this thread.

    Not really, 700k+ apps on the App Store , a few people's observations does not equal evidence.
    As of right now for all my main keyword searches all my apps yet again return in the same places they did on 24th Dec. but a day ago they moved a little.
    So that is my piece of 'evidence'


  • KeysKeys Posts: 190New Users @ @
    When searching my name, all apps have moved positions again. Lost track of whether this is good or bad news!
  • iekeiiekei Posts: 614Registered Users @ @ @
    fouldsc said:

    Not really, 700k+ apps on the App Store , a few people's observations does not equal evidence.

    It is evidence. What people have been providing as proof of major search changes is called anecdotal evidence. The small sample size makes it unreliable though, especially since other devs here haven't seen any major changes.
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