A cursory look at the top picks in App Store shows that there is no shortcut to success. The chart-toppers are all a class apart be it games, productivity apps, language, doodling, music streaming or messaging apps. It is a tough market to crack with hundreds of new apps added daily (1600 by one report). All with stellar features, high visual engagement and addictive gaming capabilities.

As of June 2016 there were 2 million available apps in the App Store. Obviously every developer builds apps with the intention of getting there and launching the most downloaded and sought-after app. But optimizing your app for discoverability and success in the App Store is an art in itself. If you have a genius idea for iOS apps development, then take a look at this checklist to ensure high viability and marketability of your project:

1. Popular segment:
Create a business case for your app project and study App Store statistics carefully to understand what category you want to build for. The most popular app categories disclosed by Apple in December 2016, revealed that gaming apps are by far the successful category. About 23 percent of all apps available belong to the gaming category. This is also the category with the highest user engagement – with gaming users spending an average of 7.55 minutes in an app session. Not surprisingly, it is also the most profitable app category. The second-most popular category is business with a share of 9.96 percent of all apps being business apps.

But don’t let popularity and profits alone decide the segment you want to build for. Your idea should be unique, the app proposition an engaging one and should ideally fill a gap in the market.

2. Great UI:
Simple and clean UI and UX are pre-requisites for apps to rise their way to the top. Exceptional user experience is a hallmark of iOS apps and a distinct feature of some of the highest grossing apps on the store. But how do you build the rich, engaging, and intuitive apps that uses have come to expect? Use accessibility APIs to make your apps work seamlessly for a wide range of users. Ensure your app confirms to all display sizes and device orientations to enable a great user experience.

For example, consider Ulysses, a powerful text editor app for Mac, iPad, and iPhone, one of the winners of the 2016 Apple design awards. Its clean and uncluttered interface is ideal for penning down without distraction. It also aids writers with productivity tools in each phase of the writing process. It has a strong design execution and was announced a winner because it provides a consistent and device-appropriate experience to writers.

3. Demystifying The App Store:
To get your app featured in the top charts, it is useful to know what the criteria for selection of ‘featured’ apps is. The selection is not done by some complex algorithm, rather the best apps are the ones that are hand-picked. Apple seems to have 155 app stores with a local editorial team. Each week, the editors browse through thousands of new releases and select the ones that meet their stringent criteria. The common theme across all featured apps is the unique value that they offer to users. In Apple’s words “We look for high-quality apps across all categories, with a particular focus on new apps and apps with significant updates.” Some of the factors that the editors consider are:

  • UI design: intuitiveness, usability, appeal, and visual quality of the app
  • UX: effectiveness and functionality of the app
  • Innovation: the big idea or the unique problem that the app solves for users
  • High quality and relevant localizations
  • Accessibility
  • An attractive product page for the App Store
  • Uniqueness

4. Take Advantage Of Apple’s Latest Software And Hardware Releases:
Leverage Apple’s latest software and hardware releases. Apps that support Apple Watch, or all Apple devices, 3D touch, beautifully rendered photos from the phone’s camera, and those that include Swift programming are more likely to be featured than apps that do not leverage these hardware and software opportunities.

If you are launching a new app soon, then you can email the editors at the App Store to increase your likelihood of getting noticed. If your app meets these criteria and offers something unique then you certainly have a strong chance of being featured. Have you created such success stories on the App Store? Would you like to share your tips and advice? Please share your views in the comments section.

Author's Bio: 

Kaushal Shah manages digital marketing communications for the enterprise technology services provided by Rishabh Software.