Improvements to AppStore Developer Portal
Last week Apple made some changes to developer’s website iTunes Connect. Now developers can add keywords to the application description so that they show up well in search results. This news has been covered well by many blogs.
The part that is not covered is, why this is done and what features are disabled. When you search in AppStore, the name of the application obviously is given priority compared to a keyword being present in the description. So for apps to show up in many search results, developers started tweaking the names of the applications to fit in as many keywords as possible after the app is released. Infact, in some cases, we will see the names of competing applications show up in some apps. This means, names of the apps change pretty frequently and the app names end up like a mini app description. So, to avoid this issue, Apple make two key changes to the way it works.
1) Apple disabled the option to edit the name of the app once submitted. This means, the developer has to choose and live with the name once he submits the app. There is no tweaking it again.
2) Any additional search keywords developers want to include should be included in in the Keywords section. But then, you cannot have your entire dictionary there either. Keywords are restricted to 100 characters. So you better choose the appropriate ones….and once you nailed your keywords, there is no changing it….forever after submitting the info. So think again before you hit the submit button.
So what does this mean for end users? Well, good short names for the apps to start with and hopefully better search results.
I consider this a good move from Apple. I wish they let me edit those keywords though, atleast when I update my the application as it could contain some new functionality and I might want to include in the keywords. Overall, a positive move. What do you think?
Update: I noticed that both Application name and the keywords can be modified while submitting an update. This is good.