Impact of Being Featured in the App Store
Mobile Growth

Impact of Being Featured in the App Store


Buse Kanal

App store optimization, organic search, and paid ads are proven ways to boost your app’s visibility and rankings. However, being chosen as one of the Apple editorial team’s Featured Apps can provide a massive amount of exposure and growth.

This article will detail how to get featured on the App Store, explore the app store guidelines for making the cut, and demonstrate the impact of having your app featured on the App Store.

App Store featuring happens if the App Stores editorial team selects your app to be promoted in some placement locations with the App Store.

These locations are either:

  • Today
  • Games
  • Apps

The “Today” tab is considered the most desirable of the featured apps spots. It’s the most viewed page in the App Store because all organic visitors to the App Store arrive there.

The Games and Apps tabs generate less traffic, but they still get a large number of visitors. Editors can feature games permanently, inside lists, or via themes by season or other categories.

Most publishers want to improve their app’s visibility. Higher numbers of impressions should lead to a greater number of users who visit the app listing. And more visitors should eventually turn into a higher number of installs.

Featured Apps have a great chance of being discovered by users browsing the App Store. It’s like being placed beside the cash register or having your product in the shop window. People who aren’t necessarily searching for your item will see it.

But when compared to organic traffic or paid search, this traffic needs to be put in context.

Imagine your app is a dating app. Organic and paid visitors to your listing page are motivated and interested in dating. Therefore, if they like the look of your app, they’ll download and install it.

However, if your dating app is featured in the “Today” tab, it will experience a surge in impressions, but the traffic will be of lower quality. Many potential audiences will be married, in a relationship, or uninterested in dating applications. In effect, they won’t be that interested in the app, which means you’ll have a lower conversion rate.

So, while the Games / Apps tabs get fewer impressions, the audience is narrowed down. For example, If someone clicks on the Games tab, they are at least interested in mobile games. Therefore, they are more likely to like your game, which means there is a higher chance of them clicking through.

According to various reports, the impact of being featured is significant.

The best way to measure the impact on downloads is to take the downloads the week before they were featured and compare them to downloads on the week the app is featured.

Below is the percentage increase of the two weeks side-by-side according to a report from Sensor Tower.

App of the Day = +685%

Game of the Day = +800%

Theme Features =+165%

Stories = 222%

App List = 240%

As you can see from the figures above, the benefits of being featured on the App Store are significant in terms of sheer numbers. But the impact goes far beyond download numbers.

For customer acquisition teams, there are some other big benefits.

#1. Lower Customer Acquisition Costs

Customer acquisition costs (CAC) have been rising in recent years. Increased competition and a saturated market are part of the reason. The pandemic brought bigger audiences but also new publishers looking for a slice of the pie.

Additionally, iOS 14 has made IDFA opt-in. The downstream effect is that users who consent to tracking have almost halved. The battle for these customers has become intense.

Customer acquisition costs refer to the amount of money that publishers spend on gaining new customers. It’s a fundamental aspect of mobile app success. App store optimization is just one aspect of the marketing efforts that developers employ to grow their user base.

However, becoming one of Apple’s Featured Apps offers developers a chance to grow their app organically. Promotion on the App Store can lead to a considerable boost in terms of visibility and installs.

Like other organic growth methods, Featured Apps get your product in front of users at a far lower cost than Search Ads and other marketing. App Store promotion can significantly drive down CAC leading to growth without the huge price tag.

#2. Increased Visibility to Relevant Users

Having a Featured App on the “Today” tab can do wonders for your app. But it’s not the only app store feature that can get great results. As mentioned above, a themed list can also raise your visibility among users.

However, one advantage of a themed list is the audience type that sees your app. In general, they’ll be a far better fit for your product. If your app is listed within the right theme, the sort of user who clicks on this list will be much more likely to click through and install your app, resulting in sustainable growth.

#3. Increased Revenue

As we’ve seen from the Featured Apps download figures above, App Store promotion can greatly increase downloads. Depending on your monetization strategy, this could lead to a big boost in revenue.

Over recent years, Apple has been promoting the Feature Apps on the App Store. As a result, the chosen apps actually appear above paid and organic search results. App Store Optimization is a vital strategy, but Featured Apps gain higher priority.

Of course, there’s no guarantee that you’ll get a featured slot. But if you do, your app should grow its user base and increase revenue via app sales, subscriptions, in-app purchases, or in-app advertising.

How to Get Featured on App Store

To understand how to get featured on the App Store, you need to know a little bit about the ethos of Featured Apps.

The idea behind Featured Apps is for the App Store to showcase apps that impact people’s lives worldwide. The purpose is to shine a light on the developers doing great work.

According to Apple, this can mean:

  • New apps
  • Games
  • Significant updates
  • In-app events
  • Great stories

Now let’s look further at the App Store guidelines that are used for the selection process.

The App Store employs a global editorial team whose aim is to help its users discover great apps and games. These teams curate selection on the App Store to get apps in front of users when they need them.

The inclusion of Stories is particularly interesting. The App Store looks to highlight content that shows how developers launched an app or helped solve a particular problem.

Here are the App Store guidelines for the factors they consider for Featured Apps.

The App Store’s editorial team wants to promote high-quality apps. They don’t discriminate against categories or different business models. Additionally, there is no checklist of requirements or paid placements.

So what are the factors the App Store team uses to define a high-quality app?

UI Design

Great user interface design means several things. The overall look and feel of the product, how it works, its general aesthetic, and its use of creative controls and gestures are some of the factors that make up a great UI.

User Experience

User experience (UX) is related to UX, but it refers to how users feel when they use the app. Is it intuitive and easy to navigate? Can they accomplish their goals without much effort? Does it solve their pain points?


In the context of Featured Apps, innovation means a novel approach to solving an issue or something that uses new technologies to offer the user a great experience.


An app that cuts through the noise by doing something no one else is. It can be something that breaks the mold and creates a new genre or a new creative spin on a familiar category.


Accessibility refers to apps built with a broad range of users in mind, including less tech-savvy users or people living with disabilities.


Apps that have in-built relevant localization, such as support for different languages or culturally aware content and copy.

App Store Product Page

Excellent ratings, reviews, descriptions, app previews, and screenshots are all factors that help determine inclusion for Feature Apps.

Other Considerations

While the above are the App Stores guidelines for Featured Apps inclusion, there are a few other factors like value, gameplay design, controls, story and character, music and sound effects, replayability, and more.

You can read ShyftUp’s article about how to get featured on App Store for details.


Featured Apps on the App Store are a magnet for traffic. While not all of it is highly relevant or high converting, this promotion brings new users at very little cost.

The App Store guidelines on how to get featured on the app store suggest that it’s mostly about rewarding quality products. However, one of the most influential factors is getting your app product page right. Excellent App Store Optimization — alongside a high-quality product — are the key to taking one of these promotional spots.

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