A number of mobile app developers and industry observers recently noticed a significant change in the way the Apple App Store’s search algorithms are returning results. Developers say that, following a series of shifts that took place beginning on November 3, app search results now appear to be more intelligent and far more relevant – especially among the top results – than in previous months.
Apple is continually working to improve its algorithms, as the way apps are ranked and surfaced plays a large role in the overall success of the App Store. If Apple points consumers to apps that don’t make sense or offer a poor experience when compared to others, users could become wary of Apple’s suggestions, and even of apps themselves.
However, many of the App Store algorithms in the past have focused on changes to the way that apps are ranked in its Top Charts, meaning the Top Free, Paid and Grossing apps on the App Store overall, and by category.
This new change is focused more on how apps are returned when users type in keywords to find an app – something that’s becoming a more common way to find apps in a crowded app store featuring over a million mobile applications. According to studies, at least half of iOS apps are found through search.