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3 Ways to Build the Perfect App Rating Dialogue for a Mobile Game

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While those yellow stars don’t take up much space next to an app icon, app store ratings are an important piece of the user acquisition puzzle. After all, a high star rating can be the tipping point for players to tap download. And more stars improves a game’s overall ranking in app store search.

For most mobile game developers, building an in-game pop up to get users to rate the game is a quick set-and-forget task, but given the importance of this dialogue, it may be worth more time for improvements.

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Image via Helpshift

Tip 1: Don’t send the user out of the app for feedback

Users who give a negative response (or ratings of 1-3 stars) are typically sent to feedback forms. Some developers may choose to do this by opening another application for feedback, like email. But pushing a user out of the game is a harsh experience—particularly for a player who seems to be having a bad time already.

Instead, keep the user in the game to fill out the feedback form. Developers can create their own or use a plugin like Helpshift, but in either case it’s better if the form looks native to the game. Make sure that there’s a way user support can communicate with the player, too. Many developers have forgotten to add ways to identify and communicate with users and it ultimately hurts the developer’s chance at improvement.

Tip 2: Time the request carefully

Many players are very familiar with app rating pop ups and this repetition leads to fatigue—especially when the dialogue appears too early. While developers may need the rating, it shouldn’t come at the cost of annoying the player.

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Image via App Store

There’s no magic formula, but developers should try to find a point in the user flow well beyond the tutorial, during which few users churn. A point after which the player has made a major achievement or received a big reward may help ensure the player’s feeling of goodwill toward the game and is ready to give a good review.

Tip 3: Have a remote kill switch

Let’s face it, even the best teams screw up sometimes. Releasing a buggy or bad update is stressful enough without producing a stream of negative reviews (some users are even savvy enough to select a high rating on an in-game pop up, then give a low rating in the App Store). For these times, developers should be able to completely turn off the app rating dialogue.