How to Get the App Featured in Apple App Store and Google Play Store?

calender May 17, 2023
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Pankaj Pandit

QA Engineer

Getting in the featured apps category is the best and most successful way to increase visibility and awareness about your application or business. A featured app is chosen and highlighted by the app store for providing top-of-the-line products, services, and user experience, which gives your digital product a competitive advantage in stores where the number of apps increases quickly and every day.

A recent survey by Statista found that Google Play has over 3.5 million apps, and the Apple app store is not far behind with over 2.2 million apps. Making sure your app gets noticed by app store editors in such a competitive market will require more than just providing top-quality products and services. But what do you have to gain with those efforts?

You should always consider the benefits you can gain by getting your app featured and whether they actually have any long-term impact on your app and business. The benefits mentioned below apply to the Apple app and Google Play store.

Benefits of Getting Featured on app store

Benefits of Getting Your App Featured

  1. Increased User Base
  2. Reduced Acquisition Costs
  3. Increased Business Revenue
  4. Increased User Retention

Increased User Base

Reaching your target user base becomes extremely simple when you have an app on the Google Play and Apple app store’s featured list. Your target users and millions of others will see and access your app quickly without searching for it. As a result, the featured app will witness a rise in the target user base.

Reduced Acquisition Costs

iOS and Android app stores have millions of mobile apps (and increasing every day). It complicates the app visibility you need to reach the target users, and sometimes it is nearly impossible because there is almost always a better alternative for an app that you can provide. Such competition creates the need for constant and creative marketing strategies to highlight your app in the app stores, which can cost your business a lot of money without necessarily getting the results you want.

Getting your app featured can save your business from such costs since the featured section does all the marketing for your app. The Top Charts and Editor’s Choice sections of app stores make your app look trustworthy and easy to notice. That is why working towards getting the mobile app featured is the first thing you must do once you submit the app to Google Play and the Apple app store.

Increased Business Revenue

If you create a ride-hailing app, you will find great competition like Uber and Lyft, which are already ruling the ride-hailing industry. Generating decent revenue in this competitive market will not be easy and may not happen for a long time unless you gain the trust of the target user base and provide a user-friendly experience. 

Any app featured on Google Play and the Apple app store should have a unique user interface, top-quality products/services, and a convenient user experience. The app store editors carefully pick such mobile apps to add to the featured list. Getting your app on that list will put you on the radar of the target users and give them a similar or better option. It will increase the number of daily active users (DAU) you have on your app. The more users you have, the more revenue your business will get.

Increased User Retention

As mentioned above, Google Play and Apple app store editors pick the app with great UI/UX, quality products/services, decent customer services, and user-friendly functionality for the featured section. Ensuring that your app has all of that will get it featured and improve the user experience significantly, which is the primary element that can increase user retention and decrease app uninstallations. A survey by PwC found that 17% of US-based customers leave a brand after one bad experience, while 59% do after several.

The Apple app store may not have the same number of apps as Google Play, but it makes up for that by providing quality. That is why the Apple app store had a global revenue of $21.2 billion in the third quarter of 2022, while the Google Play store had only $10.4 billion. Making your app and business a part of that growth is why getting featured on the app store is crucial.

get featured on apple app store

In conclusion, How well you understand your target users and how skilled your developers and UI/UX designers are has a lot to do with getting your app featured on the Apple app store. Start by looking into the factors that Apple app store editors consider when choosing new apps to add to its Top Charts.

How to Get Featured on the App Store?

  1. Focus on Recurrent Innovation
  2. Keep it Secure and Bug-free
  3. Build a Native App
  4. Optimize App Store Page
  5. Design a Creative Icon
  6. Keep Your App in Sync with Apple
  7. Improve Your App Ratings
  8. Create or Keep up with Trends
  9. Sell Your App to Store Curators

Focus on Recurrent Innovation

Adding an advanced application on the app store with a simple and creative user interface, convenient user experience, and good-quality products/services can help ensure an increased user base. However, keeping those elements the same or as they were when you submit your app will lead to uninstallations and customer attrition. You must keep adding new, unique, and exciting elements to your app to improve the user experience.

For example, if you have an app for a video streaming service, add updates like Auto Pause and Play with eye sensors or a new UI/UX design according to a holiday like Halloween and Christmas. The better value and user experience you provide to users, the more the chances of your app getting featured.

Keep it Secure and Bug-free

iOS is the most secure and trustworthy operating system for user data security and privacy. Any iOS-compatible application with the same qualities will get on the radar of app store editors. Therefore, you must ensure that your app has no bugs, coding errors, user interface issues, or vulnerabilities that could lead to cybersecurity threats.
You can also simplify this process by hiring a professional mobile app development company to secure your app. An app that can keep its user and organizational data/privacy secure while providing a memorable user experience will most likely get featured.

Build a Native App

Native apps have better functionality, user interface, and reliable security compared to hybrid and web apps. That is why Apple app store editors are more likely to give preference to native apps as it has all the elements they value and provide. With cross-platform/hybrid apps, you build an app with a single reusable code that developers use for Android, iOS, Windows, and macOS. It can lead to a poor user experience as all of these platforms have specific requirements for user interface and experience. Building a native app helps create a unique UI and UX for iOS devices only, which the store curators will prefer over other apps.

Optimize App Store Page

The app store page is the first impression, a closing point in the sale that determines whether the user will download and install the app or move on to the next. You should add a creative preview video on the Apple app store page to display the USPs of your app and ensure that the screenshots and description put an unavoidable spotlight on every USP of your app.

For example, if your food delivery app lets users use the CCTV cameras in the kitchen of the restaurant they have ordered from, display that feature in the preview videos and screenshots. Keep the description short and informative without sounding like a pushy sales executive.

Another thing to focus on is keywords on the app page as they can significantly increase traffic if you use the relevant ones correctly. Get an SEO expert to help you with this and ensure the keywords you use in the app title or all over product pages can drive traffic. When you optimize your app store page to provide only helpful information and creative images/videos about the app, the store editors will also give a second look to your page.

Design a Creative Icon

The app icon is always the first or the second thing the users notice. That is why ensuring it is unique and creative is necessary if you want your app to have a visual advantage. You can focus on the core elements of your app to design the icon or create something new out of your brand logo to maintain consistency through innovation. Conduct research on color psychology and how you can use it for your target users. Such research behind an app icon design will capture the attention of app store editors as well.

Keep Your App in Sync with Apple

Apple frequently introduces new software updates and trends related to technology to keep users interested. As a part of the app store, your app must always become a part of those trends to be in focus. For example, if the Apple app store promotes VR technology in every digital platform, you can make your app VR-compatible and promote the technology with Apple. The app store editors will appreciate your enthusiasm/support and consider your app for the featured list.

Improve Your App Ratings

Improving the quality of products/services, UI/UX design, 24/7 customer service, user satisfaction, and user feedback implementation is how you can improve the app ratings. App store editors will quickly notice apps with four or above ratings and multiple positive reviews from users. The bottom line is that if your app has poor-quality products/services, bad UX, and unsatisfied customers, it will never make it to the Top Charts.
Besides getting featured, having good ratings can significantly increase the number of app downloads, which can increase the user base and business revenue.

An online trend can be a fun event or a social cause designed to help many. Ensuring your app is a part of the trend can get it noticed and also improve the visibility of the Apple app store, which the editors will most certainly note.

For example, if the new trend on social media is about making everything Christmas or Harry Potter-themed (Like clothes, hats, dance routines, or cake), you can redesign your app icon and UI/UX the same way, and provide a Santa toy or Harry Potter characters toy if you deliver products/services. Becoming a part of such trends will promote your app and the app store, increasing your chances of getting featured.

Sell Your App to Store Curators

The good old skillset of making a unique pitch to the app store editors goes a long way. Apple app store curators review apps regularly and receive thousands of pitches from owners to get their apps featured. If your app has what it takes to get featured, make an impressive pitch, keep it short, creative, and informative, and send it to the Apple store editors.

Some factors to focus on in the pitch:

  1. User Interface
  2. Ease of Use/User Experience (UX)
  3. App Functionality
  4. Unique Features
  5. Satisfied App Users (Feedback/Testimonials)
  6. App Preview Video (Highlight the USPs)

If your app has something new and unique (not provided by anyone else), put it in your pitch. Use all you can get to maintain the attention of app store editors on your pitch (out of many) and consider your app for the Top Charts. You can create, review, and edit the application pitch and send it to –

Google Play has the competitive advantage of having Android apps, an operating system that makes up 70.96% of the worldwide OS market share. Consequently, Google Play store had nearly 27 billion app downloads in the third quarter of 2022, while the Apple app store only had 8.2 billion.

get featured on google play store

Getting your app featured on the Google play store increases the chances of its success significantly. The Android-featured apps on Google Play are in the Top Charts and Editor’s Choice. Meeting all the user needs and expectations while making the experience visually appealing and highly convenient is your ticket to the Editor’s choice list.

How to Get Featured on Google Play?

  1. Use App Store Optimization (ASO)
  2. Ensure a Creative UI and UX
  3. Localize Your Application
  4. Improve App Ratings and Reviews
  5. Use WOM Marketing (Influencers/Experts)
  6. Stay Active During Holidays and Events
  7. Use the Current Featured Apps
  8. Use Google Products
  9. Improve Application Security
  10. Advertise the Application
  11. Pitch to Google Play Curators

Use App Store Optimization (ASO)

Get an SEO expert for app store optimization with the most relevant title, description, and the correct use of keywords all over the app product page. Such keyword-based app optimization helps increase the visibility of your app by getting in the top results of multiple search terms. For example, if the app product page of your stock trading app has keywords like – Trading Account, Equity, Stockbroker, Buy, Sell, and Day Trading, anyone using the same or similar search terms will see your app in the search results. Top-quality products/services, good UI/UX, and tested SEO strategies are required to ensure your application gets to the top of the search results in Google Play.

Ensure a Creative UI and UX

As mentioned above, a simple and creative user interface is the easiest way to get your app featured on the app store, whether it is Google or Apple. The user interface determines how your app looks and how easy it is to use the features and functionalities of your app. For example, if it takes users more than 1 to 2 minutes to find a clothing section on your marketplace website or app, you have a poorly designed user interface. 

Unlike UI, user experience is about the experience users have with your whole application. It includes factors like page loading time, quick or slow payments, and fast or slow search and buying experience. Bad user experience usually leads users toward competitors. Hire UI/UX designers that can evaluate the interests and needs of your target audience to create a user-centric UI and UX. It will make a lasting impression on the Google Play store curators and could get your app in the Editor’s choice list.

Localize Your Application

You must optimize your app for various locations, where it is available for download and use. It is another crucial factor that can improve the user experience and increase the user base. If your app is available for download and use in the US and Mexico, ensure that your application page (including app icon, description, preview video/instant app, and screenshots) is available in languages most commonly used in these countries. You must also implement the various cultures of these countries on your application page if or when it is relevant and appropriate.

For example, if the Day of the Dead (el Día de Los Muertos) is coming up in Mexico, you should implement that theme in the app icon, product descriptions, screenshots, and preview videos/instant apps to make things interesting. Such optimization will show the Google play store curators how much you care about improving the user experience while meeting user needs.

Improve App Ratings and Reviews

Like Apple app store editors, Google Play editors focus on apps with good ratings (4 and above) and positive user reviews. The more satisfied users you have, the better reviews and ratings your app will get on Google Play. Google Play store editors care what your users think about your app before they look into it.

For example, if your fintech application for P2P payments or banking has a below 3.5 rating and many reviews like – Payments take too long or crashes a lot, the Google play store editors will not consider your app. Meet target user needs, make the app functionality visually appealing, and keep improving your Android app design and features. It will eventually lead to better ratings and increase the number of positive reviews on the app page.

Use WOM Marketing (Influencers/Experts)

Word-of-mouth (WOM) marketing is when a satisfied customer positively talks about your product/service and recommends it to friends, family, and people. When you use influencers and industry experts for WOM marketing strategy, you increase the reach and credibility of the experience the influencers/experts describe.

For example, if a psychiatrist or a famous yoga expert talks about how your mental wellness app can guide users in improving mental health, users will find it easy to believe. An app validated by influencers and experts through WOM marketing will stand out in the Google play store and list of apps that the curators consider for the Top Charts and Editor’s Choice.

Stay Active During Holidays and Events

Redesign the UI/UX of your Android app and app store product page according to holidays and current events. For example, you can create a Halloween-themed app design and store page for the whole Halloween week, or you can show support for Ukraine by using the country flag and a short message in the app description and preview videos. It will show Google play store curators that you care about the user community they serve while supporting those that need it in the best way possible. The chances of your Android app getting featured can increase significantly after that.

The best way to learn how to get an app featured is by taking inspiration from featured apps on the Google play store. Anything you can learn from such apps is most likely to succeed since the apps are in the Top Charts or Editor’s Choice List. You should read the reviews of such apps, check their UI and UX design, functionality, number and type of features, and talk to the app developers if possible. It will help you determine the factors in your application that need improvement/changes to increase its chances of getting featured. Check and take inspiration from every featured Android app in the Google play store for better results.

Use Google Products

Google play store is a business like the Apple app store, so it considers any app that helps it grow and increase its reach. Integrating tools like Gmail, Google Pay, Google Cloud API, and Google Maps into your application will help you improve its solutions while promoting Google as a brand in the app market.

For example, if Google play store curators have to choose between two applications with great UI/UX, advanced functionality, unique/helpful features, and a large user base, they are most likely to choose one that uses multiple Google products.

Improve Application Security

One disadvantage of Android applications is that they are known for providing unreliable security where user data and privacy is involved. That is why Google play store is frequently improving its standards and guidelines to ensure all its applications are secure for users. You can contribute to that by doing automated and manual pen tests on your application before and after deployment. 

Mobile app security protocols can include source code encryption, tested user authentication, and secure data storage. You should also consult with app security experts to use the most effective security tools for your applications. The better security/privacy policies your application has, the more chances it has of getting featured.

Advertise the Application

Although it is not the most creative or liked the way to spread awareness about your application, you can always advertise the USPs of your application on multiple platforms like social media and YouTube. However, it is best to avoid the advertisement method if you do not have something new to offer.

For example, if your food delivery provides similar solutions to other food delivery mobile apps like Uber Eats and DoorDash, the ads will not have the advantage they need to convince users to switch to your Android app. If your food delivery app does have unique UI elements or a feature like Check Customer Reviews on Dish (with photos/videos and comments), you can use it to sell the uniqueness of your food delivery app. Advertise your application when it offers something unique and valuable to users. It will increase your visibility, reach, and business revenue, eventually getting your Android app noticed by the Google play store curators.

Pitch to Google Play Curators

If you have done all the things mentioned above and more, and your application is still not featured for a long time, then it is time to take a more direct approach. Create a short and informative pitch that describes the best qualities of your Android app, how it benefits users, and the Google play store, and email it to Google play store editors and see if you can get any of them to talk to you further. You must sell your application to these curators and make them see its potential. And if you do it right, you can expect to get your application featured soon while creating good relations with Google play store editors.


The only thing you really need to do in order to get your application featured is meet all your user needs and expectations through a user-friendly and visually appealing application. The rest are just steps you have to take to get there quickly. Another thing to remember is that staying in the featured section of the Apple app and Google Play store is just as difficult as getting on it. That is why you must keep innovating with app updates, UI/UX improvements, and features while taking every honest feedback seriously and implementing it in the application. It will help you stay in the featured section (Top Charts/Editor’s Choice) for a long time and improve the app’s performance.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does a featured app mean?

Featured iOS apps are the ones you see in the Top Charts of the Apple app store, while featured Android apps are the ones you see in the Top Charts and Editor’s Choice of the Google play store. The app and play store curators choose them for providing products/services of quality, uniquely attractive user interface, advanced functionality, and a convenient user experience. Featured apps are on the front and easy to notice, which can increase app downloads, user base, and business revenue.

How does an app get featured?

Your app will get featured quickly if it provides products/services of quality through a simple and attractive user interface and experience.

What are featured Android apps?

Featured Android apps are the ones you see in the Top Charts and Editor’s Choice sections of the Google play store.

How does Apple choose featured apps?

Good UI/UX design, convenient ease of use, and quality products/services are some things that the Apple app and Google Play store consider when choosing apps for the featured sections. Check what Apple app store curators say about the factors they consider in apps.

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