Windows 10 Store app not showing all results + App name weighted too highly RRS feed

  • Question

  • There appears to be a bug in the Windows 10 Store app where only a limited amount of results are ever returned from a search. Interestingly, the total number of results varies by search and I can still see that results are being paged for searches that return 50+ results. I'll explain more in the example below.

    I have a very popular calculator app in the Store, which appears second in the search results for 'Calculator' behind only the Windows Calculator (UK Store). When I type 'Unit Converter' into the search box, my app appears as the top suggestion (although maybe this is because I have it installed?). However, when pressing Enter to view the search results, only apps with 'Unit Converter' in their name appear, the exception being the Windows Calculator, which is the top result. This page reports that there are 68 matches for the search term, yet when I click on 'Show all', the next page only shows a total of 36 results. My app does not appear at all, even though it is likely significantly more popular than those that do appear, in terms of downloads, ratings and revenue generated. If I filter the results by the Utilities & Tools category, 33 results appear -- some that weren't present in the Store-wide results -- and my app still does not appear. This means that there is no way to find my app using the 'Unit Converter' keyword.

    The fact that the app name is given much more weight than the keywords is something I've raised before. I would think that there are two main types of search performed by users, one to find an app by its name, e.g. 'Twitter', and one to find apps that perform a function, e.g. 'Unit Converter'. Perhaps the user research/analytics have found that the former is the most common, which is why the app name is so heavily weighted in the results. However, in my view the balance appears to be incorrect. If an app like mine with over 2 million downloads is far down the search results (for searches by functionality) behind much less popular apps, or is not even returned in the results, then there is an obvious problem. The impact is that the perceived overall quality of apps in the Store by users is much less than actually the case.

    As an aside, are UWP apps given more weight in the search results than Windows 8 apps? Such apps would likely provide a better experience to Windows 10 users, and this could incentivise developers to upgrade their apps to UWP. Would UWP apps also be more likely to be featured?


    Richard Walters.

    Saturday, August 15, 2015 10:49 AM

All replies

  • My little app is not nearly as popular as yours; but as my first release on to the store it is as much about learning what works and what doesn't as it is about releasing the app itself.

    I too have found the same issue; previously, my app was for Windows 8.1+ desktop, as I wanted to understand the store submission process. My app name being something to do with colors, but to differentiate itself, not being called Color Picker. Keywords include color and picker of course. Searching the 8.1 Store for color picker, brought up my app in the 6th or 7th rank.

    With the release of Windows 10, I set about doing what had been my intention all along; UWP apps. The same app, same name, etc. now as a UWP app (and working fine on desktop, tablet, mobile). When you search the 10 Store for color picker, you are presented with 6 apps, but the title reads Apps (15). When you click Show All, you are indeed shown 15 but all have the words color picker in their name except for one or two. My app is not shown, even though the keywords are in place.

    What adds insult to injury is the fact that most if not all of those apps are not UWP and are not a good UI/UX.

    • Edited by 2bitdev Saturday, August 15, 2015 12:35 PM
    Saturday, August 15, 2015 12:32 PM