Apple Needs to Give Developers a Way to Respond to App Store Reviews

Google Play reply-reviewsMany times, users leave negative comments in the App Store for issues that can be explained or resolved if the person would contact the app’s developer directly instead. Some developers have even added wording to their app’s summary in regards to it. There should be a way for developers to respond to comments, if only to let them know they heard the complaint.

Google just announced that developers now have the ability to respond to user comments in Google Play.

“We’re happy to announce today that all developers on Google Play can now reply to user reviews. You can reply to user reviews in the Google Play Developer Console, and your replies are shown publicly below the corresponding user review on Google Play.”

This is great news for Android users and app developers alike. If a user can’t get an app to work, and they don’t contact a developer directly, they could still get their issue fixed.

For example, if a user complains that there is no sound in a game and then calls the app a piece of junk that should have never been allowed into Google Play, the developer could respond to that comment and remind the user that they may have forgotten to turn up the volume on their device, thus fixing the user’s issue and discounting the “piece of junk” accusation all in one shot.

It is possible that the ability to respond to comments is both a blessing and a curse. Some developers are too busy to respond to comments. This could lead users to believe that a developer is unresponsive. Of course, not responding to user comments doesn’t mean that an app’s developer isn’t listening to users.

Currently, App Store app developers have no way of getting in touch with a user who has left a negative comment. This should be changed. Developers should have the ability to explain a situation, offer a solution, or simply apologize for something that went wrong.

This would probably make users less afraid that they are getting scammed. If they see that developers are trying to work with users to create a better experience, they wouldn’t be as likely to jump to the conclusion that they are being tricked if something goes wrong with their app.

About Lory: Writer of all things app related, traveler of the space-time continuum, baker of really great cookies. Follow me @appaholik

  • Kevin McNeese

    As an app developer who has been blessed by many great reviews, and hurt by many ignorant comments by lazy people who dont read, the inability to address comments is a huge missing tool.

  • Josh Dombro

    You’re 100% right, but the question remains as to whether Apple will do anything about it. Please tell me you’ve heard of steps in that direction and that you’re not just teasing us 😉

  • Anna Cheung

    Totally agree. The ability to respond to customer reviews is essential.

  • EmmieThomas

    As a app developer, I would have to agree. It is difficult to do business when you have no way of communicating back to your users. Now that Google has added that feature, I hope Apple will do it too.