Back in June, Apple announced some major changes to the App Store, including the addition of ads to App Store search results. App Store Search Ads have gone live as of today, and Apple is allowing developers to purchase ad spots. Ads from developers will be displayed starting on October 5.

Search Ads have been in beta testing since the feature was announced, and developers were previously able to participate in a beta testing program to provide ads that were visible to App Store users.

appstoresearchads
With Search Ads, developers can bid to have their app listed as the top result when certain keywords are used, improving app discoverability. Ads are available through an auction system, with one ad displayed to customers on each search result page. Ads are clearly marked and ad content is the same content that's available on the App Store app description pages as it uses App Store metadata and imagery.

According to Apple's Phil Schiller, Apple "thought about how to carefully" do search ads in a way that "customers will be happy with." Apple also believes the ad auction system is fair to developers, including indie developers.

Developers do not need to pay a minimum amount to use Search Ads, so it's possible to buy ads for a small sum of money. Apple prices Search Ads based on a cost-per-tap model, so developers only pay when a user taps on an ad. Apple displays ads based on a combination of bid amount and an app's relevance to the search query, with ad matching done automatically.

Developers who sign up to offer Search Ads are being given a free $100 credit to get started with the program.

Top Rated Comments

sykeward Avatar
101 months ago
John Gruber wrote about this back in April when it was originally reported by Bloomberg, and I still agree with his thoughts:

"This sounds like a terrible idea. The one and only thing Apple should do with App Store search is make it more accurate. They don’t need to squeeze any more money from it. More accurate, reliable App Store search would help users and help good developers. It’s downright embarrassing that App Store search is still so bad. Google web search is better for searching Apple’s App Store than the App Store’s built-in search. That’s the problem Apple needs to address."

http://daringfireball.net/linked/2016/04/14/bloomberg-app-store-search
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Buxley Avatar
101 months ago
so, basically, the apps making money will be able to drown out the apps that are having problems getting noticed.

Makes you want to just quit developing apps.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
69Mustang Avatar
101 months ago
According to Apple's Phil Schiller, Apple "thought about how to carefully" do search ads in a way that "customers will be happy with."
Hmmm. A way to do ads that customers will be happy with... lemme think.

/thinks

{idea lightbulb turns on} <-- it's fucia, cuz Hue

DON'T!!
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
KALLT Avatar
101 months ago
I really don’t understand why they do this. It seems so unnecessary; it improves nothing and at best annoys people. Surely it cannot be just about money.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Max Portakabin Avatar
101 months ago
Yet more nickel and diming from Cook's Apple.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
redscull Avatar
101 months ago
When a Kindle is designed to show you ads, Amazon gives you a discount on the hardware. But Apple is still charging full price for hardware then selling its customers to ad services? It really cheapens the brand.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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