Attract Users to Rate Your Plugin in the WordPress Plugin Directory

WordPress opened up a huge platform for not only bloggers but for developers too. While the main source of income using the CMS is to host websites, there is another group that focuses on creating plugins that make the websites look pleasing and function seamlessly.

The WordPress Plugin Directory is one of the main web sources to discover the best plugins. Whether you are looking for a subscription tool for, or keen to create one that would help you analyze the data from your website, the directory is your best bet to find and launch a plugin.

Like any other app directory, the catch is to get your plugin noticed by the audience. It requires effective optimization strategies, as well as marketing tricks to attract users to leave their ratings. It is not only the quality of ratings that matter but also the quantity of them. If you have ten 5-star ratings and your competitor has 1000 ratings with an average of 4.5, potential customers would still prefer the latter.

Why You Need to Push for Ratings 

People mostly opt to leave ratings for two reasons. One, they are extremely impressed with the app, or the other, they are disappointed and want to leave a bad review. However, it is easier to get a bad review than to have customers to praise your product.

Even if your plugin is performing remarkably well, unless nudged, a majority of users will not take the initiative to leave rating themselves. Much like how app ratings influence App Store optimization, the ratings are also a major factor in how the directory and the audience will perceive your tool.

This is the primary reason that you would want to encourage your customers to rate your products. Here are a few tips for you to achieve that.

1. Shift Your Admin Notice Strategy

An admin notice with a personalized message is the typical strategy to get users to rate your app. However, it might not be the best approach in 2020. The admin notices are usually considered a place where you get all the unwanted and unimportant information from the developers.

There are instances when these notice boards are filled with discount notifications that are often left unopened for weeks. Now that every plugin uses the same tactic with the same message template, the users naturally tend to ignore it. It is obvious we live in the Internet world so using poster mockups is not enough for your online presence. It is said definitely to find new ways of improving your admin strategy. Moreover, the admin strategy needs to be reviewed and improved permanently.

While admin notices are still worth adding, the point is not to stick to them alone to get users’ attention.

2. Include as a Notice Count

If you are a Yoast user, you might have noticed that the plugin used the “notice count” area to send you messages regarding settings updates and promote their premium plans. The lesson is that admin notices are not the only place to put personal notifications. The notice count presents a much better and attractive space to include a rating message.

You can do this by defining a function in the coding that would give the number of notifications. Then use the add_menu_page to include a new item in the menu and append the notification count to the menu title. This will also make it subtle, yet effective as users are more attentive to update notices and will not dismiss them right away.

3. Prompt in Release Notes

Your software should come with release notes for every update. Many users skimp through the changes and improvements listed in the release notes. Why not use this as a space to engage with the audience? But put it subtly and do not request users to leave positive reviews right away.

Consider adding phrases such as “If you enjoy our plugin, please consider taking a few seconds to rate our app”. While doing this, make sure it agrees with the policies.

4. Respond to the Reviews

Getting plugins reviewed is not so different from apps. It is thus better knowing that 97% of Google App reviews go unanswered, and it certainly affects the image of the brand. Responding to the reviews, even if it is only a “Thank you” would give the impression that you care about the customers’ opinions.

It is particularly important to respond to reviews in case the customer is not satisfied. Being acknowledged makes users feel worthy. Besides, feedback helps build relationships with the customer in the digital space these days.

5. Make Good Use of Personalization

Not every app has scope for personalization; however, you can customize how you approach the users. If you have set up a customer database, you are bound to have enough information and authorization to use multi-channels to contact them. Utilize different communication channels to send out segmented prompts. Timed them to be sent out after the user has had positive interactions with the plugin.

If you get the timing right, interacting with happy customers could work more effectively. It is worth noting at this point that it is a terrible idea to ask for rating as soon as a user has opened the plugin. Reduce the frequency to draw the line between diligence and annoyance.

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While it is tempting to use shortcuts to entice users to leave ratings, offering incentives or reinforcements is considered a dishonest activity and is against the rules. Resort to subtle measures and focus on delivering an efficient app that will encourage users to leave more ratings and become your loyal patrons.