(Good) Ratings and Reviews are key success factors for your apps and business.

The quality of the ratings is closely bound to the quality of the services that you are offering and how well and freshly are you offering them. This is a very vast topic that I won’t cover within this post. The aim of this post is to help you increasing the number of ratings/reviews of your apps.

Here 3 simple hints:

  • Few users rate/review apps spontaneously. For this reason, you should ensure that your app stimulates the user to rate it. Implementing such a feature is quite easy: At the end of the post, you will find some demo code for this.
  • If your app make use of “in-app-purchase” mechanisms, you can offer free or discounted goods in exchange of ratings.
  • Use your other assets (web page, blog, social network,…) to request ratings.
Code Sample – Rating Feature

NB: This code is provided as it is: You can use it and change it upon your need. Be aware that I cannot offer you a “bug-free” certification, so test it smartly within your own context.

In this case, I work with a UserControl that I place on my app main page within a fully blown, hidden ViewBox, as latest/highest control within the main Grid of the main page:

<Viewbox Grid.RowSpan="2" Grid.ColumnSpan="2">
            <Controls:RateMe x:Name="ucRateMe" Height="766" Width="1366" Visibility="Collapsed"/>
        </Viewbox>

On the constructor of the main page, I then initialize my UserControl:

         public MainPage()
         {
             this.InitializeComponent();
             ucRateMe.Check(3, 14, 3);
         }

The parameters are:

  • Number of times the app is run before the rating screen appears
  • Number of days to wait before showing the rating screen again, in the case the user has chosen the “remind me later” option
  • Max Number of times the rating screen will appear (we don’t want to be too tedious).

The UserControl (nothing fancy) XAML looks like this:

<UserControl
    x:Class="Controls.RateMe"
    xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml/presentation"
    xmlns:x="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml"
    xmlns:local="using:Controls"
    xmlns:d="http://schemas.microsoft.com/expression/blend/2008"
    xmlns:mc="http://schemas.openxmlformats.org/markup-compatibility/2006"
    mc:Ignorable="d"
    d:DesignHeight="768"
    d:DesignWidth="1366">

    <Border BorderBrush="#33000000" BorderThickness="0" Margin="0" Background="#CC000000">
        <Grid>
            <Grid.RowDefinitions>
                <RowDefinition Height="4*"/>
                <RowDefinition Height="8*"/>
                <RowDefinition Height="60"/>
                <RowDefinition Height="1*"/>
            </Grid.RowDefinitions>
            <StackPanel Height="60" Grid.Row="2" Orientation="Horizontal" HorizontalAlignment="Right">
                <Button x:Name="btnDontBotherMeAgain" Content="Do not bother me again" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" BorderThickness="2" Margin="0,0,20,0" Tapped="btnDontBotherMeAgain_Tapped"/>
                <Button x:Name="btnRemindMe" Content="Remind me later" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" BorderThickness="2" Margin="0,0,20,0" Tapped="btnRemindMe_Tapped"/>
                <Button x:Name="btnRateMeNow" Content="I'll rate you now" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" BorderThickness="2" Margin="0,0,20,0" Background="Red" Tapped="btnRateMeNow_Tapped"/>
            </StackPanel>
            <TextBlock HorizontalAlignment="Center" Margin="173,62,166,107" Grid.Row="1" TextWrapping="Wrap" VerticalAlignment="Center" Height="267" Width="1027" FontSize="22">
            	<Run Text="Dear User, "/>
            	<LineBreak/>
            	<Run/>
            	<LineBreak/>
            	<Run Text="Your feedback is key to my success an evolution: I really hope that you really me and I would very much appreciate if you could please rate me and maybe write a short review, if you have suggestions on how make me better!"/>
            	<LineBreak/>
            	<Run/>
            	<LineBreak/>
            	<Run Text="Thank you very much in advance."/>
            	<LineBreak/>
            	<Run/>
            	<LineBreak/>
            	<Run Text="Your App! "/>
            </TextBlock>
            <Image x:Name="imgLogo" HorizontalAlignment="Right" Height="100" VerticalAlignment="Top" Width="100" Source="ms-appx:///Assets/Logo.png" Margin="0,20,20,0" />

        </Grid>
    </Border>

</UserControl>

Which looks visually as follows:
rateme
And finally the necessary code behind is:

using Data;
using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.IO;
using System.Linq;
using Windows.Foundation;
using Windows.Foundation.Collections;
using Windows.System;
using Windows.UI.Xaml;
using Windows.UI.Xaml.Controls;
using Windows.UI.Xaml.Controls.Primitives;
using Windows.UI.Xaml.Data;
using Windows.UI.Xaml.Input;
using Windows.UI.Xaml.Media;
using Windows.UI.Xaml.Navigation;

// The User Control item template is documented at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=234236

namespace XXX.Controls
{
public sealed partial class RateMe : UserControl
{
private DateTime _refDate;

public RateMe()
{
this.InitializeComponent();
bool _fake = DateTime.TryParse(&quot;2000-01-01&quot;, out _refDate);
}

public void Check (int FirstTimeAppearanceAfter, int DaysBeforeShownNextTime, int MaxNoOfAppearence)
{
bool _ratedOrNoRatedWished = true ;
if (Utilities.LocalSettings.isLocalSettingStored(&quot;RatedOrNoRatedWished&quot;))
{
_ratedOrNoRatedWished = Utilities.LocalSettings.GetLocalSetting&lt;bool&gt;(&quot;RatedOrNoRatedWished&quot;);
}

if (!_ratedOrNoRatedWished)
{
#region getTheDataFromIS

int _nOfTimesAppHasBeenStarted = 0;
if (Utilities.LocalSettings.isLocalSettingStored(&quot;NoOfTimesAppHasBeenStarted&quot;))
{
_nOfTimesAppHasBeenStarted = Utilities.LocalSettings.GetLocalSetting&lt;int&gt;(&quot;NoOfTimesAppHasBeenStarted&quot;);
}

DateTime _lastTimeShown = _refDate;
if (Utilities.LocalSettings.isLocalSettingStored(&quot;LastTimeTheRatingMessageWasShown&quot;))
{
string _sLastTimeShown = Utilities.LocalSettings.GetLocalSetting&lt;string&gt;(&quot;LastTimeTheRatingMessageWasShown&quot;);
bool _fake = DateTime.TryParse(_sLastTimeShown, out _lastTimeShown);
}

int _noOfTimesShown = 0;
if (Utilities.LocalSettings.isLocalSettingStored(&quot;NoOfTimesTheRatingMessageWasShown&quot;))
{
_noOfTimesShown = Utilities.LocalSettings.GetLocalSetting&lt;int&gt;(&quot;NoOfTimesTheRatingMessageWasShown&quot;);
}

#endregion

if (_nOfTimesAppHasBeenStarted &gt; FirstTimeAppearanceAfter)
{
if ((_lastTimeShown == _refDate) ||
((_lastTimeShown.AddDays(DaysBeforeShownNextTime) &lt; DateTime.Now) &amp;&amp; (_noOfTimesShown &lt; MaxNoOfAppearence)))
{
// ShowMe
this.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
_noOfTimesShown++;
Utilities.LocalSettings.SetLocalSetting(&quot;NoOfTimesTheRatingMessageWasShown&quot;, _noOfTimesShown);
}
}
else
{
_nOfTimesAppHasBeenStarted++;
Utilities.LocalSettings.SetLocalSetting(&quot;NoOfTimesAppHasBeenStarted&quot;, _nOfTimesAppHasBeenStarted);
}
}
}

private async void btnRateMeNow_Tapped(object sender, TappedRoutedEventArgs e)
{
String uri = String.Format(&quot;ms-windows-store:REVIEW?PFN={0}&quot;, Windows.ApplicationModel.Package.Current.Id.FamilyName);
await Launcher.LaunchUriAsync(new Uri(uri));
Utilities.LocalSettings.SetLocalSetting(&quot;RatedOrNoRatedWished&quot;, true);
this.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
}

private void btnRemindMe_Tapped(object sender, TappedRoutedEventArgs e)
{
Utilities.LocalSettings.SetLocalSetting(&quot;LastTimeTheRatingMessageWasShown&quot;, DateTime.Now.ToString());
this.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
}

private void btnDontBotherMeAgain_Tapped(object sender, TappedRoutedEventArgs e)
{
Utilities.LocalSettings.SetLocalSetting(&quot;RatedOrNoRatedWished&quot;, true);
this.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
}

public void ResetData()
{
if (Constants._ISDEBUG)
{
// RESET IS
Utilities.LocalSettings.SetLocalSetting(&quot;RatedOrNoRatedWished&quot;, false);
Utilities.LocalSettings.SetLocalSetting(&quot;LastTimeTheRatingMessageWasShown&quot;, _refDate.ToString());
Utilities.LocalSettings.SetLocalSetting(&quot;NoOfTimesAppHasBeenStarted&quot;, 0);
Utilities.LocalSettings.SetLocalSetting(&quot;NoOfTimesTheRatingMessageWasShown&quot;, 0);
}
}

}
}

Enjoy it and get some awesome ratings!

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