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Best-in-Class App Search in China

In China, the Google Play Store is not mainstream. All large phone manufacturers have their own App Stores that contribute significant revenue in addition to core mobile phone sales.

In 2015, Quixey started working with Meizu, one of the leading mobile phone manufacturers in China, to power search across the Meizu App Store on all their phones.  

Meizu previously used another leading app search service; the goal was to significantly improve app downloads to generate additional revenue.

Integration took about a month, including A/B testing to compare two main performance metrics:

Quixey showed significant improvement over the leading vendor (red line), as shown below for both key metrics (all percentages are relative). The data below highlights the months following the launch.

Search Results CTR

App Details CTR

During the first week, Quixey’s metrics were only marginally better, but over time, Quixey’s results improved further. In 4 months, Quixey CTR was over 20 percent better for search results, and over 35 percent higher on app details.

These improvements would mean an app store with a daily search volume of 10M would receive around 2M additional downloads every day.  

The Best App Search in China

There were several differentiators that contributed to building the market-leading app search product in China.

Data from Multiple App Stores

App stores usually use only their own data, but Quixey gathers data on a daily basis from all major app stores in China. The impact of this:  

Machine Learning

Quixey creates machine learned ranking models. As more signals were integrated into the models, we optimized our search results ranking. This contributed to the bulk of the early improvements.

Data Feedback Loop

Our Data Feedback Loop uses user engagement data, including searches and downloads, to improve the overall relevance of search results.  This is extremely effective because of the recency effect; user engagement data are collected in near-real-time and fed back into the ranking model.  The outcome is that search results are more relevant to user intent, and trending apps can be promoted quickly.  

The figure below depicts Quixey’s Ranking Model Data Flow, including our Data Feedback Loop.

Ranking Model Data Flow

Ranking Model Data Flow

Combining a variety of techniques led to Quixey building out the market-leading App Search offering in China.  We are now working closely with the Meizu team on:

Stay tuned for more exciting updates from Quixey in China.