Tips for Apple TV App Developers

Since the Apple TV got released I have been running Apple TV Apps, a blog and Twitter account showcasing the best Apple TV apps available. With discoverability being sub-par compared to the iOS app store, the site has been moderately successful and I’ve been contacted by a number of developers with iTunes links to their apps asking me to feature them, but there’s a problem. Those links don’t go anywhere; no web previews, no way to view these apps in iTunes.

Connecting to iTunes

Graham Spencer summed up what is needed from developers really well:

The page doesn’t have to be the most beautiful website in the world but the information needs to be available if you expect your app to be featured anywhere. There are a number of options to get a simple website up and running with very little effort.

Free options

Although Wordpress and Tumblr are both blogging platforms, they can be used as landing pages with a little bit of tweaking in the settings.

  • GitHub Pages - If you know some HTML and CSS, you can get a GitHub pages site up in a matter of minutes.
  • Squarespace - Their cover page starts at just $5 a month and is perfect for an app landing page.
  • Roll your own - If you’re comfortable with setting everything up yourself, you can build and host your own website. Hover is a great option for domains and Digital Ocean offer one-click installs for loads of web applications like Wordpress and Ghost.

Checklist

At a minimum, you should have:

  • A few screenshots of the various parts of your apps (ideally the same ones featured in the store)
  • A description of your app (again, the same description as you have in the app store is ideal)
  • The price — this is a more difficult one because of pricing in different countries, but put the price in at least one currency.

Some other things that will help market your app:

  • A video of your app. This is useful for helping people decide whether they want to but your app or not.
  • A press kit. This is normally a zip file which includes all the the above information (screenshots, description, video) as well as your app icon and any other marketing materials you might have.

For an example that fits all of these criteria, check out the landing page for Almost Impossible!.

Almost Impossible Landing Page

Until Apple allows web previews for Apple TV apps, your goal should be to replicate all of the information you have in the app store. If you at least some of the above, your app is much more likely to be featured and also it will help customers decide if they want to buy your app.