The best way to manage bugs in your application is to avoid them. But some of the bugs get detected only after the release of the app. This is not the end of the world. Some major app publishers released app versions with a bug and survived.
The key to managing your bugs successfully means knowing how to detect them, track them and how to manage user frustration caused by not good enough performance of your app. Let’s look into all these in more detail.
Detecting application bugs
There are three ways in which your users can tell you about the bug in your app.
1) App Store reviews
Track your app reviews using tools like Appfigures or just by visiting your app page once in a while. You may considerably reduce the number of negative reviews if you provide users with other options to leave their feedback.
2) Support email
Make sure to mention it on your landing page and iTunesconnect app details page and check it on a daily basis.
3) In-built customer support system
We use Helpshift. It’s actually free for one team member if your apps have less than 10 thousand monthly active users. This SDK is sort of an in-app chat that allows users to quickly contact you if they have a problem, a question or a feature request. A developer then gets an email notification about the new message and writes an answer that will be received as a push notification. When you receive a message, you can see a user’s type of device and iOS version. It’s super-convenient and prevents many bad reviews from appearing on your app page.
Managing bugs within your team
If you are not the only person behind your app, you need a tool that will help you track bugs and assign them to your team members. Trello will work perfectly in this case. It’s free and very flexible.
There is no particular instruction as to how Trello should be used for managing app bugs. But here is one idea. Create a separate Trello board for bugs, add your team members and create three lists, for example: Backlog, In Progress and Fixed, and then create a card when you receive a bug report from Helpshift, for example. You may get feature requests via Helpshift as well, but those are better kept on a different board.
Bug related customer support
Replying to reviews on iTunes App Store is hard, but not impossible Read about one app store review managing hack.
When you receive a bug report from the user via support email or Helpshift, here is what you should do:
1) Admit that there is a bug
2) Provide details on when it will be fixed. But don’t make promises that you won’t be able to keep. If the bug will take a month to be fixed – say it.
3) If you have promo codes for in-app purchases or your other apps, offer them as a compensation.
4) In case the user has spent the money on your app and there is no way you will be able to fix the bug (for example your app doesn’t support the device of the user and never will), provide them with a link explaining how to get a refund from Apple.
If the current app version glitches on some devices, mention it in the app description. In case you fix the bug with a new update, don’t forget to mention it under What’s New.
And, of course, the sooner you reply, the better. Prompt support makes a good impression.