Why the Chrome Web Store Sucks

To be fair, the Chrome Web Store is not the world's worst app store. It's just almost the worst, ranking somewhere between the Blackberry App World and the Windows App Store. But, with some small improvements, it can be significantly better.

The Good

Quick, easy to publish - Publishing an app or extension for Chrome takes literally minutes. The automated review process lets developers know what will fly and what won't, almost immediately. That is more than we can say about some other popular browsers (looking at you Firefox).

Region and language options - Choosing where and in what languages to publish your app is also very easy and straight forward.

The Bad

This is not an app, it is a link to a website!

Lots of “apps” that are merely links to websites -  Why does Soundcloud have a banner and why is Netflix an editors' pick? These apps are literally links to websites and don't deserve to be ranked over actual apps.

The relationship between apps and extensions is confusing - Developers are unable to package Apps and Extensions together, which creates a confusing experience for the end-user.

Apps are difficult to find when installed - Apps, unlike extensions, are very difficult for end-users to locate within Chrome after installing. Chromebook users have it slightly easier, but the vast majority of users do not run ChromeOS.

Poor analytics - Though you can and should connect your app to Google Analytics, the traffic analysis on the App Store itself is downright terrible. On the days when it actually updates (not every day), it provides impressions, but provides zero context. 

Does an "Impression"mean they viewed your app while browsing? "Users of this app have also used"? What about "related apps" when viewing another app? As our conversion rate varies quite a bit as compared to Impressions, it would be excellent information to have.

Stats and ratings update haphazardly - Why does it take several days or even longer for ratings to be updated? What's worse, the updates do not appear to happen on any regular schedule. Developers are left to question whether users are actually rating the app.

Recommendations make no sense - I have no idea why Google thinks I would be interested in any of these. 

Ironically, search sucks - Our app, FireRTC, cannot be found by searching for "Fire RTC".

Terrible browsing experience - Users cannot cross reference or rank searches. For example, try finding the most popular social app.