Limited stem cell migration capacities and undirected homing hamper their therapeutic efficacy. We report here the novel technology to isolate stem cell subpopulations with high migration potential. Hereby, we identified podoplanin-dependent stem cell mobility as important mechanism for their in vivo homing capacities and therapeutic efficacy as validated in preclinical models of Alzheimer´s disease and mouse glioma. In vivo applications of highly migrating stem cells resulted in remarkable improvement of targeted homing and engraftment rates. Moreover, animals receiving highly migrating stem cells showed higher recovery rates compared to unselected stem cells. This novel technology provides useful tool to improve therapeutic efficacy of stem cells and give insights into stem cell subpopulations heterogeneity with the potential of general applicability for cellular therapies.