ASO is the process of optimizing mobile apps to rank higher in an app store’s search results. The higher your app ranks in an app store’s search results, the more visible it is to potential customers. That increased visibility tends to translate into more traffic to your app’s page in the app store.
The goal of ASO is to drive more traffic to your app’s page in the app store, so searchers can take a specific action: downloading your app.
Stats from 2013 reveal a lot about the current state of web enabled mobile phones across the globe:
- 56% of people own a smart phone
- 50% of mobile phone users, use mobile as their primary Internet source
- 80% of time on mobile is spent inside apps
- 72% of tablet owners purchase online from their tablets each week
The good news is that one of those questions is easy to answer – you’ll definitely need an optimized mobile website. With so many people accessing the net via mobile, if you don’t provide an optimal experience for these users on your site, then you’re losing potential customers.
- Apps with keywords in the title ranked on average 10.3% higher than those without a keyword in the title.
- So, is a keyword worth placing in your title? Yes.
- There is a clear trend showing that apps with higher ratings also rank higher for keyword difficulty.
- Do apps with better ratings rank higher? Yes
- Do apps with more downloads rank higher? Yes
According to one study from Cisco, traffic from wireless and mobile devices are expected to outpace wired devices by 2018. Not to mention, mobile data traffic will grow three times faster than fixed IP traffic.
Solve a problem in a way that makes your app a staple
Build an app that’s more than a ‘nice to have.’ Solve one of your audience’s most pressing challenges, instead. Far too often, companies develop apps as ‘one-off’ campaigns that have little connection to the solutions that target customers actually need.
When building a mobile app, it’s important to start with your customers. Figure out their most pressing needs and how mobile fits into their buyer journeys.
Focus on Meta Data on ASO:
1) App Title
An app’s title is the single most important metadata factor for rank in ASO. It’s equivalent to the <title> tag in your HTML, and is a great signal to the app stores as to what your app is about. On the web, you want your title to include both a description of what you do (including keywords) as well as some branding; both elements should also exist in the app store. Be sure to include the keywords, but don’t be spammy. Make sure it parses well and makes sense. Example: “Strava Run – GPS Running, Training and Cycling Workout Tracker”
2) Keyword Field
The Keyword Field in iOS is a 100 character field which you can use to tell iTunes search for which keywords you should show up. Since you only get 100 characters, you must use them wisely. A few tips:
- When choosing your keywords, just like on the web, focus on relevancy, search volume, and difficulty.
- Don’t use multiple word phrases; break out to individual words (Apple can combine them for you).
- Don’t repeat keywords that are already in your title (and put the most important ones in your title, leaving the keyword field for your secondary keywords).
- Separate keywords with commas, and don’t use spaces anywhere.
3) Screenshots :
The most important rule to remember when creating your screenshots is that they should not be screenshots. They are, instead, promotional graphics. That means you can include text or other graphics to tell your app’s story in an interesting, visual way.
Especially in iOS, where the card layout shows your first screenshot, it is incredibly helpful when an app displays a graphic which explains the app right up front, increasing conversions from search results to viewing the app page and, ultimately, installing the app.
Focus on Off-Metadata :
3) Link Building
How Do iOS and Google Play Differ In App Store Search?
When Apple launched their app store, they used the same technology that was already built for music, which meant that the app title, developer name, and keywords were the only fields used to understand search for an app. Note that description isn’t taken into account in iOS (but I expect this to change soon). On the other hand, there is no keyword field in Google Play; there is only a description field. Thus, while iOS doesn’t take the description into account, in Google Play the description is all you have.
Tools for App Optimization :
In addition to having a great, free, in-app analytics product (Flurry Analytics), as well as an interesting paid advertising product (AppCircle), Flurry also posts some of the most interesting data about the app ecosystem on their blog.
2) Apptamin :
Sylvain has written some great content and has some incredible insights into app marketing and ASO on his company’s (Apptamin) blog.