What is it?
App Store Optimisation (ASO) is the process of improving the visibility of apps in an app store, namely Google Play and the Apple App Store.
ASO can be likened to SEO, but where SEO deals with search engines, ASO applies to the ranking algorithm of an app store’s search function.
When optimising an app, the following should be considered as the most important direct ranking factors:
- App Name
- Keyword field (Apple App Store)
- Keywords in copy (Google Play)
Indirect ranking factors are much harder to influence, but with the right strategy you can target them. These include:
- Download velocity (the amount of app downloads in a given time) from organic or promoted listings
- Ratings and reviews
Why is it important?
70% of mobile users discover apps via store search. With more than 5 million apps available for download from Google Play and the Apple App Store, your app is likely to face a lot of competition.
ASO will directly influence the visibility of your app and can therefore be a sustainable way to increase downloads over time – particularly where you may have limited budget to promote your app.
App Store Optimisation identifies the unique selling points of your app to users. The first impressions of an app can strongly influence install rates and retention (a known, indirect ranking factor).
Even established brands with well known apps can benefit from ASO as studies indicate that over half of App Store traffic is driven by generic keywords.
What to do next?
- Use app store keyword research to identify where the search opportunity exists and what your competitors are targeting. Update your app metadata fields to reflect these search trends.
- Ensure your app is not in violation of the Google Play Store or Apple Store policies as this can negatively impact the performance of your app.
- Work closely with your Creative team to A/B test the app icon, screenshots and videos as this can improve install rates and the chances of an app being featured.
- If your app is a representation of your website or an eCommerce store, ensure that deep linking (Google Play) or universal links (Apple App) is correctly set up.
- Utilise app tools (internal and external) to monitor app performance to understand your app’s strengths and weaknesses and to identify opportunities to improve optimisation.