Mobile applications are a must-have for many businesses because they provide constant and convenient contact with consumers. However, it is not enough to develop a product, you need to promote it as well, and an effective ASO or App Store Optimization marketing tool will help you with this. So, we will tell you what it is and how to optimize mobile applications.
ASO is some kind of mobile app SEO. ASO is now considered a mandatory element of integrated marketing for app owners, as it ensures the growth of the application’s position in the ranking of stores for web queries and the growth of its views and downloads. As with SEO promotion, app optimization will bring organic traffic long after the work stops. However, specific ASO results are difficult to predict because they depend not only on optimization for keywords but also on correctly designed graphic elements.
In addition to organic downloads from store search, apps are installed after switching from contextual advertising. They differ in the number of returns. Usually, those who install the store search app (organically) are the most loyal audience interested in using it regularly.
There are some differences between Google Play and App Store promotion, but the basics of ASO are the same, and that’s where we’ll start.
ASO consists of several main stages:
How do users search for mobile apps? By their names and keywords that describe the desired functionality. When a user enters a query in the search bar, search suggestions appear for them to follow. At the same time, the algorithms of search engines take into account most of the mistakes accidentally made while typing from a mobile keyboard, but not all, and this should be remembered. App title and description with relevant keyword phrases are key ranking factors.
The icon is responsible for the first impression of the application. While creating it, it is important to adhere to the standard sizes of store icons, not to use text (there is a name for this), to avoid small, poorly visible elements, as well as transparent elements, and not to use screenshots and photos as icons. Optimizing the block with screenshots used as a user manual will help increase download conversions.
To select keywords and phrases, we recommend not using the usual semantic collection services — Google Play keywords will be different from Google Search keywords. We advise you to compile a list of associative words and phrases independently. And only after that use the services to expand the list of keywords.
We offer a list of recommendations for ASO in the Google Play Store.
Apart from app page optimization, there are other methods and tools for mobile app promotion.
Google indexing. Use it to increase downloads from search engine results. If an application is indexed and not installed by the user, it will be shown on request already with a link in the store. If the user has already installed the application and there is a page for it on the site, then the link in the search results will take the user to the desired site section. Instructions for setting up app indexing for both platforms can be found in Firebase App Indexing, and Firebase Analytics service will allow you to make timely adjustments and optimize your app.
Rating and reviews. In addition to application page optimization, it is also necessary to work with rating and reviews, as the rating also affects the ranking. To avoid the appearance of negativity in the feedback section, we recommend collecting feedback from users using a pop-up window. But it is important to configure it so that it does not interfere with the user’s familiarization with the application but appears after the performed action. In the appeal, use the question form to avoid irritation and rejection. While promoting Android applications, working with negativity is especially important since the authors of reviews in Google Play receive a letter with the developer’s response, making it possible to process the negativity directly and, as a result, get a higher rating from the user. While for iOS applications promotion, such careful processing of negative is not so important — in App Store, the rating is reset to zero every time the application is updated to a new version.
App size. Many users prefer not to download «heavy» applications, so we advise you to consider this option.
Updates and What’s New. They are necessary to make the process of product improvement visible to users. Sometimes those who previously uninstalled the application install it again after making changes and also indicate a higher rating.
Mobile application promotion is not a one-time event but constant actions aimed at maintaining the application’s competitiveness: regular introduction and testing of new elements/changes/improvements, tracking trends in the field of application creation, and monitoring competitors. All this requires time and financial costs, as well as the presence of a qualified performer.