More than 2 million apps are available in app stores. The numbers are increasing every day. All developers want their app ranked top in the Google Play Store. The important question is – How does a marketer optimize for better discoverability in an app store? How to get noticed by potential users? Well, we have the answer. We have prepared the list of ways to optimize your mobile app to rank higher.
Let’s dive in!
Before we start understanding ways to optimize a mobile app, let’s understand one term getting famous among developers – ASO (App Store Optimization). SEO – Search Engine Optimization, makes your content rank higher in search engines. Just like that, ASO is the process of optimizing a mobile app in order to get maximum visibility and rank higher in app store’s result. If you neglect ASO, then no one will be able to find your application. Therefore, you must optimize your mobile application for better rankings.
Here are few good tips to help you improve your mobile app ranking:
1 Keyword research
Before you start implementing App Store Optimization strategies, keyword research is an important aspect to consider. Research about actual keywords that users are searching for. Use relevant keywords which describe your app. You can use right keywords in app name as well as app description. Keyword using alone in the title even can improve your app’s search ranking. You can conduct separate research for Android and Apple platform ASO to make sure you are using right keywords. Research your competitors. Which type of keywords your competitors are using? There are many keyword suggestion tools available such as – The Tool or AppTweak. Avoid keyword stuffing. You can use maximum 100 characters for keywords.
2 App title
The best thing about app publishing is – you can always change app title and app keywords. You can update the app name time to time. While deciding app title, keep two things in mind – use keywords in app title and avoid using a similar name of an existing app. Google allows you to add 50 characters in the app title. Make most of it. Moreover, you can add one title for each language. So make sure to localize your app name. Your app name is your first impression to a potential mobile user. Your app name should be short, simple, easy to spell and easy to memorize. Avoid using an unnecessary dash or vertical bar. Because special characters or symbol will not be helpful in the App Store Optimization strategy. According to research conducted by Tune, adding a keyword in app title will increase your app discoverability by 10.3%.
3 App description
Through app description, your users can know what your app actually is all about. Your app description should be written in a simple and concise language. The app description is another good chance to use relevant keywords. Don’t do keyword stuffing in your app description. Instead of that, you can use small paragraphs and bullet points to describe the benefits of the application. Use core keywords in your app description. Why users read app description? – To know whether your app provides what they are looking for or not. Your main objective should be to let them know what your app does and why they should download it through a brief yet attractive app description. Keep improving your app description. For example, if you update new features in the mobile app then mention it in the app description.
4 App icons
How people recognize your application? Of course, by the app icon. If your app icon doesn’t attract users then users will not even click on your app. Therefore, your app icon should be unique. While creating an app icon, keep in mind the standard size, geometry and color schemes of icon provided by app stores. Your app icon size should be at least 1024×1024. Each app store has defined their own standards for the app icon. When you are designing an app icon, make sure it contains vibrant colors. Avoid using text in the icon. Browse some top-rated apps by categories and do some research about those icons. Keep your icon simple. Don’t put too many elements in your icon. Your app icon should be modern and innovative. To get design inspiration, you can browse some online DIY logo services such as Logo maker and 99designs.
5 Understand your customers
Every application has different type of users. While understanding your target audience, it is very important to consider some factors such as age group, location, language etc. To understand your customer better, you can go through following questions:
- How your application will be different from your competitors so that you can attract more customers?
- Why will customers download your app?
- Which language your customers use?
- How can you compete with competitors’ keywords?
- What are the requirements of customers that can be fulfilled by your application?
According to your potential target market, you can conduct keyword research. You should use those keywords which drive the most traffic towards your application. You also need to understand your competitors along with your customers. Which type of keywords your competitors are using? After this research, you will be able to determine whether to use similar keywords used by your competitors or use unique keywords.
6 Importance of reviews & ratings
Reviews & rating play very important role in your application. Usually, the majority of users don’t write reviews or give rating apart from some negative reviews in case your app consists of any issues. Remember, your app ratings are directly connected to higher ranking factors. Because applications with a large volume of positive rating rank higher in comparison to other apps. That is the reason you should ask users to give ratings and reviews. For example, if your application has more 5-star rating then it is likely to get higher ranking in search result. Moreover, by users’ feedback – you can understand their requirements, take their suggestions into consideration and update the application. Users also write about issues faced by them in the app. You can read those reviews, solve those problems in the app and let them know about updates. This way you will be able to stay connected with your users. Always remember, the more positive reviews you get, the more your app will get higher ranking in search result.
7 Screenshots and videos
Images can convey more about what your app is all about rather than descriptive text. To make your customers download the app, screenshots can become an advertisement for your application. In Apple app store you can upload maximum 5 screenshots and in Google play stores you can add 8 screenshots. According to one research, 60% of users do not even swipe more than two screenshots. So you have to make sure that those two screenshots are more appealing to tempt users to download your app. Adding a short demo video of 15 to 30 seconds also can be useful. In this video, you can show functionalities of the app in an effective manner. In Google Play Store you can add YouTube video of your app. If your YouTube view increases then it will also be helpful to rank higher in the Google search result. You can even upload your video in different languages. A good video will increase discoverability of your app. Make sure that thumbnail image of the app video is also attractive.
8 Get more social
Constant engagement between app marketers and users through social media can have a great impact on App Store Optimization. Now social media plays important role in deciding the ranking of the application. Links from social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn can help your app get a higher ranking. For example, Google Play Store uses 1+ to refer users to related apps. Having more 1+’s recommendation will increase the chance of discoverability in the search box. Pinterest is also a great platform to create loyal followings for your application. You can start sharing app updates on social media platforms. Facebook provides app installation feature to run ads. Having a Facebook Page also can be useful where you can promote app’s features, functionalities, and updates on social media platforms.
9 Maintenance & Update
People love the apps which keep on updating new features and improving the app for better user experience. Its developer’s responsibility to maintain the app and make sure the app is bug-free. Improving the older version and releasing a new version will lead to get better reviews. If your mobile app is well maintained and updated then you are likely to get a higher ranking. Whenever you update new features in the app, let your users know through push notification. Moreover, change your app description and add what’s new in the app. The ideal timeline to update your app is 30 to 40 days. Fixing issues in the app by giving priority to users’ reviews will satisfy your users. Keep improving app performance and user experience.
The App Store Optimization (ASO) process never stops. Now you must be having clarity that building an app and launching it on the respective app store is not enough at all. Study above tips of App Store Optimization and start testing each strategy. Keep monitoring the progress of application ranking. Know what your competitors are doing to get a higher ranking. Stay updated with App stores’ news about ranking algorithm and implement ranking strategies accordingly. You can share us your views on the comment box and let us know if you have any suggestions in mind to optimize the mobile app.