What is App Store Optimization(ASO)
App store optimization (ASO) is the method to get app downloads and app ranking in iTunes/Playstore. There are many techniques on the internet which claims to grow an app in ranking before going down to important points, I will like to introduce myself.
I am Rajeev doing ASO since 2013 and had the opportunity to work on apps having worldwide reach. I even got the chance to work on apps of biggest search engine giants. So, I am suitable to write this post. In this post, I will be discussing general app store optimization techniques for apps which can be implemented on all apps.
Below are some of the main component of app store optimization. We will discuss each point in details.
- Keyword Research
- App Title
- Subtitle Optimization
- Keyword String
- App Promotional Description
- Short Description Optimization
- App Descriptions
- Screen Shot Optimization
- App URLs
Keyword Research For Apps Store Optimization:
Keyword research is one of the crucial stages of app store optimization. We should do it very carefully as it is the base of all your future works. Keyword research takes times, but if it is done carefully, you can hack the growth of keyword rank in the iTunes store. Let’s discuss know-how for the keyword research.
Know your App:
Yes, you heard it right, before beginning keyword research one should understand,
- what is the app?
- What app does
- which market you are targetting
- Know your competitors.
List down some of the keywords which you will be targetting and do your keyword research around it. For example, if I have an app for shopping my initial keyword list include shopping, online shop, discount shop, sale and many more. once you have listed these keywords now we have to move second part of app store optimization to use the keyword tools.
Tool for Keyword research:
There is the various tool available in the market but I prefer the sensor tower and App Annie. Do all initial setting and feed your initially listed down keywords. These tools will in return provide you so many keywords with data like keyword difficulty, Number of Apps and many more. you can read sensor tower manual to understand it.
Here I will only discuss keyword traffic: In Sensor Tower it is the inverse of Apple popularity score. It ranges from 1 to 10 in the Sensor Tower and 1 to 100 in Apple’s popularity score. Higher the keyword score more is the traffic. Lesser the keyword difficulty, easier to rank.
Keyword Selection for App Store Optimization:
List down all keywords which are app functions. While looking for the keyword also look which app is ranking to understand the behavior of app bot. Once you understand it you can bring any app in rank. check difficulty of each keyword. For a new app, it is advised to keep keyword with low difficulty and medium popularity. Once we have finalized the keywords, it is time to move to the next part of app store optimization.
App Title Optimization:
App title should be the perfect blend of your brand keyword and your major keyword. Ensure keyword including in title have medium difficulty and good popularity score. The app title character limit is 30 character for iTunes and 50 Character for Playstore. Check competitors title and how they are doing it. Keywords include in title have higher chances to come in rank so pick it carefully, if it is selected wrong you might place in 3rd screen space.
- You can use “:” or “-” to differentiate your brand
- Make App title meaning full.
- Try to keep your major keyword to the left-hand side.
App Subtitle Optimization
After app title app subtitle is the major component for app store optimization. This option is only available in iTunes. Use keywords which are supplementary for keywords used in App title, Make it short and crisp. App Subtitle character limit is 30 character in tune. This optimization is not used in Playstore.
App Promotional Description:
There is no impact of promotional description in algorithms of iTune. It is only used to increase the chance of download when page views happen. It is shown just before the description. You can optimize it as app pitch. The tip is to include some of the major keywords. This option is not available in Play store.
Keyword String Optimization:
The keyword string can contain a max of characters. Each keyword should be separated by the comma. The keywords on this pace should be a combination of keywords. do not include long tail keywords and other brands name and app keywords in the string.
For Example: if you want to target “best football gaming app” you should only include “best,football,gaming” in keyword string.
Short Description Optimization:
This option is available when you are optimizing your app for Android or play store. The character limit for short description is 80 character. Use your major keyword twice and keep it near to the beginning of short description sentence. Short description has an important aspect in app store optimization.
App description Optimization:
Apple algorithms have no impact on ranking due to the optimized description. Include well explainer content to educate the user about the app. But a well explained can gain you the chance to download.
Unlikely iTunes, Play Store has the strong algorithm impact on ranking. Always have a long description of more than 2500 words. It is found in the study that an average new app contains more than 2000 words in the description. The tip is to tune your content for the user and play store bot.
Screen Shot and Video Optimization:
Do not simply put the simple image. Do a contextual research based on your user and app then make a creative to send the message to the user. It should be beautiful with messages. There is various type of screenshots, you should use according to your app.
It is advised to do A/B testing and select screenshots getting better CVR. It is important to optimize as it is the first this user see with title and subtitle. Similar holds strong for video too.
It is specifically for the new app, which is not launched yet. If possible keep a major keyword with the brand name in App. With all other optimizations, It is going to boost ranking.