Google announced back in February that it was looking to start a pilot program to test sponsored search results in the Google Play Store. Sponsored search results are already a major part of Google search results and with over 100 billion searches a month on Google.com, they know a thing or two about implementing the program.
Paid Ads are a great way to promote, improve visibility and discovery of your app. Google has already documented how paid ads can improve content discovery for users in Google search, the same principle should translate well into the realm of the Google Play Store.
While the initial reaction from developers has been mixed, the new paid ads platform could be a good way for premium developers and apps to cut through the noise of some 1.2 million apps currently in the Play Store, in the same way that Google search brings forth relevant content and pushes down spammy or irrelevant content.
The pilot program is only available to select developers at the moment and no one really knows how it will affect app store optimization (ASO) until there is a full rollout. It could end up making ASO easier because of a transparent search volume system similar to Google Adwords.
In 2014, the Apple store’s highest grossing app was – by far – Clash of Clans. Business Insider noted, “Top-grossing games are all free downloads that convince people to pay real money for in-game boosts. On top of the pile is Clash of Clans, which was earning $654,000 a day in February, helping maker Supercell to a $3 billion valuation.” In the iTunes store, all versions of Clash of Clans harbor 1,168,298 ratings by users!
In a close second, Candy Crush is still racking in the cash! Kim Kardashian: Hollywood, Hayday, and Game of War are also in the top grossing apps!
So, want to join in on the fun? Check out Clash of Clans! There is a reason this app is the highest grossing in 2014!
From rage-filled Barbarians with glorious mustaches to pyromaniac wizards, raise your own army and lead your clan to victory! Build your village to fend off raiders, battle against millions of players worldwide, and forge a powerful clan with others to destroy enemy clans.
● Build your village into an unbeatable fortress
● Raise your own army of Barbarians, Archers, Hog Riders, Wizards, Dragons and other mighty fighters
● Battle with players worldwide and take their Trophies
● Join together with other players to form the ultimate Clan
● Fight against rival Clans in epic Clan Wars
● Build 18 unique units with multiple levels of upgrades
● Discover your favorite attacking army from countless combinations of troops, spells, Heroes and Clan reinforcements
● Defend your village with a multitude of Cannons, Towers, Mortars, Bombs, Traps and Walls
● Fight against the Goblin King in a campaign through the realm
With hundreds of new apps being added to the Play Store daily, it is more important than ever for user to be able to find your app quickly and efficiently. We have gathered a number of tips to optimize your Google Play Store app so that it can be found more easily by potential users.
Optimize your app for search results.
It should come as no surprise that Search is one of the most important elements of the Google Play Store. Recent statistics show that search represents 80% of high quality organic downloads. This means that people who are using the apps are organically searching the Play Store for a specific type of app.
The Play Store uses an algorithm that takes into account a variety of things before it gives your app a rank. No one (except the people at Google) knows the exact algorithm and criteria, but people have tried to understand it and come up with a list of items that that influence your search ranking. These items are
Number or ratings your app has received
Overall rating (High or Low)
Total number of downloads
Downloads growth rate over past 30 days
Number of uninstalls by people who downloaded the app
How often people actually use your app (App usage)
Looking at the criteria laid out above, there are several things you can do to improve and influence your search ranking. We have listed the main methodologies below.
Put your main keyword in the title of your app
Get reviews/ratings (good ones)
Use your keywords at least 4-5 times in your app description
Have a demo or video about your app
Make sure your app is well designed and user friendly
Upload your best screenshots
Increase usage frequency among users who have downloaded your app
While the methods written will give your app significant advantages in search ranking, it will also depend on what search terms you are competing for. For example, a highly searched term like “alarm clock” will be more difficult to improve ranking significantly than compared to a niche search term like “1920’s photos”.
You can use as many white hat ASO methods as you want to make your app more visible and downloaded, but there is no better way than getting user recommendations about it.
User recommendations, or people telling how great your app is, how much they love it and how well it works and highly rating it, is free marketing for your app – and it’s the best kind possible!
Of course, you can’t just create a new app and hope someone gives a recommendation about it and expect it to be the most-downloaded app in the App Store. You will have to put some effort in your ASO, and the user recommendations that you will get are extra bonuses!
People always tend to rely on other people’s opinions and recommendations before purchasing or downloading something. How many times have you downloaded a mobile game just because your friends can’t stop bragging about how awesome it is? And how many times do you check Yelp before dining at a restaurant you’ve never been before?
Definitely keep this in mind when marketing your app. Use a combination of white hat ASO methods and put those valuable user recommendation in the spotlight. We guarantee it’s the best way possible to get your app to the top!
App stores and especially App Store Optimization haven’t been around too long yet, which explains why many marketers still makes frequent mistakes against optimizing their apps in the app store. Here are the ones most commonly made and how to avoid them!
1. Inefficient Use of Keywords
Yes, incorporating keywords that are highly searched for is important, but it shouldn’t be your main focus. Instead, take the time to compile a list that has niche and valuable keywords.
After determining the target group of your app, place yourself in their minds and imagine what keywords they would insert when looking for an app like yours. Try to use relevant keywords so people can easily find your app and so that your app can get ranked as high as possible.
2. Leaving out description and screenshots
A good description of your app is crucial to persuade people to download it. Explain what your app does and how the users can benefit by downloading and actually using it. If it has many apps alike in a particular category, explain why your app stands out – what makes it the best one out there?
Although a good description is crucial, it shouldn’t come as a surprise thats screenshots might talk louder that your description does. Insert a few good and clear screenshots where the viewer can see clearly what you app does and how good it actually is. A combination of a good description and great screenshots is what will make people download your app!
3. Having “download” as ultimate goal
A big mistake many app store marketers make, is thinking that you’ve won when a lot of people download your app. Yes, downloading the app is the first step to success but you’re not quite there yet! In order to stand out from all the other apps and to be successful on a long-term, you actually need a useful app that people like to use. An excellent product will lead to many downloads (when good ASO is applied!), not the other way around!
For more information about ASO services, check out our “Services” page on the website.
Before the era of apps and the App Store, there was SEO as we’ve always known it. White hat methods (and sometimes black hat methods) to make sure your company’s webpage shows up at the top in the Google Search Ranking to create more visibility and ultimately more conversion, that’s what it was all about.
But things have changed. With more than 25 million apps in the iTunes App Store and with an overall app-usage growth of 115% in 2013, it’s only normal that companies go along with modern times and integrate apps for employees to use in the office [read our previous article about ASO: What is it and why does your company need it]. Now it’s all about ASO – App Store Optimization.
But more interesting are the companies and brands that create their very own app. It’s not uncommon anymore for enterprises (small, medium and large) to create their own company app to be seen as more “professionally” and to get more visibility on the mobile web.
But how do you optimize those apps? By using your SEO knowledge!
Yes, to beat over 600,000 apps in iTunes and over 450,000 in Android’s Play Store, you’ll need skills to do so. If you have been managing your company’s SEO for quite a while now, you will have an advantage of the ones who are new to the game.
Instead of focusing on Google Search Page Results (SEO) you should focus on Apple’s and Android’s App Store Rankings (ASO). And instead of focusing on Google’s Search Algorithms, focus on Apple’s and Android’s ones.
Using the right keywords, meta tags etc. also apply for your ASO. Use the knowledge you have about SEO and translate it into ASO. That’s the key to a successful app!
Need more help with your app visibility and conversion? Check out ASOstealth’s services and contact us for more information