App Store Optimization (ASO)

Increase the visibility of your app and boost organic downloads with ASO!

More Downloads. More Revenue. More Business.

What is ASO? How can App Store SEO help my app or game business? How should it be done? How to track and improve it?

ASO is a must for every app or game developer

What is App Store Optimization?

App Store Optimization (AKA ASO or App Store SEO) is the process of optimizing a mobile game or application in order to maximize its visibility in the Apple App Store, Google Play Store or other markets in Search (keywords) and Top Charts, boost traffic to listing and improve conversion rate to generate the maximum volume of organic downloads. ASO brings free high-quality users to your app and is the base of any Mobile Growth or App Marketing strategy.

ASO = Traffic + Conversion

This process requires a critical understanding of how the app stores work, the target user base, and the most relevant keywords potential users are typing or speaking to find apps or discover new ones.

App Store Optimization is not only optimizing for Search

What is ASO? Experts say...

We’ve asked some experts and friends about what they think “App Store Optimization” is:

Daniel Peris (@DanielPeris)CEO at TheTool

“App Store Optimization is a never-ending optimization process that can bring millions of free installs.”

How does App Store Optimization work?

Mechanics of ASO

ASO is similar to SEO (Search Engine Optimization)…

There are some known factors that influence / impact ASO for iOS & Android apps. Let’s start by breaking them down:

On-metadata factors

App Store SEO on-metadata factors are those elements of app store listing that can be modified within iTunes Connect or Google Play Developer Console in order to optimize app keyword rankings within the App Store or Google Play and to encourage the user to download our app or game.

These elements, that are 100% under our control are: URL / Package (only Google Play), Developer name (only Google Play), App Name / Title, description, short description (only Google Play), keywords field (only App Store), app category, icon, screenshots and video.

Optimizing App Store SEO on-metadata will help your app rank higher in App Store Search.

Off-metadata factors

As it happens in SEO (Search Engine Optimization from web marketing world) and off-page factors, ASO off-metadata factors are those external factors that are not under the control of the developer.

The elements that are not 100% under our control are: volume and speed of installs, ratings + reviews and, maybe, user engagement…

App Store Optimization = on-metadata + off-metadata

How important is App Store Optimization?

AppleOptimizing for App Store Search

“Search plays a huge role in how users discover apps, with search queries accounting for 65% of downloads from the App Store.”

App Store Optimization = More downloads

All the ASO intelligence your app needs to succeed in App Store & Google Play.
TheTool helps you track all App Store SEO KPI and increase your app downloads & revenue.
Start in seconds. No SDK required.

ASO is a process, a marathon

How to do it

You know you have to optimize your app and that ASO stuff is cool but… how to do it? How to do App Store Optimization the right way to boost visibility and get downloads? This is a challenge!

1. Keyword research / market research

Picking the right app store keywords is crucial for Search success. You should target keywords with high relevance (related to your app or game business), high traffic and low difficulty or competition.

The app keyword research process is different for each app. For example, for new apps, it’s better to use mid and long-tail low competition keywords to gradually change them with keywords with more traffic and competition.

In order to get the maximum visibility, your app or game should be global (available worldwide) with all languages “ASOptimized”.

Already have your main app store keywords defined? Go to the next step. It’s time to optimize!

2. Optimize your app for Search & Conversion

It’s all about optimization.

Apple App Store optimization

Add keywords in the app name (50 characters) and keywords field (100 characters). So, a total of 150 characters, although there is a “hack” that allows using much more than 100 characters in the keywords field…

Google Play Store optimization

Add app keywords in the title (30 char), short description (80 char), description (4000 char). Unlike Apple, Google indexes almost all text that appears in the store listing. Google Play ASO, when it comes to Search, is much more similar to SEO than App Store ASO.

App conversion rate to install optimization

A/B test listing elements like icon (to increase CTR in lists), feature image or screenshots to boost app conversion rate and get more installs with the same traffic.

Is your app store listing ASO ready? Let’s see it!

3. Track / monitor main ASO KPI

Track your app keywords rankings and your competitors’ keywords rankings, track Top Charts rankings, organic installs (by country), app conversion rate to install, revenue from organic installs (in-app, advertising…), track your competitors updates / changes in listings (on-metadata).

The higher the rankings and the higher app conversion rate, the more downloads.

Meet TheTool, the first Performance-Based App Store Optimization tool

The most accurate and powerful App Store SEO software

TheTool helps you with your ASO strategy in the App Store & Google Play in 91 countries.

In TheTool you can track and optimize the main App Store SEO KPI: keywords rankings, Top Charts rankings, user ratings, app conversion rate to install, organic & non-organic downloads and revenues.

Try our 14-day FREE trial and start boosting your installs!

Win the app stores competition!

Quick App Store Optimization tips

1. Pick a great app name / title

The app title is one of the first things that users see when they discover your app or game. Chose an app name that is identifying your app and expresses its purpose. Your brand name should be simple and memorable – better stay away from generic names here.

To compose a perfect app title use this formula: Brand name + 2 or 3 of your most important keywords. These keywords serve a double function – to give users an understanding what your app serves for, and to boost your keywords rankings. App stores give most weight to the keywords included in the app title, so make the most out of it!

App Store Optimization begins with the App Name…

2. Focus on your app keywords

Keywords are the most important aspect of your ASO strategy, and you should start working on them even before the day you launch your app. Do a keyword research, and get as many keywords and keywords combinations that are related to your app and imply a download intent.

Besides App Title, add keywords to the URL of the page (Google Play), short description (Google Play), and in the first lines of your description. Important: Google Play indexes your full app description, but App Store doesn’t.

3. Make your icon stand out

Get creative! This is your chance to outrank your competitors. Make your icon descriptive and clear for the users to understand what your app or game is about, check out what your competitors are doing, and make an icon which is striking and original. Work on your style and stick to it, keeping it through updates. Create a distinctive image for your app.

Marketing is about creativity!

4. A/B test everything

Prior to implementing a change in the app store listing elements, test them using an A/B testing tool. Our advice is not to combine several changes at once, but separating and testing them one by one, so you can certainly understand which item benefits from the change.

5. Localize your app store listing / page

A blind translation doesn’t work here. When you are localizing your app for a different country, you are getting in touch with a different culture, with different search and behavioral habits. Even for the US and the UK english language there might be differences in spelling. When opening a new country for your app, adapt your text, provide screenshots in a different language, think of culture-specific engagement options. And if you decide to publish your app in a new country using an english version, think of how many people in this country actually speaks this language and if they will be eager to use your app in english.

6. Don’t let your app weight more than 100MB

Without WiFi connection the user most likely will not download your app or mobile game instantly, and it might become hard to remind them to come back and install it…

7. Avoid bugs in your app

Bugs can cause a lot of negative reviews, and you don’t want that. Monitor and update your app frequently, and get your users to report bugs on a separate page, impide negative reviews from leaking to your app download page.

8. Monitor your competition and never stop optimizing

ASO is not about one-time optimization. Some of your competitor’s actions can make a big change in the market, so never stop monitoring and react timely on these changes. Or maybe you will be the first who shakes the market? In any case, track the situation in your niche daily and update your strategy frequently.

More App Store SEO tips coming soon!

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App Store Optimization ASO -or App Store SEO- is the base of any App Marketing / Mobile Growth strategy. Don’t underestimate its power!

Must read: Get discovered on Google Play search (by Google) | Optimizing for App Store Search (by Apple)