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The Foolproof Guide to App Store Optimization (ASO)

You designed and developed your app. Here's your guide to marketing and optimizing your app in the App Store.

There’s an ASO checklist that we use for every client.

And it works.

Want proof?

A Fueled client recently used this checklist to boost their organic traffic by 48.7%.(In 3 weeks)

And in today’s post we're going to show you exactly how they did it…step-by-step.

But first, an introduction to App Store Optimization (ASO) and how it works:

Getting Started

After spending time, money and innumerable effort to build your mobile app, you will see the success or failure of your app in its performance in the App Store. While your app might have a high-quality UX and UI, without optimization, your app may go unseen in the App Store and may get lost among the million other apps that fill the App Store. To ensure your app's success in downloads, here's how to build a successful marketing strategy that will optimize your app.

At the center of app store optimization is the goal to increase your app’s visibility. The more visible your app, the more users will encounter it in the store, which will subsequently lead to more downloads and purchases. Here are the main components of our App Store Optimization strategy, with explanations to follow:

  • Keywords
  • App Icon and Name
  • Screenshots
  • Reviews
  • Downloads
  • Time & Competition
App, Store, Optimization, Guide, Help, Tips
Where in the world will you NOT find apps?

Keywords

With the high quantity and quality competition, your app needs to stand out. With focused research and the calculated use of particular keywords in your app's App Store description, you can make your app stand out to search engines.

First and foremost, the most common keyword that describes your app should be a part of its title. Remaining keywords should be used in the product description. These keywords differ for every product type and target market. Certain keywords will be more competitive than others, so be precise in the keywords you choose to use.

Also, be sure to continue your research after your app is released. This will allow you to update your keywords based on your target market’s search habits to ensure that your app remains well-positioned in the App Store.

While keywords should be carefully used, they should not obscure nor damage readability. Simply put, don't use language that you think will appeal to search engines but is hard for users to follow.

App Icon and Name

In order to ensure downloads and the consistent use of your app, it’s necessary to make sure that you are presenting your app well in the App Store. To start, make sure that the description reads well and explains your app and its functions.

As users scroll through the App Store, they will be drawn to apps with icons and names that stand out. So, when designing your icon and choosing a name for your app, consider the importance of presenting something unique.

When your app goes into the app store, the platform will automatically reduce the size of your icon in order to fit specific size requirements. By looking into these requirements, you can size your app logo beforehand and ensure that it will still look good when scaled to fit apple's size requirements.

App-Store-Keywords-mobile-apps-770x470

Screenshots

Make your screenshots count. Show common usage situations and tell a ‘story’ to your customers about the usability of  your app. This will allow users to understand the experience of using your app, and will give them the unique opportunity to both familiarize themselves with your app while seeing the solution it offers. Some of the most effective commercials make viewers experience product integrity in their own hands before it’s even within their grasp. That way, a bond of intimacy is created before the user even pays for it. While these screenshots won't directly increase your app's ranking, good screenshots will lead to more downloads, which in turn should improve your app's rank.

You are also able to add a video trailer to your app's profile in the App Store. If you are willing and able to invest resources into making this video, it can be a great way to market your app and show potential users the app's features.

Reviews

Although you can't control the reviews that your app receives, reviews often have a significant impact on an app's popularity and downloads. Studies have shown that apps with higher ratings rank higher in the App Store. As a buyer, you typically take note of the reviews and number of stars a product has received before making a purchase, and those going to download your app will likely do the same. While the number of downloads might be enough to attract individuals to your app, positive ratings and generous reviews are often necessary to influence users to download or purchase an app.

While you shouldn't beg your users for high ratings, by strategically marketing your app, and presenting users with a high-quality app with a good UI and UX, your app should receive high ratings that will increase the app's visibility in the marketplace.

Downloads

While you can't exactly control the number of times your app is downloaded, your marketing strategy can and will definitely influence your app's notoriety and popularity, both of which can lead to downloads. While a high quantity of downloads may be one of your principle goals, your number of downloads may also be one of your app's greatest marketing tools. When you hit significant milestones in the quantity of downloads, be sure to publicize these numbers and update your product description to show them. Nothing encourages a user to download an app quite like seeing that so many others have done so.

App, Store, Optimization, Guide, Help, Tips

Time and Competition

Successfully optimizing an app takes time and trial and error. Often, you’ll have to adjust and tweak your keywords and the related app description as time goes on, taking note of what is more and less successful. Doing this may help you to reach your target market, and certain keywords may prove more successful than others.

As competitive apps show up, be sure to avidly review your downloads and other analytics, and investigate what keywords put you at the front of your respective market.

App, Store, Optimization, Guide, Help, Tips

Conclusion

An app store optimization plan covers several key elements. Chief among these is proper use of keywords in both your app title and description to leverage search engine results. Other factors, such as download count and customer reviews can also be used as marketing tools. However, you do not have direct control over them. A proper app store optimization plan requires careful upkeep as keyword popularity can change and competitors can enter the market. By keeping keywords current and focused on your target market, it assures that you’ll stay on top of the search results. Lastly, the art of the sale should never be overlooked. The app in the marketplace that users encounter needs to be enticing and attractive.  A striking icon, well written description, screenshots, and video footage can help you achieve this goal, which in turn should result in a large quantity of downloads of your app.

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