The terminology of the App Store Optimization (ASO), correlates with improved app visibility and downloads. ASO is also popular by other names like App Store Marketing or Mobile App SEO. The fundamental function of App Store Optimization is to improve the visibility of an app in an app store search engine.
Now this can be any app search engine like Apple App Store or Google Play. The dilemma faced today by the marketing teams is how to make the people discover their app in the first place, rather than the problem of whether to invest in the app for engaging with the audience.
This is where ASO comes as your retort. You can support your goal of an increase in downloads or an increase in traffic to your online app by increasing impressions.
ASO focuses on expert resource applications. These are related to improving the ranking of mobile apps directly within app stores.
Other than the main goal of ASO of “app downloads”, there are certain support goals as well. These may include:
- Engaging with Audience
- Increasing brand exposure
- Increasing frequency and quantity of app reviews
- Getting positive app reviews and ratings
For a newbie, ASO can be a more familiar practice to your business’ online marketing process. If you are familiar with the term “search engine optimization” (SEO), you’ll find many facets of ASO overlapping with it.
- Easy app content discovery
- App ranking algorithms
The App Ranking algorithms further consist of elements like perceived app quality, brand sale, and user value signals like engagement, reviews, and ratings. These all ingredients are actually similar to those required by SEO as well.
Businesses today largely focus on generating increased ROI from app stores. Hence, marketing professionals are mostly seen targeting key performance indicators, linked to increased app visibility. These indicators refer to:
- Reviews & ratings
Optimising your app's visibility is a constant process of improvement and update, and is very similar to the idea of SEO.
The purpose of building an app is to drive traffic. Your reach can be limitless in the app store and playstore, if you consistently track and measure the performance with a proper strategic ASO approach.
Many organic ASO delivery approaches miss out on the key elements of organic search optimization and integration of app stores in the broader marketing plan. The integration of SEO and ASO functions, with a consistent focus on ASO, can support a variety of search marketing growths.
You should also know the fact that many traditional search engine optimization techniques that work for search engine performance like Google and Bing can also be applied to ASO working. For instance,
- App name and title selection
- URL optimization
- Keyword research for ASO
- App ratings and reviews management
- Internal linking within mobile apps
- Click through rate (CTR) optimization
- Indexation of apps in Google engine results pages (SERPs)
But a big mistake that marketers make while integrating ASO and SEO is ”overlooking the role of websites in driving the referral visits directly to your store page and the app downloads section.”
You should regard your website as the most powerful tool behind leading your audience through your business’ information and purchase funnel. Your website can thus be the source of converting your visitors to your purchasers and even increase customer loyalty.
You may find that the content level is limited at the app stores. Hence it is very important to leverage your detailed website content to increase your app awareness and discovery to build external app visibility. The greater the value of the app, the more traffic, resulting in greater downloads of your app.
App stores have specific optimization areas, which can be targeted for updates, enhancements and persistent optimization.
A large majority of app downloads are directly attributed to app stores. Hence you cannot overestimate the value of in-store app maximisation.
Despite the differing nature of app store features and available fields, there are some core optimization items you should focus on and strive to improve on. These include:
These should reflect your main keywords describing and giving value to your app, differentiation, and other perceived value signals.
Also, there are character restrictions in place for areas like app title and you should be cautious about the implementation of any low-quality strategy. For instance, keyword stuffing can be easy for algorithms to identify and penalise, hence should be avoided.
App keyword fields are crucial to get right and update to show the latest and ever-changing user search queries. For optimising this, traditional keyword research is required. Take good enough time to gather data and put in place techniques to review and improve this and other key elements in an iterative manner.
Volume, ratings and freshness; everything matters in this area. A strategic framework should be worked on for generating regular reviews and engaging with them. A proactive and consistent approach should be practised for getting good volumes of app reviews.
One can expect more user value associated with the app, if your app gets higher a demand and more downloads. Your app can get more prominence in the app store’s organic ranking.
Integrating your marketing channels outside the app store to guide people to the app is an equally important aspect of the process, as it is crucial to maximising the in-app performance.
It is always witnessed that the updated and ever-evolving apps become the top performers in the app store. These top apps constantly strive to change, modify and evolve, taking into consideration the feedback and working according to the audience's needs. The more frequently the apps are updated, the more they receive positive reviews.
As part of their ranking algorithms, both App Store (Apple) and Play store (Google) highly take into account the regularity of app updates. This ensures that your app remains fit for purpose and supportive of the reviews. It should be open to negative feedback by the audience if any, and the loopholes should be worked on.
In today's dynamic tech world, ASO continues to outperform growth trends. Within the marketing mix, the value of apps has been attached as a key marketing element.
We should therefore plan, explore and strategize to face the challenge of how to improve app discovery on an organic level within the major app stores.
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