An App Store Optimization checklist you can’t ignore
If you are an app owner, we don’t need to remind you how difficult it can be to make the transition from a great idea to an excellent product and, finally, outstanding sales. Now that the app stores for both Apple and Android-based phones have become a highly competitive, over-saturated marketplace, it takes more than just a quality product to stand out from the pack.
As competition for consumer attention has heated up in recent years, an entirely new skillset has emerged amongst professional app marketers and app developers alike, that being so-called App Store Optimization. Much like website or search engine optimization, the process of App Store Optimization involves the creation of an app description page within the relevant marketplace which guarantees enhanced consumer engagement, greater conversions (downloads, purchases, etc.) and a more self-sustaining growth rate over time.
We’ve designed this guide to provide app owners and app marketers with the information and tools they need to begin their App Store Optimization strategy that will guarantee the long-term prospect of their product. Whether this is your first published mobile app or one of several products you have released in recent years, we guarantee that this checklist will help.
TIP #1: RESEARCH YOUR DEMOGRAPHIC
It goes without saying that not every app is for everyone. In fact, studies have shown that some of the most successful mobile apps available today target specific niches within the larger consumer demographic rather than attempting to capture the attention of every potential downloader out there. No matter what your app may be, the chances are good that you have enough information on hand to begin pinpointing your specific user demographic for your App Store Optimization strategy. For example, depending upon the specific nature of your app, you may be more likely to capture the attention of women over men, or millennials over retirees.
This information may seem like “common sense” to some, but taking the time to concretely define your target audience will help you not only narrow down a specific promotional App Store Optimization strategy catering towards the interests of your market, but also avoid over-generalizing your app store content and appearing vague or generic.
TIP #2: EVALUATE YOUR COMPETITION
Who out there is producing an app that would compete with yours? Is your app wholly unique, or are you attempting to win market share in an already crowded niche? These questions are extremely important, as they will help you better determine how to structure and craft the content appearing in your app store promotional page for your App Store Optimization strategy. If you are competing against established industry competitors, you have the added benefit of being able to evaluate their app store content and/or any advertising campaigns you can locate online. By seeing what works and what doesn’t, you can improve your own App Store Optimization presence in such a way as to remain industry-standard while still standing out.
TIP #3: CHOOSE YOUR APP STORE TITLE CAREFULLY
Given the fact that over 60% of app downloads occur through organic search, it is essential that you place the appropriate keywords in your app store title so that search engines can successfully locate you. While the iPhone App Store only allows 100-character titles, app owners placing apps for download on Google Play store, for example, gives users an additional 4,000 characters to describe their app after the title.
In either situation, it is imperative for app marketers to utilize these character allotments as efficiently and tactically as possible for the success of their App Store Optimization strategy. Even a small amount of research can yield a trove of information on which keywords are being searched for most often. With this information in hand, you can include such keywords in your app store title so as to ensure maximum visibility.
TIP #4: CREATE AN AMAZING ICON
The app icon is one of the most prevalent and yet simultaneously overlooked elements of App Store Optimization. Believe it or not, your app icon creates a powerful first impression – either for good or bad – on users visiting your app store page for the first time. If you’re not a competent graphic designer (it’s ok – many of us aren’t!) then you should consider hiring someone in the mobile app marketing world to help you create a noteworthy icon that is guaranteed to spark interest and turn heads. Particularly in situations where someone is undertaking an organic search on the app store, a well designed logo can make the difference between standing out and fading into obscurity and is also a key factor for the App Store Optimization.
TIP #5: INCLUDE SCREENSHOTS
In-app screenshots are particularly critical in today’s bustling app marketplace environment. Although a well-written description can work miracles for user interest and conversion (and your App Store Optimization strategy), high quality pictures can push customers in the right direction just as easily.
TIP #6: UPDATE YOUR CONTENT FREQUENTLY
One of the greatest fears of any individual investing in a new app purchase is the idea that the software they just purchased will eventually grow obsolete or inoperable due to a lack of technical support from the company behind it. In some situations, this can’t be avoided: for example, if a small app development company is bought out by a larger entity, it is possible that app products will be discontinued.
Also, if an app development company goes out of business, it is reasonable to assume that their apps will no longer be supported. That being said, one of the most effective ways to dispel the notion that your app may be ‘on the way out’ is to update your app store content frequently, including release notes, version info, user reviews and screenshots. This information will dramatically boost consumer sentiment and ensure a more confident, loyal audience over time.
TIP #7: ENCOURAGE FEEDBACK
The more positive comments you have on your app store page, the more likely it is that individuals will download your product and you get a better position thanks to a good App Store Optimization strategy. That being said, negative reviews can also significantly impair your quest towards app store dominance.
No matter what your app may be, we highly recommend you try to collect as many positive reviews as possible, as this truly is a secret weapon on the path towards achieving professional-level App Store Optimization.
As you can see, there are no shortage of strategies and tips you can use to boost your App Store Optimization and achieve higher sales rates over time. With good and updated content, as well as with a title with the right keywords, your app can be at the top of the charts of the app stores.
No matter where you may be in the app marketing process, you can use this information to benefit your app greatly over time.
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