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Anyone involved in online marketing, realises the need for good SEO that improves page rankings on search engines. What is less commonly understood in modern marketing is the need for App Store Optimisation or ASO.

With more businesses switching to apps, it’s become increasingly important and something which can certainly give you the edge over your nearest competition. If you can get it right.

ASO and why it matters

What is ASO?

The higher up the rankings you can appear when potential customers search instore, the more chance you stand of being downloaded. According to the recent stats, potential customers will routinely head to an app store like Apple rather than a standard search engine or social media when they are looking for a particular game, tool or other application such as an educational one.

As with SEO, ASO demands that you keep up with the latest trends and an understanding of the landscape on which you are operating is important. Apple, for example, has just updated its store and downloaded iOS 11 for mobiles and other devices – if you haven’t taken a look at your ASO since then, you might like to set some time aside for it.

The latest iOS update has been designed to make it easier for people to search and get the results they are looking for. By far the most popular category in store is Games which is now designed to look like a news feed and has its own devoted page – that means users can search within this category without having to trawl through other app types.

How apps appear in searches has also changed with titles shorter and icons smaller. Producing portrait and landscape formats rather than one or the other also improve visibility now where it didn’t matter before. With a little less space on the search pages, the icon and its design becomes increasingly important for apps on the site while in the main product page, Apple have removed the tabs and made it into one, scrollable page which makes for easier viewing.

Top Tips for Successful ASO

Top of the list when tackling ASO is still keyword choice. The trouble is that algorithms for different online stores vary, so a certain amount of testing is needed to make sure you get the perfect balance which then, hopefully, gets your app to the front of the queue.

  • Including the right keywords in your title is vital. With shorter titles, this is going to be hard work for some businesses as they try to compete on the market.
  • Second, is the design of the icon which needs to be considered in terms of its value and how it drives traffic and downloads.
  • The description is one area where many designers have fallen down, even prior to the update for Apple. It’s an opportunity to include a series of keywords but also to sell and tell the story of your app.
  • Keyword number and position can all influence your performance in searches for both apple and android.
  • Ratings and reviews have a big influence on whether your app is finally downloaded. Encouraging positive ones is therefore important.
  • Testing is equally vital – don’t believe that you are going to get your ASO right first time and don’t believe that you won’t have to update it on a regular basis. Create your content, test it, tweak the content, and test again. This should be a continuous process whether you have your app on Apple or an android site such as Google.

Finally, to increase visibility you need to bring in all the other marketing activities that help promote your app including social media such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

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