Month: October 2016

Don’t Do These 5 Mistakes In App Store Optimization

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If you’re an app marketer or developer, you already know the challenges of getting your app to rank in the app store. This can prove to be a challenge considering there are more than 4 million apps in the Android Play Store and Apple App Store combined.

So you try to optimize your app page in an attempt to gain a higher rank in the app store.

But marketing your app gets really hard if you’re committing some of the most common mistakes app owners make while trying to optimize their app page.

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1. Keyword Stuffing

You’ve heard about the importance of keywords in ASO, so you decide to place high-ranking keywords randomly in your app title and description. But just as in SEO, stuffing your content with keywords can end up hurting you instead.

Take a look at it from the point of view of a user. You search for a certain type of app and you come across a high ranking one. But what you read makes no sense. Would you download it?

Take a look at the example below and see how they’ve used the keyword “emoji” multiple times. They’ve randomly added “emoticons” in the title and the description doesn’t even make sense anymore.

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Instead of using as many high-ranking keywords as possible, choose the most relevant keywords and use them to describe what your app is all about. The title and description should both be fluid and natural.

2. Changing Title Too Often

Some app owners make the mistake of changing their app title frequently, according to the latest keyword rankings. They believe that this is essential for optimizing their app page. In fact, it can hurt your ranking.

Remember that app download volume is an important determiner of its ranking. The more download, the higher it will rank. So you need people to spread the word about your app to improve download rate.

If users like your app and want to spread the word about it, they’re going to use your name. What happens if those potential users can no longer find your app because you’ve changed the name?

Once you’ve decided on a title with the right use of keywords, stick to it instead of switching it around every now and then.

3. Ignoring Icons, Previews, And Other Graphic Elements

Just like the title, the icon is one of the first things users notice about an app. So your app needs to look appealing while expressing what the app is all about. A camera-themed app icon for a photo-editing app, an envelope-shaped icon for a messaging app, etc. are some good examples. See how Runtastic Running & Fitness app makes use of a running man in its app icon.

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It sticks to a color theme and doesn’t use more than three colors, making the icon look neat and professional. If you use too many colors and elements in your app icon, it can ruin the aesthetics and make it look unappealing.

The icon basically needs to show what your app does while looking visually appealing to prompt users to download.

If users like the title and icon, they check out the app description and other elements such as previews, screenshots, etc. It’s not enough to have an interesting and informative app description. Anyone can write a description that sounds highly persuasive, but you need something to support your claim. That’s what screenshots and previews are for;  your promise may seem empty if you don’t have compelling visuals to prove it.

High-quality screenshots can make a case for your app and encourage more people to take action. The Runtastic Running & Fitness app also includes informative screenshots that show users what the app looks like.

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4. Focusing Only On High-volume Keywords

While keyword-based descriptions are among the top ranking factors for apps, it doesn’t mean you only choose keywords with a high search volume.

Remember that other app owners like you also target those high-volume keywords. This means that using high-volume keywords isn’t always the most viable solution for your ASO needs.

What you can do instead is to compile a list of keywords that are the most relevant to your app. And then you narrow down this list, choosing keywords that have a high search volume but lower competition.

While this may be challenging, you can also mix it up a bit and throw in a few keywords with mid to high-level competition every now and then.

5. Only Doing ASO When You Need It

Finally, one of the major mistakes a lot of app owners make is that they stop their efforts once the results start churning in. It’s easy to make this mistake. You change a few things and make some improvements so you’re able to get more downloads for your app. Now that you’re satisfied with the results, you see no point in making further changes. The truth is that the app store is evolving by the minute – from the emergence of new apps to the changes in keyword ranks.

Without continued effort, your app is just going to get back to the slumps and you know how challenging it is to get out of that.

Instead of considering ASO as a one-time thing, consider it as an essential, ongoing part of your app marketing. You need to make a continued effort to maintain the ranking of your app.

One effective method is by updating the graphical elements like icons and screenshots according to seasonal and holiday themes.

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8 ESSENTIAL STEPS TO MAKE YOUR APP DISCOVERABLE

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The app market is one of the most competitive spaces in the world.

And it’s crowded – with approximately two million iOS App Store apps and 2.5 million Google Play Store apps (as of June, 2016 according to App Annie Store Stats).

Between the sheer number of apps and the skyrocketing costs of advertising, successfully acquiring and retaining users is more challenging than ever. Successful marketing specific to the apps industry has never been more valuable.

As an (app) marketer, your job is to cut through that clutter and get in front of the right audiences. Increasing exposure for your app helps increase downloads, boost store rankings and ultimately drive revenue for your business.

A highly valuable strategy to increase long-term exposure is app store optimisation. App store optimisation, or ASO, can be defined as the ongoing process of testing and measuring updates to app store marketing assets, with the goal of increasing visibility and driving more downloads.

So here are eight key steps to ASO success that go way beyond keywords.

1. Keep tabs on competitors
Before you dive into selecting the categories for your app, you should first research what your closest competitors are doing.

This will help you determine the competition in that category and show how users are searching for similar apps. Choosing a less competitive category could improve discoverability for your app.

2. Select the right category to improve discoverability
It’s about fit, user behavior and your competitors. Before selecting an app category, consider your app’s most natural fit as well as how your target users are most likely to find you. For additional inspiration, look at what competitors and similar apps are doing.

Finding the best keywords means closely tracking and monitoring competitors.

3. Generate organic reviews
Pay attention to what your users are saying. Track your rankings and reviews to see how users respond to new updates and features. Remember to mine this feedback for insights. Be responsive.

In addition to addressing user feedback behind the scenes, take the time to show that you’re listening. This can be done through your blog and release notes – or through direct response on Google Play.

4. Prompt user feedback
Target high points. Improve the likelihood of receiving a positive review by asking for feedback when a user is having a great moment with your app. Approach trusted reviewers. Consider asking beta users and professional peers to provide honest reviews.

When an app goes live the review section on your app page will be barren. Rather than waiting for an unknown user’s first impression, ask your trusted network to submit reviews documenting their honest thoughts.

5. Choose keywords smartly
Pay attention to competitors: Finding the best keywords means closely tracking and monitoring competitors. By analysing how a competitor ranks for a specific keyword, or determining which other apps rank for your app’s keyword, you can strategically select keywords to help your app rank higher.

Leverage user reviews: One of the best ways to describe your app uses language from user reviews – their words may resonate better with prospective users than the ones you had in mind.

6. How to measure the impact of your strategy on your ranking
Once you’ve selected a group of keywords, it’s important to review how these keywords will impact your ranking.

The quickest way to find the app icon that will perform best is through sequential A/B testing.

In addition to monitoring keyword impact on key performance indicators (KPIs), you should also pay attention to other factors that will affect ranking, such as: rating, number of reviews, download levels and download velocity.

7. Design the optimal app icon
Keep it simple; complex icons can be difficult to distinguish on smaller devices (or when nested in folders on a smartphone or tablet) and should be avoided. The icon is going to be shown in several places throughout the platform – and at several sizes – so it is important your creation maintains its legibility and uniqueness; design for scalability.

The quickest way to find the app icon that will perform best is through sequential A/B testing; however, note that the way you can execute on this will vary by app store.

Android developers have it a bit easier, as Google Experiments allows you to easily set up tests and collect results. iOS developers will have to use a third-party option. Of course, sometimes you need to balance science and intuition in order to create an iconic app icon.

8. Use screenshots to drive home the key features and benefits
Use all available spaces. You can include up to five screenshots in the iOS App Store and eight in the Google Play Store to promote your app. Use them all to maximise visibility and sell your app’s value.

Prioritise key messages; the first two screenshots are the most visible. In fact, they even show up in search results for the iOS App Store. Make sure your more important selling points are featured in these screenshots.

Tell a story; screenshots are your opportunity to tell an engaging story to your target audience before they interact with your app. Make sure your screenshots address their needs

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To Increase Your App Downloads, Check These 5 Growth Hacking Strategies

how_to_get_visitors_to_your_website_using_growth_hacking_strategiesAccording to mobile marketing technology firm, Fisku, cost per install in November of 2015 for iOS increased 40 percent from $1.10 to $1.54, while Android increased an astonishing 101 percent from $1.13 to $2.27 year-over-year.

With the cost per install consistently growing each year, app publishers must get creative with their marketing efforts.

After successfully launching apps of our own and also for our clients, you will discover five of our favorite growth hacks to increase downloads when you have little to no budget.

Ask for a Free Consultation to our ASO and Growth Hacker experts here

1. Paid-to-free campaign

This is a campaign that I have run many times and it’s driven hundreds of thousands of downloads on multiple occassions.

If you’re not familiar with a paid-to-free campaign, it’s where you make a paid app available for free for a couple of days.

If you have a free app, you can make one of your in-app purchases free. However, the in-app purchase must be a non-consumable type, which means that the product is purchased once by users and does not expire or decrease with use. For example, new race tracks for a game could be implemented as non-consumable products.

It is important to note that getting media exposure is crucial to making this a successful campaign. I generally give a big website likeAppAdvice or BGR the exclusive on the free campaign, which dramatically increases the chances that the website will cover the price change. Skip to the fourth strategy of the article to learn more about the exclusive strategy.

2. App store optimization

There are two commonly overlooked components of your app store listing page that can increase your downloads — reviews and in-app purchases.

The words that are in your app store reviews — those left by your users — and in-app purchases are all indexed by Google Play and iOS. Having targeted, relevant keywords in both areas will help you see a dramatic increase in downloads.

3. Localization

There are 28 regions in the App Store, and each country has its own App Store. It would be naïve to think that the world only searches for apps in English. In fact, most users will read and search the App Store in their native language.

Unless your app is designed for a specific region, take the time to localize your app in every language. You never know who will find your app useful.

Gonzalo Juarez, co-founder at eTips, the number-one publisher of mobile travel apps, proudly admits that they do not run any paid marketing campaigns. Localizing his apps has led to a greater than 200 percent increase in downloads and in countries where they didn’t have exposure before.

Juarez suggests first translating the words used in your app name and keyword field. Once you start to notice an increase in downloads for a particular language, he suggests further translating your app description, screenshots and then finally your in-app content.

Lastly, use a translation website like Gengo or OneHourTranslation, and hire two translators – one to do the initial translation and another to proof it.

Related: How Duolingo Mastered the Fickle Language of Startup Success

4. The exclusive strategy for public relations

Using the exclusive strategy, we have been able to secure coverage on Techcrunch, Social Times, AppAdvice and BGR.

What is it? You give a big publication the first right to publish your announcement: product release, update, funding, etc. Big sites love getting an exclusive, because it means that they will be the first to write about the announcement, which generally leads to the other big websites linking back to them as the source.

It’s a win-win strategy, because they get traffic and backlinks — and you get coverage.

The key to success for this strategy is to start early. You want to start pitching about two weeks before your launch date. You should only pitch the exclusive to one publication at a time, and be sure to follow up only once. If you do not hear back, you can move on to the next publication.

5. App store feature hack

There’s a little-known strategy that I’ve used to help multiple clients get featured by Apple. Before we get to that, it’s important to know what Apple is looking for in your app.

I go into quite a bit of detail about this growth hack in this blog post, but here’s the gist.

Most developers know that they can email appstorepromotion@apple.com to pitch their apps for a possible feature. However, within Apple, there are “app store managers” for each app category.

Using a LinkedIn search for “app store manager,” you can find out how to contact the right person to pitch at Apple.

I like to use the Email Hunter Chrome extension, because it automatically creates an “email” button within LinkedIn that reveals the person’s email address. The software makes an educated guess of the email, so sometimes you may get a bounce back.

Click here to estimate FOR FREE how many downloads could our growth hackers bring to your App by using ASO!

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The 6 Basic Rules Of App Store Optimization

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Building the best app takes a lot of time and devotion. It would be a shame if those efforts were going to waste because of a lack of optimization !

With time and technology, the number of apps that get to the store is skyrocketing with over 1000 apps per day submitted on the Apple store. As of June 2016, Google play store and Apple store are housing in average 2 Million apps each.

With such huge numbers flowing in each day, it is likely that an app would never get to stand out from the crowdHence it is important for each developer to understand why ASO is such an essential part of any app.

So what is ASO all about?

ASO is the process of improving the visibility of your app on the different app stores.
The main goals of ASO are:

  • To be found easily by users
  • Increase app visibility on search results
  • Rank higher for specific keywords
  • Generate more organic installs

6 basic ASO rules:

Now that you know what ASO purpose is, here are a few basic starters that you need to be aware of:

  • Know your users and competitors

Having a clear understanding of your target audience should be a primary concern. Know who your competitors are and their visibility on your target markets.

  • Know the store algorithms

          Google pulls keywords from your app’s full and short description, while Apple uses the title and Metadata iTunes Connect area. Google and Apple follow a different approach on search results, so it is necessary to understand how the store works in order to design the app optimization.

  • Title and icon/screenshots

Choose a title that clearly says what your app is about.  When potential users scroll the stores, the icon is the first thing they see. It reflects your brand identity so it has to be eye catching. Make sure your screenshots display your app benefits. Good screenshots = Better transformation rate.

  • Keywords

63% of apps are discovered through app store searches.  This aspect of ASO is the most important part of your app’s optimization.  Carefully analyse the keywords you choose and make sure they are related to your app. Take into account your target audience, the features and also the characters limit on keywords . Too competitive keywords won’t bring you any visibility.This part is crucial as users will potentially land on your app through keyword searching.

  • Description

Don’t bother writing a very complicated description. Users are mostly scanning through it. Keep the best keywords for the first lines.  Describe what the app does in simple terms. Your transformation rate will depend on how appealing your app sounds.

  • Localization

Adapting your ASO to local markets is the best way to proceed. Trends, competitors, languages are different in each countries. Translation is not enough! It takes a lot of downloads for your app to be discovered on the stores.  Search presence is the first step to differenciate your app from others. To get a lot of downloads you need to make sure your app is present on the search results.

ASO is an ongoing process and needs constant monitoring and optimization through the year. Keep a close eye on your market(s) trends and competition.

Increase your chances to boost your visibility and organic installs! Start now!

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