In Part 1 of the App Search Optimization Guide, we tackled the importance of Keyword Research as the start of ASO SEO. Let’s do a quick recap:
There are free Keyword Tools that you can use such as Google Keyword Planner, UberSuggest or the free ASO Keyword Tool to come up with a good list of keywords.
You can use Reddit and look into subreddits regarding your chosen niche or market and see what the public needs.
By spying on your competitors, you can predict the performance of your app by benchmarking already successful apps. You can know what they are ranking for and what to improve on by checking positive and negative reviews.
Now, with the keyword list in your quiver, let’s jump to Step 2.
Step 2: Optimizing Your App Listing
Optimizing your listing primarily involves:
- Textual elements: using your well-researched keyword list in the right places
- Visuals: includes your icon, screenshots of your listing, and videos.
Textual Elements of your App
Giving Your App A Name
The search algorithms of both Google and Apple app marketplaces look at the App Name for possible keywords, so it is always a good idea to come up with a name that contains your niche or market keywords.
Think of a brand name that contains your keyword as this adds a lot ASO value as far as making your app rank is concerned. Keep in mind the app title length limits: Google – 50 characters, Apple – 30 characters.
If your brand name does not include a keyword, try putting a dash after your App name then add keywords. Avoid special characters.
App Description (Google Play Store)
Google allows both short and long descriptions of your app The short description contains up to 80 characters, while the long description can accommodate up to 4000 characters.
Unlike Apple, the long description affects your ASO because it gets indexed for keywords. Users can also read it so be mindful to write an ASO piece that is well balanced and not just written for bots.
Optimize Subtitle (iOS only)
Apple allows you to create a subtitle directly under the app name and title. The subtitle has a maximum of 30 characters. The Subtitle also gets indexed so this is another good place to use keywords – something that describes the functionalities and best features.
Keywords Field (iOS only)
You are allowed up to 100 characters. This is a good place to add important keywords. The algorithm uses information in this section to determine search visibility. It is not visible to end users. Add your keywords separated only by commas and do not use words that are already in the app name and title to maximize usage of limited space.
App Description (iOS)
This is a 252-character field with more information about your app. Users can read this when they open your app page in the App Store. Based on studies, only a very small percentage of people click the ‘Read More’ button.
That being said, list all the important features in the first 3 lines of your description. Write this like your sales pitch. It’s like the metadata of a website. It has no ASO value as it does not affect your ranking but definitely affects your installs depending on how you connect with users.
Visual Elements of Your App
The Visual Elements of your app/product listing include the Icon/Logo, Screenshots, and Videos. Visual elements, as well as ratings and reviews, greatly influence your conversion rate. The design and color of your visual elements, such as your logo and screenshot, are the first things that users see. Make sure to create the absolute best!
Your App Icon
Keep your Icon clean, simple and crisp – do away with small fine texts. Make it a catchy attention-grabber. Use good bright colors with one or two contrasts.
Your App screenshots should highlight the main features of your app and visually give users the reasons to download your app.
In Google Play Store you can add up to 8 different screenshots, Apple gives you up to 10. It is recommended that you put your best 2 or 3 upfront.
In addition to the screenshots, Google Play also allows you to display your app’s feature video or graphic. This helps to convinced undecided users to download your app. Get your best images and videos up. They count a lot!
Videos increase conversion rate tremendously.
Google Play store, lets you add a Youtube hosted video that’s up to 2 minutes long. We recommend you keep your video to 30 seconds and below and highlight your 3 best features first.
Now that you have all the elements of your product listing ready, we’ll proceed to part three tomorrow.