At the fifth anniversary of the App Store, Apple announced that there is an average of 1053 apps that are released every day. Looking at this, you can see that it is very difficult to make sure that your app will be found. In this blog post I will explain what’s the importance of App Store Optimization (ASO) and what the key differences are between the App Store and the Google Play Store.
How do people discover apps?
When developing apps, a lot of attention is given to the development process of the app itself. You have an idea, you have identified the function of it and the first drafts are there to be tested. This is good! But most of you forget the most important part: the actual placement of the app. This gets too little attention. All your other work will be in vain when your app won’t be downloaded because of bad placement.
ASO vs SEO
Research has shown that most people discover a new app through the search function. Also lists are popular to find a new app. This can be compared to Search Engine Optimization. Just like SEO, ASO is composed of:
- On Metadata Optimization: Factors that you can control
- Off Metadata Optimization: Factors on which you have limited influence.
In this blog I will mainly focus on the factors that you can control: On Metadata Optimization. Below I shortly explain about the most important components of On Metadata Optimization:
Title: Your app’s title is extremely important. Through this way, you app will be found. Therefore you will need to use the right keywords in your title. This doesn’t mean that you should create a title only consisting of all your keywords, but you should create a logical sentence containing several search words.
Keywords: In the App Store, you specify keywords. You can fill in what keywords you want to be found on and you can see what keywords people are searching with. These are also very important to get to a good end description.
Description: There are two things you need to keep in mind when writing your App description: 1. You need to have a clear and proper description of what you app is about and 2. You will need to have the right description that matches what your consumers might be looking for.
Screenshots: Besides your title, keywords and description, it can also be very handy to add screenshots of your app in the explanation. This way people are able to see what the app has to offer in a visual context.
App icon: A good app icon can make the difference in whether people will download your app or not. But creating and designing a good app icon is a subject that is so broad that I won’t go into depth about this in this blog post. You can find tips and tricks about how to optimize your app icon this article of SensorTower.
Basic differences between the Apple Store and the Google Play Store
Looking at absolute numbers, the Google Play Store has passed the Apple Store for some time now. The Google Play Store has had more than 45 percent more downloads than the App Store in the past year. However, the profit from the apple store is 80 percent higher than the one from the Google Play Store. China and Japan are major drivers of growth in downloads for both stores.
The clear difference in turnover and number of downloads raises the conclusion that users of the Google Play Store more frequently download free or less expensive apps. Both in the App Store as Play Store games were responsible for most of the revenue. At Google games were accounted for 90 percent of revenues, at Apple for 75 percent.
Another striking difference is that Brazil, Russia and India are responsible for a large part of the downloads at Google Play. For Apple, China and Japan play a bigger role, although these countries have almost been absent at the Google Play Store. A possible explanation could be that in less developed countries such as Brazil and India cheaper Android phones are more popular and therefore the Google Play Store is used more often.
Below you can see a video of Ankit Jain, the head of search and discovery for Google. In this video he explains about how you can get your app discovered on Google Play.
When wanting your app to be found in either the Google Play Store or the Apple Store you will need to excel on the following points:
- App icon
Besides looking at the above points, it is also very important to think about whether you want to create an Android (Google Play Store) or an IOS (App Store) app. You can use the table below as a basis. It shows which types of apps are better suited for the Google Play Store and which apps work better for the Apple Store.
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For further reading:
|Google Play Store||Apple Store|
|Free and less expensive apps||Costly apps|
|Games||China and Japan|
|Brazil, Russia and India||Well developed countries|
|Less developed countries|