google mobile first index

Tips for App Store Optimizations

Your business spent months working on an app, but guess what no one, not even your mom because she can’t find it, is downloading.

So where did you go wrong? It sounds like you missed a critical step — App Store Optimizations.

The importance of ASO cannot be undersold.  Sixty-three percent of apps are discovered through app store searches. Searches make up the majority installations. Unfortunately, most developers and publishers are not properly leveraging app store optimizations, instead of waiting on consumers to come to them.

There are four main factors to consider for ASO.

App Store Optimizations

App Title

By utilizing knowledge gained from keyword research, you’ll have insight on the best keywords and phrases to include in your app’s title. The keyword with the heaviest search traffic should be incorporated in the title.  It’s important to keep in mind that changing the title, can negatively impact your App’s rankings, so researching the keyword with the most traffic will be worth the time investment.


Relevant keywords which are used by your target audience must be incorporated in the title. It’s also important to monitor competitors’ keywords to understand how you compare.

Tips for App Keyword Research

First, make a list of the words and phrases most people will use searching for your app, products and services. Next, we run an analysis on competitors’ sites to find additional keywords and phrases that app store users may be interested in. Analyze the information for frequency and impressions. New keywords can be integrated into app store descriptions and information, where appropriate. 

Number of Downloads

Apps with more downloads rank higher for competitive keywords. However, the number of downloads is something you won’t be able to control. So making sure title and keywords are relevant to an app store users’ intent is critical.

Ratings and Reviews

Similar to “Number of Downloads,” these are difficult to control, yet you can create ways to encourage satisfied users to rate and review your app. Apps with higher ratings will also rank higher for competitive keywords.

How to Improve and Maintain ASO


Place the most relevant keyword in your title, regardless of keyword difficulty.


Track your keywords and the movement of your competitors. Use tools like Tune’s App Store Analytics to track search rankings, select and analyze keywords.  Having a firm grasp on what’s driving competitors success will help you understand your position and the best way to improve current rankings.

App Description 

Overstuffing content with keywords that force “creative” descriptions will deter users from downloading and engaging with your app. SEO keyword density does not work for ASO. Keep descriptions brief, while explaining user benefits.

Optimized App Store Description

Smart News utilizes best practices in its app description. The statement highlights awards and importance in users’ lives, as well as showcasing the app’s unique features. Smart News differs from other news apps by being customizable, providing offline Reading options, etc. The developers take the opportunity to clearly state how the app differs from other news outlets with brief, strong statements.

Number of Downloads

Since you have less control over this, marketing the App/brand to increase awareness and appeal will improve this metric. Use compelling images, ratings and reviews. Leverage a strong social media presence promoting app downloads.

Ratings and Reviews

For customers who are unhappy with your app, create a place where they can talk with developers to answer questions/share their needs. Create incentives to encourage happy customers to leave feedback and reviews. 


App optimized for ratings and reviews

Hotel Tonight provides clear opportunities in the App Store to write reviews and also contact the App Support team. This eliminates users’ needs to perform an online search to report issues or ask questions related to concerns they may have regarding the app.


Make sure your App speaks to your users’ language. Leverage keyword research to communicate/market to your target audiences in specific countries (include the region’s language as well).


Understanding how App stores categorize and the limits allow you to properly categorize your app and lead to advantages. Using a tool like Leaderboard allows you to see the competition for each category. Starting with a less competitive category will allow you to increase rankings and your ability to get into the app store’s Top Charts list.

ASO in APP Store vs. Google Play Store

How does ASO differ in Apple’s App store versus Google Play? The differences are mainly between each store’s algorithm and descriptions.

Apple App Store – Apple is more auto-centered in its rankings, but the App’s iTunes App page needs to be carefully maintained regarding SEO.

Google Play Store – Google’s Algorithm is more complex and integrates more external factors that are difficult to control. Link Building is important in Google Play since this closely relates to Google Search Engine and Google+.

App Store vs. Google Play

Need more insight on app store optimizations? Don’t hesitate to reach out to our strategists with questions. Also, don’t forget about App Store Search Ads. They’re a great way to engage with consumers searching for your app.