What is App Store Optimization?

Detail Blog | todo Mobile

There are millions of apps in the google play and app store on IOS. This has created an ecosystem for brands to look at essentially their positioning and visibility within the respective stores. At the end of the day when an app receives more impressions and more clicks along with conversions one begins to improve their ranking within their category. One of the main KPI’s that is sought to discern is the incremental increase in app downloads.  

 There are some longer tail goals that can be sought to achieve as part of the grander scheme of ASO and this can be likened to the following areas of focus:   

  • Generating positive app reviews and ratings  
  • Improving brand equity and exposure  
  • Audience development  
  • Organic marketing 

In emerging markets, ASO may appear to be a novel approach to marketing within the digital sphere. The most common comparison is of course SEO which has many parallel along with nuanced differences in approach. The most obvious difference here is that ASO is within a closed site or portal as the stores themselves while SEO is heavily reliant on web.   

The main KPI’s that need to be accounted for a closely tied to visibility factors that can be quantified such as:   

  • Installs  
  • Ranking  
  • Reviews/Ratings  
  • Impressions  
  • Clicks 

It’s imperative to track and to measure ASO performance to compete and showcase your product to the most widespread audience possible. This is an ongoing process that requires management along with business intelligence as there are certain categories within the app store that are fiercely competitive.   

Some of the overlap between SEO and ASO is significant in the sense that applicable strategies can be executed with metadata optimization and keyword research being the most obvious elements. Areas such as deep linking within mobile apps and click through rate (CTR) optimization are examples that have a cross reference element presence.   

Available fields will slightly vary from store to store nevertheless there are specific optimization items that require focus as shown in the below diagram.   

When it comes to the App name, subtitle, and other fields it’s important that they project a sense of liking towards the core keywords that correspond to what the app is.  

There are character restrictions that need to be accounted for very carefully. The number of characters that are available for example on title versus description are correlated in a way that should be illuminating and genuine. Algorithms that change can detect when any party is taking part in keyword spamming therefore these efforts need to take place within an allotted time when proper testing can allow.   

One may ask how often should I be updating my metadata? The answer varies for some, but sufficient planning and reporting can allow for changes to take place every 4-6 weeks. It’s important to set up a hypothesis y specific criterion to develop a thorough data set that can be applied, reviewed, and iterated. The same can be applied to when screenshots can be updated as well. Do your screenshots display the best features of your app concisely? Test some different things out to increase your CTR.  

When it comes to improving your reviews and ratings engagement and interaction is an integral element to success. Deep linking and asking for reviews at the most strategic time, such as when a positive result has taken place is proactive.   

The volume metrics to watch are essentially installs. The uplift an app receives can only be measured by an incremental increase in organic installs. With organic search representing the bulk majority of how apps get discovered, it should be noted that paid media such as apple search ads and google play ads can accompany your ASO strategy to make headway with keyword rankings.  


The best performing apps are the ones that continue to make improvements based on taking account user commentary. Whether features are enhanced, or technology is approved customer service will always remain paramount to whether an app has a positive user experience. When apps are updated with a level of consistency that enables users to reap the benefits of these improvements then active users will increase.   

Most importantly both platforms measure app updates on a fundamental sliding scale that if employed successfully can allow for the algorithm to kickback a favourable outcome.  

August 16th, 2021

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