You and your team have spent time developing and refining an app that has now gone live on the App Store. All of the time, energy and effort that you all have put into this new business venture is now ready for smart device users to download and engage with. There is generally two ways people look for apps: they search for keywords or they scroll through the top-rated charts by category.
One problem – they can’t find yours in the sea of others. With roughly 2.2 million apps in the Apple store, who can blame them? The App Store operates on an algorithm that is completely user based. The popularity and rating of apps determines what order the apps will appear in a search result, as well as keyword use and the number of times it has been downloaded by users.
If you have developed a new app, it can be difficult to grab a potential user’s attention. There are methods that you can take that can help you rank your app inside the store, and become more visible to users.
- Optimised Keywords
One way to ensure that your app is seen more prominently is by having relevant and optimised keywords associated to it. Customers who are searching for your app within the store will see results based on keywords that you have associated with your app. Given the App Store process, users will only be able to find your app based on these keywords, the app name, or your company name compared to the older version that allowed users to find apps based on the description. With this information, it can be seen as critical that your app has the proper optimisation behind it for search purposes.
An optimised description can be harnessed as a strong marketing tool, and describe the key components that make your app what it is, including the functionality, details and point of difference. In this case, an app’s description may be as important as the keywords related to the app. Include a strong call to action within it, and help set yourself apart from others with similar apps.
You will need to set aside some time to really consider what types of keywords will be most relevant to your app. The inbuilt search no longer suggests results to their users based on history, it is strictly to do with the keywords used.
- Featured Apps
Having a featured app is a feat that every app developer would want to reach. With featured apps, not only do you see a more prominent placement within the App Store, but it will also have you recognised by industry personnel. More than that, those who do get their app featured are allowed to further customise the way that it appears to viewers.
If we look back to the way most people find apps after keywords, we see that it is through a natural scroll within the App Store’s charts. Being featured means you are seen amongst this. Having your app visible as a top competitor within the store, and one of quality, would almost ensure it will be downloaded by a multitude of users. The keyword in that phrase is quality, which is something that Apple aligns itself with amongst other phrasings. If your app is innovative, and appeals to users in an entertaining and functional way, it will get noticed as an app worth featuring.
Apple itself also looks at whether new apps have taken the newest features of tech and developed with that in mind. If you are featuring individualistic features of Apple’s overarching technical work, then you are keeping your app relevant for Apple and may lead you to being featured.
- Search Ads
The App Store has another opportunity for new and old developers alike with their ad feature. This is a function which allows developers to promote their app in search results, bumping an ad app to the top of the results list. These search ads can prove highly successful given that they are visible after a search has been conducted by the user for an app of your type. Its nature is similar to that of Google AdWords, with developers setting out a price that they are happy to spend. Once they have identified this, it is compared to a bid that relevant competitors are able to counter with.
The appearance of your advertised app is determined by your keyword relevancy to the user’s search, not how much is paid by the app developer. In other words, your app will still only appear by search relevancy, but its placement will be featured at the top. There are also a number of advanced features for Search Ads, including the ability to narrow down targeting to a specific audience based on elements such as demographic data, location, etc.
Including Search Ads as part of your budget may be a worthwhile venture for newer app developers looking to gain notoriety quickly.
- User Reviews
This is a relatively simple step with a big pay off. Encourage users to rate your app within the given App Store, and leave a review for future viewers to use. As the popularity and ratings of an app play heavily in the determination of your app’s ranking, it can be highly useful to encourage users to leave reviews. As part of your app, you can feature an inbuilt function that allows users to click and leave a review with ease, and get back to using your app.