10 Tips for Higher Rankings in the App Store

The application store is a platform that helps many people around the globe create an income for themselves, and in order to maximize the amount of profits you’re going to receive from the app store you need to look at ranking a specific application. There are many different tips and tricks you can learn in order to make the ranking process on the app store much easier, and that’s why we’re going to go through 10 different tips that will help you do exactly that. Ranking an application isn’t exactly the easiest thing to go about doing, but if you’re going to try and make a living through the app store you’ll have to put as much time and dedication as you possibly can into your craft. It isn’t exactly ideal to go through the process of ASO (Application Store Optimization) without being aware of the specifics you need to deal with, that would almost be like trying to go scuba diving without the proper training.

10 Tips for Higher Rankings in the App Store

You might not know where to start when it comes to ranking useful applications and games on the app store, but that’s why this article was thought up in the first place. You aren’t the first person who might be having troubles with maintaining a high rank on the app store, and you’re definitely not going to be the last. The 10 tips and tricks that we’re going through should help you garner a new perspective on the entire process known as ASO, and they should also create a base for any application you’re trying to rank highly.

1. Demographics

Demographics are somewhat overlooked when it comes to ASO, and that’s mainly because people don’t try and target a specific group of people (most of them are just in it for any and all types of traffic). Some traffic is going to do you much better when compares alongside others, the perfect example would be trying to raise the awareness of your app in Canadian consumers as opposed to Indian consumers. There’s nothing wrong with Indian consumers, it’s just that Canada is looked at as being better off financially on an average basis; this means there is more money running through the hands of the common folk than usual.

If there’s one thing choosing the right demographic has to offer it’s the fact that leaning towards high-grossing areas (revenue wise) will present you with better opportunities. Would you rather pitch a movie script to an independent film company or Sony Films? The choice is quite obvious in the end. Choose the right demographic for your application and appeal to them accordingly, this tip alone should put you at an advantage right away. Although the money is sweet and more common in Canada, India shouldn’t be left out of the picture either. The population is absolutely massive and they’re just as technology based as any other country in the world, so leaving them out of your ASO process would just be silly (trying to rank for LSI keywords pertaining to different regions is the perfect example of ASO demographic selection).

2. Keywords

Keywords are probably the most important (as well as the most obvious) trait that is paired alongside a high ranking application, and the main reason this happens is due to the search function (as well as the search process itself). Keywords are things that people have searched for on a consistent basis, and when you’re creating an application you should be keeping keywords in mind at all times. If you’re making an application that’s trying to make hailing a cab easier you wouldn’t try to rank for a keyword like “monster trucks in Reno”, it’s pretty much a lack of common sense if this were the case. Keeping your keywords relative to your application will ensure that you receive the best ranking possible on the app store, you’ll even notice that some of the higher ranking applications have exquisite description optimization.

You can find keywords through the use of many different tools online, and it’s always a great idea to try and tackle multiple keywords at once. Not only will those whom are searching for these particular keywords be exposed to your application, but they also have the ability to spread it through word of mouth. There’s no such thing as having too many fans, and this is especially true when you’re dealing with application store optimization. The title and description of your app should contain the main keyword you’re trying to rank for, as this is the most important rule to follow when it comes to implementing keywords properly. The use of keywords within a title is quite common on the app store, so it’s obviously something that’s going to be useful for a decent amount of time.

3. CTR

CTR (Click-through Rate) is another important thing to factor in, because Apple has a consistent green light when it comes to accessing the intricate details of applications. As a result there’s a bunch of different datasets you can use to maximize your application store rankings, it’s just up to you to realize which ones are as effective as some others. When an application is being shown to people at an advanced position in the rankings the CTR rate should be relatively high, or else you’ll be doing all of that work for an application that might not even be utilized accordingly.

You never want to work with an application that gets ranked highly only to have it fall short due to low CTR rates, so make sure that you’re completely aware of this information before trying to do anything drastic. Discard rates would apply in this case as well, because finding out how much the application is being deleted on a daily basis is useful information. Figuring out the average lifespan for an application can help you time your marketing right, as well as ensure that you’re adding updates and new features all of the times (which is what we’re getting into next).

4. App Updates

Keeping an application updated is crucial, because this means that the people using the application itself are going to be completed satisfied. It’s one thing keeping the consumer satisfied during the initial download of the application, but introducing new features and having a high-quality customer support system in place is always recommended. This not only allows users to keep their interests peaked, but it also gives them an opportunity to chat with people who know the application inside and out if there is a problem. The neat thing about customer service is that companies and application developers are able to take any complaints (whether they’re big or small) and fix the problems that have been occurring.

You’ve been in the position of downloading an application only to be disappointed before, it seems like that’s a process that is becoming increasingly prominent these days (and that’s usually why so many people fail to rank their applications highly). On-page optimization is only going to do so much, because if the application is a piece of junk you aren’t going to build a reputable consumer base. The whole point is to keep people coming back for more, and application updates definitely do a great job of managing that.

5. Reviews

Reviews are a great way to keep your application relevant, and some people have even gone as far as faking great reviews in order to give their application a little boost. It doesn’t necessarily affect the optimization of the application itself, but when was the last time you’ve taken it upon yourself to download an app without any reviews? People like to know what they’re getting before they try it out for themselves, and when talking about applications and the app store world it’s just the same. Not only will the reviews encourage more people to take a look at your application, but it can also boost your average score and help you climb the ranks in that regard.

Downloads could fall under this category as well, because we’ve all seen those applications with the “downloaded 1,000,000+ times!” badges we crave so much. The amount of downloads an application has is relevant as well, because a popular application is going to appear higher in the rankings when compare alongside one that has absolutely no downloads.

6. Social Media Integration

Make sure that there is some sort of social media element within your application, there’s just no way of telling how much traffic/potential consumers you can draw in with a simple share. Allowing your users to share their endeavours on your application with their Facebook and Twitter followers (and even pin it to their Pinterest boards) would always be ideal, because not doing so would leave you in the dust. It’s a pretty common occurrence these days to see applications offering up social media aspects, because who doesn’t want to share their achievements with the world?

Not only that, but it will give your application a much more “professional-like” feel, and keeping your application professional is just one of the most common ways to draw users in. Use this information to your advantage the next time you’re trying to rank an application, you’d be surprised as to how effective it actually is. The whole point of ranking an application higher than others is to draw more traffic (meaning more money overall) towards it, and leaving a social media feature out of your application is a quick way to bow down to the competition.

7. Marketing

This is probably the most “of course we have to do that” of the group, but not every tip is going to be some super-secret formula that’s going to make you money and rank your applications right away. Marketing is a key focus when it comes to dealing with the app store, because in the end marketing reigns supreme. When you put a product in front of people’s faces for a long period of times they’re going to get used to it, and once they’re used to it they’ll start to put some money towards said hobby. A perfect example would be the “Clash of Clans” game that everybody is getting into these days, because they’ve taken it upon themselves to run through a high-quality marketing campaign. The campaign consisted of many different things, and there was even commercials for the purpose of television developed (which shows true dedication to a marketing plan).

Clash of Clans went through the process of developing and implementing a reasonable marketing campaign, and they’re reaping the benefits because of it. If it wasn’t for the exposure on television and other means (like blogs and such) it’s not farfetched to say that Clash of Clans wouldn’t be as successful as it is today, so think about that the next time you’re getting into the developmental stage of an application. You can never be too prepared, so working on a marketing campaign before the actual applications itself is finished wouldn’t be shunned upon (and it’s necessary if you want the highest rankings on the app store as possible).

8. Quality over Quantity

It’s hard to say whether people prefer quantity over quality or vice versa these days, but one thing is for sure; people want an application that works. The opinion regarding the matter is going to vary, but if you create an application that’s completely broken it isn’t going to rank very well, and as a result it won’t sell very well either (as if the poor quality wasn’t the determining factor for that already). We know how hard it is to actually go about creating an application, so we’re not saying that you should just fix everything that’s wrong with it or find another job. Bug testing and finding glitches should be a main portion of the developmental process, because releasing an application that hasn’t gone through a quality check isn’t a good idea at all.

The highest ranking apps are usually the ones that bring the most to the table, so taking the time needed in order to create something that will resonate with your consumers would be the perfect situation to be in. You never need to rush your work when it comes to applications, and when you take your time you’ll see the difference in the app store rankings for sure.

9. Don’t Overdo It!

There is actually a thing known as “over-optimization”, and that’s what happens when you use the keyword within your description and title so much that it becomes somewhat obsolete. There are keyword density rules that should always be followed, and most people just implement them at a 1-2% ratio. This means that you take the total count of words in both the title and description and apply the keywords accordingly, so make sure you aren’t using them every other sentence.

It might seem like the ideal thing to do at the time, but over-optimization is something that nobody wants to be a part of. Not only will it affect how well you can rank your application, but it will also determine how many eyes actually get laid on your application. We’ve all seen those over-optimized application descriptions that look incredibly unappealing, so don’t be one of those people! Keep it natural looking and you’ll receive the best bang for your buck, that’s a guarantee.

10. Do What Feels Right

There are situations where you will feel like a certain process needs to be handled a certain way, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. You’re the mastermind of it all, and if you want to ensure that your application is going to rank as high as possible you’ll do what feels best at the time. This might result in a bit of reworking when it comes time to release a final version, but that’s just one of the many things you’re going to have to tackle when developing your very own app. It can be time consuming and incredibly frustrating at times, but in the end you’ll know exactly what to do and when to do it (hopefully).

Don’t let others put ideas in your head when it comes to dealing with your application, it’s something that you should personally be perfecting and crafting to your liking (and only you can accomplish this). You wouldn’t ask somebody to write a book for you because you wouldn’t be able to control all of the small details needed in order to make it “perfect”, so when it comes to applications you should go about it the same way.

There you go, there are 10 tips that should make the path to a higher ranking within the app store easier than it was before. Anybody can take on the challenge, you just need to equip yourself with the proper tools in order to get it done. ASO is the new form of SEO, so improving your knowledge relating to the topic right now should save you some trouble for the future.



Author: Paul Andre de Vera

Paul Andre de Vera's diverse technical and creative background and entrepreneurship has led him to build successful online properties. In addition to Paul Andre's business ventures, he's formerly the SEO/SEM Manager at SuccessFactors- an SAP company and now the Director of SEO at SmartRecruiters. On his free time he is learning to become an ASO ninja.

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