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Aspects of ASO that can lead to higher app rankings in Google Play and App Store



App Store optimization can make a big difference in the visibility of your app.

The three most important pillars are visibility, conversion, and localization.


In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the aspects of ASO that can lead to higher rankings in Google Play and offer tips to ensure you’re maximizing your app's searchability. We won’t touch on every aspect of ASO, so let this be a great place to start – but only if you want your app to rank in its search results!


To get started with app store optimization for an app available on an Apple device, read our guide to ASO for iOS.



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What is the Google Play Algorithm?


The Google Play algorithm can be mystifying and there is little information about how it actually works. However, we've been working with many apps to learn the nuances and know what can be expected. We'll share some of our best practices for working with the algorithm in this article.


Google Play is continually adapting and adjusting its algorithms to take new variables into account. For well-known brands, this can be an issue because they want their apps highlighted to encourage higher customer satisfaction.


One of the most important aspects of app development is how your ranking compares to all the other results. When a user searches for a specific keyword, they'll find your app at the top of the list, just in case it's what they're looking for.


It's necessary to follow best practices when the main keyword has lots of competition. In these cases, it's crucial to do what the algorithm recommends.


Google plays by the same rules for Search Engine Optimization. It's helpful to understand SEO principles in order to rank well on Google Play.


The algorithm takes into account relevant keywords in the description and analyzes them for their ASO weight and density. These factors help the algorithm understand what it thinks is best for the user. The algorithm then creates a list of apps that match search terms.


What are you really looking at?


When users come across an app in the store, they commonly look at some parts of the store description. Here are some stats to know:

Some mobile users see this icon before downloading a given app

97% of mobile purchases are made after clicking on the icon for app stores

3 out of 4 consumers are searching the web or social media to find apps outside the marketplace, and there’s no turning back


On average, only 5% of visitors tap “Read More” to read the full description.

Most visitors don't scroll through the screenshots

Visitors typically spend 3-7 seconds looking at each store page.

Including a video on your landing page can produce a sizable conversion increase.

A/B testing is a very important part of an effective strategy. Keep your goals in mind and start with a focused set of tests.


Google Play metadata optimization


The keywords used in metadata (title, short description, long description) are indexed and compared hierarchically. This helps determine the weight of each keyword.


The title and description fields have the most weight when it comes to optimizing for keywords. When you're deciding on a keyword targeting strategy, it's important to keep this in mind.


Both frequency and density are important when it comes to metadata. You'll want to target the main keyword a few times at most, but it's better to be selective than spammy. Avoid overusing those keywords if you can.


Google recently updated their metadata guidelines and a lot of app developers are feeling frustrated. Google is really trying to clean the store of spammy and irrelevant messaging, so it wants developers to specify the app’s main objective and remove anything extraneous.


Google Play app title keywords provide most of your ranking power, and Google creates a maximum of 20 characters for your title. This limit was reduced from 50 to 30 in September 2021.



Providing potential customers with the most accurate and reliable information in a compact amount of space is never an easy task. When it comes to app tiles, the short description's 80 characters are especially important because they account for the next highest weight after the title.

This means that neglecting this space could potentially harm your conversion rate, so don't overlook it.


Keeping your Google Play short description detailed is important for business success. Follow these tips to make your work easier and more effective.

Currently Installed Word Count: 185


Constantly test your short description to find the one that converts the best.


Your success will depend on the uniqueness of your app. What makes it different from competitors? What's its USP? Keep thinking about those things and keep focusing on them.


When users click the small arrow next to the short description, it reveals the full description of the app. This is called the long description.


When writing your long description, make sure to keep keywords relevant to your mobile app. Just use them in an authentic way that means something to the users who are searching for what you're selling. This will signal that those keywords are related to your app, and thus relevant for search on Google.


When you have a lot of long-tail keywords to share with potential visitors, it can be difficult to include them all in the title or short description. Not to worry - it's best to include those keywords anyway because they will still affect the algorithm.


People don't usually read every word of long descriptions, but they should be readable and visually pleasing. Besides that, the Android algorithm will definitely read the whole thing. So make sure you get a little creative with it to ensure it meets your needs.


The headings on the top of the page mention various violations around the Play Store.


Google Play is always refining their practices to help developers increase their chances of success on the market. Here are some new items to avoid in your app description if you want it to succeed:


Words or emojis that denote performance in the Play Store will be banned, such as "Top 10 apps" or use of the trophy emoji.


It's never a good idea to use all-caps letters, emojis, and emoticons in any type of content unless the brand name is also written in all caps, for example FILA.


We do not use words like "best" or "#1."


The Google Play Store allows businesses to add tags to their app listing. Tags are words that help describe the app, and can be up to 50 characters long.


When you're about to set up your app's listing on Google Play, make sure you carefully consider your tags. You'll only be able to associate 5 tags with your listing, so pick them wisely!


This is an example of how we evaluate the top providers.


Choosing Google Tags


You can find the most relevant tags by clicking on Google Play’s recommendations for the app.


Don’t choose tags that don't accurately describe your app.


Monitor your app visibility after selecting the tags to optimize your campaign.


Application creatives are an integral part of a listing. Here are some things to know:


Google Play App Icon


The app icon has a huge impact on the success of your app. It is one of the first elements a user sees when browsing through your app pages, which affects how they view and engage with your brand.


We can add a feature graphic to your Google Play Store page


Make your storefront stand out with the feature graphic. On most devices, this will be at the top of your store and have a very large view. This is a great way to convert visitors.


Here's some helpful advice for you when it comes to creating a great feature graphic:


Keep the focal point of your graphic centered, as well as any prominent elements, while avoiding the play button in the center. Make sure it doesn't cover anything important like your brand logo or main UI elements.


There are some important safety guidelines to keep in mind when designing a feature graphic. First, you need to make sure it doesn't have any crucial elements that will be lost if it's cropped.


If your app is featured in the store, a Feature Graphic will be shown instead of a video.


Google Play Screenshots


It's important to have good images to show the value of your app. That's why we use graphics to tell a story - because pictures say a thousand words.


The order of your screenshots can make or break the success of your app. The first screenshots are seen by more people, which means they have a bigger chance of being clicked on.


If you're designing a website, do you want to go with landscape or portrait?


With Google Play, you can choose whichever orientation you want for the images on your app page. Upload up to 8 screenshots, with a maximum dimension twice as long as the minimum dimension. Feel free to experiment!


How would you like to have a promotional video made for your mobile app?


One of the most overlooked aspects of ASO is the app's video. Google Play allows each app to show one video in the product page, which displays before the screenshots. The video and screenshots need to work in tandem and take into consideration the store's graphic style.


I really like how Google Play allows us to add videos, which are played through YouTube, and oriented in a landscape format. That makes it so much easier to watch!


Here are our top 10 commandments for creating informative and interesting app preview videos:


A/B Testing on Google's Play Store.


A/B testing in the Google Play store is built-in and allows brands to test different elements of their app in order to find out what resonates best with customers.


It allows for up to 3 variants against the current version, plus immediate testing for up to 5 markets at a time.


There are two main places where you can improve your app conversion rate--metadata and creative assets. Here are a few helpful tips for leveraging these elements to drive up your overall conversion rates:


Give a test campaign an entire week to allow for more accurate data analysis. For example, more people are likely to install your app on the weekends when they have more time and boredom, but they're also more likely to delete it, too.


Don't leave new assets untested. Instead, formulate a strong hypothesis and test one element at a time to learn about user preferences and behaviors (plus, this can also help the product).


The beauty of CRO is that it gives you useful insights into how different countries behave differently.

Track your metrics carefully. Ratings, CTRs, downloads, and user retention rates can all be indicators of user satisfaction. The algorithm will automatically recommend higher-ranking apps more, which pushes its rank even higher.


This is an app for internationalization for the Apple App Store.


You might know that most apps can be used by users anywhere in the world. It makes sense, then, to make them available in many languages. This helps to get your app ranked higher in search results across geos, which means more worldwide reach and a bigger chance of conversion. But even so, it's not enough to just translate it. For each language and region there are different expectations - the culture, rules and preferences matter a lot too. So including those details in your international app will only help make it more appealing.


You can find the full list of languages for Google Play here.


Google Play is one of the more prominent stores for mobile apps. Here are some tips to keep in mind when you're trying to localize your app page:


One app listing is reserved as the default, so it will be used by default for countries without a dedicated listing.


To make your localization strategy successful, one crucial step is to conduct keyword research. One way of finding localized keywords is to search on Google and Play in the country you're interested in.


Building a successful content strategy means understanding the number of articles your competitors have published, and the search volume and relevance metrics for each specific country. Our suggestion is to develop long-tail keyword combinations and input them into a keyword tracking tool. From there, research what specific keywords are being used in each country to see if you can rank for them.


Localization is not only for countries that have different languages; it's also for those with a shared language, like the US, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Australia. These places tend to use different phrases than their common language, as well as other preferences and behaviors.


Differences in regions mean there are some differences when it comes to keywords and search volumes. For example, "diapers" may be a strong keyword for baby care apps in the US, but the parallel term "nappies" is popular in the UK.


Did you know that there's a difference between "New York City apartments" and "London apartments"? Posts about one will do better for US audiences and posts about the other will do better for British audience.


Localizing metadata is just one part of localization. It's also important to go back through your graphics and make sure they look the best they can be.


ASO (app store optimization) localization means adjusting the messaging and characters to best suit that geographic location.


It's important to do some research before hosting your international event so that you are knowledgeable about the local culture and traditions. Doing this will help you better understand the perceptions of your potential target market. For example, a character dressed in a tank top might be fine in one market but scandalous in another and turn prospective customers away.


Google Play App Reviews


Reviews are one of the most important aspects of an app, and they're more important than ever. With increasing competition, reviews signal to the algorithm which apps deserve a higher ranking.


Here are a few of the best practices for generating lots of reviews:


Prompt users for a review at opportune times, such as after they complete a level or win a prize.


If a customer leaves a review, make sure to leave your opinion.


Your reviews are a solid indicator of users' pain points and what they think of your business in general. In addition, they can be an excellent source for keywords: by leveraging the way that users word their descriptions, you’ll be able to communicate more effectively with them. And as a result, conversions and retention should increase.


Make it as easy as possible for users to rate your app. Don’t make them leave the app to do it. Use Android’s in-app prompt API for Google Play and ask your user if they want to rate your app at this exact moment.


There are a number of steps you can take in order to get an app featured on the Google Play store.


Appearing in Play Store can provide your app with added visibility, but apps must be worthy of it. Some things to keep in mind when applying are that:


All high-quality apps need to be updated to remain compatible on all Android devices. Make sure your app is of the highest quality and up-to-date with Google Play's latest features and updates.


Making your app available to a worldwide audience can be a great way to build an audience quickly. One way of going about this is through localization, which will make your app available to more people. Add localized listings and made sure to include keywords that others in other countries might search for.


Although it can be difficult to get buzz in the media, it's one way to get on Google's radar. PR activity is key to getting noticed by the Google editorial team and can lead to organic growth.


Apps with high ratings and good reviews have a higher chance of getting featured. They are, in essence, indicators of a great product.


Google Play Store Optimization Hacks —

Learn how to increase app downloads by following these simple hacks for Google Play Store optimization.


We recommend an "optimization hack" that many people aren't aware of: basing your decisions on data. Each app is unique, so you should decide what will work best for your brand by looking at the data. For example, let's say you want to change the background color of an icon on your app page. You might not realize how a small change can impact conversion rates!


We will show you how to increase app downloads and make your apps searchable on Google Play.


There are many easy ways to optimize an app’s performance in the Google Play Store through the use of ASO experts. By understanding the key tools, such as links to your app from the company site, newsletters, and social media feeds, you will see much better organic ranking and hopefully attract more happy customers.


If you're interested to find out more about optimizing your apps for higher conversions and reaching your brand's goals, contact our ASO team.


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