ASO – App Store Optimization – getting your app found in Google Play – will determine your app success.
Android app makers often make their apps to make money, and then there’s disappointment when the cash doesn’t roll in. Making money from apps isn’t easy, and there are a lot of great apps out there that aren’t making money. You’re probably asking yourself how you can make your app different – how you can make your app stand out.
The single most critical factor in making money from an app is making sure that your customers can find your app. Even if you can magically set up a system where every time your app is opened (and there’s no legal way to do it, so don’t try), you make $5, you won’t make any money if people don’t find your app.
Although there are many other app stores, the vast majority of Android users search Google Play to find their apps. This means, of course, that your app needs to be in Google Play, but more than that, it means working with Google’s algorithm to make it easy to find your app. Take note of what I just said. You want to work WITH GOOGLE’S ALGORITHM. You don’t want to game the system, because gaming the system eventually leads to penalties. You want to use it to the best of your ability. ASO (App Store Optimization) is the art of making your app easy to find.
Look at Google’s keyword tool to find popular searches related to your app. Make a list of the keywords that describe your app best. Ignore related words that aren’t specific to your app. For example, if your app is a stopwatch app, then Swatch watch isn’t a relevant search term, nor is antique pocket watch. It doesn’t matter how many people are searching for those terms; if they get to your app, they’ll feel duped, and they won’t download it. Be aware; in web searches, Google penalizes sites that show up in the search and don’t get clicked on. No one’s fully cracked the Google Play code, but it stands to reason that if it’s not the case now, it soon will be. In short, make a list of the most popular keywords and phrases that are completely relevant to your app.
Choose the ones that best describe your app, and make one of them the name of your app. You may have to try more than once as Google requires unique app names in Google Play. You may want to add your own twist, but be sure you get one good, serious, relevant keyword in your app name. ‘In Johnny’s Time’ will not get the same attention that ‘Johnny’s Stopwatch Timer’ will get.
Make sure to use the best keywords in your description, in a way that expresses the app’s most salient features. If it’s a stopwatch, then describe the stopwatch, the timer, the alarm clock, and any other relevant functions. Don’t just drop a bunch of keywords into your description. Remember that getting people to find your app is one step in the battle. The next step is getting them to download it. If the app description doesn’t tell people that they’ve found what they’re looking for, they’ll keep looking! Remember that when your app is downloaded and used, its ranking improves in Google Play.