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Apr 12 2022
Recently, we have noticed that the keyword rankings of some apps in the Apple App Store have suddenly been cleared or dropped. Here, let's discuss about this topic and provide some insights and solutions for app promoters.
Apple's official statistics show that there are currently more than 2 million apps displayed on the App Store. Therefore, for any app to stand out in such a fiercely competitive app market, it must seize the traffic entry in the App Store. Therefore, keyword search It has become a battleground for the military, trying to improve the search ranking of high-volume keywords. The most effective way is ASO optimization, but some improper optimizations often have a bad impact on the ranking of keywords , and even the risk of being unranked on the app store list.
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In this article, we will analyze the reasons for the keyword drop and the solutions in the actual operation process, hoping to bring some helpful insights to app developers.
The app keyword dropping (or unranked) is a situation where the search ranking of a keyword in the app store is cleared, resulting in the inability to search for an app through this keyword.
Let's take a look at the main reasons for the app keywords dropping on the list:
Apple App Store search ranking algorithm;
Unusual fluctuations in external traffic;
Switching of monitization way or payment methods.
You may heard about the penalty mechanism under the Apple App Store: "Apple Penalty Keyword Collection", such keywords are identified by Apple as sensitive keywords.
The characteristic of this situation is that there are multiple apps under the same keyword that fall off the list, and Apple’s algorithm for determining penalties corresponding to such keywords is more sensitive, that is, optimizing such keywords is more likely to lead to keywords dropping the list.
There is a corresponding "penalized keyword collection" under this type of keyword, and the rankings of this batch of apps under this type of keyword are synchronized. For example, the keyword "decoration", we found that the time of 3 apps' relevant keywords ranking in same category dropping the list is almost the same.
And we've found that some well-known apps' branded keywords are protected, and using a competitor's branded keywords sometimes poses similar risks.
App downloads in unit time increased sharply will be identified as unusual traffic
In order to maintain a fair competition environment in the App Store, Apple will take corresponding punitive measures for apps that are identified as cheating and violate normal competition. Therefore, when the app be found with this, the downloads per unit time increase sharply, which does not conform to the reasonable regularity of traffic acquisition, or if it violates the reasonable range of organic growth, it will be identified as unusual traffic, resulting in a penalty for keyword dropping.
Sharp drop in multi-channel traffic (such as advertising)
Although we always recommended that marketers to obtain traffic through a variety of channels, drive the app downloads increased reasonable and quickly with our strategies, and ensure the app ranking grow rapidly and safe, but we encounter many apps declined or stoped their ads or promotion plans after the keywords ranked top because of the budget or the marketers' decision. It is risky to reduce the budget or stop the previous promotion plan immediately after the application obtains the top ranking.
For example, many users who choose our guaranteed keyword ranking service have experienced that we usually help the application to quickly obtain the top ranking in a very short period, and will keep this top ranking for a long time. This is also because we will take into account the reasonable range of traffic growth, multi-channel traffic, and the continuous promotion works to stable the traffic.
Switching of payment methods is also one of the reasons for the risk.
The Apple App Store encourages everyone to use apple pay as the main payment method, and only those settled through apple pay can be counted into app revenue. When some other third-party payment is connected, the corresponding data of the revenue conversion obtained by your app will show a sharp drop, and such a drop will cause the penalty risk of a rapid drop in the ranking of your app.
For keywords identified by Apple as sensitive keywords, if the ranking is restored after it is found to be unranked the app store list, optimization about these keywords is not recommended within one month.
1) According to the resonable app growth regularity, take care of the operation of app downloads. New products can start from a small amount, and gradually increase the ranking of keywords and brand authority. Or solution as "paid ways (ads or buy app installs) + ASO + Social media" to boost the app downloads is effectively.
2) It is necessary to keep a reasonably arrange of the delivery time according to the download and usage time of application users and the visit statistics of paying traffic users (from advertising or purchase app downloads, buy app installs). The initial optimization should simulate the natural increase curve as much as possible. And avoid concentrating on a certain time.
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