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Home Blog ASO Guides Strategy About Keywords Optimization In App Store

Strategy About Keywords Optimization In App Store

Dec 9 2020

We discussed earlier what is App Store optimization and what basic elements in App Store and Google Play affect the ranking of apps. Here our experts will share other topics for you: how to build a powerful keyword pack; how to improve keyword search rankings, the popularity and downloads of the app in the app store.
Strategary About Keywords Optimization In App Store

How do people discover applications?

From the way apps are discovered, we can roughly divide people into two groups. Those who know what they are looking for and those who browse casually.

People who know what they want often use brand names or intended keywords to search the store to find the apps they want. For example, use "Kayak" as a brand search and "Airlines and Hotels" as an intent keyword for search. On the contrary, the other group tends to browse the app store to find new apps. This means they just browse and find areas such as featured apps, top charts, or categories.

There are many ways to browse the store. People who are interested in specific types of Android or Apple apps can discover your apps by browsing categories, popular charts, or featured content. Both stores provide you with suggestions for similar apps already installed on your phone.

Another way to let people discover your app is through the app and web referrer URL. This means that users reach your app store list via a link in another app or web page.


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When you focus on improving the visibility of your application, you need to focus on the following traffic sources: application store search, application store browsing, application referral sources, and web referral sources.

Let's start with the app store search ranking. Many people think this is the biggest discovery channel for apps. In order to maximize your potential customers and direct customers to find your app in the store, you need to develop your keyword optimization strategy and spend time optimizing your keyword package.

Basic knowledge of App Store keyword ranking

Similar to SEO, ASO's keyword ranking refers to the ranking position of your application that visitors see in the application store search results through the intent keyword search.

Suppose you have an application for home decoration, and you want users to find your application when they search for "decoration home design" in the app store. If your app ranks first in the search results, it means that the app is ranked #1 on that particular keyword. If your application does not appear at all, it means that the keyword is not ranked.

Although this may seem simple, there is a very complex ranking algorithm in the app store. Therefore, we need to complete a series of investigations first, and formulate a complete optimization strategy which is essential to the success of your market operations.

Why is keyword ranking important?


If your app is not ranked for any relevant keywords, users will not be able to find it, and you will lose the chance to get more installs. Users are usually accustomed to downloading applications that appear on the first page of search results, and often do not scroll through the entire list. Therefore, the lower-ranked apps get low traffic.

Increase the visibility of your app and pay close attention to the ranking of important keywords.

How does app store keyword ranking work?


App store search results vary by country/region

This means that if you search from other countries or regions, you will get different results for the same keyword. You can imagine two users searching for "running applications", one from the United States and the other from the United Kingdom. Even if both use the same English keyword search app, one person is looking for an app in the US App Store while the other is using the UK version. They may see this application in different ranking positions, or even a completely different application.

Search results depend on the store

Your app’s ranking for the same keywords in the Apple Store and Google Play may also be different. The reason is that different app stores have different ranking algorithms.

Your keyword ranking can be changed quickly

Your app ranking may be changed in a very short time in app store. You may experience a sudden increase in position, depending on how competitive the market is and how many people are bidding on a particular keyword. We recommend that you check your ranking once a day to ensure that you can react quickly to any decline.

How to check keyword ranking?

You can try to manually enter keywords and scroll through the search results until your app or game appears to check your ranking. However, it will be a very tedious task to know that the results are changing every day, and that the results of each country are different.

On the ASO World platform, in your dashboard, you can track the keywords of each country/region in the smart report, and view the daily changes in the ranking of the keywords you promote. You can also check the keywords your competitors are ranking for to see how to measure them.

Create a set of valuable application keyword packages

Checking keyword rankings is just the beginning. The next step is to build a keyword package. In addition to the current ranking, there are other aspects need to be considered when choosing application keywords. We have listed them for you below:

Keyword relevance

Whether you are a beginner or already familiar with ASO, when choosing keywords, keyword relevance will always be one of the most important factors. Your app keywords must be related to your app.

If you use irrelevant keywords, people may have false expectations and are more likely to uninstall your app-simply because they did not get what they were searching for. In addition, Apple and Google may punish you for using keywords that are not related to the app by lowering the app store ranking.

Keyword search volume

Keyword search volume tells you how often you search for a certain keyword in the App Store or Google Play. The more searches, the more popular the keyword.

You might think that targeting only high search volume keywords is a good strategy. However, this is not always the case. If the keyword is too popular, you may not even have a chance to rank for it. Therefore, we recommend starting with keywords with lower search volume or long-tail/combined keywords, which are less competitive and more targeted. After you start ranking higher for this content, you can swap it for content with higher search volume.

Where can you view information about keyword search volume?

You can find this data in App Radar. The keyword search volume score is 5-100. The search volume for keywords with a search volume of 5 is negligible. Keywords with a search volume of 100 are very popular.

A rule of thumb: High search volume keywords will bring more app store traffic to your app.

Keyword difficulty

In short, keyword difficulty indicates how difficult it is to rank for a particular keyword. This is another value to consider when choosing keywords for your app. Keyword difficulty is not provided by Apple or Google. However, there are some marketing tools that can help.

Track your app's keyword ranking

Because keyword rankings in the App Store and Google Play can change quickly, it’s best to track keywords that are critical to your app’s growth. In this way, you won’t miss a ranking change, and if your ranking drops, you can quickly take action.

Create your account in ASO World and add your keyword word package in the keyword management module, then you can track your keyword ranking and view its changes over time. By using this keyword management function module, you can reduce the time and effort spending on keyword research.

With the help of ASO World's intelligent tools, you can track keywords in various countries/regions around the world and learn about ranking changes.

Keyword analysis checklist

1. View keywords that your app has ranked in ASO World
2. Add other relevant keywords to your tracking list
3. Focus on improving the ranking of keywords that balance search volume and difficulty
4. Emphasize long-tail keyword ranking first, especially if your app is new
5. Find the best keywords for your mobile app or game

Now that you know your ranking and have added relevant keywords to your tracking set, it’s time to move forward. Let’s learn more about how to set up a winning keyword set.

There are some basic steps to follow in this process.

1. Research keywords
2. Keyword priority
3. Target keywords
4. Measurement and monitoring

Application keyword optimization is a continuous and cyclical process. Application keywords must be updated frequently.

Research application keywords

Keyword research is all about defining which search terms will be found by the right users in your app. This is a very important step, so make sure you invest enough time.

First let's start with the simplest and most obvious task: adding branded keywords to the application keyword list. This includes your company name, app name, and even developer name. You should track this information in all countries where the app is available.

Brand keywords are the core of the app store keyword set.

At this stage, we recommend that you build a keyword set for your main language. We will start to optimize for other languages in another course.

Brainstorm keywords to describe your app and features

Usually, an application has a specific goal and also a niche. Consider what makes your product unique, and list keyword ideas. Remember to stick to keywords related to your app. If you are not creative enough, ask your friends or colleagues how they will search for your application and how they describe its features.

Add "sub" categories to your keyword set

These are keywords that people search for, but are not officially part of the main or sub-categories in the app store. If you have a game, consider including keywords such as idle clickers, shooters, football managers, golf, basketball, handicrafts, one-touch, two-player games, or similar keywords that apply to your game. If you still can’t compete with big companies in your industry, you can start with long tail keywords.

Read through reviews and comments

If your app has been published, please check your user comments. Write down the words your users use to describe your app. In addition, you can also view user reviews of competitors. Since these are the users you want to attract, try to adjust your keywords based on your communication style.

Use keyword suggestions

With the keyword recommendation function in ASO World, you can save time on keyword research. It will automatically calculate the potential keywords you can add to the tracking list based on your current app information and competitors in the app store.

View competitors’ keywords

You can also get new keyword ideas from competitors. Remember, keyword optimization is a continuous process. The top-ranked apps are usually updated overnight. This means that your active keyword set may change over time, which is completely normal. Therefore, please rest assured that we will introduce further optimization steps for your keyword set in another course.

ASO Topic App Store Optimization, Keyword Research,


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