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Home Blog App Marketing What Happens When App's Rankings Drop Suddenly, and What You Should Do

What Happens When App's Rankings Drop Suddenly, and What You Should Do

Mar 26 2021

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When you are starting ASO for your app, keyword rankings are likely to be an important metric that needs to be checked regularly. Whether it's a complete list or just tracking a few keywords, chances are these rankings will change at some point and an investigation into what caused that change will begin!

Check your app’s ranking in ASO World


For mobile app developers, or app marketers, it is important to be able to see how their app ranks in the app store of their target country at any given time, so they can keep track of their business trends and the impact of each update, or decision, on their app. Being able to provide quick and timely feedback on industry trends and changes is also key to the success of their business.

Therefore we present our latest feature of app ranking checking tool in ASO World. You can find out your app’s ranking in App Store directly with the tool we provide for free.


Where to start?


The first thing to look at is the application metadata. If this is your own application, look at the most recent keyword updates that have been made first. Any changes made to the title, subtitle and keyword fields within the last 4 weeks may still affect rankings.

After publishing, you should monitor the updated keywords closely to avoid affecting rankings.

Updates from competitors may also affect your application rankings. Keep track of your closest competitor's updates through the timeline tool to help discover which keywords your competitors have changed and to monitor them.

While it is not possible to see which keywords have been updated on a competitor's keyword field, it is easy to see where competitors are gaining or losing the most in rankings and where they may now be ranking above rank for specific keywords and rankings by looking at the keyword movement detector.


keyword movement detector


Updates of algorithms


If no changes have been made to the application's keyword metadata, the next thing to consider is whether there is an algorithm update.

Algorithm updates can affect all rankings, or only a specific subset of keywords.

Algorithm updates may be made multiple times a year without warning about when and where they are affected.

Using the Keyword Move Detector, it is easy to see which keywords have been affected and may need to be updated. If you are unsure if a ranking change is caused by an algorithm update, check the AppTweak algorithm change detector for your country.

Newly Released Apps


It's not just competitors that can affect your app's keyword ranking, but also new apps on the store.

In the App Store, Apple tends to boost newly released apps and games in category rankings (giving new apps good rankings) and since category rankings affect downloads, this can also translate into keyword rankings.

Changes in competitor categories


Changes to your app or competitor's category may also cause keyword rankings to change as well.

The selected categories help Apple's algorithm to associate the content most relevant to your app and the other apps most relevant to it.


pricing


Reviews and Ratings


Reviews and ratings can help show what users are saying about the app. If many users comment on the same features, Apple may start associating apps with keywords.

Going a step further, it is helpful to see if users are commenting on the same feature in a negative or positive way, and if there is an overwhelming sentiment one way or the other, this may affect rankings.

Features


Every keyword has some feature that appears in the app store listings. There is no way to know when an app will be released or how it will be released, but knowing when it is released will have a significant impact on impressions, downloads and rankings.

Traffic to apps with select features may increase if installs increase, but conversion rates for specific keywords with specific features may also increase.

An increase in conversions can improve rankings for those keywords because it tells Apple that people can associate that keyword closely with that app.


Apps with similar function


If some of the reasons above don't help you, looking at similar apps (ranking against peer similar apps) before and after a keyword ranking change may help to see if Apple has made changes to how it associates with other apps.

If similar apps have changed, it is possible that Apple is running tests and may have re-associated with the content most relevant to that app.

Since featured and similar applications are considered "views traffic", it is not directly affected by keyword ranking losses and gains.

However, it should be investigated whether certain keyword rankings contribute to features or have an impact on similar applications that point to you.


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