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How to promote an app using ASO and SEO?

How to promote an app using ASO and SEO?

If you are reading this post, it means that you are thinking of launching a mobile application or that you have already launched one but it does not have the expected conversions. Here are some tips on how to promote an app. In the first place, we will talk about ASO which is the Optimisation of Application Stores and in the second place, we will talk about SEO, which is Search Engine Optimisation. Although these two concepts have many similarities, they are not the same.

How to promote an app using ASO?

We start with the ASO as this strategy is unique to the optimisation of application stores. Many refer to it as SEO for applications, however, we do not agree, every strategy has its function and benefits. ASO is about optimising mobile applications so that they are well-positioned in search results in app stores. Here are ten recommendations for achieving this.


Google Play and App Sore icons
Google play and Apple store icons. Source: Global Panorama via Flickr


1- Understand your client and your competitors. Know what languages they speak, the usability of the app, the keywords used by the competition and whether it is possible to compete with those same keywords.

2- Choose the right name for your app. According to a study by Tune, applications with a keyword in the name rank 10.3% higher. It is important to keep the name short and catchy and add the keywords then separated by a hyphen or colon. In the App Store titles can have up to 255 characters, however, the only thing visible is the first 23 characters and the first 30 characters for Google Play (including spaces).


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3- Maximise keywords. There are differences between the App Store and Google Play. For the App Store, 100 characters are allowed in the keyword place and it is important to make the most of it. Google Play allows 4000 characters to describe the app without trying to include the maximum number of keywords. It is important to keep in mind that the description is made for the consumer and not for the search engine algorithm. Choosing keywords is a fundamental part of the process.

4- Create a catchy description. This short text is aimed at potential consumers. Once it is finished, some modifications can be made to include keywords.


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App store screen
Pages app on MacBook Air. Source: Aaron Heath via Flickr

5- Draw attention with a suggestive icon. The icon of an app is the first thing users see, therefore it is vital to make a good first impression. The size of the graphical representation of iOS should be in the format of 1024 x 1024 pixels. Google Play requires a 512 x 512-pixel format. A clever way to design the graphic symbol is to look at the apps best ranked in your category and see what they have in common (in case you already created one).

6- Include screenshots and videos. Although this does not help the ranking, it helps when it comes to making conversions. The images allow the user to visualise the app before downloading it which is of great value.

7- Adapt your application to the local market. It is very important to adapt the language and communication to the market you are targeting.

8- Increase traffic with external promotion. There are many tools that can help to promote an application outside the application stores. Use everything available such as social networks, content marketing, magazines and blogs.

9- Update frequently. According to Moz, the 500 top-ranked applications update every 30 to 40 days. But, each update in iOS resets the rating.

10- Encourage scores and opinions. It has been proven that user feedback is a source of consumer confidence. For this reason, it is important to encourage users to leave comments and rate the app.


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How to promote an app using SEO 

To encourage downloads of an app many believe that only the ASO is necessary, however, as specified above, it is important to use all available tools to compete in this growing market. While most people discover their apps in app stores, 1 in 4 people discovers them through search engines. For this reason, SEO plays a key role in positioning applications on the web. We will give you four tips:

1- Have a landing page or a microsite. It is important to have an online presence. Many applications do not have a website. Although it allows you to position yourself as an authority and a reliable source of information. It should target keywords that are relevant to the user. A good tool for this is SEMrush, which you can use to find the most relevant keywords for your app. In addition, it can be beneficial if the page links to social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, Google +, Linkedin among others.  

2- App Indexing. It is a system that allows people to click on a search list on Google and Safari, from their tablets and smartphones, and open the app store. It works for both Android and iOS.

Google Homepage screen - ASO
Google web searching page. Source: Yeeply

3- Follow the links of your competitors. This is a fundamental SEO strategy to increase your search ranking. To start with, identify your most popular competitors. Once identified you can use tools like Ahrefs or Cognitiveseo to see which pages link to your competitor. Once you know the relevant websites that link to your competitors, all you have to do is contact the authors and ask them to include a link to your page. Be careful, it is not a question of having a large number of links but that these are of good quality.

4- Increase the time on your page and reduce the rebound rate. The more time people spend on your page, the more chances of being in a good position in the ranking. For this, the website has to be well-positioned in terms of search keywords and the information has to be relevant to the user.


Nowadays the number of applications in the app stores are endless. That is why it is so important to distinguish your app from the rest. To successfully promote it you have to be present in all the media where users search, this includes app stores and search engines. Combining ASO and SEO strategies is important and leads to greater visibility and application downloads.

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