Making your app visible on the App Store takes some effort. Here are some considerations for making your app visible. This list compiles advice from Tomasz Kolinko of AppCod.es, other sources, and from my own experience.
- High reviews mean a lot to potential users. Specifically requesting reviews from current users often raises your app’s score simply because more users who are happy with the product will take the time to leave a review.
- Think of what specific search phrases and keywords a user will use to find an app like yours. Those words should go in the name of the app because the app’s name has a greater effect in searches. Use the keywords list as a secondary field for SEO. Do not rely on the app description for SEO as the description is ignored in searches.
- The App Store search engine is not as smart as Google’s, meaning that plurals and related words should be included in the keywords.
- A nice icon and descriptive app name go a long way towards enticing potential users to check out your app in more detail.
- It’s a good idea to tweak keywords when updating your app, but do not update your app simply to tweak keywords. Too frequent updates will turn users off to your app.
- If the app is not free, it’s a good idea to use promo codes for discounts so that more users are exposed to the app. This, in turn, leads to more reviews. Simply dropping the price of the app for a period of time will have a similar effect.
- Google indexes the App Store, so it may be a good idea to optimize your app’s description for these searches, as well. Descriptions should be an easy read. Keep in mind only a few lines of text appear in the App Store before requiring the user to click ‘More’ to see the rest of it.
- Good screen shots give users a good sense of what the app is like before they decide to download it. If they like what they see, they’re more likely to download.
- Do not use special characters in your app title as it will cause your app’s URL to change from human-readable to an unreadable ID.
Ranking in the Top Apps sections of the App Store will really get the ball rolling with new installs. Due to the popularity of other apps, it takes tens of thousands of daily installs to get into that list. Rob Weber has a few suggestions for making it there:
- Begin a four-day advertising campaign on a Thursday. More app installations happen over the weekend and advertising for a short period of time will get the burst of new users needed to appear in the Top Apps lists.
- Advertise in several different places all at once for highest visibility.
- Use high quality images to make the app feel more complete and robust.
- Launch a website for the app.
- Maintain a presence on social networks.
- Reduce the cost of your app or even make it free during your campaign.
Here are some more resources that go into a lot of detail regarding App Store SEO