5 Key Factors to Be Better Discovered on Google Play
App Store Optimization
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Google Play is a popular app store where thousands of apps are curated and discovered by Android users all over the world. Once you published your app in the Google Play Store, you’ve entered a real game. No matter how excellent and useful your app is, if a very little amount of users know and enjoy it, it is still unreasonable to be considered a successful app. Getting discovered in a maze of applications in the store may be the breakpoint for you to win or lose.
You may not know there is an art to getting more recognition on the Google Play store. Apps rankings are based on many factors such as ratings, user behavior, and feedback, downloads, etc. Google Play searches those factors in the overall experience of your app. While these weights and values are a proprietary part of the Google search algorithm, you can work to improve your app’s discoverability by improving those factors listed below and categorized into 3 groups of information.
- Graphic and Image Assets
- Rating & Reviews
Have a right understanding of how Google list apps on the store, including the types of things that affect the listing, is very critical. This will vastly help you to put your app in the best possible place to get downloads and installations. One of the primary indicators that Google takes into account to evaluate and rank apps in the app store is the metadata. Here are the most important parts of the app metadata:
1. App Title
Google Play allows app developers to include a 50 characters limit to place the brand name and the main app functionality in the App Title which is similar to the title tag in SEO, so use them wisely. Users often do search terms or search queries for application names through google play or google search which brings out a search engine's listings and the entry of your application must be on the first page of Google. Keep the brand name as short, as concise as possible not to cut off on some devices, easy to spell, and easy to memorize for users. Keyword planners can use some free keyword tool to brainstorm as many different keywords research as possible that are relevant to the app and to the tasks it performs, or its main features, and then amplify the list with long-tail keywords and negative keywords. Search marketing improves and optimizes the app keywords rankings thanks to Google’s algorithm when categorizing apps and showing up on the search results. The backlinks (inbound links) or anchor text in SEO alike.
Source: Meditation on Google Play
Make a unique app name, avoid common phrases, and emphasizes what your app is about Use some keywords suggestions Don’t misspell words to be unique because users will typically search for the correct spelling, for example, using a “z” instead of an “s” for plural words Add one title in each language to localize your app for search engine optimization. The demand for the app can arise from any country in the world. Consider Cost Per Click (CPC) which is the price that marketers pay during Pay Per Click (PPC) campaigns for an application
Description can be as long as you want, but the very first sentence should strike the users with the unique functionalities, and what users can benefit from your app. Review it to ensure that the most vital text is visible. Use SEO Best Practices to help you make a more attractive and useful description, but be mindful of Google Play Content Policies regarding SPAM and IP Infringement. One trick here is using a professional translation service from a third-party vendor for your description can lead to better search results and discoverability for worldwide users.
In the Google Play market, the short profitable description with the best keywords of an app has a strong effect on the ASO in keywords rankings and conversion rate. Google Play allows developers to include up to 80 characters for the short description, and if the users are interested to know more, they can expand the short description to view the full description of a mobile app or game.
A well-composed short description with great content is the highlight of all the best things about mobile apps or games, and the best use that app developers can give to this field is to include the core keywords and the main purpose of the mobile app. This is similar to the meta description which is an HTML element that describes and summarizes the contents of your page for SEO. Adding some emojis in the short description definitely catches users’ eyes
Google Play allows developers to include up to 4000 characters for the long description. So Google analyzing which keywords to consider including your target keywords and related keywords a few times, and it is important to mention the core ones, avoid duplicating content in the first and in the last lines of the description to improve rankings for those keywords phrases.
A few tips for a perfect description:
- Combine all the searchable and actionable keywords of your app or game (e.g, Download now, buy it now, Start now…) which are the semantically related words.
- Use 3000-3500 characters for the application description
- Describe the best features of the app
- Include the most relevant keywords in the first line of the app description
- Write in short paragraphs without an overload of information.
- Add more mid and long-tail keywords to the app description
- Repeat keywords 3-5 times in the full description and a maximum of 8 times to avoid a list of keyword stuffing.
- Add some emoji for format text with HTML
- Prioritize primary keywords, competitive keywords, and most popular keywords
- Organize the information by using bullet points
- Localize description to all possible languages
- Focus on telling users exactly what they will get from the app
- Support app description with social media profiles or links to communities of users of your app. (Facebook, Gmail, Zalo,...) for a better user experience.
- Brag app awards, if have.
3. App Icon
A beautiful and memorable icon that attracts searcher attention in the App Store and stands out on the Home screen. An app could be set up to be opened by using a touch ID or fingerprint. The app icon is not only the first opportunity to communicate with high-quality users, but also is the first visual impact that your app will have on the user as an app store search. In order to publish your app page in Google Play Store, you need a high-resolution app icon.
Right after making the research process in Google Play, what the searchers see is a huge list of apps with different titles and icons, and at this point, the users will decide which app to check out and install. An outstanding and attractive icon is a key piece of your app’s appearance, and it directly optimizes the Conversion Rate.
Moreover, the icon (as well as the title and developer name) are the things that users see in the actual search result in Google Play Store, so these elements are the ones that have the most impact on the search ASO. Google has the following requirements for developers:
- 32-bit PNG (with alpha)
- Dimensions: 512px by 512px
- Maximum file size: 1024KB
Some tips to put a spotlight on your app icon:
- Make your icon consistent with the purpose of your app or game.
- Keep icon corners square
- Check your competitor and be different.
- Use vibrant and harmonizing colors to grab user attention.
- Avoid text in the app icon
- Keep the background simple and avoid transparency
- Test app icon against different wallpapers
- Don’t include photos, screenshots, or interface elements
- Follow the design tendencies, be modern and innovative for online-marketing
- Provide different icon sizes for different devices
4. App Screenshots
App screenshots allow the app to show off its features and functionalities to users that visit the product page. Users often gain more information from app icons, app videos, and app screenshots than they do from app names and app descriptions with some clicks.
Like the app icon and feature graphic, the app screenshots don’t affect the search algorithm, but they do have an impact on the conversion rate to install an app. App screenshots show how the app or game looks from the inside, and highlight its best features. Therefore, it is very important to grab user attention from the first screenshot.
Google Play Store allows developers to add up to 8 screenshots for each supported device type, while the minimum required by Google is just 2 screenshots with the following specs:
- JPEG or 24-bit PNG (no alpha)
- Minimum dimension: 320px
- Maximum dimension: 3840 px
The maximum dimension of your screenshot can’t be more than twice as long as the minimum dimension Obviously, don’t limit yourself to a minimum of 2 screenshots. Be creative and captivate your users with a showcase of your app’s best features.
The screenshots don’t have to be actual screenshots, you can go for storytelling and create a sequence of rich images to describe the best features of your app
Follow these tips to rock your screenshots:
- Demonstrate the key message in the first app store screenshot
- Use simple backgrounds and concise text for screenshots
- Connect those screenshots by creating a storyline between them
- Pick a style or theme for your screenshot sequence and follow it instead of bringing up random images
- Use at least 5 screenshots for Google Play
- Focus on conveying the unique value proposition that your app offers to the users, not the features
- Show any limited offer on app screenshots.
- Show off awards for apps and games, if have
- Test many options to find the best-converting ones.
- Localize the graphics of your screenshots to the local language
5. Rating & Reviews
App ratings and reviews are vital to your app's success in Google Play. App rating is a reflection of how users respond to your app and gives the admin the ability to modify queries. Because some users click through the rate of the app, you should meet the expectations of your users to guarantee that your app gets a high rating and target potential audiences.
In Google Play you can interact with users, replying to their reviews, which helps to build trust and improve the overall rating of the app. A good review from a user not only improves the conversion rate to install, but it is also giving more keywords ideas and be favorable for search ASO, as Google ranks higher the apps with more and better user reviews. It is the same with search ranking in SEO refers to a website's position on the search engine results page.
First, by answering your reviews you are going to increase your relevancy to Google as you are showing that you care about your users. In addition to that, when you answer them, you can use your relevant keywords in your answer.
Also, if in the review there is a good keyword, be sure to repeat it when you are answering it. Making sure that people understand your app is a must because this also influences them to use the right keywords when writing a review.
User reviews are a part that is not totally under your control, but if you are constantly monitoring it, you will get valuable information about your product in app development, find keywords in feedback, and the weak points of your product and your communication strategy with users.
The users are who ultimately drive Google Play search and discovery systems. So getting positive feedback for your app will raise the chance to be recognized in Google Play. Therefore, you should encourage users to provide feedback in the form of ratings and comments. Then stay attentive to the feedbacks, give prominence to them, respond to your users, and address issues. For example, whenever you get feedback about bugs or other issues, engage with the feedback and update your app in a rational time. This is one way to provide great customer service and help you to gain more installs, engagement, and higher ratings. Beta testing is also a good way to get feedback from trial users before the actual launch.
You can get an analysis in the ratings and reviews section of the Google Play Developer Console, which gives you insights into what users are saying about your app and how it affects your rating compared to similar apps.
To sum up, making your app discoverable and searchable is one of the most crucial things to keep in mind. Google Play always strives to help users discover the most useful, high-quality, safe, and relevant apps. Understand the operating principle of the Google Play search system will help you to build a long-term successful app and win the victory in Google Play battlefield.
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