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Know What is App Store Optimization (ASO): In-depth ASO Guide

If you have ever found yourself searching through the App Store, wondering why your favourite app isn't at the top of the search results, and trying to figure out how to get it there, then this guide is for you!

What's ASO?

Getting your app noticed is one of the biggest problems confronting mobile app publishers today, with more than 5.4 million mobile apps available in the main app stores it's so important to understand App Store Optimization (ASO). Here we'll give you some tips on what ASO is, what it stands for and how to do it right for your App. 

What is ASO? 

App store optimization (ASO) is a process that involves optimizing mobile apps to rank higher on an app store's search results. The most popular App stores are Google Play Store for Android and Apple App Store for iOS.  

Does App Store Optimization (ASO) help in App Growth? 

According to Statista a study conducted in 2022 (Q2), there are approximately 3.5 million apps available on the Google Play Store, making it the largest app store in terms of the number of apps available. The Apple App Store is the second-largest app store with roughly 2.3 million iOS apps available, followed by other app stores like the Amazon App Store.  

Hence, with millions of apps already in the app stores and more being added every day, not investing in ASO would lead to not getting visibility and losing out on major traffic sources. 

Importance of App Store Optimization (ASO)

App Store Optimization not only helps in getting visibility and app downloads but also helps in: 

Important Factors of App Store Optimization

Here are the important factors that primarily impact App Store Optimization: 

  • On-metadata Factors:
    They can be simply defined as the “Things that you can control” i.e., the factors that are under the full control of the app publisher such as App Title, Subtitle/Short and Long Descriptions, Keyword Field, and Promo Text (App Store only), App Icon, Category, URL/Package, Video Previews, and Screenshots.
    The on-metadata elements can be modified using Google Play Console or App Store Connect.

  • Off-metadata Factors:
    They can be simply defined as the “Things that you can’t control” i.e., the factors that are the result of the optimization done on the store and which don’t affect our app directly such as ratings and reviews, the number of downloads, download speed, size of the app, bugs, etc.

App Store Search and Ranking Algorithm 

Before beginning with app store optimization, it is crucial to comprehend the app store search and the ranking algorithms. The algorithms used in ranking are highly complex, much as like those used in search.  

The App Search algorithms consider app title, app categories, and developer names mainly. The algorithms are used by Google Play and the App Store for ranking, however, consider crash rates, update frequency, download volume, click-through rates, usage, and more. The primary ranking factors are identical across Google Play and the App Store, despite the latter's distinct methodology. 

How to implement App Store Optimization? 

Let’s learn about How can you perform app store optimizations for your app. Specifically, let’s learn what should you do to avoid wasting time attempting it incorrectly. Keep reading. You’re going in the right direction! 

We can categorize ASO activities into: 

  • Activities that help Getting Traffic on Store Listing Page (SLP) 
  • Activities that help Converting Organic Traffic from the Store Listing Page 

Activities that help Getting Traffic on Store Listing Page

Choosing Right Category, Tags and Audience 

Inevitably, if you position your app in the medical category when it’s really a gaming app, you’re going to be targeting the wrong users. Choosing the right primary category, secondary category and tags are crucial. The distinction between categories is typically more complex, though. If your app would do better in the ‘Medical’ category rather than the ‘Health & Fitness’ category, for instance, you might enter it there. However, the Apple app store also gives us the flexibility to add a secondary category to our App.

Choosing Right Category, Tags and Audience

If it's unclear, studying your competition will help you determine your category. Not only is it critical to show up in app store search results; but getting close to the top of category charts can result in a lot of downloads as well. 

Similarly, the tags that are most obviously relevant to your app should be chosen. A user who is new to the app should be able to easily understand why the tag is important based on the store listing or first-time in-app experience.

Choosing Right Keywords for ASO 

Keywords are important for ASO and app store rankings and finding the fine balance between popular searches and relevant keywords is critical. Research conducted by Apple has shown that over 65% of the downloads come from direct searches out of which 62% are branded keywords and almost 38% from generic (non-branded) keywords. Hence, choosing the right keywords would attract the right audience towards your app.

Optimizing App Title for your Android and iOS App
Optimizing App Title for your Android and iOS App

App title is what the users will see as soon as they land on the store listing page and hence to draw users to your App, we need to optimize the Title wherein you need to add the primary keywords and secondary keywords. Keyword stuffing should be avoided as it is easier for the algorithm to identify and penalize our app. 

For both Android and iOS apps the title character limit is 30 characters. 

Including a keyword in the title can raise title's search ranking by almost 10.3%!

Optimizing Short Description for Android and Subtitle iOS App 
Optimizing Short Description for Android and Subtitle iOS App

Google Play Store lets you add a short description for your Android App with a character limit of 80 characters whereas in Apple App Store lets you add a Subtitle to your iOS app with a character limit of 30 characters.  

Both short description and subtitle serve the same purpose i.e., they help users understand the features of the app and provides the developer space to target the relevant primary and secondary keywords of that of the App features. 

Optimizing Long Description for your App 

When someone is searching for an app, they want to know what the app does. If you can't describe your app in a few sentences, people will never find it. 

It's important that your long description is specific and clear about what kind of user experience you want to create for users of your app. This includes both how it will look and feel as well as how it works (or doesn't work). If people don't understand why they should download or use your product, then they won't! Long Description also helps the developer to add maximum keywords which help in getting more visibility of 4,000 characters for both Android and iOS Apps.  

We have now successfully covered the first aspect of ASO i.e., we have learned about activities that help get traffic on store listing page. Now, let’s quickly move to the second aspect of ASO.

Activities that help Converting Organic Traffic from the Store Listing Page 

The primary goal of these activities won’t be to get traffic on the page but to convert organic traffic as these activities are done on the Store Listing Page to engage users, improve their sentiments and help them understand more about the app.  

Now let us quickly deep dive into these activities: 

App Icon 

The icon is the first thing people see, and it's important to make it attractive. A simple second or two short glances at your app might reveal a lot: Why was the app created? What does the application do? Do I wish to interact with this app in any way?

App Icon

All regions of the conversion funnel are significantly impacted by the app icon, and it also has a long-lasting effect on re-engagement since it may serve as a reminder for users to launch the app when they see it on their smartphone home screens.  

The icon is the most prominent marketing tool in exploring pages of the Apple App Store. Additionally, it has a significant impact on both the product page and the search results. The typical possible conversion rate (CVR) for icon optimization in the App Store is 18%. 

Whereas the app symbol has a bigger impact on the Google Play Store because it's the only piece of original marketing content displayed on the search results page in addition to exploring pages. For icon optimization, the typical possible conversion rate (CVR) boost is 11%.

App Store Listing Visuals 

There are two main aspects for an effective app store optimization Textual and visual aspects. The textual components are essential for information quality and keyword optimization. On the other side, app store graphic components are essential for user appeal and conversion rates. 

The app store listing visual components are app icons, screenshots and app promo videos (Google Play Store) or preview videos (Apple App Store).  

In general, users of the app stores scan the information in the search results and spend less time on the Google Play store listings and the App Store's product pages. The use of strong, high-quality graphic components that leave users with a positive first impression is therefore essential.  

When you create screenshots for your app, make sure they match the quality of the icon and preview the video. A preview video can help people decide whether they want to download your app when they see it on their phone or tablet screen. 

App Ratings and Reviews 

Getting good Reviews and Ratings is important for ASO. The more positive reviews your app has, the better your app's reputation would be and then more people would want to download it. People will trust your app more if they see positive reviews, so it's important that you have lots of positive ones on your Apple app store page and Google play store page.

App Ratings and Reviews


Here are some tips for reputation management and how you can go about getting these: 

  • Make sure that the content in your app is high-quality and entertaining enough for people to spend time on it; this means being sure not only how well-written the text is but also how much variety there is within each section of the app itself; try making sure there isn't just one function of the app because this might lead users away. 
  • Utilize the feedback customers give to develop your app over time and do more thorough market research. 
  • Always keep an eye on how your rankings and feedback to change and develop over time. 
  • Respond to consumer feedback and user concerns promptly. 
  • Thrive for positive feedback 😊 

Done with all the basic ASO? Looking for more advanced ASO tips? Keep reading we have got you.

Advanced ASO Tips 

Now that we have covered both aspects of ASO one that helps getting traffic and the other which helps in getting the conversion. Below we have listed some of the additional Advanced ASO Tips to make your ASO game much stronger!! 

A/B Testing 

A/B testing plays a significant role in app marketing and is the best way to continuously improve your app store listing based on the actual user behaviour. You should keep and implement the option that increases your number of users, downloads, or any other KPI that is important to you.

A/B Testing
Source: https://www.freepik.com/


Google Play allows you to test creatives that includes icons, promotional video, featured graphics screenshots as well as short and long description. Apple App store allows you to test creatives that include icons, preview video and screenshots. However, third party tools provide you flexibility.  

App Localization  

The process of modifying and improving an app to appeal to a geographically particular target market is known as app localization. To make sure your app is just as enticing and user-friendly outside of the nation where your headquarters are as it is inside. 

Through app localization, your app may adapt to the demands of users who speak different languages by optimizing everything from measurement units to currencies and idiomatic idioms for them.

App localization

You create a huge possibility for development by making sure your software is appealing to people in a range of regions throughout the world that you could never have attained within just one nation. 

Creating Custom Product Pages for iOS 

Custom product pages are alternate versions of an App Store product page that app marketers can create to highlight different functions, content, features or offers than those shown on their default page. As a result, the app developer can leverage these page variations to target different segments of their target audience.  

With custom product pages, developers can: 

  • Create up to 35 customized variants of their default product page per language or feature 
  • Change promotional text, screenshots, and app preview video with each variant 


ASO is a process that can be incredibly difficult, and it takes time. But if you follow these tips, you’ll be on your way to success. And remember, the best part of ASO is the feeling of satisfaction when someone downloads your apps and enjoys them!