App Store Optimization is an incredibly important yet frequently overlooked opportunity for developers, when trying to create growth and traction.

Not surprisingly, there’s quite a bit of overlap between traditional SEO and App Store optimization, but it’s necessary to remember that the App Store is in relative infancy when compared to its big search counterparts.

What follows is an outline of the utmost important factors which can impact app store ranking, along with a few tips to assure long-term growth.

On-Page Pertinent Factors

According to a study of more than 200 app searches, it seems that the following on-page factors are the most relevant within the app store.

  • Application Title: Utilisation of keyword in the title appears to be one of the most crucial relevance signals. Currently, it is unknown whether it's a direct signal  (usage of a keyword means higher ranking) or an analogous one (results in higher click rates, utilisation of keyword).
  • App Description: Proper keyword usage should also be employ within the body copy.
  • Keywords Data: A good old keywords tag, you ask? Yes, but it looks Apple is already de-weighting its influence. Expect keywords tag to get the point out collectively as application development becomes even more convenient to a mainstream audience.
Relevance Factors for Off-Page

Unlike Google, Apple has complete access to everything which happens within the limits of an application that means there’s a boatload of data to manage user appreciation. The below signals can be used to compare apps within alike categorical group:

  • Usage Weights: What is the moderate frequency of usage within the app?
  • CTR: What is the click-through rate when served in a higher position?
  • Discard Rates: How frequently is an app removed? What is the average life of an app on a desktop?
  • Downloads: How many downloads does the app consist?
  • Updates for an app: How fresh is the app? Is it continuing to create innovative features and optimize for fresh OS releases?
  • Reviews: What is an average review score and how authentic and authoritative are the reviewers?
Unknown Factors

It is believed that Apple would be silly not to incorporate the following signals:

  • App age: Are users reliably and consistently using this developing app?
  • App Speed: Is the app responsive when compared to its competitors or is it a heavy experience?
  • Incoming Links/Social Signal: What kind of flow in the traditional web ecosphere is this app making?
  • Brand Trust: Is the app released by a maker which has a trusted arsenal of successful/popular apps? This would likely assure that the application has undergone a vital QA (quality assurance) process.
Where App Store Optimization is Leading

Like any search engine, an App Store appears to be shifting from one of semantical significance to the deeper and more compelling KPIs which revolve around user data (nearly every algorithmic change thus far appears to support this notion).

As the entire industry ripen, failure and success in ranking will be much more focused on the quality experience of its users.

Tips for Improvement

Here are a few tips to help you rank better in the App Store:

  • Focus on natural incorporation of keywords in the title and description data
  • Use conversion optimization techniques and push notifications to ensure more prolific usage of the application
  • Keep the application “top of mind” through email and social media integration. Give your users a great reason to share, like, and follow.
  • Offer heavy users the opportunity to review the app. A simple push with the opportunity to rate can give your ambassadors a platform to evangelize the product
  • Try traditional PR to improve download rates and a bevy of quality content regarding the site
  • Use event tracking and some iteration of “last state” tracking to prevent users from bouncing
  • Use open graph (wisely!) to help spread the word.
  • Make an absolutely killer app (if you’ve done that, feel free to ignore most of the above).