Beat app store competition with relevancy

Dave Bell, Co-founder and CEO of Gummicube, looks at the importance of relevancy for app growth. 

You’ve launched your app on the app stores and implemented a search and conversion strategy – now what? Once you’ve entered the growth phase, keeping an app relevant in the app stores is no easy feat. 

After all, the app stores reward developers who “keep it fresh” in their stores. One of the often-unspoken fundamental purposes of App Store Optimization (ASO) is the idea of relevancy at the forefront of everything. Not only does this serve to attract users to your app listing, but it also helps Google Play and the App Store determine whether you’re fit to be recommended to users for certain search queries.

Why is relevancy important in app growth?
Relevancy drives everything. It’s the reason metadata should be relevant to your app offering and updates frequently. It’s the reason creatives should be A/B tested on a regular basis to optimize conversion rates. Relevancy is the ultimate driver of growth and building an app marketing strategy that supports that marketing ideal is fundamental to success. Why?

Rankings on the app store are ultimately determined by how relevant you are for the term. For example, if a user were to search for, “mobile banking app” on the app store and they download it, the app stores algorithmically determine that you are fit to potentially rank for that term. 

All parts of your product page help drive this element of relevancy – even creatives. Although not algorithmically logged, creatives speak directly to your users and support the funnel toward a conversion. 

How can a developer convey relevancy?
Relevancy is much more than just a monthly update – it is iterative and market-trend sensitive by nature. In the process of ASO, there are two crucial practices that enable developers to stay relevant in the app stores. One is iteration, and the other is seasonality. 

What is iteration in ASO?
Iteration is the process in which app developers take the initiative to optimize their app performance thoroughly and continuously to adapt to changing trends. Changes in user search trends and app store developments are inevitable, so keeping up with these trends is vital in maintaining conversion rate growth and keyword ranking. 

Much like taking a shower, it’s not enough to clean yourself once and consider it a done deal for the rest of your life. This same rule applies to app iterative metadata and creative updates. Unfortunately, many app developers don’t give their ASO strategy the optimization updates it needs to perform well over time.

What is seasonality?
When its time to ring in the New Year, winter season, back to school, Black Friday, or anything in between – developers should always keep a finger on the pulse of what’s important to their users. Seasonality is when an app developer includes relevant copy and/or creative elements to reflect temporary changes. 

Seasonality helps developers convey relevancy while simultaneously spearheading immediate competitors in the stores. Users may be searching using specific queries around a certain external event. For example, a developer may find that users may be searching for “photo templates for Halloween” around October through ASO technology

The apps in the category that forgo incorporating this example of a relevant proposition have strong chances of losing out market share. In the long run, users may also associate apps that update frequently as being more reliable and receptive to their needs.

Relevancy in global markets
Being relevant in the app stores across different geographic locations is also important. Seasonality and iteration are two universal steps in conveying relevancy, but there’s an additional element of an ASO strategy a developer needs to take to improve relevancy abroad.

Localization allows mobile marketers and developers to adjust their metadata and creatives to appeal to a global audience. Each step during localization ensures what you’re trying to convey in your native country to one abroad in a way that is most effective. This is what makes it different from literal translations of metadata or using the same creatives. 

For example, a US-based cashback app developer who wants to move operations to South Korea may need to incorporate a localization strategy. If the US app listing uses green backsplashes on their screenshot to build a subconscious association with money, it might not work in South Korea where the currency is multicolored. 

The process of ASO is naturally iterative and ever-changing in essence. The actions that comprise a holistic ASO strategy reward developers and marketers through the fundamental element of relevance. The mobile marketing landscape and the factors that influence it are constantly changing, and so should your ASO strategy to account for them.

About the Author
Dave Bell is Co-founder and CEO of Gummicube. Gummicube is a global leader in App Store Optimization with more than 12 years of experience optimizing and marketing apps. We offer the leading enterprise ASO technology and agency services, providing support to clients around the world. Our company is trusted by thousands of enterprise brands and leading startups including Microsoft, LinkedIn, Bethesda, SWEAT, GrubHub, McAfee and many others.