Can App Store Optimization improve your paid campaigns?  

Dave Bell, Co-founder and CEO of Gummicube, looks at the role of ASO in driving more effective paid campaigns.

Common myths surrounding App Store Optimization (ASO) often cloud its position and fundamental purpose in delivering value to developers and users. From a comprehensive standpoint, App Store Optimization is comprised of three fundamental factors of success: organic metadata optimization, conversion optimization and paid user acquisition.

While paid campaigns seem like a beacon of success on the app stores, their performance relies on the latter two success factors to see any fruitful and long-term growth. 

You may be asking yourself how and why organic and conversion optimization are such an integral part of paid campaign performance. After all, other modes of marketing don’t necessarily fit into the same framework. 

When it comes to mobile marketing, there are a few key factors to keep in mind. This includes how organic optimization supports paid campaigns, and how different steps in your ASO strategy all work together to funnel users toward a conversion. 

What is Organic Metadata Optimization and why is it important for paid campaigns?  

To understand the role of organic metadata optimization, we must first go to the root – the user. When a user initiates a search for an app and taps on one, this sends a signal to the app stores that the app is relevant for that particular search query. While your app may potentially rank for hundreds, if not thousands of keywords at a time, the user ultimately decides your relevance. 

If the number of taps for that particular search query grows in comparison to the apps also competing for it, your app eventually rises in ranking for it. If an app consistently gets selected out of all the rest of the apps populating in the search query for a particular keyword, the app proves to the app store algorithms that it’s relevant for that particular search query and pushes it to the top of the listing. 

This illustrates the importance of targeted relevant terms related to your core app offering. In this scenario, you may see why targeting terms that are unrelated or too far adjacent may actually be counterproductive when trying to prove relevance.

The role of organic metadata in paid campaigns is critical for pre- and post-campaign success for a few reasons. First, establishing relevance for keyword phrases allows developers to capture users who are naturally looking for them. After a paid campaign is over, will users still be able to recall or find your app at the search bar? 

Also, building on organic keyword relevance lowers the cost of paid bids on keywords – similarly to how Google Ads functions. The more relevant you are for the search query, the lower amount you have to pay for bids for keywords and phrases. This fundamental step in ASO helps you maximize your return on ad spend and marketing investment.

Can creative assets help me drive paid campaign success?
Creative assets on your app store listing are what drive your conversion rates. Neither Apple nor Google index creatives for keywords or phrases; thus, the creatives serve to engage and inform the user with quick and relevant value propositions. To deliver their maximum impact and value, A/B testing is essential. 

Given the limitations of native A/B testing platforms, developers have to strategically assess their competitive and internal goals for creative optimization. Limitations to multivariate testing, deployment requirements and limited testing capabilities can spell difficulty in measuring the impact of a creative change based on the timing and needs of the organization. External A/B testing like Splitcube, allows us to test creative elements without the constriction of native A/B testing platforms. 

The goal of A/B testing is to see which creative assets drive the most conversions. Small, yet conscious adjustments to creative assets could make a big difference in your conversion potential. With the latest introduction of Google Play Custom Store Listings and Live Ops, or Custom Product Pages for the App Store – reaching the right audience with the most relevant message is all the more important.

 A/B testing over time shows us valuable trends in user preferences. This allows us to create more impactful and effective paid campaigns that not only drive conversion but create a framework for continuous improvement and iteration of store listings. 

Can ASO improve your paid campaigns? Organic and creative optimization works in tandem with paid campaign success. The steps toward user acquisition touch all fronts of this process. Organic foundations are key to a winning paid campaign strategy, and creatives speak to your users in more ways than one. Paid campaigns help drive continued growth after these crucial steps are set in place.

About the Author
Dave Bell is Co-founder and CEO of Gummicube. Gummicube is a global leader in App Store Optimization with more than 11 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.