Google I/O 2022 recap: what you need to know

Dave Bell, Co-founder and CEO of Gummicube, rounds up the key takeaways from Googles recent I/O 2022 conference.

Google I/O 2022 took place on May 11th through the 12th. Tens of thousands of people from different backgrounds gathered to listen to the massive Google Keynote about upcoming releases. Many left the event with exciting new features to look forward to. From augmented reality, enhanced safety features, and huge Google Play Store updates. 

The user experience on the Play Store is about to change in a massive way, with new features that improve both the user experience and a mobile developer’s ability to reach newer and fresher audiences. 

If you’re already familiar with the App Store features ushered in by iOS 15, these new Google Play updates bring forth a similar user experience on the Google Play Store. Android app developers will now be able to do a lot more to reach their core audiences. 

What new features should mobile app developers look out for? Here are the upcoming changes to the Google Play Store that may affect your  App Store Optimization strategy. 

LiveOps is still in beta, but the results of the limited, pre-launch candidates have been promising. With LiveOps, developers can submit content to be featured on the Play Store. Developers can run a LiveOps campaign to market a product, sale, new feature or any other value proposition to new and existing users. According to Google’s beta test results, developers have seen 5 per cent more daily active users and 4 per cent higher revenue after a LiveOps feature. If this new feature rings any bells with Apple’s In-app Events and Spotlight on iOS, you may be onto something.  

With this feature, developers can also funnel users directly to the part of the app that is most relevant to the user. For example, if a game developer ran a LiveOps campaign to market a new 3v3 feature, the user would then be immediately funneled to that particular gameplay experience. This will be a great tool both for new app discovery, and improving retention and engagement among stagnant users. Moreover, developers can directly see the effects of their LiveOps campaigns through a soon-to-be-released dedicated LiveOps console.

Custom Store Listings
Apple’s App Store introduced Custom Product Pages earlier last year. Developers could create up to 35 different custom app listings to help more effectively target different audience segments. Each of these pages could be used to highlight different features and value propositions to relevant targeted demographics. 

Based on the Google I/O conference, Google Play will have a similar feature called Custom Store Listings. Developers will have the ability to create up to 50 custom pages for each app. Each of these pages come with their own deep link and analytics insights. While its still unclear as to which elements of the app page will be customizable, this is a game-changer in the eyes of many Android developers looking to diversify their means of marketing. Prior to now, Android app developers had to create an all-encompassing product page to capture all of their unique segments. 

This has been a long-standing issue in marketing an app listing on Google Play. A user may be drawn to a certain app feature over others, thus the introduction of Custom Store Listings can help developers highlight features to specific audience segments with hyper-relevant offerings they’re most receptive to. This new addition may significantly help developers increase their relevance and conversion rates.

Subscription and In-App Purchase
Every interaction your users have with your app is directly tied to user experience. Subscription models have been a long-standing qualm among users – a one-size-fits-all subscription model just isn’t ideal. Developers also want additional flexibility in what subscription models they can put in place to enhance revenue streams or improve the user experience. The following changes have been made to in-app purchases and subscription models:

  1. Multiple Subscription Plans – Developers can create multiple subscription plans without new SKUs
  2. Pre-Paid Plans – Developers can set their own renewal time frames in annual and monthly auto-renewal or one-month prepaid plans.
  3. Price Equalizer – Developers can set the price of in-app purchases or subscriptions for as little at $0.05 in some emerging countries

Enhanced functionality of Store Listing Experiments
Developers can see how their Custom Store Listing or single product page is performing more quickly. While not immediate, the results of Store Listing Experiments will be more accurate than before. With this new addition, developers have more freedom to set confidence intervals, as well as check and gauge the duration of tests. This will be an invaluable tool for developers looking to test frequently, accurately and with a more tailored A/B testing approach.

The introduction of these features has really only just begun. There is still a lot to uncover about how these new features will impact your mobile marketing and ASO strategy. Our ASO company has helped many developers navigate the changes we saw with the rollout of iOS 15. Now that we’re seeing a new shift towards a the new, user-experience-driven app store, optimizing for the app stores of tomorrow is all the more important. 

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.