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Improving the visibility of your mobile application can be very challenging. App marketing experts have moved from the regular marketing channels like television or website ad campaigns to App Store Optimization. ASO is the process of enhancing your mobile app visibility in an app store.

App store optimization is important because it helps potential users find what they’re looking for. It also gives a very clear picture about app rankings in search results and various charts. With a higher chart ranking, an app has a better chance of being noticed, downloaded and used.

In this post, we’ll concentrate on best practices for ASO in Apple iTunes and Google Play. Other stores, like BlackBerry World and the Windows Store, follow the same general concepts.

App Name: One of the most prominent factors that can affect the success and ranking of an app is the name of the app. Apple and Google have different character limits. Although the iTunes App Store supports up to 255 characters for the app name, developer guidelines no more than 25 characters for the best presentation. On the Google Play store, app names are limited to 30 characters.

When possible, include a descriptive caption as part of the app name. Defining core functionality with a name like “Raphael PetMed – Track Veterinary Medical Files For Your Pets” rather than simply “Raphael PetMed” gives you more keywords to work with. Officially, both Apple and Google discourage this practice, but it does improve your chances for better search ranking. Remember that the name in the app store can be longer than the short name that appears under the app’s icon on a user’s device.

Raphael Petmed iTunes Page - App Store Optimization

Description: The description of a mobile app plays a crucial role, as it can either enhance search results or bury it. It is better to divide the description about the app into two sections, and follow practices similar to SEO (Search Engine Optimization). The first few sentences are critical, because the rest of the description is hidden behind a “More” link on an app’s page. Your app can be described in 4,000 characters in both iTunes and the Google Play Store.

While the Google Play Store indexes the entire description for search, the iTunes desktop and iOS applications do not. Web searches, however, do include the full text of the description of any app.

Keywords: Android apps don’t have a separate keyword field; iOS apps get 100 characters. Choosing the appropriate keywords for your app can definitely make a positive difference. By analyzing relevancy and search volume you can pinpoint the proper keywords for your app. It is ideal to separate the keywords with commas instead of spaces and avoid multiple-word phrases and repetitive keywords. If your app is available in multiple languages, ensure that you submit keywords that cover the languages, so that it is available in different geographical locations.

Category: Choosing the right app category can fetch optimum results. Choosing the right category can be difficult if your app isn’t easily pigeonholed. In the iTunes App Store, the developer can choose a primary mandatory category and a secondary optional category, whereas in Google Play the developer can choose from a list of different categories.

We hope this advice proves useful to you! Have you had success in promoting your app through app store optimization?

Tags: app store rankings, google play seo, aso app store optimization, app optimization, ios app search, app marketing