App Optimisation – Get started with Google Play Store optimisation

App Store Optimisation despite much progress is still an enigma. You will find apps that have no relation to that particular keywords ranking.

There might be multiple reasons for the chaos, despite much progress:

  • Less data point: In comparison with SEO where Google has vast historical and current data points based on website’s other content, backlinks from a relevant high domain website, stay time, interactions etc, in ASO the number of historical and current data points are limited because it’s still a new field.
  • Uninstall numbers:  There is no doubt that Goole uses uninstall rate as a metric for ranking on a relevant keyword. Now, because Google doesn’t provide us with the search analytics on analytics on play store, it’s not possible to figure which keyword is sending you users who love your app and who don’t uninstall. This leads to targeting keywords blindly based on volume and competition, criteria with no guarantee for low uninstall, leading to less understanding of ranking.
  • The Risk taking behaviour of new apps: It is no secret that app’s chances of ranking are higher on keywords used in the title and the short description. Now, a new app, generally focused on a single keyword, uses that keyword liberally in the title and short descriptions, doing so increase their chances of ranking. Sometimes, these new apps use misleading keywords with little relation to their core app feature to just get downloads, which might not stick, but nevertheless, affects the ranking of good apps.
  • The curious case of developing countries: While the tools such as App Annie, App Tweak, and Sensor Tower are good for the developing market for keywords analysis, their accuracy for developing market such as India is pretty low.

Key Aspects of App Store Optimisation

While there are many elements that affect ranking on Appstore, including uninstall rate, engagement, review, descriptions etc, following are the controllable element in short term that we can optimise:

playstore optimisation

Other elements such as uninstall rate require huge time investment and change in the product, so we will focus on these elements only.


These are pretty standards. Just follow these guidelines:

  • Focus on all screenshots: Please note that although many blogs suggest focusing on first two screenshots, you should focus on all. Here is why:
    • When someone searched on Playstore, almost 6 of your screenshots are visible.
    • The logic behind focussing on first two screenshots is that users see those on your Plastore page by default, but as per a study of PlayStore downloads more than 40% users see more than 4 screenshots before download.
  • Tell a story without getting constrained by screenshots: The most successful app pages do not only upload screens but also tell a story. For example, consider the case of Uber – they have depicted even beyond screenshots to tell the story.
  • Make use of localization feature: If your app is localized for different languages, you should provide screenshots that particular language.

Playstore Optimisation

  • Screenshot Split Testing: Google Play store provides a feature to run experiments with different screenshots, allowing you to split-test to identify what works for you. You can then use the results Google Play results to determine iOS app screenshots as well.

If you have designer bandwidth crunch, you can use placeit to design screenshot. Placeit is extremely easy to use.

   Fabulous: Motivate Me! Relax, Meditate, Sleep- screenshot     Uber- screenshot     Aspire UX S8 - Icon Pack- screenshot

Design tips for more scroll rate:

  • Increase the surprise element such as position of screenshot here

playstore optimisation

  •  Highlight particular elements to build a story

  Uber- screenshot thumbnail     Uber- screenshot thumbnail     Uber- screenshot thumbnail      Uber- screenshot     Uber- screenshot

  • Use multiple app screenshots if required

playstore optimisation

  • Use connected image screenshot for visual appeal

playstore optmisation screenshots

App Icon Design

It’s a tiny piece of branding that conveys the essence of your app and makes you stand out. The app icon needs to be unique, recognizable, and scalable (as it needs to be used a variety of places).

Playstore optimisation

Some key pointers for designing app icon:

  • Generally, it’s not a good idea to use “words” in the app icon
  • As the icon needs to be scalable, design it in details so that icon also be used in full screen
  • Add borders to your icon to ensure that the icon looks great on all backgrounds
  • Test the effectiveness of icon by running pilot adds on Facebook.

Text Description

The text description is the most critical part in which the real struggle is – finding the right keyword and using it appropriately.

#1 Collects keywords that are relevant for App

Playstore optimisation


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