App Store Optimization – The Only Rule You Need to Know

< Back to Blog

Kevin Ford

January 18th, 2013

App Store Optimization (ASO) is without a doubt the new SEO. But the rules have changed, and developerseverywhere are searching for the secret sauce that will help their apps swim in a sea of apps.

The question is, does any of it really work?

Before we dive into the subject, it’s important to note that apps have created a new type of impulse buy. Where traditional software required you to go to physical stores or websites, compare prices and take time to make a decision, apps have eliminated the need for any sort of “real” thinking process.

Sure apps may cost a dollar or two, but really does paying $0.99 involve any real decision-making? Not likely.

In fact, most downloads occur once apps reach high enough up the charts that organic traction starts to kick in. That being said, there’s no reason not to make use of the space that Apple allows you.

Let’s Look at this in Detail.

Start by developing a list of relevant keywords that are perfectly suited to your apps. Use them to describe your app, but also the experience your app offers, such as fun, exciting, action, scary, etc…

Now enter these words in the App Store and see what comes up. If the apps are similar to yours, you’re doing it right. Once your final list of keywords is ready, here’s where you can, and should include them.

  • Your App’s Title
  • Your App’s Description
  • Keywords

Titles are a great way to catch a reader’s attention. Including keywords along with your app’s name is usually a good idea. Here are a few examples of this at work.

  • Photo Editor – Fotolr
  • Emoji2 – 300 New Emoticons and Symbols!
  • Fitness Buddy: 1700+ Exercise Workout Journal


Your app’s description should also be rich with the keywords you’ve researched. But you will also want to make sure it flows well and is marketing oriented. After all, gaining more downloads is what it’s all about.

Make it Hot

There’s really no other way to put this so let’s use the old cliche, a picture is worth a thousand words. Your app’s visuals need to really pop and make an impression to increase your chances of your app being downloaded. This goes for your icon and screenshots, so make each one count. Prior to publishing your app, let others look at the visual and compare them to see which one works best.

Think back at the last few apps you’ve downloaded. Chances are you downloaded them A) because they were free, and B) because they simply looked good. Come on, we’ve all done it.

Last, but not Least

The only rule you need to know for app store optimization is, don’t overdo it like this “run out of breath” title.

Lock Photo+Video, Docs+Audio+Notes, Gallery/Diary, File&Documents, Pics/Image Album, Picture/Pictures Folder & Private-Photo-Vault: A Secure Disk To Protect My Secret Videos,Data, Photos & Photo-Privacy Safe With Password Pro

Yup, that’s a real title.

Kevin Ford

Marketing Manager


Leave a comment

Artificial Intelligence and the Chinese Mobile App Market: Changes on the Horizon

Kevin Ford - September 1st, 2019

Artificial intelligence (AI) is no longer something to be feared. Instead, machines are going to change how life is in […]

Read More >

4 Things Mobile Developers Can Learn About the Chinese Mobile App Market

Kevin Ford - August 12th, 2019

American companies – all western brands to be exact – are having a hard time breaking into the Chinese mobile […]

Read More >

Important Changes in Chinese Mobile App Market Development

Kevin Ford - July 24th, 2019

Although mobile app markets are indeed a global phenomenon, China is leading the way with crucial changes in how they […]

Read More >