29. June 2015 · Comments Off on Creating a Blueprint for more App Downloads With ZERO Budget · Categories: App Updates, Apple, ASO · Tags: , ,

app downloadsGetting more app downloads starts with number crunching

Developers can create the best game in the world, but without putting on their marketing hat, the app will fail.

Oh, we do the minimum: some keywords; a nifty title; a Facebook post and a Tweet, but it’s not nearly enough to truly earn a high number of downloads, sales and ad revenues.

So, we decided to back up a little bit and create a simple blueprint on how to get more downloads for our apps. An “App Downloads and Revenues” Template is available here for you to download.

In our next series of blogs, we’ll walk you through our step-by-step process of improving downloads and revenues of three (3) of our apps.

However, the past month and past quarter, we wanted to see what three apps have been earning the most downloads.

Then, we wanted to see the top revenue numbers by ad companies (AppLovin, Chartboost, etc.). This told us that, perhaps, we were giving too many ad impressions to “Ad Company A” and not getting any clicks or revenues and that maybe we needed to dial down “Company A” and give more impression opportunities to “Company B” and so on.

Next, we ranked the Top 10 apps that created the most ad revenue followed by the Top 10 apps that were generating the most Apple revenue (i.e., in-app purchases; app upgrades, etc.).

This simple spreadsheet can offer a few surprises when you look at all the categories.

For example, our top game by downloads is also No. 1 in ad revenue, but it’s not No. 1 in Apple revenue, which means we should work a little bit on improving or promoting our IAPs within the game.

We also found out a few games were doing well in ad revenue, but are low in download numbers, so we need to increase the downloads, etc.

When you view the good numbers, try to figure out why IAPs are great in your top three games and see what you can do to improve your IAPs in the games that are ranked No. 8, 9 and 10? Why is your No. 1 game earning twice as many downloads at your No. 2 and No. 3 game? Ask yourself questions like these and then come up with a plan for moving forward with improvements.

What’s next?

We selected three games for improvements. Some of these will include minor updates, but our July 2015 focus will be primarily on App Search Optimization (ASO and sometimes called “App Store Optimization”) and marketing techniques. We also plan to roll out this entire improvement project with ZERO budget.

As we move forward, we’ll share more information with you as well as our work progress and download updates.

Download the worksheet here:

App Downloads and Revenues Template (Microsoft Excel version)

 

03. March 2015 · Comments Off on Using Keyword Research Tools for ASO · Categories: ASO · Tags: , , , ,

App Annie keyword research tool for ASOOur journey to find and utilize the best keywords for our app continues as we now start to utilize a few online keyword research tools for ASO.

Some tools are free, while others are free with feature limitations. Those are good places to start so you can get a feel for the tool before slapping down your credit card for a subscription. Introducing:

App Annie http://www.appannie.com/ – Store Stats are free; other services start at $59 per month. We highly recommend App Annie, especially for its daily e-mail reports and analytics. However, this tool is often overlooked for its app store optimization features.

The Market Data section breaks down the top app companies; top games (and more) by Store (iOS and Google Play); by country and by month. For example, in January 2015, the top iOS game downloaded worldwide was Trivia Crack.

On the ASO side of things, you can dig deep into any app to view its targeted keywords and rankings. The app’s Rank History; Reviews; Ratings and how many times it was Features in the iTunes Store are also available.

Once you have an app published, App Annie tracks all the aforementioned stats for your company. For example, on the keyword “trout” our game “The Trout Family Swim and Fish Adventure” ranked No. 4 in the iTunes Store with 117 total apps optimized for the “trout” keyword. Not bad!

Sensor Tower http://sensortower.com/ – 14-day free trial; then $79 per month and up. We use this online tool every day and it’s we’ll worth the monthly fee. With an “Indie Developers” package, you can track up to 80 keywords for approximately 4-5 apps, depending on the total number of keywords.

There are many awesome features, but we are especially fond of Sensor Tower’s Keyword Research and Keyword Suggestion tools. The Keyword Spy feature allows you to take a peek at the keywords other apps are targeting which help generate good keyword ideas.

Keyword analysis, ranking and tracking your own apps is a given here, but a quick glance gives you a daily snapshot of how well your app is ranking for each keyword in both iPhone and iPad search results.

AppCodes http://appcodes.com – $14.95 per month; free demo account for testing the service; easy to use. A simple search for a keyword will return a list of apps (in ranking order) optimized for the targeted keyword. The service’s Search Queries feature quickly reveals six columns of information, including a conservative “chance” you have of ranking well on that keyword.

SearchMan http://searchman.com – Sign up for free; $25 per app per month. We recommend signing up for free and doing a test drive, but this online service may prove to be a little pricey for some developers.

Now you are armed with some great online ASO keyword research resources.

Start digging!

 

 

 

24. February 2015 · Comments Off on ASO Starts With Very Simple Research · Categories: ASO · Tags: , , , , ,

Finding the best keywords for your app is the basis for good App Store Optimization (also known as “ASO”).

However, before you start digging through online app research services such as Sensor Tower, App Annie and others, there are some better avenues you can utilize to do some basic keyword research.

Let’s say, for example, that we have a game app about sailboat racing. So, without relying on Internet keyword searches, come up with an “off-the-top-of-your-head” list of keywords. In less than a minute, I came up with the following quick list:

  • Sail
  • Boat
  • Race
  • Water
  • Ocean
  • Sea
  • Motor
  • Wave
  • Mast
  • Bow
  • Stern
  • Aft

Now, we’re ready for some more help in expanding our list with simple internet searches.

Since I’m looking for terms, I did a simple Google search for “sailing terms” and found the following additions:

  • Nautical
  • Port
  • Docking
  • Anchor
  • Starboard
  • Gooseneck
  • Hull
  • Cabin
  • Keel
  • Rig
  • Rigging
  • Yacht
  • America
  • Cup

I noticed that during my simple research that my terms were getting too technical, so terms like “gooseneck” might not work. I kept the term “cabin” for now, but I might later find out that more users are searching “cabin” to find “cabin rentals” or “cabin vacations” and not for “sailboat cabins.”

I could easily make the above list longer, but I think I have a good, simple start on “sailboat” terms, but I need more “racing” and “water” keywords, including:

  • Sea
  • Lake
  • Coast
  • Crest
  • Marine
  • Tide
  • Current
  • Fast
  • Speed
  • Regatta
  • Course
  • Series

In search for “racing” terms that apply to our sailboat racing app, we found tons of keyword opportunities for auto racing and motorsport racing. However, we continued to dig and started looking for particular “sailboat racing” events to find some more terms including:

  • World
  • Tactics
  • Cup
  • Key West
  • Recreation
  • Vessel
  • Offshore
  • Inshore

That’s a good start!

Next week, we’ll take a few of our starter keywords and dig a little deeper using some online app keyword research tools.