Every app entrepreneur faces the challenge of how to gain users once their app is built. Lucky for you we have some little known secrets that can help you increase users for your Android App.
Ankit Jain, Head of Search and Discovery at Google Play shared some secrets at last years Google I/O conference on how to improve discoverability of your Android app.
Here are some takeaways from Ankit Jain’s presentation:
Search makes up the vast majority of installs. There are two types of search queries that Google looks at:
Categorical Queries: You know the general idea of what you want or what you want to do and you use search to find the best option. “I had to get something done so I looked it up.” For example you needed a recipe so you looked for a recipe app.
Navigational Queries: Example — A friend told you about an app or you heard about it through marketing. You are searching for something specific for example I need HotelTonight.
On any given day 12% of users are searching for new apps and on any given week 50% of users are searching for new apps.
Really thinking about search is important to figure out how to get discovered on Google Play.
The most important piece of app metadata is the title of your app.
When creating your app title on Google Play: It’s important to be creative but it’s important to be very clear.
Beautylish: Makeup Beauty Tips
This is a good example because it’s easy for someone to know exactly what this app does and it helps for SEO.
When creating your app description on Google Play– get the main message out first.
Example: Star Chart- You can now have a virtual planetarium in your pocket.
When creating your app description make sure your user knows what your app is about up front. Then use the rest of the description to talk about awards, accolades, exposure, etc.
Use Real Screenshots on Google Play– Users actually check this. If you don’t user real screenshots, users might uninstall your app or give you a bad review.
Video Previews on Google Play– Video previews are amongst the most convincing features in the app preview page.
4 Factors that affect discoverability of your app in Google Play:
Installs — The more installs you have the higher you’ll be ranked in the play store
Uninstalls — Google also cares about how many uninstalls you have because that’s an indication if users are having a good or bad experience.
Long Installs– If a person plays through or uses an app for a long period of time you will not be penalized for uninstalls.
Engagement– When are people using it, how are they using it, etc.
How to be in the Top New App List on Google Play:
** If you’re looking to be in the top new apps section (free or paid) know that your app has to be among the top installs within the first 30 days of launching your app.
How to Be in the Trending Apps on Google Play:
To highlight apps that are growing faster than Google predicted — Google has an algorithm that predicts how quickly apps will grow — if your app moves faster than Google projected then you have the opportunity to make it into the trending list.
How does Google determine Related/ Cross Sell app opportunities:
If someone downloads the Bank of America App for example, Google Play will suggest other complimentary apps such as a trading app- not another banking app.
5 Things That You Can Do To Improve Discoverability and Increase Users
#1 Rule create an app that has a great experience for your users.
1. Design for tablets- There is increased discoverability for developers who’ve gone through the trouble of designing an app for tablets.
2. Ensure Helpful Web Anchors- Most articles written about apps right now have a link at the end that says “Play Link” and links to the app in the app store. Google trusts more authoritative sources that have a link to your app somewhere in the context of the article instead of just putting a link at the end.
3. Avoid Common Mistakes- Don’t choose names that are close variants of popular apps. 50% of queries are misspelled- don’t pick names that are commonly misspelled. If you have a developer URL- upload it.
4. Make your APK smaller- Users tend to install smaller APKs more than larger apps. As a users memory becomes full they tend to uninstall large apps first.
5. Create the Viral Loop for Your App- Getting people to rate your app is really important if you want to show up as a suggested app to a users friends. Get the +1 api that users can +1 your app from inside your app.
Any other secrets you know that I missed, feel free to add them below.