Ways of app install decisions making by mobile users on AppStore and GooglePlay

The ideal number of app installs consists of three conversion opportunities that you need to win in order to achieve your goals. The number one deciding factor for the users are the reviews and ratings, although their differentiation power has been steadily going down. The new key factor is the app description, while app videos are at the third position. However, in order to reach your objectives, you should divide efforts equally between all three elements, paying special attention to the various parameters like category, title, icon, and so on.

Why App Store optimization really matters

Every bit of information regarding your app should be supplied to the App Store and Google Play. After you’ve put so much effort into creating, marketing, and optimizing the Google Play app, it would be just terrible to see your efforts go to waste. If you’re aiming for a positive return on investment, then working to triple your conversion rate, which, in turn, will increase the installs number, then optimization should be your main concern.

Three conversion opportunities

Out of all conversion opportunities that exist in Google Play and App Store, three are by far the most essential ones and require most of your attention. However, you should keep in mind that different conversion opportunities call for different elements, and the value of the same elements is not the same for the three conversion channels. For instance, when it comes to the app’s icon and name, they are crucial for contextualized browsing and active search, while their position in the app listing page is not as important.

App listing, which is the dedicated page for your app that a user reaches through a direct link. Every bit of valuable information about your app should be listed here, so that the user performs the goal action, which is an install.

Contextualized browsing, which is a user looking through app lists and compilations devoted to one topic, for example, Top Free Apps or Apps For Monitoring Your Health. Here your app name and icon matter as much as the category.

Active search, when a user is looking for a specific phrase or app name and your app is featured in the search results. The app’s category, name and icon matter the most here, although the star rating on Google Play comes into action as well.

Of course, these are not all of the conversion opportunities you can use to maximize your ROI. Other effective methods include leader board listings and featured listings. However, appearing on those lists doesn’t dramatically improve your search results position.

What do users really want?

As numerous studies have shown, task accomplishment is the biggest moving force behind app installs. The better your app is tailored to address a typical user’s needs, the most installs it is going to get. If you’re imagining a user carefully looking through every app description and mindfully making a decision, you’re wrong – instead, users look through app listings in a hurry, scanning for the necessary keywords or imagery.

If you go deep into install tendencies that differ by age, sex, and platform, you will realize several interesting things. For example, women make their decisions based on reviews and ratings, while men care more about screenshots and videos, which leads us to believe that while men care about the visual aspect more, women tend to be more social.

App name and icon

Many app developers believe that the icon is the last thing a users looks at when choosing an app to install, and this opinion is supported by plenty of research data. However, there are situations when the app icon and title matter as much as the other elements of the app. For instance, when a user is dealing with contextualized browsing and active search, the name and icon are often the first thing a user encounters, which means they can be a major deciding factor. Here your goal is not to make the user make the install immediately, but rather to lead him deeper into the conversion funnel, where the install is more likely to happen naturally.

Reviews and ratings

Both app reviews and ratings are an extremely important parameter of successful conversion. Becoming one of the top 100 apps in your category on App Store Google or iOS App Store takes a lot of work, and reviews and ratings can be crucial in bringing your closer to the top. Nevertheless, here lies a downside of investing too much time and money into ratings and reviews. While they can be absolutely necessary for ranking high on iOS App Store and App Store Google, but they are not nearly enough for success. The reason for that is the fact that all popular apps have excellent reviews and high ratings, which means that although your Google Play app may look more attractive to the users, it’s not enough to differentiate you from them. That is why your mobile app marketing strategy should definitely include good ratings and app game reviews, but don’t put too much hope into them.

App descriptions

App game reviews are the first thing that can help you become exposed to more users; descriptions are the next, much more important step. Today app promotion cannot be imagined without optimizing the app description, because as much as 70% of Google and iOS App Store name description among their top three deciding factors while browsing apps. Contrary to a popular belief, in mobile app marketing the description does not only function as a source of information about the app for the users, but also helps you achieve a higher position in the ratings, a position that app reviews can’t bring you on their own.

Remember that in order to have effective app promotion, your app needs to help people complete their tasks. The best way your app can assist in task completion is by giving the users a clear description of what they will find once they install the app. This is a lot of like web SEO, when your goal can serve two functions, of optimizing your position in the rankings and by making your point at the same time.

App videos

If there is one thing that is true for every app, it’s that app videos matter a lot. You can check it yourself: take a look at each top Google Play app and you will quickly realize that the apps that include videos receive much better ranking than the ones that have no videos. The video may not be the most important element, but it’s taken into consideration by over 60% of users. Plus, videos are significantly more popular with younger users, who are often the driving force of early app adoption. Think of the app video as a test drive before buying a car – the latter likely will never happen without the former.

To sum up

The optimization methods for app promotion we’ve described above are not all the options you have in app marketing. There is A/B testing, screenshots, and different app consumption tendencies between various genders, ages, and platforms. If you’re determined to make your strategy work, you can spend ages optimizing it and there still be something new to learn every day. However, there is one important thing to keep in mind: the question of where to optimize the app promotion for is as essential as what exactly you want to optimize.