What app store optimization tools should your startup use?

What app store search optimization tools are available to your startup? Join us as we take a look at what app store optimization is, and which tools you should be using.

You’ve created an awesome mobile app and want everyone to download it. The big question is… how do you make people aware?

App store optimization is essential if you want people to find your app in big app stores like Google Play and the Apple App Store. The good news is that there are plenty of optimization tools you can take advantage of to make sure your app uses all the right keywords.

In this article, we’ll answer the question ‘What is app store optimization?’ and take a look at some of the current and best app store search optimization tools on the market. We’ll also provide some top tips and hints for optimizing your brand-new app like an expert.

Remember, if you need some help and support launching and marketing your startup’s app.

What is app store optimisation?

What is app store optimisation?

App store optimization, or ASO, is the process of optimizing your mobile app in order to rank as high as possible in the search results of your chosen app store. 

ASO is a lot like search engine optimization (SEO). However, instead of trying to rank in Google or Bing, you’re trying to rank in the App Store, Google Play, or Samsung Galaxy Store. 70% of people use app store search to find new apps, so the higher you can rank, the better for your startup.

There’s a lot of competition in app stores, with an estimated 3,700 apps added to Google Play every single day. This means you need to make sure your app stands out and entices people to download it, especially if people aren’t searching for your app by name. 

The more trustworthy and credible your app, as well as how relevant it is to users, the more likely the app stores are to feature it highly.

So, what does the app store search optimization cover? Different app stores place different emphasis on specific factors, but as a rule of thumb, the following criteria apply to all app stores.

  • The title of your app
  • The description of your app
  • How often your app is installed and uninstalled
  • How regularly your app is used
  • How frequently do you update your app
  • The backlinks you get (how often your app is linked to from high-quality and relevant websites)
  • The ratings and reviews you receive

The App Store also lets you add additional keywords to your app, but this isn’t a feature in Google Play.

Looking for more ways to promote your mobile app for free? Check out our comprehensive guide.

Our favorite app store search optimization tools

Our favorite app store search optimization tools

While an app store search optimization tool isn’t essential when it comes to ASO, it can be very helpful, especially if you need valuable insights quickly. 

An ASO tool can help you find the right keywords to target, offer suggestions for optimizing your app, let you track your rankings, and even keep an eye on your nearest competitors.

Here are some of the best app store search optimization tools out there at the moment.

1. App Radar

One of the most popular ASO tools on the market, App Radar has lots of different features that allow startups to effortlessly optimize their app search optimization.

We like App Radar as it’s easy to use, and you can get daily ranking reports to see how you’re doing in the search results. 

Price: From €69 ($76) a month – with a 7-day free trial.

2. AppFollow

AppFollow has a free plan, which means you can monitor your ASO even if your startup has a tight marketing budget. However, the paid-for plan is quite expensive by comparison.

The detailed dashboard provides a lot of valuable information, and the customer support is very good.

Price: The free plan provides you with 1,000 keywords and allows you to monitor two apps. The paid plan costs АКЩЬ $142 a month, with a 10-day free trial.

3. AppTweak

AppTweak is currently the highest-rated ASO tool on review platform G2, and it’s easy to see why. The interface is easy to use; it reminds us a little of Google Analytics. 

We also love the timeline feature, which tracks when your competitors make amends to their apps in the store.

Price: From $105 a month, with a 7-day free trial. 

4. ASODesk

We love the number of features you get with ASODesk. As well as keyword research and competitor monitoring, you can respond to reviews directly from the platform, which helps to save time. 

Plus, ASODesk is constantly growing and evolving, meaning you get access to new features regularly.

Price: From $59 a month with a 14-day free trial.

5. Mobile Action

Mobile Action offers a lot of free tools; for example, you can connect your Apple account to see how your app is doing in the App Store. There is also a paid-for version if you’re looking for more functionality, which is extremely helpful when it comes to keyword research.

Pricing: Mobile Action offers a free plan with 100 keywords and ten apps. You need to contact the sales team and schedule a demo for the paid plan.

6. StoreMaven

StoreMaven specializes in A/B testing for mobile apps. This is when you run two different app descriptions and see which one users respond to best. This can give you lots of valuable insight when it comes to ASO. 

As well as A/B testing, StoreMaven offers lots of other ASO functionality, including audience mapping and keyword reporting. However, the pricing is by request, which means it’s not the cheapest option!

Pricing: On request only.

7. TheTool (by AppRadar)

TheTool is a good all-rounder. It doesn’t go into the levels of detail that some of the other app store optimization tools in this article do. However, it’s easy to use and ideal for startups that are just getting to grips with ASO.

Pricing: From €69 ($76) a month – with a 7-day free trial.

What to consider when choosing an app store optimization tool?

What to consider when choosing an app store optimization tool

Which of the app store optimization tools we’ve mentioned is best for your business? It depends on what you’re looking for. Here’s what to bear in mind when choosing the right tool.

  • Pricing. Some tools are more expensive than others. You often save money if you’re willing to pay annually;
  • Features. A good starting point is to look at the number of keywords you can track and the number of apps you can monitor. Think of what you want from your app store optimization tool of choice and check to see that it ticks off all the boxes;
  • Number of seats. Depending on the number of people who need access, you may need more than one login for your optimization tool;
  • Learning curve. Some tools are easy to use, while others can be more complicated. Look at the resources available and the level of customer support you receive;
  • Countries. Some tools are locked in on one country, while others let you track multiple regions – ideal if you want your app to have an international presence;
  • Integrations. Some tools integrate with other software you might use, like Salesforce or Zapier. Others have an API you can plug into your own systems.

All the tools we’ve looked at come with a free trial so you can set up an account and see if the features are right for your needs before you commit.

More top tips for app store search optimization

More top tips for app store search optimization

Having a solid and reliable tool on your side is only part of the equation when developing your ASO strategy. Here are some other things to consider:

Use the right keywords (but don’t overdo it)

ASO and SEO are very similar in that using the right keywords can be beneficial to your ranking. 

Conversely, shoehorning your keywords can be detrimental. Not only can it harm your ranking, but it can also make your app look scammy. 

Focus on low-competition, high-volume keywords and use them sparingly. If you don’t have access to an app store search optimization tool like the ones mentioned above, a SEO keyword research tool like Semrush, Ahrefs, or Ubersuggest can also work well.

Localize your ASO

The great thing about app stores is that anyone from anywhere in the world can download your app. However, it’s important to realize that different countries, languages, and regions, will want different things from your smartphone app.

Consider not just your keywords but what users might want from your app. For example, US-based customers might be interested in different features than UK-based ones.

Consider seasonality

Your ASO won’t be static throughout the course of the year; it needs to change in line with your customer’s flexing wants and needs.

For example, let’s say you have an exercise and fitness app. By adapting your keywords and copy to appeal to people looking to lose weight and get fit after Christmas, you can reap the rewards.

Think about your visuals

It’s not just about your keywords and content. A bright, eye-catching icon, engaging screenshots, and fun videos can help draw users in and encourage them to check you out. 

A good starting point is to look at your competitors in the search results. What can you do to stand out from the crowd?

Get feedback and ratings (but don’t be pushy)

Positive feedback and reviews can give you a well-deserved push in the rankings, while negative feedback can pull you down. After all, it’s in the App Store and Google Play’s best interest to serve the highest-rated apps to customers.

Encourage customers to provide you with feedback and ratings, but don’t do it too often, as you can irritate them. A good idea is to prompt users to leave a review after completing a positive action in your app like finishing a level or achieving a goal.

Also be sure to reply to all reviews, good and bad. Showing your willingness to listen to negative feedback and make changes can encourage customers to download your app.

Update your app regularly

With SEO, updating your website with new information can give you a boost in the rankings. The same logic applies to ASO. App stores are more likely to give prominence to regularly refreshed apps.

After all, if you had the choice to download two apps, one which was updated a week ago and one which was updated a year ago, which would you prefer?

We recommend updating your app at least once a month, even if it’s just to fix a bug or two. Plus, you can use the ‘what’s been updated’ section to include your keywords for an ASO boost.

Keep monitoring and checking

Our final tip? Remember that app store optimization is an ongoing process; it’s not something you can do once and forget about. 

Monitor your app’s performance, keep an eye on your competitors and industry trends, and regularly update your ASO to always stay on top.

Want more information about developing and marketing your custom mobile app? Check out the You are launched blog for all the latest insights.


What is app store optimization (ASO)?

App store optimization, or ASO, is the process of optimizing your mobile app to achieve higher visibility and ranking within app store search results. Similar to search engine optimization (SEO) for websites, ASO focuses on enhancing your app’s presence on platforms like the App Store, Google Play, and Samsung Galaxy Store. ASO aims to increase your app’s discoverability, downloads, and overall success by strategically using relevant keywords and factors that influence the app store algorithms.

Why is app store optimization important for my mobile app?

ASO is crucial because it significantly impacts your app’s chances of being found by potential users. Around 70% of users discover new apps through app store searches. As the app marketplace is competitive with thousands of new apps being added daily, ASO helps your app stand out amidst the crowd and encourages users to download it, even if they’re not searching for it by name.

What factors does app store search optimization cover?

App store search optimization involves various factors that influence your app’s ranking. These include the title and description of your app, installation and uninstallation rates, user engagement frequency, update frequency, quality and quantity of ratings and reviews, and backlinks from reputable sources. Different app stores may have varying emphasis on specific factors, but the mentioned criteria generally apply to all major platforms.

Are there tools available to help with app store optimization?

Yes, there are several app store search optimization tools that can greatly assist in optimizing your app effectively. Some notable tools include App Radar, AppFollow, AppTweak, ASODesk, Mobile Action, StoreMaven, and TheTool. These tools offer features like keyword research, competitor analysis, performance tracking, and more, helping you refine your ASO strategy and achieve better results.

How do I choose the right app store optimization tool for my app?

When selecting an ASO tool, consider factors such as pricing, features (keyword tracking, app monitoring, etc.), the number of users/licenses, learning curve, international coverage, integrations with other software, and customer support. Most tools offer free trials, allowing you to evaluate their suitability for your needs before committing to a subscription.

What are some additional tips for effective app store search optimization?

In addition to using ASO tools, consider these tips for optimal results:
– Select keywords thoughtfully, avoiding keyword stuffing.
– Localize your app’s description and features to cater to different regions and languages.
– Adapt your ASO strategy based on seasonal trends and user preferences.
– Enhance your app’s visuals with eye-catching icons, screenshots, and videos.
– Encourage user feedback and ratings, responding to both positive and negative reviews.
– Regularly update your app to showcase its relevance and attract users.
– Continuously monitor performance, stay informed about industry trends, and adjust your ASO strategy accordingly.
For more insights on developing and promoting your mobile app, explore our comprehensive guide on the You are launched blog.

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