Right now, it’s difficult to think of a world without apps. They are an indispensable part of our lives, helping us in every area of them, including travel, finances, entertainment, and even feeding ourselves. Indeed, you can use 1 app to order a big greasy burger, and a different app to help you lose weight afterward! But this means that there are countless apps out there. If there’s an app for one particular problem or purpose, you can bet there are at least 10 other different apps doing the same or similar thing. This means knowing how to get more downloads for your app is crucial to your success as a developer.
So, what exactly can you do to increase the number of downloads your app gets? Thankfully, there are many ways to do this that don’t require vast sums of investment or ridiculous amounts of your time. However, we’ve whittled them down to seven of some of the most effective ways.
#1 Make Sure Your App Works Well
You may think that this is a daft thing to say, but it really is worth saying. No one wants to download a buggy, broken, or difficult to use the app. If users don’t like an app because of usability issues, they’re going to tell others about just how bad your app is. They’ll also leave less than glowing reviews and ratings on Google Play.
If your app is just starting out, you really don’t want to get a bad reputation too quickly. Bad reviews and ratings not only turn potential users away from downloading your app, but it means your app will never get to appear near the top of that gigantic heap of apps you’re competing against.
So, if you want to get more downloads for your app, make sure it’s as pristine as possible by making sure the software is robust, stable, and usable.
#2 Do Your Keyword Homework For A+ ASO
Now that you’re sure your app isn’t going to earn the ire of discerning users, you need to try and get your page noticed. For this, you’re going to need to work on your app store optimization (ASO).
Think of ASO as SEO (search engine optimization) for your app’s store page.
But why is this important? Surely your app is good enough that the quality of the product will speak for itself?
Unfortunately, this is not the case. Good ASO and keywords increase your app’s visibility on Google Play. The better your visibility, the higher up that bottomless list of apps that you will be placed. The higher up that list you are, the more downloads you’re going to get.
So, what keywords should you use? Should you use the more popular head and mid-tail keywords, or the more obscure long-tail ones?
Well, the answer may surprise you.
Long-tail keywords are actually the best keywords to focus on. This is because the head and mid-tail keywords have a high level of competition that means it is very hard to rank well for them.
When you focus on long-tail keywords, there are 2 main benefits you’ll reap. Firstly, it’ll be far easier for you to rank at the top of searches for them, simply because there is significantly less competition vying for that top spot using that keyword or phrase.
Secondly, the conversion rates of long-tail keywords are much higher than the head or mid-tail. This is because potential users using long-tail keywords are already looking for something quite specific and are keen on getting what they want. Therefore, they’re more likely to click download because you came up top trumps for what they’re searching for.
Finding a relevant and appropriate set of long-tail keywords to use for ASO can take a lot of time and effort. But, given that the payload from these can be quite significant, the extensive keyword research you’ll do on this really has the potential to be worth your while.
#3 Get Your On-Metadata on the Money
Your thorough keyword research is bringing people to your app’s Google Store page.
However, to really be sure that people are going to press that “download” button, you need to make sure your app page’s on-metadata is as complete as possible.
But, what is on-metadata?
On-metadata is all the details that you provide about your app to Google Play. Most of it will be seen by potential users on your app’s store page. This includes information like:
- App name
- Developer name
- App description
- App logo
- Featured images
Because your app’s store page is basically your sales pitch, you want all of the above to be as complete and as professional-looking as possible. This way, people looking at your Google Play page can get a comprehensive idea about what your app does and the features it includes. This means they’re going to be more likely to download it.
Another bonus of having your on-metadata as complete as possible is that Google Play prefers apps and developers that fill in this information. The more Google Play likes you, the better chances you have of improving your visibility and moving up that list of apps. This means more downloads.
#4 Get on Track with Your Tracking and Monitoring
Building up good ASO and having spectacular looking and complete on-metadata doesn’t mean you can now rest on your laurels. Ensuring you get as many downloads as possible for your app requires constant monitoring.
Therefore, be sure to get into the habit of checking your tracking and monitoring stats as often as possible.
This is information that you can easily access from the Google Play console and includes things like:
- Crash and ANR (application not responding) reports
- Keyword rankings
- Number of active installs
- Number of uninstalls
- Google Play user rating
If any of the information above starts to look bad, then you know you have a problem. But, because you’re regularly checking this, you can quickly identify and rectify the problem before there are any significant and long-lasting dents in your download rate.
If you’ve not checked this information before, you might be able to find the one thing that’s causing your download rate to be low. So, it’s definitely worth taking at least a peek at this information.
#5 Bad Reviews Don’t Necessarily Mean Bad Business
Even if you’ve got your app in excellent working order, you’re still likely to get bad reviews. This is because some versions of you app might not work great on some phones, there still might be some bugs that you’ve missed, or users might be finding your app a little difficult to use.
When you see these bad reviews and barbed remarks on Googe Play, don’t be scared by them. You can use this negative situation to turn it into positive marketing for your app. But, how do you do this?
Well, be as sympathetic, polite, and as helpful as possible. Try and respond, or even help fix the problem your user is disgruntled about.
This way, even if the review is bad, potential users can see that you’re fully engaged in your app and its users. It also shows you are dedicated to improving your app, and willing to take user feedback onboard. This oozes professionalism and shows your app is not made by some cowboy developer or uncaring app house.
Once you’ve solved a user’s issue, you might want to request that, now that they’re happy again, they might want to consider revising their rating to a higher one and updating their review. However, don’t be pushy about this as it can just make a user even more unhappy.
Succesful shopping list app, Listonic, have a dedicated team to respond to user ratings and reviews in this manner. Not only does it keep their ratings high and therefore keep the downloads coming in, but it has also given users a real chance to influence how the app is developed. Many features have been improved to make them more usable and effective because of this. Also, other new features recently implement are ones that have actually been suggested by users via their reviews.
Listonic knows that happy customers mean more downloads, and you should, too.
#6 Ask, and Ye Shall Get Good Reviews
One of the problems with human beings is that they’re far more likely to write a review and leave a rating if they have a problem or an issue with an app. They’re far less likely to leave a positive one if things are going swimmingly.
Of course, we know positive ratings and reviews means more downloads. But if users aren’t going to organically leave them when all is going well, how can you get them?
Many apps have a pop-up message in their app that appears from time to time asking users if they’re enjoying the app or not and requesting them to leave a review and rating on Google Play.
However, the success of this all hinges on the frequency and tone of these call to action pop-ups. Be too pushy and ask too often, and users are going to get frustrated and might go and leave a bad rating and review instead.
But, if you’re polite, casual, and friendly, and keep the number of times you try and lightly nudge your users into leaving a positive review and rating to a minimum, you’re more likely to get the responses and reviews you want from them.
#7 Be Sociable
As much as it’s difficult to imagine a world without apps, it’s also difficult to imagine one without social networks. How would we connect with each other? Who would we show pictures of our food to? How would we see the newest memes?
Because social media has become a big part of our lives it really doesn’t make much sense to leave your app disconnected from myriad social networks. The fact that the vast majority of them are free to use, means it makes even less sense to shy away from tweeting, pinning, or Instagramming.
But, you can’t just sign up and expect to be an influential influencer overnight. A good social media presence takes time and effort.
In order to get more downloads via social networks, you need to be ensuring you post engaging and relevant high-quality content as often as you can. Put in that effort and you can get your app trending, or even better, make it go viral.
Social media can also be a great channel for users to send you feedback. Your Google Play reviews, therefore, won’t be the only way users can tell you if there’s a problem or about improvements you can make.
Therefore, being popular on social media can make you look great, can help get exposure for your app out to a wider audience, and really boost your download numbers.
Feature Image By Parampreet Chanana from Pixabay.com