Understanding Success Behind ASO

ASO is not a magic solution, in fact many companies believe that just with ASO you can achieve top ranking for specific keywords. Although this could be done under a very successful campaign, the concept of ASO is to bring a holistic approach to organic traffic.

The following is a series of mini case studies that showcases our experience optimizing apps. We have worked with over 300 app companies in the last 2 years. Our app store optimization approach is unique, transparent and includes a mix of coaching, education and effective keyword research approach.

The following document goal is to inspire you and educate you about how App Store Optimization can bring a realistic ROI to your app marketing plans.

Organic traffic tends to convert better, is more loyal and in the long term helps to build a brand and make your app stronger in the market.

ASO is here to stay, now is your time to make a decision.

EverGreen Results – Top Australian App

EatNow achieved a great success after their launch. We helped the Audit process and we help to find the top selected keywords for IOS and Android. This is today the top food delivery app in the app store in Australia. Ranking has remained stable since the Audit.


Slow gradual improvement – category.

ASO done with time and dedication can bring slow improvement even for Indie Developers. In this case this small startup saw increase in their category. The lack of other type of marketing strategies made the boost from November 10th less than expected, but they still achieved top 10 position in their category for a few months after the optimization was done.


Overall Success – Google Play ASO

In this case we took an app that was recently purchased from one publisher and helped to provide the full optimization to a great app that pretty soon managed to conquer their niche. This is when App store optimization DESCRIPTION and full audit makes a massive difference. Overall a great success.


When Keyword Research and Updates WORK!

In this case we can see clearly how ASO changes done on June 22 after a full audit brought the overall increase of category ranking to a very healthy position in the USA / SPORT Category. This ranking although decreased it maintain a top position , having an increase in category ranking by more than a 400% based on previous ranking.


Specific Ranking Achievement

This is unusual and is not a common practice but in very niche apps, specific ranking for selected keywords can be achieved when the conditions are provided by the app publisher.

In this case vital keywords for the ranking of this Financial/Simulator app has survived in top position for the last 12 months, without any monthly setup or recurrent service. A one time full audit achieved this type of ranking.


When ASO does it’s job.

In this case our job was to help the app increase ranking… and after specific updates it was achieved. The overall ranking of the app increase dramatically. Unfortunately the optimization was a 1 time job and the true potential of ASO wasn’t achieved here. The ranking didn’t continued to increase after the initial audit was done , but overall we were proud of the effects achieved.



Sometime the best type of success with ASO is when you focus with a specific market, in this case with Antivirus booster and Cleaner (PSAFE) we focus in understanding the Brazilian market. We well knew that this was an evergreen topic and achieving good positioning will last for a while.

Well, we were right, This app has been not only in top for utilities in Brazil, but it has been in top overall position for over 1 year.

No need to brag, the app is simple amazing, we only helped to obtain more organic traffic, and better ranking.


Many companies many different strategies.

SO why they are so many different results under different apps? the reason is the different type of budgets, integrations with different marketing strategies and the overall effort they have done to maximize the effects of their ASO.

ASO works, the big question is, are you willing to embrace the possibilities. We have found that the best results are results once we work for over 45 days in the ASO campaign and with companies that are willing to be realistic. Unrealistic goals in the app industry is one of the biggest problems that app publishers face. It’s expensive to achieve your position to the top and if you want to play with the big boys, you need to step it up, be realistic, embrace all type of marketing and make your company and your overall plan accountable of your own goals, implementation and capacity to react and change course.



Understanding the Algorithm

In the last 12 months , ASO, (App store optimization) has become more and more popular in the app development community. It seems that everyone now understand that ASO is not a fade, and that proper and smart ASO can brings clear results – the problem is… how clear are those results and what type of tactics do you need to set to achieve any clear ranking increase in the app store.

To start let me clarify is not easy, many developers seemed confused.

The app stores are like secret black boxes, full of variables with so unknown factors, that understanding what to do in each app store becomes extremely challenging. Not only you have to understand what to do, but to adapt your strategy depending of the app store.

Why understanding the companies behind each App Stores matters.

App stores are ruled by their algorithm, the algorithm is the mathematical formula that determines the ranking of apps in the app store.

Each Algorithm is like the Coca Cola recipe… secret, confusing, difficult to replicate and even … like Coke … unhealthy in many cases.

Algorithms are not perfect – mainly because they are developed by humans and engineers… and those engineers develop algorithms under different companies policy.
Therefor if you understand how the company works, you can understand why the Algorithm and the app store behaves in certain ways.

Apple – iOS App Store
Apple has been for sure one of the most “secret” companies ever.
The lack of two way communication with the developers community has been clear for years, with Apple is Apple ways or the highway (just ask AppGratis).

Not only Apple is famous for their lack of “negotiation’ or “compromising”, but they are also horrible in the “Honesty Department”.

Yes. Apple tends not to be very honest at confessing or disclosing their own weakeneses… and this lack of transparency in confessing their own flaws, mistakes is evident in the problem with discoverability in the app store.

Let me say this loud and clear: Apple IOS algorithm is mediocre and lacks of the smart-ninja SEARCH capacities, you may expect in a multi-billion company. Although many developers have begged, cried and prayed to apple to improve the algorithm, Apple has never announce their intention to do so in a proper and effective way.
That’s why if if we understand how Apple works, we may be able to assume that their algorithm will also behave in the same way the company works.

So what can can we expect from Apple App store algorithm:

    • A more cluttered app store
    • Less communication.
    • More focus on Editorial and less in discoverability
    • Potential undisclosed algorithm modifications
    • More banning of apps and obviously ..
    • Less clarity in how the app store really works. in the other side of the arena we have….

Google Play
Google didn’t have to buy a company to improve their Search Algorithm (like Apple with Chump). The problem for Google is that Google is a search company , not a mobile company and modifying their big bad boy Algorithm to work in Apps, hasn’t been easy.

The difference with Apple is that Googlers are more nerds than artists and they have been playing the SEARCH Game for years.

Google Engineers have through skin, they are experts in developing new algorithm rules to fight spam, keyword stuffing, backdoors, you name it. not only Google has made search possible, but they have allowed us to search anything and everything in the most effective way possible. From videos, news, documents, patents, images and now apps…

Google boys know what they are doing, and they are open about it.
If you are a webmaster you can now know before hand when Google plans to launch and update and in many cases even be ready to do so, by following Matt Cutts online or their Google webmaster blog updates.

So can we expect from Google Play Algorithm?

  • More communication with developers.
  • More importance to social factors
  • A faster more LSI app algorithm
  • More Search Patents applied to Apps behaviour
  • more relevance to customer/user behaviour history

So why all this matter?
As a developer you need to understand the algorithms that rank your apps, are determined by policies, burocracy, intelligence and insanity of the companies behind each app store. An Algorithm is usually a honest reflection of companies philosophies.

The more we understand how Apple and Google behave, the more accurate we can predict what will happen with Search in the app stores… and the more we know, the more prepared we will be to adapt to the future changes.