App SEO Guide

App SEO Guide
Article by Bisera Stankovska
Last Updated: November 11, 2023

The internet is a prominent place with many opportunities, especially for mobile app developers, but getting people to notice your new app can be challenging. That's where app SEO comes in.

SEO for apps is a way to use search engines to help people find your app naturally, without paid ads. It can attract people who are actually interested in what your app offers and are more likely to become loyal users. This article reveals how to use SEO for your mobile app.

What Is App SEO?

App SEO, or Application Search Engine Optimization, is the practice of optimizing your mobile application to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). While traditional SEO focuses on improving the visibility of websites, app SEO aims to make your mobile application more discoverable in search engines and within app stores such as Apple's App Store or Google Play.

The goal is to attract high-quality, organic traffic to your app's listing, which can lead to more downloads and user engagement. App SEO incorporates various strategies, including keyword research, app indexing, and quality backlinks, to improve the app's visibility. It often works together with App Store Optimization (ASO), which is specifically focused on enhancing an app's ranking within App Store search results.

By effectively implementing App SEO, you can increase your app's visibility, reach a wider audience, and ultimately achieve better results in downloads and user engagement.

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How To Conduct Effective App SEO in 5 Steps

Knowing the benefits of SEO and ASO and why they’re essential steps in marketing your app, let’s take a look at how to integrate them in into your strategy effectively.

  1. Optimize Your App
  2. Create a Network to Drive Traffic
  3. Use the Right Keywords
  4. Measure Your Mobile App SEO
  5. Stay Updated on Best Practices in SEO for Mobile Apps

Step 1: Optimize Your App

It should go without saying that the first step in serving a product is to ensure it’s working correctly. An unusable application won’t stay installed for long, and bad experiences often lead to negative reviews that can hurt your app store ranking. Similar to how websites need to load quickly and to be well-designed and thought-out, your app should be just as optimized to the user’s needs.

Step 2: Create a Network to Drive Traffic

SEO and ASO work best when surrounded by a network of platforms and pages that support their online presence. We recommend starting with a website and a landing page dedicated to informing potential customers of your application.

As you set up your website, plan its content appropriately as your online headquarters. And as mentioned above, fast loading times are an essential part of keeping your audience’s eyes on your website for long enough to convert leads into sales. This is where blog posts come in, as they benefit customers with educational content while keeping their attention on your website. This decreases your bounce rate (which helps your SEO ranking), informing search engines that your website can meet your customers’ needs, providing quality service that they favor and boosting your search engine ranking.

Additionally, you can set up social media pages, craft guest post content on relevant websites, partner with peer reviewers for your product and endorse it to more people. Users are 71% more likely to trust online referrals, so creating a good product and ensuring a good user experience plays an essential role before you even market your service.

The goal is to create a network of backlinks and references to your app, endorsing its usefulness and educating users on the benefits of searching and downloading the app.

Step 3: Use the Right Keywords

Keyword research informs you what words and phrases to use for your application title, product descriptions, subtitles, app reviews, and even the content you’ll post about the application. Practicing clever copywriting in your content to effectively inform users of your app’s benefits. This works well with search engines’ algorithms and serves the solutions you’ve promised to provide your customers.

The importance of metadata for app SEO is emphasized by Avinash Chandra, Branding, Integrated & Digital Marketing consultant and Founder of BrandLoom Consulting:

"The most critical aspect of SEO for mobile apps is optimizing your app's metadata, specifically the title and description. Your app's title should be concise, informative, and include relevant keywords. In the description, focus on showcasing the app's unique features and benefits, again incorporating keywords naturally.

This is crucial because the app stores use these elements to understand your app's purpose and relevance to user searches. A well-optimized title and description increase your app's visibility and chances of being found by users searching for apps in your niche.

Moreover, regularly update your app's content and engage with user reviews. Positive reviews and frequent updates signal to app stores that your app is valuable and up-to-date, boosting its ranking."

Step 4: Measure Your Mobile App SEO

SEO is a data-based process. Make it part of your routine to track how effective your ASO and SEO practices are. You can make this a monthly review, brainstorm and collaborate with the team on a job well done and what can be improved and adjusted accordingly.

Step 5: Stay Updated on Best Practices in SEO for Mobile Apps

Algorithms change frequently, affecting the content you see. Keeping up with the latest best practices for SEO and ASO is crucial for maintaining your rankings, so include this in your ongoing strategy. The next important step is ensuring your product's quality. After all, there's little point in marketing an app that doesn't offer a good user experience.

Initially, you should handle SEO and ASO manually to grasp better what's involved. There are plenty of online resources and Google SEO tools can help you figure out what works best for you. Once you're comfortable with the basics, don't hesitate to explore SEO automation to make the process more efficient.

ASO: What SEO for Apps Can Do for You

With App Store Optimization (ASO), the odds of your app reaching the right audience improve with every organic search. About 40% of users discover apps through store searches, making it vital to use the right keywords. You should include these keywords in the app's title, subtitle, description, reviews, and ratings.

When executed effectively, ASO can offer several benefits:

  • Increase organic downloads and installations for your app.
  • Boost likelihood of being recommended in-app packs.
  • Attract relevant attention from potential customers.

Diell Behra, SEO expert, points out the importance of optimizing listings in app stores:

"In my previous experience, an effective way we optimized a client's SEO for his mobile app, was by optimizing their listing page on Google Play Store for relevant buyer intent keywords.

We started with basic optimization, adjusted the content accordingly, and then built backlinks. This works perfectly because Google's Play Store listing page has already an established authority, thus making it easier to rank a listing page. We have been able to drive a ton of downloads through this strategy for them, making this a worthwhile SEO effort for mobile apps."

So, make sure to include ASO in your mobile app marketing strategy. Determine how to fine-tune your content to encourage potential customers to install your app. Highlight its main benefits and features, create informative content for your target audience, and optimize your listing to encourage downloads.

Get connected with the right search engine optimization agency for your project.

Benefits of App SEO

  1. Relevance and Visibility
  2. Connect with the Right Customers
  3. Build a Dedicated Audience for Your App

Whether focusing on SEO or ASO, the ultimate goal is to deliver high-quality content that meets your customers' needs. This aligns with the constantly evolving algorithms of search engines, notably Google, which dominates the search engine market with an 85.55% share as of January 2022. So, how does focusing on SEO benefit your mobile app?

Relevance and Visibility

As search engines are eager to provide high-quality content to make it as usable as possible, they prioritize placing the most helpful websites at the top of the list. The top five web pages that rank on a search engine results page (SERP) receive around of the number of clicks from each search.

Connect with the Right Customers

Search engines are primarily used by people who require a particular product. With a little effort on your part to promote the benefits of your service, they will eventually make their way to your online platforms and engage with your material. With SEO and ASO, you’re able toyou can put out content that your potential customers can find and discover for themselves.

Build a Dedicated Audience for Your App

In SEO, you have an opportunity to present the positives your product has to offer. With enough time and effort, you can create a loyal customer base, whether they buy into your service immediately or after a bit of time passes. The key is to maintain a good, reliable presence where your business can remain at the top of mind and eventually convert leads into sales.

Takeaways: How SEO Helps Boost Your App and Content

SEO is essential for helping people find your online content and raising its visibility. With so many things competing for attention these days, it takes a lot of creativity and hard work to market and promote what you've made. This can sometimes distract you from the project itself. Outsourcing digital marketing and or hiring professional SEO firms can help.

SEO is a cornerstone of your digital marketing strategy for several reasons:

  • Cost-effective marketing: SEO is generally more budget-friendly than Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising, which makes it an excellent option for small to medium-sized businesses that want to get the most for their money. 70% of marketing professionals say that SEO is more effective than PPC, highlighting its cost-efficiency.
  • Informed and improved content decisions: SEO isn't just about keywords; it's also about providing valuable content your audience wants to read. By understanding what your audience is searching for, you can create content that meets their needs, improving your site's relevance and authority.
  • Competitive edge: In today's competitive market, everyone vies for the top spot on search engine results pages. Effective SEO can help you maintain a competitive edge by ensuring that your content is more easily discoverable than that of your competitors.

So, investing in SEO not only helps you save money but also enables you to make smarter content choices and stay ahead of the competition.


1. How does mobile SEO work?

Mobile SEO works by optimizing your website and app to rank higher in search engine results on mobile devices. It involves making your site mobile-friendly, using responsive design, and focusing on mobile-specific keywords. The goal of mobile SEO is to improve visibility and provide a better user experience for mobile users.

2. Do you need SEO for apps?

Yes, you need SEO for apps because it helps your app become more discoverable in search engine results, not just in app stores. It increases the chances of attracting a wider audience and getting more downloads. App SEO complements App Store Optimization (ASO) to maximize visibility and user engagement.

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