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How to increase app downloads? – Complete Guide 📱

Lior Eldan Lior Eldan | 19.7.19

Getting more app downloads is a technique and an accomplishment within itself. Nearly 2,000 apps are submitted to the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store on a daily basis, all hoping to be the next big hit.

But sadly, almost 70% of apps will never generate more than 5,000 downloads. Without the right mobile marketing strategy, chances are your app will flop and be forever invisible in the app stores.

Luckily, we’re here to help with an in-depth guide on how to increase mobile app downloads.

In this post, you’ll learn how to get more app installs through app store optimization and other digital marketing strategies that will boost your mobile app installs.

Just follow these steps:

1. Increase App Downloads by Optimizing your App

There are over 5 million apps on the app stores right now. And many more million app searches.

Optimizing your app for what people are searching for is one of the best ways to improve your online presence.

“App store optimization is the app store marketing technique and strategy that works on improving the app in order to better follow the app store’s guidelines and improve the ranking on certain keywords for a better search presence and higher organic download numbers. ”

App store optimization (ASO for short) is one of the best ways to put your app in front of app users. Yet, it’s still one of the hardest tasks for app developers and marketers.

The basis of ASO is related to the main keyword or keywords of the app. Finding out what users are searching for and then working on your app and content in order to encourage users to download your app after discovering it in the search results, and to increase your downloads over time.

Calm - app store keywords for the Health Industry

Take a look at Calm, one of our clients. The app helps users meditate, reduce stress and sleep better. They realized what people search for and named their entire app around those specific organic searches.

After you’ve settled on your main app store keywords, you’ll need to integrate them accordingly. Make sure that your keywords are present in the:

  • Title
  • URL
  • Descriptions
  • Keyword field

Integrating your main keyword into your Title (you got 50 characters, use them!) will boost your online presence in the app store, overall ranking and eventually help increase app installs.

Your URL also needs the main keyword integrated. The Google Play Store takes into consideration backlinks toward its apps, which works similar to SEO. Because of this, integrating your main keyword in the app’s landing page URL will help increase your app rankings.

An app’s description is one of the main methods of describing what the app does for users. It also allows you to cater the content towards the app stores’ algorithms.

The Apple App Store does not index the description fields! Because of this, focus more on Google Play.

Apple helped marketers a little by simplifying the ASO process through the Keyword Field. You have 100 characters where you can integrate all of the keywords you want to rank for.

Make sure to use all of the characters.

2. Downloads Improvement Through App Localization

Not everyone speaks English, and the app store knows that. Creating localized versions of your app will boost your mobile app installs significantly.

According to research, localizing your app page’s content can lead to a 767% increase in app downloads. Delivering content and creatives in the language of your target audience, and tweaking messages based on local behaviors and trends will prove itself as effective.

This process works in 3 ways:

  • Users are more likely to download and use apps they understand
  • App stores rank your app higher in a particular country if you’ve localized it
  • You bring traffic and app users from keywords that are relevant in other languages

Some of today’s mobile marketing experts even say that: “If your app is not translated into English, Spanish and Chines, you are losing more than half of the planet.”

If you want to do a little more research on how localizing your app can impact your results, you can use multiple ASO tools to find exact search volumes. We recommend starting with Sensor Tower, AppAnnie or the simplest, Google Keyword Planner.

3. App Installs through Mobile Marketing Campaigns

You can’t rely solely on your app optimization in order to achieve success in increasing installs. Especially when, in certain niches, the position can be influenced by burst campaigns.

Pushing your entire marketing budget into ads without having a relevant strategy is not good either.

So, what are good strategies to get more app installs and how to combine campaigns?

Social media

Social Media is one of the most important traffic sources. Your target demographic spends hours on apps and websites like Instagram, Twitter and/or Facebook. Being present on social channels is one of the best ways of increasing app installs and keeping in constant contact with your users.

Make sure to create good relevant content and engage with your users. Work on pushing your content through shares and presenting your app’s features in the content you are pushing.

Calm app social media

Take, for example, our client Calm. The app revolves around meditation and wellness. They create viral video content that helps people calm themselves in less than 60 seconds. This type of content represents the functionality of the app and gets a ton of organic shares by providing great value to users.

Contests are a great way to increase downloads. Give away features inside your app. The costs are practically $0, as you’re only giving away functionalities inside your app.

By engaging your users, you’re also making sure that you listen to their feedback. Keep them happy and solve all their issues in order to avoid high churn rates.

Email Marketing

The email has been around for over 40 years and it’s here to stay. While some people tend to disregard emails in the app marketing industry, we can say that emails do increase mobile app installs.

Email marketing campaigns for apps do 2 things particularly well:

  • Increasing subscribers before launching an app for a boost in installs
  • Informing and reminding people about new updates and offers inside your app

If you have yet to launch your app, make sure to create a landing page and start building your email address database. Give them info, create hype and offer them something they can get excited about.

People will gladly give out their email addresses if you can hype the benefits of your app.

Really important: If you’re going to use emails in your app marketing campaigns, make sure that all of your emails are mobile optimized and tailored to the user’s OS and mobile devices.

Sites like Reddit, Digg, Quora, and Medium

Similar to Social media, sites like Reddit and Quora have created their own digital microbiomes. People use websites as their everyday sources of information and content. And because most of them talk about problems or needs that your app can solve, it’s best to be present on them.

If you’ve created a spendings tracker, join the personal finance subreddit. If you’re helping people sleep better, go to quora and guide every one that is feeling exhausted or can’t sleep.

Websites that allow people to communicate and discuss relevant topics are a gold mine that allows an ASO agency to organically grow the number of backlinks, mentions and referral install for an app.

Still, make sure you help and add value, not promote. Reddit users are especially well known for burning and bashing any kind of blatant promoting. They are there to enjoy their time and learn, not watch ads. So, don’t turn your content into ads.

Educate, inform, help and enjoy being there.

SMS marketing

SMS is a strange phenomenon. The use of SMS between people has fallen drastically (thanks to messenger apps). Yet, SMS marketing is flourishing, as people are more prone to open the few messages they get through SMS.

If you’re in Europe, be cautious about who and how you’re sending your SMS messages. GDPR is extremely important and people tend to be really annoyed by companies that blatantly invade their privacy.

While users will tend to ignore a spam email, they will take action against a spam SMS.

Content Marketing

Be it video, text or audio, nothing beats content marketing. By creating high-quality content for your users, you’re positioning your app in relevant pieces of information that they’ll enjoy.

If your app was created to help restaurant owners or a food distributor, blog posts about the HoReCa industry will engage your visitors.

If you’re promoting an app that revolves around physical exercises, creating video guides on how to lose weight or articles about eating healthier is the way to go.

App directory sites

Nothing is as direct as this method. Get your app reviewed by tech bloggers. Also, post your app on all of the app directory sites you can find.

Timecamp created an awesome list with over one hundred websites that you can contact. Check them out here.

Word of mouth can still be relevant

Nothing converts better than a friend.

Word of mouth is still one of the most powerful marketing methods for any conversion. When a friend introduces you to an app they use, any doubt you may have had is instantly eliminated.

The trust you have in your friend is transferred to the app. You won’t rely on reviews anymore and you probably won’t bother reading any descriptions. Your friend will tell you all you need to know.

This is why multiplayer games get so many downloads. People need friends to play with, so they convince their peers to download the game.

It’s really important to make your users happy so that they tell other people about your app. Also, incentivize them. If they receive a gift or bonus, they will be more likely to make sure that another person installs your app.

Revolut, for example, asks users to share their app in exchange for premium features. Most food delivery apps offer coupons for every new user brought to the app, and Uber gives both your and your friend a discount off your next ride.

4. Measure, Tweak and Improve

Marketing is a process in which you measure, learn, experiment and improve. Clearly define what your KPIs are, and define your strategy and path to get there.

After that, start measuring everything that is relevant:

  • How many users get to your app page?
  • What is the conversion rate?
  • How much does an installation cost?
  • What is the ROI of your marketing campaign?

By measuring everything, you know what works and what doesn’t. After you know where you stand, you can start experimenting.

Change up your app store screenshots, improve your copy, better define your Facebook ad audiences. Make changes and see how things evolve. Even a 1% increase can help if you’re looking to pass the 1 million downloads mark.

Increase app downloads – FAQ

How to increase app downloads?

There are 4 important steps that can help increase your app downloads:
1. App Store Optimizion
2. Localization
3. Mobile Marketing Campaigns
4. Measurement

How to build a good app downloads strategy?

Building a strategy to improve your app installs should combine a few marketing techniques. You need to increase your app store visibility and encourage users to download your app. Your strategy will depend on your particular app, but all strategies follow the same structure: optimization, localization, campaigns and measurement for continuous improvement.

Which campaign type should you use to improve your app downloads?

There are a few different campaign types that can help improve app installs, e.g. social media, email marketing, content marketing, SMS marketing, relevant websites etc. The best type of campaign is different for every app and you might have to measure the results to understand better where to put your budget.

Final Thoughts

If you’re looking for an awesome mobile marketing agency to help you increase your app downloads and installs, feel free to message us.

Moburst is an award-winning company doing mobile advertising and App store optimization.

Check out our clients and read reviews on Clutch.

Here is some more information in case you’d like to read more about what is App Store Optimization.


3 thoughts on "How to increase app downloads? – Complete Guide 📱"

  • Nice article. Mobile app that is developed just not depend only on UI and functionality but also the rate at which the app is being downloaded.

  • Good information! Increasing app downloads is an essential for app developers to get increasing revenues and boost app ranking on app stores.

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