App Store Optimization: A Hands-On Guide for App Developers

Written by: Reinder de Vries, July 5 2015, in Guide, Marketing, Stories

When I started with making apps, a few years ago, I knew nothing about App Store Optimization. I think the App Store itself was no older than 2 years old at that time.

I made “Match Around”, a dating app looong before Tinder, that allowed you to mix and match with people around you (based on GPS). We even had a feature that allowed you to date on a moving train (technically, quite difficult).

We mostly marketed the app in local media. Got a bunch of newspaper interviews, 20-year old me even got a 2-hour photoshoot and a spread in a national magazine. Apps were up-and-coming at the time, and everybody wanted to know what kind of a person would make such an “app”. Then, we pitched the app to festivals: where people are, they must want to meet and date casually. We were right, and the app toured different festivals in The Netherlands.

Today, you can’t rely on local media to put forward your story. You’re competing with an international, borderless and barrier-less market of attention seeking app makers. There’s over 300 apps hitting the App Store every day. With good reason: Apple paid out 30 billion USD – that’s $ – to developers up to today.

Guess what!? That 30 B didn’t go to each and every one of the indie developers. The 99% of it went to 1% of the developers, with the great majority getting exactly zilch coconut money.

Fortunately, with App Store Optimization, you can make a difference. See, with ASO you’re focusing on metrics that make your app rank better: its rank in the App Store top list (and in the search results) rises.

Metrics like:

  • A good app title that has keywords in them (but, what kind of keywords do your prospects use?)
  • Compelling screenshots that show benefits, not features
  • Asking for an app review at the right time
  • Offering customer support when stuff goes wrong, so users don’t vent their frustration in public-facing app ratings

Master ASO, and you can double or triple your app installs in a matter of minutes.

Continue reading on Hongkiat: App Store Optimization: A Hands-On Guide for App Developers

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Written By: Reinder de Vries

Reinder de Vries is an indie app maker who teaches aspiring app developers and marketers how to build their own apps at He has developed 50+ apps and his code is used by millions of users all over the globe. When he’s not coding, he enjoys strong espresso and traveling.

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