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Factors you can and cannot control in ASO

Factors you can and cannot control in ASO

If the last couple of years has taught us anything, it’s that life can feel out of control. And the truth is, we’ve never been able to fully control everything.

Trying to control everything is a battle you can’t win. It’s a discouraging waste of energy to focus on areas where you really can’t change the outcome, no matter how hard you try.

This can also be applicable when it comes to game development. There are so many factors to consider during the development phase, and even after during the launch phase when you’re getting yourself out there. While you may have a great mobile gaming app with amazing features and captivating unique concept designs, if no one knows that it exists, it will never see the light of day and you will never see a great number of downloads. And so you try everything in your power to work on aspects to get yourself out there and let yourself be known.

But there’s reviews, keywords, images and videos to work on… which one of those is worth the effort and will actually pay off in the long run for discoverability?

There is knowing the difference between what you can and cannot control, and this can apply to how you go about your strategy with App Store Optimization.

What you CAN’T Control

A quick brief on ASO:

App Store Optimization (ASO) is an effective approach to optimizing mobile apps to maximize their visibility in app stores. This is usually a result of organic searches made in the store platforms and this strategy works to increase conversion rates by converting potential users who discovered the app to the end goal, which is downloading your mobile game app.

In short, ASO refers to all of the efforts you do to get more people to discover your app and download it.

So, where should your efforts go to?

Let’s start with the factors of ASO that you can and should acknowledge but know you have no control of. There are uncontrollable things concerning your mobile gaming app that are in what is called the off-metadata factor group. These factors are generally the result of your optimization efforts and cannot be affected directly.

The off-metadata factors are rating and reviews, number and rate of the app installs, the speed of downloading your mobile game app, the size of your mobile game app, and potential bugs found in your game by your users.

These aspects are reliant on many things: the device used by your potential players, the varying preferences and desires of the types of games played by your users, the speed of your user’s internet, the resources, assets, and codes that encompass your entire mobile game, and the bugs that you might not have found during your game testing phase but were discovered later on during actual gameplay.

It’s worth noting that they are just as important as the other factors, but it is worth considering that these factors are not something worth stressing about and investing your efforts into, as they are indirect and very dependent on a number of things.

They have their benefits: feedback from reviews and ratings given to your mobile gaming app can help you improve your game. The size of your mobile game app can be reduced without having to sacrifice the quality of the game. And bugs can be fixed.

What you CAN Control

So what’s worth investing your efforts into when it comes to an ASO strategy?

Anything under the full control of the game app developers and publishers is in the on-metadata factors. These elements can be changed to enhance keyword rankings, boost visibility and conversion in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.

The on-metadata factors that can be changed through App Store Connect or Google Play Console are as follows: App Title and Subtitle, Short and long descriptions, keyword field and promo text (App Store only), app icon, category, URL/Package, video previews, and screenshots.

These aspects are the things you have full control of, and something that can impact your discoverability and bottom line, which is more downloads. You can learn more about these aspects through our earlier guides about keywords and visual elements you can work to your advantage.

ASO provides you with the traffic you always wanted in the most hassle-free way, and even more so, if it is automated. ASO has worked on many apps and games, and when used effectively with the right tools, it can create amazing results for even newly launched mobile gaming apps.

So focus on what you can control, and optimize! 🚀

Picture of Mars Zarate

Mars Zarate

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