ASO Competitive Research (Why It Matters & How To Get Started)
App Store Optimization

ASO Competitive Research (Why It Matters & How To Get Started)


Buse Kanal

While ASO competitive research is an intensive and all-consuming process, it is worth every second of your time. Once you have access to a broad range of insights, you can begin to make informed decisions about optimizing your app across different marketplaces. To rank highly across the app stores, you need as much data as you can get your hands on.

In many ways, app store optimization is like a massive chess game. You have likely heard this analogy before. In a chess game, your opponent’s moves are equally as important as your own. Every move they make on the chess board will inevitably inform what you do next. When it comes to app store optimization, you need to take a similarly strategic approach.

With a solid understanding of how competitors are ranking in the app store, you can begin to develop a comprehensive ASO strategy of your own. The aim is always to outrank your opponents and get your app in front of as many eyeballs as possible. With a highly methodical approach, you can gain a solid grip on how to improve your app ranking and visibility.

ASO Competitive Research (Why Does It Matter?)

Once you go down the competitor research rabbit hole, you will begin to uncover a range of interesting insights that can help to inform your ASO strategy. The further you dig, the more data you will have to work with. You will quickly learn that throwing darts at random keywords is a recipe for failure. Here are the key reasons why ASO competitive research is so important:

Learn to break the rules

When everyone is going right, consider going left. During your competitor analysis, you may discover unconventional ways to stand out from the crowd. For instance, all the icons for apps in your category or niche may carry the same color. If this is the case, why not switch things up and use a different color? By thinking outside the box, you can find creative ways to stand out.

Identify opportunities for visual optimization

While breaking the mold is a powerful way to stand out, you can also learn from the success of others and replicate their practices. If all the top-ranking apps have stylized their screenshots, following in their footsteps is a strategically sound move. Also, do not underestimate the power of a well-crafted title. There is much to learn from how competitors structure their titles.

Develop a core group of semantic keywords

The most valuable data you can take away from your ASO competitive analysis is a core group of semantic keywords. Once you have this data, you can develop a comprehensive keyword strategy. Relying on guesswork is a dangerous game to play. Monitoring apps competing for the same keywords will give you a clear idea of how to optimize your app for better search visibility.

Competitive Analysis

Source: Binh Dang

Pinpoint how users gain value from competing apps

After reading through the user reviews of competing apps, you will develop an understanding of how these apps successfully meet user needs and address pain points. If there are recurring themes in the user feedback, you can position your app’s value proposition to ensure those browsing through an app marketplace know exactly what your app can offer them.

How To Pick ASO Competitors For Analysis

When it comes to picking ASO competitors for analysis, you should rule out brands right off the bat. By their nature, brands are not engaged in app store optimization. They may carry a certain level of name recognition in a particular niche and have considerable search volume behind their brand name. With this in mind, you should analyze the optimization of apps on your level.

Limit your research into applications with brand name recognition and double down on those trying to play the same game as you. It’s often relatively easy to identify apps engaging in ASO. Learn from their successes and shortcomings to boost your app rankings in a methodical and strategic way. With considered analysis, you can shake up the rankings in your niche.

How To Analyze Competitors (Getting Started With ASO)

At ShyftUp, it’s common for us to deploy Apple Search Ads test campaigns to gather data on how best to approach app store optimization. For instance, we took this approach with AllTrails to help optimize their metadata and app descriptions. This resulted in 119% growth in user acquisition in six months. With a treasure trove of data, anything is possible.

“Apple Search Ads helped us determine which markets were our biggest opportunities and attract new, more engaged customers.”

– Ron Schneidermann, CEO at AllTrails

Working with a user acquisition agency is a game-changer for ambitious app developers that are eager to climb the search rankings and amass a considerable user base. The right agency will have an in-house team of ASO specialists with a keen eye for detail. When it comes to ASO competitive analysis, an effective agency will swiftly identify optimization opportunities.

This is where ShyftUp comes in. As an ROI-driven ASO agency, we have the necessary skills and expertise to accelerate your user acquisition efforts and unlock the potential of your mobile applications. If your apps are struggling to gain traction across the marketplaces, we have the resources required to increase your search visibility and drive organic user growth.

With the right team in your corner, app store optimization no longer feels like a puzzle. We can help you put all the pieces together and achieve sustainable success across all marketplaces. ShyftUp has a wealth of experience optimizing apps for the Apple App Store and Google Play. There is nothing we love more than a challenge! Let’s begin the process of optimizing your app.

Learn more about our ROI-driven approach to user acquisition for mobile applications.

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