When the world of business – and more recently the world at large – changes, the companies that adapt will outlast the competition.

As the app ecosystem is hit by changing mobile trends and the far-reaching effects of COVID-19, companies need new strategies to reach consumers. For companies with apps, App Store Optimization (ASO) is more important than ever – especially for B2B companies that need to optimize for business customers.

Now that the demand for teleworking, team chat and mobile employee tracking apps is growing, it is the perfect time for B2B app developers to invest in ASO.

The potential of ASO

App store optimization is valuable in mobile marketing as it improves organic noticeability and helps apps get more installs. When properly optimized, an app can show a higher index in search results, which greatly increases the likelihood of installation.

Why are search results important? According to Apple, search has been responsible for 70% of app detection consistently since 2017, and that number holds up. App developers who want to reach the majority of users need to optimize visibility in the App Store and Play Store search results.

Companies that use ASO to improve their app’s search rank are more likely to attract new users.

The ramifications of the recent transitions to work-from-home are clear: the ranking of the conference call app has risen significantly due to COVID lockdowns, while job search apps (previously at the top of their category) have declined.

Influence of COVID-19 on the iOS category ranking (Category: Business)

How do you work with or recover from the changes associated with it when such a sudden shift occurs? If you want your app to grow, you need to implement a successful ASO strategy.

Analyze your app and your opportunities

When starting the ASO process, there are several factors to consider that will affect the positioning of your app in app stores.

Addressing target groups

What does your app do and for whom? The first thing users need to know when they come across an app is what it is providing for them. You need to tell potential users the use and purpose of your app.

Does your B2B product offer a to-do list or time tracking for HR representatives? Is it an invoicing app for finance teams? Is the app diverse and intended for both team leaders and team members?

Knowing the key features of your app will help you target users looking for its specific features. Build a strategy for your audience while focusing on the features you want.

Once you know your target audience, you can decide how the app should be presented in its screenshots and descriptions. In addition, you can focus on targeting keywords that are directly relevant to your users.

Keyword targeting

Keywords are the most important factor in determining which searches your app will appear in. Think about the terms for which your app should appear in search queries. Which keywords are relevant for the app and your target group? Do they have a high volume?

Take into account keywords that are relevant to B2B apps. Is your app geared towards business communication? To work from home? Research keyword volume and competing apps to make sure you are targeting relevant keywords that can help you grow.

However, search trends in the app stores do not match those on the web. Find out about your terms using ASO software instead of web tools (e.g. Google Keyword Planner). Otherwise the data for your updates will be incorrect.

Competitive research

What other B2B apps are you competing with, how do they rank and what keywords are they targeting? The analysis of the competitors is crucial for the development of a suitable ASO strategy.

While you shouldn’t just copy everything that other apps in your category do, you can identify trends or designs that successful B2B apps are using and take inspiration from them.

Metadata and conversion optimization

Optimizing the metadata of your shop listing will increase your search traffic. Structure it so that it targets relevant terms and phrases: If your app is relevant to the terms you mentioned, improve your app’s rankings in search results.

At the same time, the search volume must be taken into account. High volume terms and expressions generate the most traffic. However, you need to make sure that these terms refer to the B2B audience and not the general consumer. Keyword volume may not generate high traffic if the app doesn’t appeal to users who search for these terms.

In some cases, using low-volume, high-relevance terms for your app is effective. This allows you to focus on a niche, but one that is targeted at specific audiences and that has high quality, long-time users.

Targeting the right terms can make your app more visible. By taking the time to search for keywords, you can ensure that your B2B app is reaching the audience it needs to reach.

Conversion and generation of clicks

How does metadata optimization affect your ranking? Your ranking in the top positions for each keyword is determined by click-through rates – the number of users who click on your shop list or install the app when they see it in the store.

As your app gets more clicks, its ranking increases. The more the ranking increases, the more users see it and the more clicks it can gain.

B2B apps face a particular challenge here. Since they tend to be targeted more towards a specific audience than a broad consumer audience, they need to be targeted. Installing your B2B app by the wrong user can lead to quick uninstallations or negative reviews.

B2B app owners need to make sure their creative elements are tweaked. When your metadata is optimized and users can find your shop list, they still have to decide whether to install the app. Optimizing for conversion can increase the likelihood of users installing your app by determining relevance through creative elements such as icons, screenshots, and videos. In order to get downloads from the right audience, make sure these elements convey what your app does and who it is intended for.

Creative optimization strategies can …

  • Using keywords in the screenshot copy
  • Present value proposition
  • Show unique features in every screenshot and video

Using best practices can show that an app is relevant, current, and effective. Extending this by tailoring your creative to the right audience will make the app more appealing to businesses looking for new solutions.

Paid visibility

Paid campaigns like Apple Search Ads can further improve your reach and generate clicks. You can bid on a specific keyword or a range of terms related to a common concept. That way, you can focus on making sure your app comes up when looking for relevant results.

If your app shows up as a search ad for the terms you are bidding on, the clicks that get there will help improve your organic ranking, which will also improve organic visibility and install it outside of your paid marketing as well.

For B2B apps, a paid strategy should target specific searches that are relevant to your industry and demographic. It can give your app a boost and make it stand out when searching against strong players like Zoom and GoToMeeting, while also improving your organic ranking.