PG Connects London: the evolution of ASO in 2022 | Pocket Gamer.biz

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App markets are constantly evolving, and as they grow, the competition between stores has become much fiercer.

Speaking at PG Connects London 2022, Simon Thillay, Head of AppTweak at ASO, discussed the essentials of app growth in 2022 and the challenges mobile marketers face.

Due to the competitive nature of app markets, it is likely that once the App Store implements a feature, the Play Store will follow, and vice versa.

Thillay explained how Apple is working to make its App Store a place where people can discover apps rather than just using it as a platform to download apps they’ve discovered elsewhere.

With many developers now exploring other app market options, this is a way for Apple to maintain dominance in its platform.

Thillay said Google has been “more varied” but there’s still a tendency to mix UA – paid and organic – to make challenges more competitive.

With Apple’s iOS 15 update, there were three big changes: in-app events, product page optimizations, and custom product pages; although not all have arrived at launch.

In-app events focus on developers, rather than just end consumers, and allow developers to promote their products, for example through in-app events. Product page optimizations provide an option for AB testing, while custom product pages allow segmentation of traffic to the store rather than a “one page fits all” approach.

Rather than AB testing, Thillay recommended ABB testing. Thillay explained that running two “B” tests compares the two tests to see if the results are the same. While you can be sure they’re similar, Thillay said more often than not you can see significant gaps, making the results harder to trust.

Thillay predicts that there will be other changes to Apple Search Ads, such as targeting old, active or new users. As ASO does not really depend on user behavior, the tracking of data obtained is not affected by privacy issues found elsewhere.

It is possible to see different things in custom store listings. Currently, app marketplaces only allow you to set different versions for different countries sharing the same language, but in 2020, Google announced a custom detail page that would allow customization of the in-store app landing page.

Thillay expects this to likely be implemented this year, however, he noted that Google has not communicated its intentions on this for some time.

Thillay also mentioned the (almost inevitable) possibility of a new search UI for the Play Store that allows screenshots in search results. Apptweak has already noticed the presence of this feature in the Japanese and Korean versions of the store and expects a wider rollout to come soon.

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