The most recent update to Google’s app store impacts app marketers and developers in three big ways.
Unlike Apple, Google frequently adds new updates to its app store on a regular basis. Although a lot of these changes are minimal, the most recent update should be impactful for app marketers and developers.
Google is slowly getting pushed to optimize more towards quality within its app store, a pronounced theme in the most recent update. We can summarize the update in three distinct buckets within the Google Play store:
Video Watch Rates
Historically, the GP store has had low watch rates for videos. Depending on the app and value props, videos can be the best way to convey and sell apps to prospective users. With the updated design, the video is now placed in the gallery instead of the feature graphic real estate. Since the gallery is the central hub for exploration, this change should lead to much higher video watch rates.
In the previous app store design, the gallery was buried below the fold on the landing page. This layout often led to few screenshot views and a slew of missed opportunities for developers to convey their apps’ messages. In the updated app store, the gallery becomes the main asset, as it takes over the most prime real estate on the app’s landing page. This redesign should lead to more engagement across the board, as it’s easier for the visitor to find the app store’s screenshots.
Most visitors in the previous app store’s design didn’t scroll past the first impression frame, ultimately making their decision to install within seconds. In the redesign, the feature graphic has been removed entirely for apps that have a preview/promo video. This impactful change places the video in the first impression frame and allows developers to communicate multiple value props to the prospective users.
Ultimately, Google Play is starting to shift and mimic what Apple has been doing with its app store updates over the past six months. It’s still important to remember that both app stores drive different users and experiences, so it’s important to have two separate strategies for both respective app stores when addressing ASO.
The above observations are some of the main takeaways from the upcoming release, but it will still be crucial to leverage A/B testing for these assets via the “experiments” tool within the Google Play developer console to efficiently optimize landing pages.