Apps and games are built to be used, right? And there is no secret that it’s not enough to create a great product. Attracting users for it in most cases becomes a way bigger challenge. So what steps should you take to reach and conquer those precious users?
First of all, let’s find out where do your potential users hide.
Recently we ran a Mobile App Monetization Survey to get as much useful information as possible towards app usage in order to bring you relevant insights that could help your apps grow.
I believe that some of you have already determined in your opinion the best user acquisition channels, while the others are still in the process of testing and analyzing. Maybe there are a few that are just planning to release their first app and could only guess what works best when it comes to user acquisition. After analyzing the collected data we’ve listed the most common channels that users discover and download new Windows Store apps and games:
From reviews in blogs/ websites
Research shows that even 73,39 % of Windows app users discover new apps by reading reviews on media. So it’s another evidence that getting your app covered by app related news site or blog is the most effective way to be noticed by your potential users.
There surely are quite a few news sites and blogs that you should definitely contact. So do some research and make a list of at least some of them that are writing about Windows apps.
Back in 2014 we asked our readers to list their favorite internet sources to keep up with latest Windows app news and got more than 150 different titles. Here you’ll find the most popular ones.
But how to attract their attention and finally get covered? Before reaching out the editor teams be creative and prepare a catchy headline and interesting message presenting your freshly released app or a new update.
Find it using app store search engine
The second most popular channel to discover new Windows apps and games is by simply using app store search engine. More than 65 % of survey respondents identified it as one of the most common ways to find and download new apps.
The only thing that will help you to stay ahead of those thousands of apps in the store is ASO (App Store Optimization). It is very important to get the best search ranking possible by improving your app visibility in the store. In order to do that:
- Choose the right name for your app. It should be memorable and informative at the same time.
- Define relevant keywords and use it carefully in your app description. There are different tools that will help you find what are the most common keywords people might use to find your app.
- Collect good app ratings and reviews. Encourage your present users to leave a positive review, just don’t get to pushy.
Moreover, don’t be ashamed of spying your competitors. Learn from their good practices and even mistakes but never blindly copy them.
Keep in mind that in most cases your app description is the key decision point that drives your potential users to install your app.
Download apps that are featured in the app store
Almost half of the smartphone users claim that they find their favorite new apps through feature pages in the mobile app stores. And while at first sight it seems obvious – being featured in the app store should bring you lots of new users, it is also obvious that it is very difficult to gain that feature slot, especially in the major markets.
Luckily there’s a pretty effective alternative to being featured in the app store – app discovery platforms. These discovery platforms usually work as alternative app catalogues and allow you, in one form or another, to present (or in other words – feature) your app to thousands of active app users worldwide. Currently Windows Store has a few great solutions for that, the most popular being AppRaisin, myAppFree or AppDeals.
People follow their friend suggestions
You will have to master your social skills to take over the control here. No secret that social media is the king as it’s how people communicate nowadays. So your app must be there too. Make sure to create accounts for your app or app development studio in the most popular social media channels such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. and interact with your followers. Simply share the information that they might be interested in, announce new releases, updates or any other relevant messages that would catch the attention.
In most cases, the people that are following your social accounts tend to be the fans of your app already, so feel free to encourage these happy users to spread a good word about your great app through their personal social channels and you might be surprised with the results you’ll get (research shows that even 29,76 % of people follow their friends suggestions to discover new Windows apps and games). However, make sure to sound natural and not to get too annoying.
You might also want to test a reward based recommendation system – where you award users with in app currency (or any other perks) for every new user brought to your app. If used correctly, this strategy can be one of the most powerful marketing tools for apps.
Through in-app advertising
Another channel that does attract users to download new apps is in-app advertising. While the common thinking is that ads do annoy users and usually stay ignored, surprisingly more than 50% of Windows Store app / game users admit, that they do click on in-app ads whenever they are interested in the ad content. This means that mobile ad campaigns can actually be an effective solution for user acquisition. The only challenge is to find the right target audience and provide content that would interest them.
If you already know your target audience there are two ways you can take advantage of in app advertising. The first one is buying ad space from various ad networks and running ad campaigns through them. Most of the service providers allow you to optimize, target and analyze your campaigns, helping you achieve maximum performance.
The second solution is to join a cross-promotion platform and start cross promoting your apps / games with other app developers. While this method requires you to integrate ads in your apps, in most cases it is a totally free and very effective way for any app to attract users. Cross promotion can not only be an effective channel for user acquisition, but it can also help you to avoid the risk of investing big budgets to paid advertising.
Remember that none of these channels will work well if used in a wrong way.