App Store Screenshots
Your screenshot set is a vital piece of your overall creative, especially when it comes to improving conversion. You want to be able to highlight different value propositions: keywords, showing in-app imagery, and being able to relate back to the user’s search query to show relevancy.
On the App Store, you're allowed up to ten screenshots within your set, while the Google Play store will only allow for eight. Also, when you're searching for an app, the store listing for Google Play is the first time you'll be able to see the actual screenshots, while the search results page for the App Store will show up to three.
In the first three screenshots, you want to be able to highlight the most vital features that are going to help your overall conversion when it comes to keywords and different value propositions. Especially within the first screenshot; 80% of users will only look at the first screenshot, and when it gets to the third screenshot, that figure goes down to 8%. This shows why creatives are so important, especially your screenshots.
When it comes to ASO, what is the secret to creating the perfect screenshot set? What it comes down to is the extensive amount of research that goes into the competitive landscape and app category trends. This must be followed by iterative A/B testing to narrow down your creative treatments to that which drives conversion most effectively.
App Store Market Research
Not every app converts well on the same creative treatments. For example, a mobile action game might benefit from brightly colored screenshots displayed in landscape mode to show the exciting gameplay. This particular style may not be successful for a financial app, which might instead perform better using more muted colors and a portrait orientation to display features and UI elements. Furthermore, expert insight into user behavior is sometimes necessary to determine the creative best practices for more niche apps.
In order to determine both the best practices for an app's category, as well as the treatments that are currently trending among competitors, you must conduct research. Much of the research needed to track a competitor's creative trends over time requires powerful ASO tools. Otherwise, you are limited to only the most recent trends, which is not a complete picture of the competitive landscape.
Iterative A/B Testing
Once you have defined a clear style that you hypothesize will convert well based on research, it is important to confirm this by running A/B tests on different variations of the core design treatment. This shouldn’t be a one time endeavor either, as app store trends change frequently. Through iterative testing you are able to hone your creative set over time to determine the most effective treatments to improve conversion.
Iterative testing is the process of applying winning variants from one test to your control, and immediately initiating another experiment both to verify learnings via pre/post deployment analyses, and to incorporate additional changes in the new variants that explore different design treatments. It is crucial to be aware that changing too many elements at once can complicate an experiment by making it difficult to isolate individual variables that contribute to the results seen. This is why it is recommended to minimize the number of changes to your control to only one, which can be built off of in subsequent iterations.
Any and all changes to a screenshot set should be backed by hard data, either though research or experimentation, to ensure that a clear goal has been set. Only after a solid foundation of winning creative treatments has been established should more daring experiments be run. Additionally, throughout the year there are many opportunities to test less conventional design changes such as seasonal trends and holiday treatments. These can supplement an already sound testing strategy and contribute to the framework of future experiments.
Screenshots are one of the most important creative elements in your app store listing. Data shows that screenshots, particularly the first three, are the primary drivers of user conversion on both the iOS App Store and the Google Play Store. Determining what design styles are an ideal starting point can be a daunting task, but with the help of an expert ASO agency the veil can be lifted to reveal what performs well, backed by hard data.
Want to learn more about App Store Optimization? Contact Gummicube and we’ll help get your strategy started.