App Store Optimization – Prepare for Black Friday & Cyber Monday

November 11th, 2017

App Store Optimization – Prepare for Black Friday & Cyber Monday
David Quinn

by David Quinn

VP of Strategy & Partnerships at Gummicube, Inc.

As we near the holiday season, it means that we also get closer and closer to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. These huge events set new revenue records last year and are already trending on the App Store. IMG_50D77A6FB00E-1 In 2016, Black Friday boasted $5.27 billion for both online and brick and mortar sales, while Cyber Monday reached $3.45 billion. Consumers are serious when it comes to getting the best deal, especially as the holiday season hits. While retailers still advertise with traditional promotions like in-store coupons and promotional displays, many have seen success from preparing their mobile apps to specifically emphasize deals and products, driving users to shop online or in-store. Since Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2016 were huge, it only means that retailers can expect the 2017 season to be huge as well. To take advantage of this ever-increasing sales season, retailers and app developers need to plan marketing strategies that include optimizing their mobile apps to be discovered - and downloaded - by early-bird holiday shoppers.

Tips to Increase Your App’s Bottom Line

Everyone has heard the horror stories of Black Friday, and in recent years, consumers have taken to the safety of their couches and mobile devices to complete their early holiday shopping. Mobile performance has improved year-over-year, and 60 percent of shoppers use their mobile device at some point to either research or purchase. Knowing that how many shoppers utilize their mobile device shows that they are taking advantage of websites and mobile apps instead of enduring painstaking hours of standing in the cold to save on that brand-new TV. Cyber Monday, which is truly dedicated to shoppers on the web and mobile devices, has seen success with eager shoppers that are readily waiting on their phones for the best deals. More consumers are going directly to mobile apps to shop during the holiday season, and retailers have taken note. Below are some tips that will help retailers prepare their app before Black Friday and Cyber Monday hit.

1. App Store Optimization – Create Visibility

First and foremost, retailers should look to ASO to help their app become more easily discoverable in the app stores just in time for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Retailers can go through the quick ASO checklist before making any other adjustments tied to the shopping season:

  • Unique app name?
  • Relevant keywords?
  • Clear, concise description?
  • Screenshots/preview video that highlights deals and shopping?

If an app doesn’t meet the criteria listed above, then it might not reach its maximum potential. Retailers need to make sure that their app clearly highlights any promotions, deals, coupons or more before the shopping season to successfully convert users and see an increase in revenue.

2. Paid Campaigns

Paid campaigns are a good way for retailers to quickly get their app above competitors. Retailers need to bid on relevant, high-volume keywords for the shopping season to so their app appears before competitors. There are a variety of paid campaigns retailers can take advantage of, meaning they aren’t limited to just one. If they have an iOS app, they can utilize Apple Search Ads, which will appear at the very top of search and incorporate their app’s existing metadata. If they have an Android app, they can use Google Adwords to utilize UAC, place bids, and appear before competitors in the Play Store. Social media campaigns are also helpful as consumers will be checking social media often during the holidays. Retailers can utilize Facebook or Instagram paid campaigns to appear on consumers’ social media feeds in hopes of encouraging them to convert based on specific promotions, products and more.

3. Check the Competition

Sometimes the best place to look for inspiration is at the competition. If retailers know their main competition for their specific market, they can make key adjustments to their marketing and ASO strategies. If it’s a clothing app, retailers will already know that some of their main competition is Urban Outfitters, thredUP, Forever 21, PacSun and Tilly’s; all apps that rank within the Top 5 for the keyword “clothing.” Retailers looking to capitalize on the keyword “clothing” will need to make adjustments to their metadata and paid campaigns to clearly highlight any clothing products or deals that are unique to their brand. If retailers don’t focus their efforts on targeting the various types of products and promotions their app has to offer, they are less likely to convert users simply because they haven’t set themselves apart from the competition.

4. Test New Creatives

Creatives are the one piece of metadata that consumers look to first to get a better understanding of how an app will benefit them. Retailers can take advantage of creatives and upload a new icon, screenshots or preview video that clearly highlights Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals. If the creatives are updated to reflect possible deals, coupons, promotions and more, consumers are more likely to convert on that app. Make sure that the callout text clearly addresses the features specific to Black Friday and Cyber Monday to let consumers know what the app has to offer.

5. In-App Notifications

Apps that have push notifications can take advantage of consumers that have the setting turned on. They can send out eye-catching notifications that get consumers excited about purchasing new products and make them think that they’re getting a deal. Push notifications don’t need to be pushy, they just need to be engaging enough that they encourage the consumer to open the app. Having effective push notifications that specifically target promotions, coupons, products and more, will help consumers make their shopping decisions faster.

Be Visible and Convert Consumers

Now is the time for retailers to prepare their apps so they are visible to consumers before the shopping season starts. Retailers need to prepare their apps before Black Friday and Cyber Monday to successfully convert users and increase their bottom line. Without making key adjustments to the app’s metadata or even creating paid campaigns that will help the app appear before competitors, retailers will not see success this shopping season. It’s crucial that retailers pay attention to their app and take advantage of eager consumers that are ready to spend in order to be part of possibly the most profitable shopping season yet.

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