App Store Spotlight - Genius

January 25th, 2022

App Store Spotlight - Genius
David Bell

by David Bell

CEO at Gummicube, Inc.

App Store Metadata - Keyword Optimization

Before digital music formats exploded, song lyrics could only be found in liner notes included on the album sleeve for records or in a booklet for cassettes and CDs. In the early days of the internet, there were many websites where users would submit lyrics from the aforementioned sources, or from their best guesses. This led to an extensive library of misheard lyrics that persists to this day. With hundreds of websites parroting incorrect information, it can be difficult to pin down the correct words to your favorite songs.

Genius is a song lyrics app that allows users to find the right lyrics for millions of songs with just a tap. Crowd-sourced musical knowledge allows fans and artists alike to provide their take on the meaning and history of a song's lyrics. Genius has a dedicated following of users, with many who have followed the app from its early days as a reliable website to discover hip-hop and rap lyrics. Today Genius is a popular music discovery app on both the iOS App Store and the Google Play Store, with an expanded ability to recognize songs and provide lyrics instantly.

Apple's iOS App Store

Genius is the featured app today on the iOS App Store. The editorial feature highlights Genius’s unique differentiator that has driven its success since its inception. Genius allows users to annotate song lyrics so a worldwide discussion can be had over the deeper meaning of a chorus or verse. Genius is sure to see some boosts tied to this featuring, but let's see if their App Store listing has what it takes to continue driving visibility and conversion.

Genius starts off with a decent title: ‘Genius: Song Lyrics & More’. The branded title is followed by a descriptive title tag, which can help build relevance for keywords like ‘song’ and ‘lyrics’. The ‘& More’ tagged at the end will not go far in keyword building though. This space may be better suited to another descriptive keyword to help users find the app.

The subtitle ‘Song Lyrics & Music Knowledge’ duplicates the terms ‘song’ and ‘lyrics’ from the title. Duplication does not improve your chances for ranking highly on the iOS App Store, and it can instead be detrimental to the listing as it uses space that could be allocated for new and different keywords. Genius might benefit from using the subtitle to describe their unique annotations feature in more detail while using keywords that are commonly searched.

When it comes to creatives, the listing is adhering to many of the best practices recommended for an effective ASO strategy. The screenshots are brightly colored and they show true-to-life in-app imagery. Additionally, bold screenshot copy expands on features that are showcased in the screenshots to give users more context. Well-written screenshot copy can be the number one factor that influences a user's decision to download an app. This is because the first three screenshots show up in search results, which Apple has stated generates more installs than any other channel.

The Google Play Store

Genius is using the same title on the Google Play Store as on the iOS App Store. The Short Description goes into greater detail: ‘The world's largest collection of song lyrics + crowdsourced musical knowledge’. This does a better job from a positioning standpoint by communicating the core feature that sets Genius apart from other lyric apps. It still needs some work with keyword incorporation though, as the only keywords of note in both fields are ‘song lyrics’ and ‘musical knowledge’.

The screenshot set for the Google Play Store differs from the iOS App Store in quite a few ways. The in-app images feature different artists and songs and the copy text, while still being bold and clear, is smaller on the Google Play Store. All of the screenshots feature the same branded bright yellow background seen in the app icon and other off-page creatives.

For the Google Play Store indexation algorithm, the Full Description is one of the most important fields in which to incorporate high-priority keywords. Genius's description does a poor job at incorporating keywords that will get them discovered, and the description is only using 879 characters out of the allotted 4000. By leaving so much space unused Genius is not making the wisest move with their description. In order to get discovered by the right potential users, Genius should look to intelligent ASO tools to discover which keywords competitors are ranking for, and how they can incorporate these terms in their metadata.


Genius is a popular website and app that allows music fans to connect over song lyrics. Users can annotate lyrics and create discussions surrounding the meaning, history, and controversy embedded in the lyrics we hear every day. Genius has been foundational for music lovers for over a decade. To continue growing and reach a new user base, Genius will need to revisit their store listing on both the iOS App Store and the Google Play Store to incorporate some of the best practices of ASO. With the help of an expert ASO agency, the process of finding out what keywords, creatives, and copy will drive discovery and conversion will be much easier.

Want to learn more about App Store Optimization? Contact Gummicube and we’ll help get your strategy started.

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