By Hagen Weiss
So, you are ready to expand your game app to the global market. You are figuring out how to best localize your game to other areas.
However, localizing the game is not the only thing you need to consider. You must also consider how to best make your app visible to users in the app store.
This is where app store optimization comes in.
The Importance of App Store Optimization
Perhaps your app is doing quite well in your local market. Word is getting out, and revenues are steady. As you look to expand to global markets, questions may arise, such as:
- How do I get users to discover my app?
- How can I increase app downloads?
- How do I reach a global audience?
A major factor in answering these questions is app store optimization (ASO). ASO is optimizing your app store listing so that it is more visible to users on app stores. The two major app stores today are Google Play (Android) and Apple App Store (iOS).
You can think of ASO as somewhat like Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Within the app store, you are competing with thousands of apps. Just like SEO, your aim is to improve your app’s search ranking with ASO.
According to Forrester Research, 63% of app downloads are a result of searching in an app store. A properly optimized app store listing leads to increased visibility. Increased visibility can then lead to increased downloads.
How to Optimize Your App Store Description
Similar to SEO, app stores have varying ranking factors. Google or Apple utilizes these factors to determine which apps will rank in their app store.
It is crucial to consider ASO when localizing your game for another market. Here are the steps to take to optimize your app store description.
1.Localizing Your App and Title
Should you translate your app title? It depends.
One of the key ranking factors is your app title. Translating it can make it clear and easy to understand for users in a different market searching for your app.
However, sometimes it makes sense to keep your title in the same language. For instance, if branding is an important aspect of your app, keeping the title the same will allow for consistency across multiple markets.
If keeping the title the same, you can still translate the title description (or the small descriptor phrase beside the title). This is a good way to localize your title while maintaining the important brand that your company is known for.
2. Localize Keywords
Getting your keywords right is an important aspect to help users find your app. Not all keywords have the same value when it comes to ASO. You need to identify the keywords with high volume, but also not too competitive, to target in your description.
This is where keyword research is vital. When translating your app description, you need to be aware of the ideal keywords for the particular language you are translating into. Just because a certain search term in English is a high-volume, low-competition keyword, doesn’t mean the direct translation of the same term will be the same.
How do you find these ideal keywords? Certain ASO analytic tools are available for keyword analysis. With these tools, you’ll be able to identify which terms users are using to search for your app. It’ll also let you know keywords your competitors are ranking for as well. Having an ideal set of keywords will help you localize your description effectively.
3. Localize Screenshots and Videos
People are visual-oriented, first and foremost. Before users proceed to read about the game, they’ll direct their attention to your visuals first. Graphics and videos are vital for that first impression.
Always check to ensure your app listing visuals are appropriate for the new market. Replace any culturally specific images for something more suitable. Likewise, translate any text that may be in your app screenshot or videos.
Screenshots and other creative visuals are not direct ranking factors in app store platforms. However, they are crucial for conversion rates (i.e. downloads). The number of downloads is a signal to how popular your app is, which affects your visibility.
4. Check for Formatting
Translating your app store description can result in formatting issues. Text that may fit nicely in your original language may end up taking much more space in another language. Readers will likely not read walls of text on their hand-held devices. Condense text as much as possible for a better user experience.
Another formatting consideration when localizing is units. Ensure all units of measurements are localized for the appropriate area. Almost all countries outside the US are under the metric system. Currencies will also need to be adapted based on the targeted area.
Proper formatting is beneficial for both the user experience and ASO. Take the time to ensure everything looks clean when localizing your game.
Tips for Localizing Your App
Besides for the above, here are some quick tips to ensure you have an optimized app store description:
- Research your market: Expanding your game to another market can be risky. Localization is no small investment and should be done with proper planning. Research your prospective market extensively before you dive into localization.
- Hire the right translator: As you can see, localizing your app description is much more than just direct translation. It involves proper keyword usage, cultural awareness, and utilizing best copywriting practices. Ensure your translator is qualified and has the skills necessary to complete the job.
- Spend time on keyword research: It might be tempting to skip out on keyword research. Simply put, don’t skip it. Invest the time necessary for this important activity. Keyword research is the basis of your app store listing. Pick high-quality keywords so you can strategically position your app in front of your audience.
iGlobe Game Translation & Localizing Your App
It’s crucial to stay on top of app store optimization best practices when localizing your app. iGlobe is a team of translation and localization experts that can help you do exactly that.
We offer free localization audits to ensure your game is properly optimized. To learn more about our translation & localization services, contact us today!
Tel：+1 604 355 3023