It’s a common thought that ASO is considered the mobile version of SEO because of some similarities. In fact, they have different search intents, processes, and results. Since they are both legitimate marketing techniques for organic traffic, it’s inevitable to consider they’re basically the same thing, even if they are not.

Since people assume that ASO is basically “SEO for apps”, it’s considered that the same strategies and methods will work as the same for both. But it cannot. Let’s see why.

What are ASO and SEO?

App Store Optimization (ASO): It is the process of improving an app’s visibility in the search results to gain a more organic increase in the app installs. It’s basically the optimization process of an app’s rankings to reach an extensive range of search terms.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO): It is the process of improving a website’s qualified organic visibility in different search engines like Google, Bing, etc. It aims to attract more visitors to the website and so increase the position in the search results.

Similarities between ASO and SEO

1. Visibility

The main goal for ASO and SEO is to make your app or website organically found in the search results. Both optimization processes focus on boosting inbound activities to use the webpage or app and get a high ranking in the search rankings.

To increase impressions and app downloads ASO is what app marketers need. Since SEO aims to increase the visibility of the websites, it’s a total need for web marketers too. The goal of visibility works the same for both techniques.

2. Keywords

Keywords have strong importance when it comes to SEO and ASO. It directly affects the performance of the optimization and search algorithms. Keywords are substantial factors to make your app or website findable by everyone and so enhance the chance of getting ranked higher. Keyword optimization is made by checking on competition, relevant phrases, long-tail keywords, etc.

Even the logic between SEO and ASO is the same for keywords, it’s a must to use different tools and search methods to find best-performing keywords. Search algorithms, behaviors may be different when it comes to apps and websites so using the same keywords will not work for both methods. ASO and SEO require different metrics to build a strategy, don’t forget that!

3. Consistency

Organic growth is a constant manner. When it comes to ASO and SEO, it’s important to implement the work in the long term. It cannot be done for one time, because it should be continuous. The results for both methods will not come quickly and that’s why both methods require patience and consistency.

Differences between ASO and SEO

As much as similarities, there are many differences between ASO and SEO. The first difference is ASO is for apps and SEO for the websites. But is that all? Not really. Let’s see the other factors.

1.Search Intent:

User behaviors differ when it comes to app and web searches. In the app stores, people tend to search with shorter terms than the web. Like a brand name, specific apps for their needs, or look for categories to discover new apps. That’s why in the app stores, searches are based on functionalities or specific app features.

On the web, people tend to search with longer and more detailed terms since there are lots of sources. It’s a fact that people generally look for specific answers for their questions, that’s why web searches are longer and more complex according to the app search.

2. Ranking Factors:

When the context of metadata changes, the ranking factors change accordingly. Both algorithms work differently even they aim for the same goals. Here are the factors that affect SEO and ASO.

Top ASO ranking factors are:

  1. App title
  2. App subtitle or short description
  3. Keywords
  4. App description and keyword density
  5. App icons, screenshots, and videos
  6. Localization
  7. In-app purchases
  8. Reviews & Ratings
  9. Total downloads
  10. Conversion rates
  11. Retention rates

Top SEO ranking factors are:

  1. Page speed
  2. Keywords in the title, header tags (H1, H2, H3)
  3. Page titles
  4. Metadata (Description)
  5. Backlinks
  6. Keyword density
  7. Content quality
  8. Domain
  9. Page content
  10. Images alt text
  11. URL structure

Are ASO and SEO competitors?

This is an obvious NO. ASO and SEO have the same goals but they work for different algorithms and they are both a must for marketing processes. As long as we have websites and apps, they both will be in our lives.

On the other hand, ASO and SEO must be included in the marketing strategies of companies that have apps and websites, if they want to increase organic search results. They are inseparable parts of user acquisition. They should work together to provide the best outcomes for more traffic and sales. That’s why ASO and SEO are not interchangeable with each other since they are working to optimize different assets.