TOP 400 US APPs ASO Analysis & Category Competition Index

According to the Nielsen report, a large sum of users find app’s from friend/family or via app searches. So, app title is very important for first impressions. Thus, it must be unique, memorable and fitting with app. If we think that Apple rejects some of apps because of long and stuffy titles, choosing app title name gains more importance. In this point, we wanted to examine how much using appropriate app title and keywords effect overall ranking.
First of all, we start with analyzing character size of titles. We stated that there are outliers whose character size of titles are 109, 122 and 141 respectively. Then, we looked their rankings which are 315, 259 and 341 in order. Thus, we cleared these apps in order to analyze data more efficiently. While the biggest observation has 141 characters on its title whose overall rank is 341, the smallest observation has only 3 characters whose overall ranks are 38, 41 and 260 respectively. On the other hand according to the table and graphic below; it can be said that:

  1. Most commonly used character size is 12 whose frequency is 23.
  2. Average character size of titles is 27.62.
  3. Approximately 1/3 of the application’s title character sizes are between 5 and 15.

Secondly, let’s look at the number of keywords usage in the title in top 400 US apps in App Store. According to the graphic and table below:

  1. Most commonly used keyword count is 1 whose frequency is 72.
  2. Average keyword count is 4.48.
  3. Above 50 percent of the Apps (208 of 400) use at most 3 keywords.

2 Apps in the top 400 list have 16 keywords in their title which are “Jet – The Smartest Way to Shop & Save Online, Find the Lowest Prices, Discounts & Deals” and “White Tiles 4 : Piano Master ( Don’t Touch the White Tile and Trivia games ) – Free”
We analyzed character sizes and keywords of the titles. Then, the question is whether they effect overall ranking or not. In order to answer this question, we divided the data into 4 parts with equal length 100. Average character sizes and keywords of the titles of each group is below.
According to the table, not only character size but also keywords of the titles are decreasing when the rank of the App is increasing. It can be also said that famous apps are known with their brand name and get discovered by the brand searches. Moreover, they are using less keywords in their app titles.
Let’s get deeper analysis with respect to app categories. There are 142 apps in game, 43 in photo&video, 33 in social networking, 30 in entertainment, 27 in music and 25 in the shopping category in the top 400. In terms of character and keyword count:
According to the table above, it can be said that:

  1. Shopping and photo&video apps have the longest character sizes and keywords.
  2. Games and social networking apps have the shortest character sizes and keywords.

Lastly, we analyzed the most frequently used keywords in the titles of the overall 400 apps. It is not a surprise FREE is the winner.
As a conclusion, according to the analysis results, we can say that top ranked apps use less keywords thanks to their reputation, whereas in some categories there is a strong competition between apps which have similar features. Thus, they are using ASO techniques in order to go up in the ranking list.
Category Analysis
According to Fiksu index of February, 8.5M apps downloads is achieved daily by the Top 200 ranked free iPhone apps in the U.S. Since the main factor in ranking algorithms is the daily download volume, we will now make an estimation of category download volumes.
Below is the percentage of app categories in top 200 overal free US chart. We also extracted daily download volume of each category using a simple linear estimation.
There is a huge competition difference between Games and other categories. Games category get the biggest download volume. Photo&Video and Music follow the Games category in terms of daily download volume hence the competition.

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