Google on its AdWords Agency Blog is advising that 29% of shoppers are planning to purchase smartphones this holiday season (from a Google/Ipsos study in October). The necessary fallout: new owners of smartphones and tablets will play with their toys, looking for apps. Google Trends observed that in the week after Christmas 2011, searches for "best tablet apps" spiked more than 70% and searches for "free phone apps" jumped about 37%. How can app promoters prepare?
First by maximizing reach with search and display ads. For example, TripIt, the mobile travel organizer, used click-to-download ads on Google Search and on the Google Display Network (GDN) to promote its app to business travelers on the road. Google claims that TripIt increased downloads by more than 75% by creating and optimizing display ads within other apps, while cutting cost-per-download by more than 96%. That, said TripIts senior director of search marketing, allowed it to "redirect the dollars we've saved on app promotion to improving our app and providing a better trip-organizer service to our business travelers."
Second, maximize ROI with Conversion Optimizer. Mobile game developer GREE promoted its apps to gamers using Google Search click-to-download ads alongside image and text ads on GDN. They leveraged Conversion Optimizer for apps to reach their cost-per-download targets. This automated campaign optimization helped them improve download rates by 150% while decreaseing cost-per-download 52% and improving click-through rates by 49%.
Google offers these tips to promote apps across search and display:
- Ensure you reach people when they search for apps like yours, and help them easily download those app with click-to-download ads and mobile app extensions
- Reach relevant users within over 300,000 premium apps on the GDN with image and text ads
- Track downloads on Android and iOS with AdWords conversion tracking and optimize ROI Conversion Optimizer for apps, the automated bidding feature.
- Measure in-app user activity with Mobile App Analytics.
- Increase app promotion campaign budgets for the holidays to account for additional ad clicks.