In this ASO Monthly series, the Phiture team reflects on the previous month and sheds light on trends in app store optimization, algorithm changes, privacy changes, conversion rate optimization, and tool updates.

This update was prepared by ASO Consultant Peiyi Lin at Phiture.

Phiture has prepared a series of articles on iOS 15 to ensure you’re ready to install!

iOS 15: iOS 15 and Product Page Optimization: A Crash Course in Launching A/B Testing on the App Store

December 1 – More tags are available for games in the Google Play Store setting section 

As mentioned by Marek Pasieczny in the ASO Stack Slack Community, all gaming apps now have access to a more complete tag list for their app. Although you can select up to five tags, you don’t necessarily have to use all five. Choosing the right tags for your app allows Google to cluster similar apps and increases the possibility of increasing browse users. A complete list of tags can be found here by AppTweak.

December 7 – Custom Product Pages and Product Page Optimization are available in App Store Connect

Following In-App Events on October 27th, Apple released two more highly anticipated features: Custom Product Pages and Product Page Optimization for app developers and ASO practitioners to further optimize for users.

Custom Product Pages (CPPs) allow us to create additional versions of the App Store product page which specify different app highlights. Each unique page has its own URL which can be used in other UA channels for marketing.

Example of Custom Product Pages from Apple

On the other hand, Product Page Optimization (PPO) provides ASO practitioners with a native testing environment in-store to cater to users’ preferences via in-app icons, screenshots and app previews on the product page. This is an exciting update for ASO practitioners because it also presents an opportunity to optimize and boost conversion rates.

Example of Product Page Optimizations in App Store Connect from Apple

As shared by Ilia Kukharev, to see these two new features (Custom Product Pages and Product Page Optimization), you need to enable In-App Events first. 

It’s important to note that Product Page Optimization and Custom Product Pages are localized by language and therefore do not provide information per country in the analytics. We’ve curated all PPO issues identified so far by our ASO community members:

  • If we are testing localized assets, we can run only one experiment for one locale. Otherwise we can’t isolate the performance of each locale. (Agata Jajszczyk at ASO Stack Slack Community
  • Another limitation is that no parallel reviews are permitted. This means that if you want to submit Custom Product Pages, you’ll have to wait until your new build submission is complete. (Ilia Kukharev at ASO Stack Slack Community)
  • If you submit the new app version while your test is running, the Product Page Optimization will be forced to stop automatically. (Fede Behrens at ASO Stack Slack Community)

Note from Apple shared by Fede Behrens at ASO Stack Slack Community

From feedback in the ASO community, there are still many things to be optimized, but most of the ASO practitioners are still thrilled by the new releases in 2022. They symbolize a step closer to users and most importantly, exposed countless opportunities to elevate app visibility and conversion.

Get familiar with the new features:

December 8 – A delay is recorded for Redownloads data in App Store Connect

Apple notified users that there was a delay in Redownloads data which may have impacted metrics totals between October 12th–18th, 2021. However, the full set of data is now available.

Notice of delay in Redownloads

December 10 – App practitioners struggle with testing icons in the App Store whilst  slideshows in the Play Store are limited 

For those interested in Product Page Optimization, it may not be as straightforward as it could be in App Store Connect.  in the ASO community shared that you need to:

  1. Include the app icon you want to test in the app binary for the current version on App Store Connect.
  2. The app must use an SDK that supports alternate icons in asset catalogs. 
  3. Icons must be sized to 1024×1024 pixels.

These restrictions make it hard to test app icons, which is a blocker for flexible testing in the App Store.

In the Google Play Store, the slideshow display in the “Recommended for you” and advertisement section is limited to landscape screens. Although it seems to have been announced some time ago, the requirements around landscape with a minimum of three slides were not specified. (Claudia Trujillo at ASO Stack Slack Community)

Since vivid displays are more likely to catch the user’s eye, it is recommended that ASO practitioners mind these differences in creative display for more visibility. 

December 15 – Abnormally big app icons noticed in the Google Play Store

On December 15th, Donavin asked other ASO community members if everyone sees a gigantic app icon in the “For you” section in the Google Play Store, and it seems that some of the members also saw the same on their devices. 

Although projecting your app icon like this could be a dream come true, this is a bug. It’s supposed to be fixed soon by Google, but for now the impact of the bug remains uncertain.

           Shared by Donavin at ASO Stack Slack Community 


December 16 – In-App Events Analytics can no longer be found in App Store Connect

Apple suddenly removed the analytics from App Store Connect without notice (Claudia Trujillo at ASO Stack Slack Community), making it hard for app developers to evaluate the performance of In-App Events. In-App Events were announced on October 27th and were already in use by many app marketers. 

*In-App Events Analytics is now back and available from January 6th, 2022 (Apple).


December 20 – In-App Event order might display differently on the product page

As we all know, the targeted audience selection will impact what users we are showing events to in the App Store. However, it’s often missed that the event presented on the product page might show slightly differently to users who have installed the app. (Brian Devine at ASO Stack Slack Community) For instance, if you have the app installed on your device, you will first see the icon and event, then the “What’s new” section, but if you are new to the uninstalled app’s product page, you will see more app information, such as icons, “What’s new” and previews before the event. (Claudia Trujillo at ASO Stack Slack Community)


December 22 ASO practitioners have the same conversion result from PPO tests

After Product Page Optimization was released at the beginning of December, many marketers started to test the app’s product page with different variants. However, many ASO practitioners noticed that the conversion rate was the same for different variants (named treatments in App Store Connect).  

Shared by Vadim Lysenko at ASO Stack Slack Community

Shared by Marília Mugnol at ASO Stack Slack Community

It seems that not everyone experienced the same result however, as some shared different results in conversion among treatments.

Shared by Anton Tatarynovich at ASO Stack Slack Community

After finishing your Product Page Optimization test, we encourage you to carefully evaluate the result and compare the changes of before and after applying anything new to the store. Follow this as the golden rule to identify what’s stunting conversion.


Tool updates

Recap of 2021 Product Updates | AppTweak

Asodesk now has the translation of reviews (Paid Feature) | Asodesk


Interesting reads 

Average App Conversion Rate Per Category in 2021 | AppTweak 

Impact of Black Friday on Shopping Apps [2021] | AppTweak 

An interesting case of how ASO helps seasonal events to increase traffic and the conversion rate of your app store listing.

Apple and Google duopoly limits competition and choice | UK Gov

TikTok became the most downloaded app worldwide on Christmas day 2021 | Mobile Marketing Trend

Google is bringing Android games to Windows in 2022 | The Verge

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