A product review was conducted on an ASO tools used in mobile apps marketing. It is known as Sensor Tower which is available at sensortower.com. This review was conducted on a free version of the software which is limited to one active apps and eight keywords. In order to understand the effectiveness of this tool, I use it to analyze my own apps which was published in apple AppStore.
What is Sensor Tower?
Sensor Tower is an online analytical tool for App Store Optimization. The primary function is to use for keyword analysis for mobile apps. Some of the key modules are:-
- keyword ranking
- Keyword optimization
- Keyword Research
- Keyword Suggestion
- Keyword Translation
- Keyword Spy
- Category Ranking
- Track Competitor
- Download & Revenue.
Module 1 – Keyword Ranking
This module allows you to track which keyword is ranked for. A report consist of several tracking parameters is displayed. It is helpful for you to understand your app ranking and factors affecting it.
In order to understand the functionality of the sensor tower software, I used it to analyze my hotel app with the keyword “best deal hotel”. The analysed results are described below:-
Traffic Score – 1.9 ( most traffic score is 10 )
This score is an estimate of how many people are searching for the specified keyword. A higher score means more people are using this keyword to do a search.
The score is 1.9 – It has relatively low search volume.
iPhone Difficulty – 0.4 ( scale of 0 to 10 )
This score is given in a scale of 0 to 10. It represents how difficult it is for an app to rank top for a specific keyword. The lower the score, the easier is to rank top for a specific keyword. Conversely, a higher the score indicates more difficult to rank to the top.
The score is 0.4 – It is relatively easy to rank top for the given keyword
iPhone Apps – 39 ( high score meant higher competition )
This score is straight forward. It shows the total number of similar apps in AppStore. For a higher the score, there are more competing apps in the store.
The score is 39 – It is 39 apps with the same keyword.
iPhone Rank – 5 ( low score meant top ranking )
This is the easiest indicator. It simply tell you the ranking position of your app for given a keyword.
The score is 5 – the apps is ranked at position 5.
1) The score for the respective keyword is a useful data to improve your apps ranking.
1) The score in the report is only indicative. There is no real number to show the amount of traffic.
In Summary, you have to interpret the scores logically since real number is not available. You have to test which keyword has better potential to get high download. The tools does not tell you exactly what you need to do.
Module 2 – Keyword Optimization
This Module has the ability to analyze a single or multiple keywords for a published apps. You can input as many keyword as you wish. There is a counter to show the total number of characters. A color band is there for all the keyword inserted for analysis. A red color band indicate duplicated entry. Amber color mean similar keyword term is included. A unique keyword is shown in green color.
You can click on those keyword with red and amber color band to optimize the list until it is 100 or less. Once the list is optimized to 100 characters, you can click on the search button to see the potential ranking of each keyword.
The search results provides a table consist the following data headings:-
iPhone Rank -
This is a score indicates the position in which an apps is ranked for a specific keyword. Example: My hotel apps ranked in position 136 for the keyword “booking”.
I can click on the word “booking” to spy on other apps which is ranked with the same keyword.
Similar usage as iPhone Rank but it is meant for iPad.
This score is an estimate of how many people are searching for a specific keyword. A high score means more people do the search for the same phrase.
iPhone Difficulty – ( scale of 0 to 10 )
This score is given in a scale of 0 to 10, with a10 being the most difficult. Obviously, a lower score is the easier to rank and vice versa.
iPad Difficulty – ( scale of 0 to 10 )
Similar definition with iPhone Difficulty
iPhone Apps – high score meant higher competition
This score is straight forward. It shows the total number of similar apps in AppStore given a specific keyword. A high score mean more app are in the store. It may also reflect a high demand of the keyword which lead to more developer willing to build similar apps.
iPad Apps – high score meant higher competition
Similar definition with iPhone apps
1) It provides an indicator to view the number of characters
2) It highlights duplicated and similar keywords for optimization.
3) Each of the selected keyword is tabulated to show its suitability
1) no obvious issue
Module 3 – Keyword Research
This is a useful module that allows you to do a search on any keyword you desired. When a search is done, a list of top apps will be displayed in a table which consist of detail information listed below:-
It indicates the date the apps is first released to the store
Date shown in this column indicates when the apps was last updated
In app Purchase
If the display is blank, it means there is no in app purchase. Otherwise, it will show a yes.
All Time Reviews
It indicate the total number of reviews done by viewers since the released date.
It indicate the total number of reviews for the current month
I have no explanation of this term used.
It indicate the category for which the apps was registered.
It is used to spy own or competing apps for the same keyword
1) Traffic score is a good indicator to demand of a keyword
2) iPhone and iPad difficulty provides a score to ranking difficulty. A low score implied a better chance to rank top.
3) iPhone apps and iPad apps score indicates the number of apps already published in the store. It is also a reflection of number of competitor for the keyword.
Since there is not explanation note by the side of the report heading, I can only give my best guess to its meaning.
Module 4 – Keyword Suggestions
This Module is quite straight forward. A list of suggested keywords are provided based on your apps. Detail analytical data are provided in a table to similar Ranking.
1) very useful tools to enhance your list of keyword
No obvious issue
Module 5 – Translation
This Module consist of 22 language translation. For each translated languages, it provides the number of characters used.
Can do multiple language translation with one source keyword entry
Language provided are fixed. no selection are provided.
Module 6 – Spying
This Module allows you extract keyword used for a particular apps. It is a useful tool to know what competitors are doing.
More competitor apps can be identified.
No obvious issue
Module 7 – Category Ranking
This module provides a chart which track the ranking of your apps by category.
Module 8 – Track competitors
The module track all your competitor apps.
Module 9 – download & Revenue
No able to test this module as my apps has low downloads.
Summary and Conclusion
In summary, this free version of ASO tools is a comprehensive analytical tools for keyword research as well as analyzing competitors. The result is more fact based. It is a valuable tools to be used for own apps ranking. Nevertheless, it took me several attempts to understand various functionality and data interpretations.
Although there is limitations in this free version, it was helpful for me to use it to analyze my own hotel apps. If you need to analyze more than one apps, you can upgrade to a paid subscription which provides a 14 days trial period.
However, you need to provided your credit card details in order to subscribe to the upgrade.