2 July, 2020

Apple’s iOS 14 is changing the mobile marketing landscape


Take a bite out of Apple’s sweet new updates! iOS 14 introduces App Clips, new privacy guidelines, search detection, and more!

Apple is at it again! The tech giant virtually gathered last week to kick off its annual Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC), introducing multiple new features that will change the ASO game, impact User Acquisition, and affect overall mobile growth.

App Clips

App Clips offer users a new, easy way to experience apps. Aiming to improve the platform’s User Experience, this incredible new iOS 14 feature allows mobile users to get a feel for an app without having to download it.

Displaying a portion of an app, app clips are sort of a tease, giving users fast access to use it and even complete a task through it. Similar to Google’s instant apps, app clips are meant to give users a seamless introduction to an app. This parallels with how Google Play Instant allows people to use an app or game before installing it.

On both platforms, users are offered to fully download the app at the end of the experience. This new app preview allows for quick activities, like paying for a coffee or ordering show tickets faster than ever before.

App Clips - Apple Developer

Source: Apple Developer

App clips are built to be speedy and lightweight, so you can quickly open them. Ahhh. The sweet relief of instant gratification! Easily beats that of our peering eyes waiting for the full download to complete, only to discover we’re displeased with the downloaded app.

And to make things even simpler, app clips can use Apple Pay and Apple ID Sign In, so you don’t have to enter additional information. Hooray!

The “mini-me“ version of an app holds significant space to showcase the app’s features and engage users. With these more engaged users, we’re likely to see higher retention. Then, of course, once you seamlessly experienced this sweet bite-size version, you have the opportunity to download the full app. The key is to tastefully offer that option at an appropriate time in your app clip.

Apple brings this unique UX space to simplify the process of app usage and to help users discover more of the App Store.

How are App Clips discoverable?

App Clip Codes

Apple Developer says that App Clip Codes are “the best way for your users to discover your app clip. It’s visually beautiful and distinct, so when someone sees one, they’ll know there’s an app clip waiting for them.”

Is this tech gibberish? Maybe. Part of the app clip value is how potential users can discover these codes. However, the tools needed to create them will only be available later this year.

But, since we’re all about the sneak-peaks, here is what we know – an app clip code will encode a URL with an NFC tag, so users can scan or tap the code. The codes will be eye-catching, distinct, and easily recognizable.

Here are various spots to implement your app clip code:

  • NFC Tags
    To launch an app clip, a user can tap their device on NFC tags placed in specific locations. They won’t even need to unlock their phone to do so. What?!
  • QR Codes
    Similar to NFC tags, you can place QR codes in specific locations. The only difference here is users can reach the app clip by scanning the code using the camera’s barcode reader.
  • Safari App Banner
    Configure your webpage with a Smart App Banner for app clips and, from there, users will be able to simply tap to open it.
  • Links in Messages
    Make sure you enable sharing within your app clip, so users can share it via iMessage and the lucky receivers will be able to open it from there.
  • Place Cards in Maps
    Is geography a key aspect of your app clip? If your app clip relates to a specific location, you can register for a place card to appear in Maps, and users can open the app clip from there.
  • Recently Used
    The new App Library will have a ‘Recents’ category, which will keep track of your app clip history. Here, you can find recently discovered app clips and relaunch them. But wait, there’s more! You can send users a notification within the first 8 hours of them launching your app clip. Once tapped, they’ll be redirected back to your app clip.
  • Splurge on Experiences
    For apps that enjoy flooding their users with multiple experiences, there’s an opportunity to create a unique experience for each feature of the app through a single app clip. This lines up well with their new simplified app build.

iOS 14 Privacy Guidelines Changes and the Implications on IDFA

During WWDC20, Apple also announced the crippling news for Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA). Users will now get a pop-up when they install an app that asks them if they would like the app to follow them or not. Sounds creepy, but to know more, check out our blog on the topic here.

Developers Can Now Appeal App Store Guidelines. Challenge Accepted!

Another exciting update from iOS rides on the harsh rejection history often experienced by developers. Apple is known to be very strict on what’s being put out on their store’s shelves, and while that’s understandable, many developers have felt the platform’s guidelines are too strict and limit their app product.

In light of this constant battle between the two, Apple is allowing developers to challenge both the rejection of an app and the rule that prompted that rejection. This is the first step of what developers hope will eventually alter the future of App Store guidelines. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the show!

On a similar topic, for apps that already have a presence in the App Store, guideline violations will no longer be accountable for delaying bug fixes, except for those related to legal issues. Running immediate bug fixes is integral to keeping apps secure. Apple doesn’t want to put its users at risk, and finally understands that delaying bug fixes due to other app negotiations is unnecessary. This happy change is expected to begin as early as this summer.

Hide and Seek? Not Anymore… New Search Updates Affect ASO Strategy

A common strategy used for keyword targeting on iOS includes adding misspellings of brand names and high-traffic search terms in the hidden keyword list. Well, ASOers, those days are over.

Type detection and automatic correction are being introduced as part of iOS 14. That means that any misspelled word will be autocorrected before searched (unless the user taps on the “did you actually mean that” pop-up), and thus the traffic surrounding that search term will decrease and make the misspelled target insignificant. Therefore, ASO strategists and developers that capitalized on ranking high for such terms will no longer be able to use this strategy.

Search results for genre keywords will now include editorial collections and be shown at the top of search results, pushing down the top ranks below it. For example, if an app is ranked #1 for ‘card games’ but there is an editorial collection featuring card games, the placement of that top-ranked app for this term will be pushed down to the #3 spot. This change can have huge implications on an app’s traffic and CVR.

Overall, iOS 14 is bringing on some massive changes that are going to affect both paid and organic marketing strategies. Knowing how to adapt to these changes will be vital in keeping your app in the game. Make sure that you’re ready for September because iOS 14 is going to really shake things up.

Contact us if you have any concerns about how iOS 14 will affect your app.

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