How many installs do you need for a keyword?

“Tell me how many installs do I need to get to the TOP” is one of the most popular questions our clients ask at first minutes on our platform. Unfortunately, we can not put the answer into the chat answer. We hope the article will be instrumental for you as a newcomer or keyword promotion expert.

How many downloads each keyword of my application needs?

First of all, we are talking about growing up the ranks by keywords, not categories. In the best-case scenario, we plan to grow to the 1-3d position at the market. A general idea is the following: the higher is keyword difficulty (we calculate it from 1 to 10, and it shows relative competition over a position of the keyword) the more installs you need. The higher is the position by keyword, the more installs you need to get +1 position. However, you can not use more than 10-20 installs per day, if the keyword is lower than 20th position: your organics bring some 5-10 installs from search as you are far to scroll for. Here we illustrate our logic:

The next chart shows what are the numbers of installs you need to get from the 20th positions to the top 3 in ranks by a keyword, regarding the difficulty. Notice the growing difference between Max and minimum amounts of installs: higher competition makes algorithms rely on various factors. The more metrics it takes into account, the more installs you will need to get new positions if you fail by one of these criteria.

The lower is the metriс score, the more you will need to promote your application. For example, your in-app activity and retention are too low. As a result, the Google Play algorithm will index and move your app up the positions slower. One of many categories can affect the number of installs you need to get your position. The most common is the overall traffic for your app, in-app activity, retention, conversion rate, category discrepancy, app lifetime. 

So, two different keywords for your application will need different numbers of installs and their promotion will not be the same as the competition, and app ranks by these words and phrases are not the same too.

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Why A app ranks for the same keyword quicker that app B?

The answer is simple – metrics. Let us suppose that 2 slot apps are promoted by the same “casino” keyword at the App Store. In the charts below you see their dynamics from promotion and key differences they have:

Click charts to zoom in

As you see, app B had better starting positions for the “casino” keyword, It was 20 positions higher. However, with the same number of installs bought, it has never reached the 10th position. 

Here are the reasons that made the impact:

App A

The title contained “casino” keyword.

It had 700+ rates, with a 4.7 average score.

It had 500+ reviews with 75% of them containing competitors’ brand names, keywords with “casino” as cores.

CR from search into download was 7,3%.

The average retention rate was 3,4 days. 

Managers bought traffic from the same region for this application.

The screenshots’ captures had relevant keywords. 

The application is 2 years old.

App B

The title contained “casino” keyword.

It had 600+ rates, with a 4.5 average score.

It had 500+ reviews with 75% of them containing competitors’ brand names, keywords with “casino” as cores.

CR from search into download was 5,2%.

The average retention rate was 2 days. 

The app is 5 months old.

We do not know all the other metrics that could affect the apps’ dynamics of promotion. But even that slight difference we see now, directly shows, that each app needs its specific number of installs per each keyword.

So, how can I find the number of installs I need?

Test that out! When we create campaigns for clients, the first two days of promotion we spend to understand how many installs we need. For example, our casino application campaign for 7 days 5 keywords will be like this:

The main principle is to start with 10-15 installs for the first two days. It gives you the idea whether the keyword can ever drow with the installs. We will continue to promote with 10 installs per day till we get to 20th positions. After that, we increase the number of installs by the keyword 1,5-2 times every 2 days till we get the top 3-5.

In two days we had these changes:

For 1st 4 keywords, 10 installs per day are enough, so we will continue with 10 installs per day till we get to the 20th.  

But “casino slot machines free”, 10 installs was not enough for this application. So, we will change the campaigns and promote with 15 installs until the same result. 

Now we have 2 separate campaigns, for 7 days:

In seven days we had these results:

Now we have 2 keywords we can promote with more installs. 3 other keywords we will group in a new 7-days campaign and continue with 10 installs daily. 

For “casino slots” and “casino slot machines free” we create a 5 days campaign with the next amounts of daily installs:

In 5 days we have the next results for our keywords:

So we can create campaigns for 4 keywords increasing the numbers of daily installs by 1,5-2. One keyword still needs promotion to the 20th. So, all in all, now you know how much installs do you need.

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