With the release of iOS 11, developers everywhere are double checking their ASO checklists, especially in regard to their app preview videos. Developers mustn't forget that Apple has made recent changes to preview videos that cannot be ignored. These changes, which include the ability to submit up to three preview videos per app and the app preview video auto playing while in search, have an impact on conversion. Developers need to make sure that their preview video, whether they only have one or opted for the maximum of three, follows ASO best practices. In order to convert users and convince them to tap “GET”, developers need to make sure that they have optimized their preview video by following these 5 ways.
1. Emphasizing the App’s Core Features
As previously mentioned, preview videos are by far one of the most important aspects of converting users. The preview video needs to entice users to click on an app listing so they can see all the app in action. The preview video also needs to reflect the app’s core feature within the first 10 seconds, pan out in a logical progression and pace, while also visually understandable without music or sound. It is all too easy to get caught up in the unique features an app has to offer, but the first preview video must really emphasize the app’s core features to convert users. Take for example, PAC-MAN’s preview video: It clearly shows users what they want to know about the classic game’s features, mechanics and more. That first preview video needs to undeniable convey the message of the app’s core features. If users see images that strongly correlate with the functionality of the app and that the app’s name, they are more likely to convert.
Highlighting Different Features Now that Apple allows up to three preview videos, developers should take the time to feature different core features. The first preview video must emphasize all core features that the app has to offer. If a developer has additional preview videos, they should then highlight what makes the app different from its competition in 30 seconds. When creating app preview videos, optimize the given space and keep the audience engaged in order to increase conversion. One of the benefits of having three preview videos is the fact that when one finishes playing, it will automatically start playing the next video for the app below it. This gives developers a great opportunity to focus on just one core feature per video. Not only will developers have the time to show off all of their app’s features, but they’ll also encourage users to keep watching.
3. Poster Frame
Now that preview videos are on auto play in iOS 11, it’s crucial to not forget that there is still importance to having a well optimized poster frame. The poster frame will appear wherever app previews do not auto play. On the App Store for iOS 10.3 or earlier, the poster frame will be one of the first graphical elements a user will see on the app listing in search. Developers should keep in mind for their other preview videos, that they should make sure the app’s name, callout text, etc. aren’t hidden under the play button. On top of that, if a user is watching another app’s preview video in app store search, any other adjacent preview videos in the listing are paused on their poster frame. The poster frame should be as enticing as possible so users will ultimately convert. 4. Follow Apple's Guidelines A preview video can't increase conversion if it doesn’t meet Apple’s requirements – plain and simple. Apple has guidelines that all developers must follow when creating and submitting a preview video. Thankfully, Apple hasn’t changed their guidelines with iOS 11. Some basic key points to remember is that the video must have a length of up to 30 seconds and have seamless scene transitioning that doesn’t imply functionally the app does not have. The preview video must also not feature people interacting with a device that displays the app or any other external footage outside of the app. We have found in our past research that apps with impressive preview videos can improve conversion rates up to 30 percent, while bad videos can conversely decrease conversion up to 30 percent. Apple's guidelines genuinely are there to help app developers give users a realistic demonstration of their app. Developers can also note that nearly every type of device and version of that device will require different video dimensions. For example, an iPhone7 landscape dimension requirements will be 1334 x 750 while an Apple TV’s requirements will be 1920 x 1080. These differences indicate that app developers must ensure their app passes Apple’s dimension requirements and prevent video submission rejection.
5. Look at What Competitors Are Doing
It’s important to constantly check out other competitor apps in the space to see what elements they are incorporating into their preview video or poster frame. Any developer taking the time to refresh their preview video(s) to be more iOS 11 should look at what other apps are incorporating to stay on top of the competition. For example, are competitors utilizing more portrait oriented or landscape oriented screenshots? Are competitors adding copy throughout the video? These are good questions to ask oneself when either recreating one preview video or creating more.
Even though the release of iOS 11 hasn't made a huge impact on the requirements for preview videos, the increase of three videos plus auto playing will definitely make an impact in creatives. Creatives in general are a key factor for conversion, meaning developers should take the time to follow these tips for preview videos in iOS 11. Always make sure preview videos clearly highlight the app's core features and stand out against competition without compromising Apple's requirements.