Thriving in the Privacy Era: ASO Strategies for 2024 and Beyond


The current digital era has seen a significant shift in privacy regulations, emphasising the importance of user privacy and data security. In 2023, app downloads surpassed 218 billion, showcasing the immense popularity of mobile apps. With each download, users encounter terms of service and privacy policies, which are crucial legal…

The current digital era has seen a significant shift in privacy regulations, emphasising the importance of user privacy and data security. In 2023, app downloads surpassed 218 billion, showcasing the immense popularity of mobile apps. With each download, users encounter terms of service and privacy policies, which are crucial legal documents safeguarding both consumers and companies by outlining data usage practices.    As apps have the potential to enhance brand identity significantly, companies must navigate these regulations adeptly to devise a strategy that doesn’t compromise the app’s visibility, especially in the face of increasing competition. To tackle this challenge, companies employ App Store Optimisation (ASO) techniques to enhance their app's visibility and attract more downloads. This strategic evolution requires marketers to enhance their ASO to adapt their approaches. This further leads to improved discoverability and precise targeting that not only helps increase user retention and engagement but also ensures compliance with evolving digital privacy regulations.

Privacy Revolution: Redefining App Store Optimisation

Privacy concerns among mobile users have increased, leading to calls for regulatory action. About a year ago, the Indian Parliament passed the Digital Personal Data Protection Act (DPDP), empowering users with control over their data. Both Google and Apple app stores have implemented their privacy policies, and they receive regular updates. These policy adjustments can significantly influence App Store Optimisation (ASO) outcomes in several ways:
  • App Submission Guidelines: Apple and Google now require developers to disclose age targets, ad networks, and privacy specifics.
  • New Privacy Opt-In: Users must now opt-in to allow tracking by advertisers, affecting paid advertising efforts.
  • Cookies, IDFA, and GAID: Users can now block third-party cookies, and developers can't bypass tracking opt-outs, making campaigns less targeted.
  • Mandatory Disclaimers: If the application shares data with third parties, its policy should clearly state the reasons for sharing that data, including sharing with affiliates and service providers.
  These changes aim to give users more control over their data, limiting marketers' access to identifiable user information and impacting ASO strategies.

Key Strategies for Marketers to Elevate ASO Campaigns

With industry leaders like Google and Apple continuously updating and tightening their privacy regulations, adapting and implementing new strategies that comply with these changes without hampering App’s performance or visibility is necessary. Some of the impactful strategies that can be adopted by them include: 
  1. Encourage Opt-Ins through Value Exchange

Since users now have to opt-in to allow tracking, companies must provide a clear and convincing reason for them to do so. Offering incentives such as exclusive content, discounts, premium features, or free trials in exchange for opting in can be a good start to that. Users with probable benefits in sight are more likely to opt in for tracking than those without. 
  1. Transparent Privacy Policies

Developers should ensure the app’s privacy policy is clear, concise, and easily accessible. With stricter regulations, transparent privacy policies are good practice and legally required in many jurisdictions. Failure to comply can result in warnings, hefty fines, and removal from the store. Data regarding age targets and ad networks, as required by Apple and Google, must be disclosed to build trust with the users and positively impact the overall conversion rates. 
  1. Segmentation and Personalisation

While third-party tracking is limited, marketers can still utilise first-party data for segmentation and personalisation within the app. Tailor in-app experiences based on user behaviour and preferences to enhance engagement and retention. User behaviour can be segmented on the basis of retention rate, time spent on specific features, purchase history, or interactions with content/elements of the app. The personalised content can also be regularly improved upon using A/B testing and optimisation. 
  1. Invest in Organic Visibility

Optimise the app store presence for organic discovery by focusing on keywords, visuals, and user reviews. Businesses must encourage satisfied users to leave positive reviews and ratings, boosting the app’s visibility in search results. Further, app listing can be strengthened by investing in content optimisation.
  1. Adapt to optimised in-app elements 

To enhance user experience, it's crucial for app developers to not only adapt to privacy regulations but also focus on optimising app performance based on user feedback and usage experiences. For example, in BFSI-related apps, providing examples of usage is mandatory to avoid warnings and potential removal from app stores. Additionally, app developers should shift their focus to key performance indicators (KPIs) such as app store visitors, acquisition, and in-app engagement metrics to evaluate the app's success and ensure a smoother user journey.
  1. Compliance with adequate systems and processes

With consistent updates in regulations and policies, major players such as Google or Apple occasionally require the completion of certain documentation and release-related updates. Apart from an effective strategy for the app’s performance, businesses must also be proactive in tracking and adapting to these new requirements and ensure that their documentation is completed as needed.

Navigating the Future

Privacy regulations and their impact on ASO are likely to continue evolving in the future. As concerns over data privacy become prominent, governing bodies may introduce new laws and guidelines to protect user data. App developers and marketers must adapt their ASO strategies to ensure transparency. These strategies not only ensure compliance with the regulations but also encourage user trust and enhance engagement and driver conversions. By prioritising this clarity, marketers can create meaningful experiences that resonate with users and differentiate their apps in a crowded marketplace.

Subscribe to our weekly updates.

    Make a mark in the industry with us via digital transformation.

    Contact us