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Mastering App Store Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide

Mastering App Store Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide

The quantity of applications for iOS-powered devices continues to surge, reaching over four million currently available in the App Store. To make an application standout and reach the top of search results in the App Store, Apple Search Ads proves to be a solid ally. It operates as a platform for marketers and brings convenience to iPhone and iPad users by bringing notable individual applications to the forefront, ultimately simplifying the selection process whether the application is for productivity, leisure, or entertainment purposes.

Mastering App Store Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide

A Brief Overview

Apple Search Ads offers paid promotion opportunities in as many as 59 countries. Based on Apple’s statistics, a noteworthy 65% of app downloads stem from a search conducted on the App Store itself.

Mastering App Store Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide

Constituting roughly one-fourth of all the offerings in the App Store, gaming applications sit atop the app category hierarchy. Business applications, remarkably, claim the second rank despite amounting to just about half of the number of gaming apps.

Mastering App Store Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide

The presence of a multitude of competitors is hardly a persuasive reason to refrain from advertising on the App Store. It’s worth noting that the cost of a click, as well as the position of the ad, is influenced more by factors like the country where the ad is displayed, the category of your app, the relevance of your app to search inquiries, and the level of user interest than mere competition levels.

In the sections to follow, we delve into the mechanics of how this advertising service functions, and outline the necessary steps for initiating your ad campaign.

How Apple Search Ads works

Apple Search Ads shares similarities with both Google Ads and Facebook Ads as platforms for advertising space auctions, which dictate the per-click rate. Two distinct payment options serve to differentiate Apple Search Ads:

  • Cost-per-click (CPT)
  • Cost-per-install (CPI)

Advertisers with limited knowledge on advert setup and targeting can utilize the keyword match search function. This feature facilitates ease in keyword usage, incorporated through data accumulated from the application’s metadata, comparable applications within the same niche, and additional search metrics. Subsequently, selected search terms determine when and where your advert appears.

For digital advertising savvy users, the platform provides added sophisticated features:

  • Geographic, demographic, and device-style manual targeting.
  • Self-directed search term selection.
  • A comprehensive array of advert scheduling options.

Utilizing these settings can help achieve your precise target audience reach, at the most opportune moment. An apt example is scheduling ads to display to users in the vicinity of your office during regular company operational hours.

Options with Apple Search Ads

Understanding the objective of advertising and having a certain degree of proficiency in managing its functionalities, provides you with the option to select from one of two packages: Basic or Advanced.

Basic Search Ads

Opting for a basic account format is an excellent choice for those launching minimalist projects and for newly-minting advertisers. The key feature of this model is the default intelligent display automation that calls for minimal intervention and tweaking on the advertiser’s part.

Mastering App Store Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide

Highlights of the Basic Plan:

  • Exclusively provides pay-per-install (CPI) payment model.
  • Offers standard reports.
  • Places a cap on the budget at $10k monthly for a single application.
  • Allows promotion of up to 50 applications on a paid basis.

Advanced Search Ads

The enhanced plan offers access to a broader range of features and comprehensive analytics, necessitating a higher level of engagement from the advertiser. This is a point at which you can – and should – choose specific search queries, designate a price bracket for each click, and review expenses.

Mastering App Store Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide

Critical elements of the Enhanced Plan:

  • A cost-per-click approach is at your disposal.
  • Keywords and target audiences can be controlled and managed.
  • Comprehensive analytics are on offer, accompanied by meticulous reports.
  • There is no upper limit to the advertising budget.
  • You have the liberty to promote an infinite number of applications.

How to Set up Search Ads

Navigating the Search Ads interface is straightforward, making it easy for you to move from the initial registration phase to the commencement of your ad campaign. This article delves into some of the nuances that are likely to come your way at each step of the setup process.

1. Signing up for the ad manager*. To get started, all that’s required is your Apple ID.

2. Picking a plan: Basic or Advanced. The Basic plan simply needs your metadata, whereas the Advanced plan calls for audience configuration, budget allocation, and scheduling.

3. Crafting a new ad account. Here, a form requires inputs including the project name, country of operation, local time zone, and currency choice.

4. Developing a campaign. This step involves detailing the application’s name, Apple ID, and the campaign name, along with setting the overall and daily budget, and incorporating negative keywords.

Mastering App Store Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide

5. Forming an ad group. During this stage, the name of the group is defined and the main ad settings established.

5.1. Setting Cost per Click (CPC) and Conversion Cost (CPA) targets. CPC measures what an advertiser is prepared to pay for a click on their ad. CPA evaluates what they are prepared to spend to achieve a conversion. The CPC assigned here will be applicable to all keywords. If you prefer to configure on a per-query basis, this step can be skipped during group setup and bids can be configured at the keyword level.

Mastering App Store Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide

5.2. Choosing the targeting options. For the Basic plan, you can opt for the Search Match option that will conduct an automatic setup.

5.3. Setting up search queries.

5.4. Tweaking audience settings. When beginning, it’s crucial to thoroughly examine the target audience so you can specify key factors like gender, age, geographical location, preferred devices for ad viewing, and user status (they can be existing users or new to the product or developer).

Mastering App Store Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide

5.5. Arranging a broadcast schedule for the ads: defining the time and the date for the initial and final impressions.

After these parameters have been set, the system puts forth ad variants for smartphones and tablets. The final step is to endorse them and provide your payment information.

Leveraging paid advertising in the App Store presents an excellent opportunity for boosting your visibility and aiding users in finding your app. Besides proper setup, preliminary actions like testing the app, verifying key queries, and developing a detailed audience profile, are also crucial. Presenting a product that aligns with user interests is a dependable strategy for achieving a worthwhile return on ad spend.

Follow these instructions, adopt an experimental approach, and evaluate their impact, and you’ll soon realize that Apple Search Ads packs a powerful punch as an advertising tool!

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