Under the Radar

Under the Radar 109: Search Ads in Practice


00:00:00   welcome to under the radar a show but

00:00:02   independent iOS app development I'm

00:00:04   Marco Arment and I'm David Smith under

00:00:06   the radar is never longer within 30

00:00:07   minutes so let's get started so Apple

00:00:10   launched their search ads program last

00:00:12   fall in the App Store and a lot of

00:00:15   developers I think us included didn't

00:00:16   really know what to make of it at first

00:00:18   it we were it certainly was a little bit

00:00:20   intimidating a little bit off-putting

00:00:22   the idea that we'd have to pay to have

00:00:26   our ads shown at the top of the search

00:00:28   results in the App Store and we've now

00:00:30   had a lot of time I've actually been

00:00:32   using search ads for overcast since the

00:00:35   day they launched and I'm still using

00:00:37   them today it's a little bit back in the

00:00:39   news now because yesterday Apple

00:00:41   launched I think by surprise for most of

00:00:44   us Apple launched a new search ads basic

00:00:47   which is a version of search ads that is

00:00:51   so far us only but they said it's going

00:00:53   to expand to the rest of the world and

00:00:54   that's where that's where the ads show

00:00:56   up not who can buy them so if you're a

00:00:58   developer outside the US you can buy

00:00:59   these ads but they will they will only

00:01:01   start showing in the US App Store for at

00:01:03   first but anyway so now they have search

00:01:05   ads basic and the old one has renamed

00:01:07   search ads advanced I think it's worth

00:01:10   discussing now that we had you know at

00:01:12   least from from my perspective and and

00:01:14   from yours David to you know to the

00:01:15   extent that you've used it now that we

00:01:17   have almost I have over a year now of

00:01:19   search ad data it has slowly expanded

00:01:22   from initially the main offer it was

00:01:24   also us only and then it expanded over

00:01:26   the last maybe six months or so to a few

00:01:30   to other different marketplaces now you

00:01:31   can have Canada UK Australia Switzerland

00:01:35   and New Zealand and it's a little bit

00:01:39   cumbersome to manage them all honestly

00:01:40   but I think I've come up with a number

00:01:42   of key insights and and best practices

00:01:45   that might be useful to share what's

00:01:46   your experience with them because you I

00:01:47   mean you have way more apps than I do

00:01:50   because like all I can say is what what

00:01:53   my experience has been with my single

00:01:54   app and it's a free app so it's gonna be

00:01:56   different than paid up front apps and

00:01:57   its affiliate it's you know fairly

00:01:59   popular among certain people so that's

00:02:01   gonna be different from an app that's

00:02:02   totally unknown have you had have you

00:02:04   had more diverse experience than I have

00:02:06   with this a little bit so like I've

00:02:08   tried tried well I've tried a variety of

00:02:11   different campaigns

00:02:13   and things with this I tried it for my

00:02:15   paid apps for my free apps and overall

00:02:20   like my experience is like in aggregate

00:02:22   is just very mixed I would say like some

00:02:25   of the time it it seems to work and pay

00:02:28   off sometimes it really doesn't like and

00:02:30   the thing that I struggle with the most

00:02:32   with these is trying to it's like

00:02:35   there's initially like the obvious naive

00:02:39   like reaction to something like

00:02:41   advertising

00:02:42   he's viewing it as a in a weird way

00:02:47   almost like a direct investment where

00:02:48   like I'm I take this amount of money I

00:02:51   put it into this and then I expect to

00:02:52   get a certain amount hopefully a greater

00:02:54   amount back and that was straightforward

00:02:58   especially for like my paid apps for

00:03:00   example where like it's very

00:03:01   straightforward that like search ads are

00:03:03   based on the cost for install and if

00:03:06   it's a paid app the you know like my

00:03:08   revenue per install is you know after a

00:03:11   so whatever you know 70% of whatever the

00:03:13   purchase price is and I could go in and

00:03:15   say like I'm will be essentially willing

00:03:17   to break even say for all of these app

00:03:20   installs and I try that for a little bit

00:03:22   but in general that didn't seem to work

00:03:26   at a very high volume anyway where I

00:03:30   would it's like I could I would get a

00:03:32   some amount of install in traffic but it

00:03:35   didn't seem like I was paying enough for

00:03:38   those installs that mads are being shown

00:03:41   very often I better Mayo my terms are

00:03:43   very low volume or whatever but it

00:03:44   didn't seem like it one of these things

00:03:46   that's like great you know I can spend a

00:03:48   dollar and get a double you know a

00:03:50   dollar forty back but I can only have

00:03:54   three or four transactions a day that

00:03:56   are doing that and so it's like well

00:03:57   that's that's like net positive but not

00:04:01   particularly interesting so I had that

00:04:03   experience on the paid side and then on

00:04:05   the free side it's so because it's so

00:04:08   hard to sort of have this feeling of

00:04:10   what an install is worth and I pursued

00:04:13   it a little bit but at the end it kind

00:04:15   of felt like I was just sort of throwing

00:04:16   money away or at least putting money

00:04:18   into something that was so hard for me

00:04:20   to quantify but over time I just sort of

00:04:23   backed away from it and decided that's

00:04:25   like

00:04:25   you know it's okay and I'm probably

00:04:29   helped a little bit in this that my most

00:04:31   important apps tend to have reasonably

00:04:34   good just general search optimization or

00:04:39   whatever like they show up fairly high

00:04:40   anyway and so that helps a lot for not

00:04:44   needing this necessarily because it's

00:04:46   you know I'm now the second say CAF I

00:04:49   was previously like the top results for

00:04:51   a search you know with the now with ads

00:04:52   I'm the second result because the first

00:04:54   one the paid result is going to always

00:04:56   be on top but you know at least being on

00:04:58   that first screen is probably useful

00:05:01   enough but yeah I don't know I won't go

00:05:04   back and forth on how useful they are

00:05:05   and then in the back of my mind I kind

00:05:07   of feel like I'm probably missing this

00:05:12   or in some ways like the funders the

00:05:14   fundamental like realities of

00:05:16   advertising where I'm sure if you were a

00:05:18   just like a typical bit like a larger

00:05:22   brand advertiser like your goal is not

00:05:24   necessarily like direct net positive

00:05:28   cash flow from each advertising by it's

00:05:30   a much more broad something that you're

00:05:32   just you're taking this it's like you

00:05:34   have a marketing budget that whose

00:05:36   purpose is to just increase brand

00:05:38   awareness and to increase usage of the

00:05:40   app as this kind of more general concept

00:05:43   in some ways even kind of like per

00:05:45   conversation a couple episodes ago where

00:05:47   I was talking about why I'm making

00:05:48   workouts plus plus free where it's like

00:05:50   there's this general value to being

00:05:54   well-known beyond the immediate like

00:05:58   huge sort of return on that investment

00:06:00   in the less you see within a few days

00:06:03   and so I go back and forth and if I'm

00:06:06   just like doing it wrong or not but I

00:06:08   don't know my experience has been kind

00:06:09   of mixed and mostly I've kind of backed

00:06:12   away with it I'm gonna try the new

00:06:13   basics approach like just to see if

00:06:16   there's anything interesting there and I

00:06:18   mean Apple it's giving us $100 free

00:06:20   credit so like great you know sure I'll

00:06:23   take that hundred dollars and spend it

00:06:24   but overall I'm still kind of mixed

00:06:27   about it I think you know a lot of

00:06:29   developers didn't give it a fair shot

00:06:31   when it first launched because we felt

00:06:34   kind of put out put off by it or kind of

00:06:36   like you know like it was a trick or an

00:06:38   egg

00:06:39   thing for Apple to be doing I think we

00:06:42   have there there's kind of two parts of

00:06:44   that argument that are that are worth I

00:06:46   think internalizing now number one is

00:06:47   that well it's done

00:06:49   it's it's clearly here to stay they are

00:06:51   not only keeping it but expanding it so

00:06:53   I think that that ship has sailed much

00:06:56   like initially when we brought mad that

00:06:58   a preview was a thing when the AppStore

00:06:59   first launched that ship has sailed and

00:07:02   so has this one so you might as well get

00:07:04   on board with at least being okay with

00:07:06   it existing even if you decide not to

00:07:08   participate or net you know you should

00:07:09   at least realize that this is if this is

00:07:11   now a factor in the AppStore that's

00:07:12   that's probably here to stay um and and

00:07:15   number two while it does feel pretty bad

00:07:18   to pay to reach people you were already

00:07:22   who are already seeking you out so like

00:07:24   if somebody searches the App Store for

00:07:26   overcast someone else is that is gonna

00:07:28   be up top there if they outbid me on

00:07:30   that keyword that day probably audible

00:07:32   but someone else is that is gonna be up

00:07:34   there and it's probably gonna be a

00:07:36   bigger company than me and I'm gonna

00:07:38   feel kind of like that's a little bit

00:07:40   unfair but the reality is that could

00:07:43   also be a smaller company than may that

00:07:44   could also be an indie startup who wants

00:07:46   to get into the same market I'm in and

00:07:48   wants to have a chance at paying to take

00:07:52   away some of those searches from me and

00:07:53   I'm doing the same thing I'm bidding on

00:07:57   generic terms like podcast but I'm also

00:08:00   bidding on terms like audible because

00:08:02   you know I'm trying to get some of the

00:08:04   same some of that same audience and

00:08:05   search ads largely have worked for me

00:08:09   and so it is the kind of thing where you

00:08:13   can still promote an app for free

00:08:16   through traditional PR channels and

00:08:18   marketing channels and you probably

00:08:19   should but this in a way gives an

00:08:22   opportunity for small apps to get seen

00:08:26   in some way and get started and yes of

00:08:29   course it does take money and therefore

00:08:31   that will price out a lot of developers

00:08:33   but if you manage it responsibly and

00:08:37   conservatively upfront it doesn't have

00:08:40   to take that much money and you and if

00:08:41   you if you luck out with your terms and

00:08:45   if you control it well enough you can

00:08:46   actually make it profitable per user so

00:08:49   this leads into I think the first major

00:08:51   Challenge of using search ads which is

00:08:54   you have to know what a user is worth to

00:08:56   you and that's very hard to do if your

00:08:58   app is not paid upfront if there's any

00:09:00   more complex business model than paid

00:09:03   upfront and honestly I don't think paid

00:09:06   upfront has worked that well in search

00:09:07   ads because you don't pay per install

00:09:09   you pay per tap on the ad so the the

00:09:15   cost per install varies depending on how

00:09:18   many people tap your ad and then decide

00:09:20   not to buy it or not to download it and

00:09:22   so that can obviously vary based on

00:09:24   things like your screenshot your

00:09:25   description your ratings but also I

00:09:27   think if you have a a price there of an

00:09:30   upfront price I have I would guess that

00:09:33   causes much lower buy through rates or

00:09:36   you know conversion rates from from the

00:09:39   tap to the purchase then a free app

00:09:42   would and so that's gonna dramatically

00:09:44   affect your cost right there so you know

00:09:47   if you're paid upfront I think I think

00:09:48   it's easier to calculate what an install

00:09:51   is worth to you but it's also harder to

00:09:53   get those installs so I'm gonna now

00:09:55   focus for the rest of my discussion of

00:09:56   this on free versions on free apps

00:09:59   upfront because that's what I know

00:10:00   that's what I have and I think that's

00:10:02   gonna be mostly what search ads are good

00:10:04   for because there's just that one less

00:10:07   big barrier to entry for people to to

00:10:09   who are learning about it for the first

00:10:10   time through that ad to then click there

00:10:12   and download it so the question then

00:10:15   becomes how do you value a user if your

00:10:18   app is free upfront so if you have a

00:10:20   scheme like I do which you know I think

00:10:22   at least part of this is common if not

00:10:24   it's not the whole thing where I have

00:10:26   ads in the app and I get paid for those

00:10:28   ads and I have an in-app purchase that

00:10:31   can be optionally bought to remove the

00:10:33   ads and add some premium stuff but

00:10:34   mostly it's removing the ads and I you

00:10:36   know people I think this is common

00:10:38   enough that I can tell you some lessons

00:10:40   I've learned from this number one when

00:10:42   you're trying to figure out what each

00:10:44   user is worth to you you have to make

00:10:47   some assumptions that might be

00:10:48   uncomfortable or cruel or or revealing

00:10:51   for instance what percentage of people

00:10:54   who download your app will actually ever

00:10:56   launch it that's a big it's not a

00:10:58   hundred percent newsflash if this yeah

00:11:00   if you've worked aware of this yet you

00:11:02   know and if you already have some

00:11:04   analytics in your app you probably are

00:11:05   no this kind of thing but yeah it's not

00:11:07   a hundred percent that might you know

00:11:09   you might get two thirds or eighty

00:11:11   percent or something like that like it

00:11:12   might be or half it might not be a very

00:11:14   very kind ratio of people who actually

00:11:17   ever launched the app after downloading

00:11:18   it and then after that you have to then

00:11:22   work through like if you're valuing the

00:11:24   user based on the likelihood that

00:11:26   they're going to buy an in-app purchase

00:11:28   or whether they're going to see your ads

00:11:30   or follow through any other kind of

00:11:32   monetization what other barriers are

00:11:34   there between getting the app and

00:11:37   running the app and getting to that

00:11:38   point where they're making you money do

00:11:39   they have to create an account

00:11:41   do they have to sign in do they have to

00:11:43   you know enter some data and all those

00:11:45   steps are gonna reduce that percentage

00:11:47   even further of how many of those

00:11:48   downloaders actually make it to the part

00:11:51   of the app that makes you money not to

00:11:53   mention the fact that once they get you

00:11:55   know assuming they're actually using it

00:11:56   then you have the question of what

00:11:59   percentage of actual users will then by

00:12:02   the end up purchase or if it's ad based

00:12:04   what percentage of them will see the ads

00:12:06   and then you and ads have another

00:12:08   massive complex guess that you have to

00:12:11   make or data you have to collect which

00:12:13   is how long will each person be using my

00:12:16   app you know will the average user use

00:12:18   it for a day a year ten years like we so

00:12:22   those numbers can dramatically change

00:12:24   what you think a user is worth and I

00:12:28   would urge you that if you don't know

00:12:30   this number you know if if you are

00:12:31   making estimates and guesses on a lot of

00:12:34   these numbers which you might have to

00:12:35   you know if you if you don't have really

00:12:36   good really creepy analytics like I

00:12:39   don't you have to guess and a lot of

00:12:40   these numbers or just wait and see the

00:12:42   results and for me I found that guess

00:12:46   very conservatively on these numbers

00:12:48   like every step of the way that might

00:12:50   reduce the amount of users that get to

00:12:53   the next stage cut it in half like

00:12:55   really like be very aggressive like just

00:12:58   assume half the downloads will result in

00:13:00   launches reassume that half of the

00:13:02   launches will result in in accounts

00:13:04   being created or you know signups

00:13:06   happening or proceeding to the next step

00:13:08   and so these numbers starts to start

00:13:10   said you know divide out and math starts

00:13:12   catching up to you pretty soon and so

00:13:15   you have to be very very careful when

00:13:17   making any kind of assumption

00:13:19   about what a user is worth to you

00:13:21   long-term and keep in mind that

00:13:23   long-term might really be a day for a

00:13:25   lot for the majority of your users

00:13:28   it like your average duration of how

00:13:30   long a user sticks with your app might

00:13:31   be a day or a week or something pretty

00:13:33   short so you can't for instance assume

00:13:36   like eat that you have like six months

00:13:38   or a year of ad revenue to attribute to

00:13:40   that download cuz you probably don't the

00:13:42   nice thing though is we do get a lot of

00:13:44   those numbers now from app analytics and

00:13:45   iTunes Connect that's true yeah like at

00:13:47   least we do have a better starting place

00:13:50   then like you don't necessarily need the

00:13:53   creepy analytics for a lot of that kind

00:13:55   of stuff cuz I'm just thinking like with

00:13:56   the things that we get from there or

00:13:58   like we get AG a retention percent which

00:14:02   is a really useful measure for being

00:14:03   able to get a sense of like you know so

00:14:06   once someone has downloaded the app what

00:14:09   is it like you know what percentage of

00:14:10   those people will down open it the next

00:14:11   day and what person will open it a week

00:14:14   later two weeks later three weeks later

00:14:16   and they go up to 28 days and so at that

00:14:19   point you get a sense of like what's

00:14:20   your retention you look curve looks like

00:14:23   there and so at least you can kind of

00:14:25   get you know infer that you know it if

00:14:28   your retention is kind of flattened out

00:14:30   by the time you're a month out like we

00:14:32   won't you've probably gotten that user

00:14:33   if you're still you know whatever it is

00:14:35   say you have you ten percent retention

00:14:36   after a month it's like you probably

00:14:38   have them for that but even if you just

00:14:40   capped it at a month and tried to work

00:14:42   out you know how many sessions does the

00:14:46   wooly user have you know if they if ten

00:14:50   percent of them are there after at the

00:14:52   end of a month and maybe twenty percent

00:14:54   of them are there after a week you know

00:14:56   you can kind of do a little bit of math

00:14:57   but yes it's it's it is a really tricky

00:14:59   thing I think being conservative here

00:15:01   makes is by far the better way to air on

00:15:04   because it's far more important for it

00:15:06   to just be a reasonable number than it

00:15:08   is for it to be an exact number exactly

00:15:11   and all this by the way this is all

00:15:13   making a pretty big assumption all this

00:15:16   advice so far that you don't want to

00:15:18   lose money on each installation but

00:15:21   there are types of businesses and apps

00:15:22   and situations where that might not be

00:15:23   the case you might actually want to lose

00:15:25   money on or you already might you might

00:15:28   be willing to lose money on every

00:15:30   installation

00:15:32   maybe it's only a little bit of money or

00:15:34   if you're you if you have a plan to make

00:15:36   it up down the road or if you really

00:15:37   want to just focus on growth of user

00:15:39   base right now or if you haven't

00:15:41   monetized yet if you're like you know a

00:15:43   start-up that's pre monetization

00:15:44   strategy and you just want growth you

00:15:46   know so you might have reasons where you

00:15:48   don't care about whether you're gonna

00:15:49   make up the you know make it up properly

00:15:51   you know on the other side or not or you

00:15:53   just might be betting for your future in

00:15:54   bidding you know what I can take a small

00:15:57   loss on each user right now but some

00:15:59   percentage of these users will tell

00:16:01   their friends and spread the app and

00:16:02   cause my organic installations to go up

00:16:04   so it's it's very very vague and based

00:16:08   on a lot of estimates and assumptions

00:16:10   that this is true of all advertising on

00:16:12   all sides it's for everything so all

00:16:15   this to say like you know try to

00:16:18   quantify some of these numbers try to

00:16:20   make good estimates to try to have as

00:16:21   much data as you can to to make good

00:16:22   decisions here but your decisions might

00:16:25   not have the same you know needs as

00:16:27   someone else's anyway before I get into

00:16:30   specifics of what I do in the App Store

00:16:31   and with app search ads we are brought

00:16:33   to you this week by Eero this is another

00:16:35   kind of ad by Eero never think about

00:16:37   Wi-Fi again arrow has created the dream

00:16:40   Wi-Fi setup a fast reliable connection

00:16:42   throughout your house and even into the

00:16:44   backyard if you want and now is the best

00:16:46   time to get on board with arrow as

00:16:47   they've just released their new super

00:16:49   slick second generation devices this

00:16:51   brand new tribe and second generation

00:16:53   model along with the new arrow beacon

00:16:55   allows you to build a Wi-Fi system that

00:16:57   is perfectly tailored to your home the

00:16:59   new second-generation arrow includes a

00:17:00   third five eager Hertz radio making it

00:17:03   twice as fast as before this is to do

00:17:05   more than ever whether it's your Wi-Fi

00:17:06   needs

00:17:07   Eero has the power to blanket your

00:17:09   entire home in fast reliable Wi-Fi the

00:17:12   base the base unit sits flat on any

00:17:14   surface just plug into the wall with the

00:17:15   included power adapter and you're ready

00:17:17   to connect to your Eero either with

00:17:18   Ethernet or wirelessly and the new year

00:17:21   also includes a thread radio which lets

00:17:23   you connect to low-power devices such as

00:17:25   locks doorbells and more and the new

00:17:27   little satellite units are now called

00:17:29   aero beacons and this is new as well all

00:17:31   you do is plug it into a wall it looks

00:17:33   like kind of like a large

00:17:34   nightlight almost it just it sits flush

00:17:37   right on the outlet right against the

00:17:38   wall there's no wire needed plugs right

00:17:40   in and it even includes a nightlight on

00:17:42   the bottom to help you out so you can

00:17:43   plug it in anywhere you have an outlet

00:17:45   you don't

00:17:45   need like a table or a surface or a

00:17:47   cabinet to hide it in these are

00:17:48   wonderful I love these new beacons and

00:17:51   the new ero app lets you manage your

00:17:53   network from the palm of your hand

00:17:54   and you can also easily create and share

00:17:56   a guest Network too if you want that and

00:17:58   if you need any help

00:17:59   IRA's customer support is amazing you

00:18:01   can call them and get a Wi-Fi expert on

00:18:03   the phone in just 30 seconds I've used

00:18:05   euro and it is by far you know I've used

00:18:08   other multi-point access point things

00:18:09   before and first of all you definitely

00:18:11   want multi-point Wi-Fi but euro is by

00:18:13   far the easiest and fastest to set up

00:18:16   I've ever seen it's wonderful and and

00:18:18   this the fact you don't to run wire

00:18:19   between the base stations is also just

00:18:21   incredible so definitely recommend it

00:18:23   it's it's very very easy to use and

00:18:25   performs very well so the new euro

00:18:27   starts at just 399 for one second

00:18:29   generation ear a base station and two

00:18:31   beacons and that is everything you will

00:18:33   need for almost any situation you can

00:18:35   add more if you want but you probably

00:18:36   won't need two listeners of this show

00:18:38   can get free overnight shipping to the

00:18:39   US or Canada when you head to eurocom

00:18:41   that's eer Oh calm and use promo code

00:18:43   radar that's eurocom promo code radar

00:18:46   for free overnight shipping thank you -

00:18:48   Iiro for supporting this show so I

00:18:51   wanted to go into a little bit more

00:18:52   specifics of how to optimize search ads

00:18:54   on the App Store now that you know

00:18:57   roughly what you want to spend per

00:18:59   installation because you figure that

00:19:01   during my ad read I guess I don't know

00:19:02   you figured it out sometimes well assume

00:19:03   you have that number oh did the math

00:19:05   yeah yeah well uh flea what you're able

00:19:07   to spend per installation you know it's

00:19:10   worth now learning kind of how the

00:19:12   system works so the main thing with with

00:19:15   search ads is that it's dependent very

00:19:17   very heavily on Apple's own App Store

00:19:19   relevancy engine and as we know for App

00:19:24   Store search it's not that good it's you

00:19:27   know it works on a fairly coarse level

00:19:30   but there's a lot of mismatches a lot of

00:19:33   misjudgment of relevancy ranking isn't

00:19:36   so great and this applies therefore to

00:19:39   the search ads matching algorithm as

00:19:41   well so you need to do some tailoring

00:19:43   and you need to know that going into it

00:19:45   that the relevancy matching is not very

00:19:47   strong and is you know therefore that

00:19:51   could work for or against you if you

00:19:52   know your app might rank weirdly high or

00:19:55   really low one thing Apple has done

00:19:57   which i think is a smart move

00:19:59   is and it's and Phil announced us on

00:20:01   stage when they announced search ads or

00:20:02   whatever that was but the idea is that

00:20:06   even if you bid a high enough price if

00:20:09   Apple's algorithm deems your app not

00:20:12   relevant to a query it will not include

00:20:14   it no matter what no matter what you bid

00:20:16   and this is good because this prevents

00:20:18   something like clash of clans bidding on

00:20:20   the term podcast because it might be

00:20:22   could be becoming a high-volume term and

00:20:24   they want to get it on that even though

00:20:25   their app is not relevant to podcast at

00:20:26   all you know so that's actually a very

00:20:28   good prohibition the downside of that is

00:20:30   that if the search algorithm guess is

00:20:33   wrong on whether your app is relevant

00:20:34   you could be on the wrong side of that

00:20:36   so something to keep in mind there's not

00:20:38   much you can do about that unfortunately

00:20:40   but that is nice to know that that's a

00:20:42   thing when you are picking your keywords

00:20:45   I have found that it's best to mostly

00:20:49   just do search match that if you do too

00:20:51   much keyword selection you can get weird

00:20:54   results if you do search match you're

00:20:56   kind of letting Apple do it for you and

00:20:58   this is actually so when they long

00:21:00   gesture day long search ads basic that's

00:21:02   all it is as far as I can as far as I

00:21:04   can tell it seems like it is a search

00:21:05   match only ad account is that is that

00:21:09   right yeah you just give it a budget and

00:21:11   a maximum cost per install like those

00:21:14   are the only two numbers you put in

00:21:16   mm-hmm and then it just does the rest

00:21:17   it'll do it'll try and find you whatever

00:21:20   the best opportunities are and you know

00:21:25   sort of do its own thing but you have no

00:21:27   visibility into what those terms are or

00:21:30   anything like that it's just you just

00:21:32   give it it basically you just tell it

00:21:33   how much money overall are you gonna

00:21:35   give to give to this campaign and then

00:21:37   how much what's the maximum amount that

00:21:39   you're willing to pay for an install and

00:21:41   then it just does the rest for you the

00:21:44   only thing about that I will say that

00:21:45   then this is why I'm a little bit

00:21:47   worried about search that's basic is

00:21:48   that one of the great things about the

00:21:50   search ads implementation in the

00:21:52   Advanced Mode that used to be the only

00:21:54   mode until yesterday is that you can go

00:21:56   in so run it for like a few weeks you

00:21:58   know with you know or whatever time you

00:22:00   want you know run it for a little while

00:22:02   and then you can go in to the reporting

00:22:04   areas and you can see if you go to if

00:22:07   you go within the ad group you go to a

00:22:09   tab called search terms and it will list

00:22:11   the term

00:22:13   people actually use to search your app

00:22:15   and you can rank that by things like

00:22:17   conversion rate or average cost per

00:22:20   installation which they say it's CPA

00:22:22   cost per action in the advertising world

00:22:24   but it's a cost per installation and so

00:22:26   you can you can sort and rank the

00:22:28   keyword people are actually using that

00:22:29   Apple is matching to you

00:22:31   you know for you and you can see like

00:22:33   you know certain ones are gonna be are

00:22:35   gonna be better than others in terms of

00:22:36   what you're actually spending for those

00:22:37   users what percentage of them are

00:22:39   actually installing your app etc and if

00:22:42   you see the keywords like I'll you know

00:22:45   I'll tell you like some of mine like I

00:22:45   started out as so if I sort by spend

00:22:48   which is the the amount of money you

00:22:50   have spent on it for that time interval

00:22:51   my first one is podcast which is good

00:22:55   that is my most expensive one but that's

00:22:56   also my highest Volume one and I'm

00:22:57   bidding high on that because I want I

00:22:59   want to get those people who are

00:23:00   searching for podcast then there's low

00:23:03   volume terms just kind of their bucket

00:23:04   for everything else that's too small to

00:23:05   matter then I have things like podcast

00:23:08   app for iPhone great that's what I want

00:23:10   the next one down is FM transmitter well

00:23:14   I'm not sure I want that one that's

00:23:17   that's not that relevant and sure enough

00:23:19   FM transmitter has a way lower

00:23:21   conversion rate than the other ones so I

00:23:24   have to decide like is this actually do

00:23:27   I actually wanna be paying for people

00:23:28   who search for FM transmitter and if you

00:23:30   don't one thing you can do in searched

00:23:32   in search ads advanced is you can you

00:23:35   can go through this list you can check

00:23:36   off whichever ones you don't think are

00:23:38   worth bidding on that are not relevant

00:23:40   enough and you can say add as negative

00:23:43   keywords and if you say exact match then

00:23:45   which you probably should do then it'll

00:23:48   it will not put you on those bids and

00:23:50   that I have found is a necessary part if

00:23:54   you're gonna do search match if you're

00:23:55   not gonna just put on the exact key

00:23:57   which if you're gonna do any search

00:23:57   matching at all on the App Store you

00:24:00   must go in and add as negative keywords

00:24:03   the things that are not relevant to your

00:24:05   app that are costing you a lot of money

00:24:06   and my might because you know because

00:24:09   Apple's relevancy engine isn't that

00:24:11   great you get a lot of these and some of

00:24:14   them you actually might want so like one

00:24:16   of the very common ones that I get is

00:24:18   things like music player without Wi-Fi

00:24:22   free music downloader offline music

00:24:24   player FM radio offline

00:24:27   and I'm like well actually those are

00:24:29   people who want to listen to stuff

00:24:31   offline some of which is radio so I

00:24:34   think I actually might want to keep

00:24:36   bidding on a lot of those whereas one of

00:24:38   them over watch I don't want to bid on

00:24:41   because that's a video game there's

00:24:43   nothing to do with my app and it's being

00:24:44   matched by some kind of linguistic

00:24:45   coincidence and I definitely don't want

00:24:48   to bet on overwatch terms so I

00:24:50   definitely add that as a negative

00:24:51   keyword but again keep in mind that

00:24:54   you're dealing with a fairly low

00:24:57   sophistication search algorithm and

00:24:59   relevancy algorithm so be careful one of

00:25:01   the reasons I said only add negative

00:25:03   keywords as exact match is that earlier

00:25:06   in the summer I had a problem where I

00:25:07   had added too many things to negative

00:25:09   keywords as like regular like broad

00:25:12   match like relevancy match thinking that

00:25:15   was what I think to do and I started

00:25:16   getting matched on very very few things

00:25:18   I'm all of my numbers just plummeted and

00:25:20   I contacted the search as team and

00:25:22   they're they're very nice there's actual

00:25:23   humans there who will like help you out

00:25:24   and they ran amongst numbers and they

00:25:26   recommended that I like remove some of

00:25:27   those and just switch to a more

00:25:28   relevancy based approach which I did and

00:25:30   and so I would recommend only using

00:25:32   negative keywords and exact match mode

00:25:34   to avoid that situation anyway

00:25:35   I end up you know coming out for for a

00:25:39   long time until the last couple of

00:25:42   months I have come out ahead in what I

00:25:46   believe a user to my app is worth versus

00:25:48   what I'm paying per install from the

00:25:50   search ads and the search ads have made

00:25:52   up approximately 10 to 15% of my weekly

00:25:58   installs and so that's not bad that's a

00:26:01   lot yeah exactly and that's 10 to 15

00:26:04   percent of my installs per week so you

00:26:06   know that that increases over time and

00:26:09   like those users are you know sticking

00:26:11   with the app I think I don't know there

00:26:12   actually is an API somewhere in

00:26:15   somewhere in iOS there's an API where

00:26:17   you can attribute installations to your

00:26:20   app to whether they came from search ads

00:26:22   or not and I think even what keywords

00:26:24   they came from and then you can tell in

00:26:26   your app analytics like what those

00:26:27   people are worth to you I have not done

00:26:29   that that seems a little bit too fiddly

00:26:31   for me I don't think I really care that

00:26:33   deeply and it's a little bit creepy I

00:26:35   think but but so I haven't done that but

00:26:37   you can do that and you can get into you

00:26:39   know deeper measurements but

00:26:40   I have found for the most part this this

00:26:43   has been worth it for me to do for a

00:26:44   while unfortunately over the last couple

00:26:47   of months the podcast related keywords

00:26:50   have really heated up

00:26:51   thanks audible from like big companies

00:26:54   thanks audible who who don't seem to

00:26:56   have a limit to their budget thanks

00:26:58   audible and so I I'm losing a lot more

00:27:01   bids and I've had to increase my bids if

00:27:03   I want to keep winning them and I'm now

00:27:05   pushing to the point where I'm losing

00:27:06   them a little bit of money on each

00:27:07   install that comes from a search ad and

00:27:09   so so far I've decided well I I kind of

00:27:13   want to wait and see and watch how these

00:27:15   numbers go I I kind of don't want to

00:27:17   give up that 15% so maybe I'm okay

00:27:19   losing a bit of money on those people

00:27:21   because then the other 85% of my users

00:27:23   will make up for it so I'm not entirely

00:27:25   sure I'm gonna do about this long-term

00:27:26   yet but the only reason I've been able

00:27:29   to keep costs under control at all is

00:27:31   because when going in and negative key

00:27:34   wording the searches that are providing

00:27:36   me with really bad conversion rates and

00:27:37   really high cost per install and because

00:27:40   search ads basic does not offer that

00:27:42   ability I do hesitate to recommend it

00:27:44   because I don't think you're gonna get a

00:27:47   lot of control over that kind of thing

00:27:51   and Apple's search relevancy engine is

00:27:53   not good enough that I would trust us to

00:27:55   do it without any intervention for me

00:27:57   what do you think yeah I mean I think

00:28:00   I'm intrigued to go to use the basic

00:28:05   system but mostly insofar as it's an int

00:28:07   because like because it's the only input

00:28:09   I give is with the maximum amount I'm

00:28:11   willing to pay for installation is I

00:28:14   will just put that number low enough

00:28:16   that I feel comfortable with it and

00:28:19   understand that like your approach of

00:28:22   the highly tuned like going in there and

00:28:24   looking at keyword by keyword like

00:28:26   dialing it in you are going to end up

00:28:29   with a better result for the same like

00:28:34   cost per install but it takes a lot of

00:28:37   work and thoughtfulness and so on versus

00:28:40   the approach you're just saying it's

00:28:41   like I'll put that number low and if the

00:28:43   number is so low that it's not getting

00:28:44   high volume okay like that's fine I

00:28:47   didn't have to do much for it but if I

00:28:49   am getting installs from that great and

00:28:52   so I kind of view it as a you

00:28:54   over you what you're doing makes perfect

00:28:56   sense I think it's the ideal way if you

00:28:58   if this is something that you want to

00:28:59   spend time on if you want to in sort of

00:29:01   have it be a focus if not if you're sort

00:29:04   of like me and it just like this is an

00:29:06   interesting kind of more amusement it's

00:29:08   an interest it's a really convenient way

00:29:09   to just kind of like a set it up set it

00:29:12   at a number that you're comfortable with

00:29:13   and then just see what happens and

00:29:15   that's how I expect to proceed from here

00:29:17   well best of luck I do I strongly

00:29:20   encourage everyone to use that free

00:29:21   credit look you might as well they're

00:29:23   giving you a free credit so use it and

00:29:25   see how it goes if you want to be she

00:29:27   talked about it wait until after

00:29:29   everyone else uses theirs then use yours

00:29:30   sure then the price will be lower but

00:29:32   anyway we're out of time this week I

00:29:34   hope this was helpful to you

00:29:35   thanks to listening except thanks

00:29:37   listening everybody and we will talk to

00:29:38   you next week bye