Timely knowledge is the greatest asset out there. It often means a world of difference in any business or niche. In the online sphere, where updates come and go daily and change is the only constant, being notified on time about a trend or an update often might or break a project or even a business. Here’s is a piece of news that is of much interest.

Google is on a quest for a more seamless mobile user experience. This means that web content and applications, that up until recently were thought of as separate entities, will now be brought closer than ever before. This plan will be brought to life via app indexing. In its core, this matter represents a strategic move that will allow for better connection between the two.

Current mobile SEO tactics are in for a big change. In this article we will discuss the way Google surfaces deep app’s content as well as the way SEOs could prepare Android and iOS deep screens for the Google index.

App Indexing of Google

In retrospect, every app landing page on every website has already been in Google’s index. However, internal apps screens and actual apps haven’t. Since indexing and crawling internal app’s content wasn’t possible till recently, users then had to find new apps through the app store that could surface apps in accordance to their editorial groupings and meta-data rather than their internal app’s content.

This case has led Google to face the following problems:

  1. App stores disabled users from utilizing Google to discover apps; and
  2. The app developers weren’t given incentives to optimize searches’ internal app information. This has restricted Google’s aim to gather and unify the entire world’s information, which has also restricted its profitability.

Now that Google’s indexing the apps’ deep screens and landing pages, app rankings in Google boil down to 2 essential criteria: App Deep Links and App Packs. An App Pack is similar to an app search result which SEOs usually encounter. This is because they’re linked to a download page in the App Store, which also depends on the kind of gadget you’re searching from. Ranking in App Packs greatly depends on the apps’ titles, descriptions, reviews, and ratings.

Why Is App Indexing Important For SEO?

Google is sure to miss a big, big chunk of the world’s data without indexing apps. This new strategy will revolutionize the means of app discovery and will totally modify mobile SEO tactics.

How Google Ranks Deep Links

As usual, Google has a distinct algorithm in determining how indexed deep links rank in SERPs. And as usual, the majority of the ranking algorithm details are unknown. However, there are pieces of information that could be inferred and implied from Google’s recent announcements.

Possible Positive App Ranking Factors

Status of Installation

An android app is usually featured in Google’s SERP when it’s installed on users’ gadget or has previously been. Instead of examining the gadget, Google simply tracks the app downloads right in its user history. Thus, this affects searchers only when they’re logged into Google.

Accurate Technical Execution

The most efficient way for every app publisher to rank is to make certain that his technical execution of Apps Indexing is accurate and the content is valuable.

Site Signal (description tag, title tag)

Common SEO tactics involving the tag could be one of the factors on how Google ranks deep links.

Possible Negative App Ranking Criteria

Content Mismatch

The leading search engine Google won’t index an app screen which claims to associate with a page but doesn’t show data similarity. This mismatch error can negatively affect the chance of ranking.

Interstitials

These are a form of JavaScript banners which shows the website’s content. They’re like a pop-up but not generating new window. The Same thing is covered in certain apps (usually for advertising purposes). However, this is no longer encouraged by Google and Apple. Their announcement has implied to use banners that simply move content right down the screen instead.

Aside from boosting ranking on its own, an app’s deep link could also offer SEO benefits for webmasters. App deep links that are indexed can positively affect the ranking chances.

How To Have a Deep App Screen Indexed For Google Search

Setting it all up is rather simple. Google has also documented the process in a detailed way. In brief, the following steps are involved.

  1. Enable the app to manage deep links.
  2. Add codes to your relevant web pages which reference deep links.
  3. Optimize well to index privately.

You can take these steps out of order if your app is still on its development stage. However, the second step is really tricky because, without it, the app can be set up with deep links but cannot be set up for Google’s indexing. Thus, the deep links will not be showing up in Google’s search results. There are actually further steps to follow in terms of for Google deep-link indexing. You need to be very keen every step of the way in order to avoid fatal mistakes.

As new advancements and new demands arise, changes are once again heading our way. Every advantage of app indexing is clear. However, the learning curve for traditional digital marketers may not come easy.

Many questions are currently popping up about this whole new trend. How long is Google going to offer benefits for deep links? Is this another bait-and-switch approach like that of the mobile friendly announcement? Is the app ranking criteria going to evolve in order to cover further traditional page ranking factors? Is Google planning to crawl in-app content more extensively? Are the algorithms bound to be fully modified? There are basically lots of questions boggling the minds of every SEOs and traditional advertiser. However, there’s only one thing certain: whatever the change is about, the one who adapts faster and with less friction, will surely seize the throne.