Competing Against Free Apps

programmed into everyone's brains at birth! Nevertheless, we also know that in many cases we get what we pay for.

Don't be intimidated by free. If you have developed a unique app, use your app's unique features as your marketing angle.

Consumers have also learned that free apps could mean risky software with a clumsy interface that does not really solve their problem. They also know that free may mean lots of advertisements that sometimes get in the way of a useful app. So how can you effectively position your paid app to compete against free apps? Here are a few ideas that will help you out:

There are really only two ways to be found: on the App Store and on your own product website. As discussed in greater detail in other parts of this book, use care in selecting keywords to describe your app. You cannot easily change the keywords except when you launch a new build so make sure you are maximizing them. Make sure your app's icon is catchy and colorful. Icons without a lot of sizzle will be scanned over and ignored during a search on the App Store.

Make sure that your app appears in the top listings of search engine results if possible. Use SEO (Search Engine Optimization) techniques to make sure your website will rank higher than those of competing free applications. This takes time to achieve this ranking, and you must have a website that showcases your app extremely well utilizing key phrases and keywords for maximum effect. One of the other keys to high search rankings is to get many other sites to link to your site. Establish a relationship with other sites that are complementary to yours and exchange links on each other's site. Additionally, a carefully placed article that you have written about your app or a press release announcing your app will help bloggers and other sites to link to your website, thus raising your website in search engine rankings.

This should go without saying but your app must provide greater functionality, better graphics, and more features than a free app. Many free products are often stripped-down versions and offer minimal functionality. Make sure that your iPhone/iPad app is more robust and feature rich, but without compromising the ease of use or functionality. Include features and functions that are not available in the freeware competitors, and then use these features to promote your product.

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