App Indexing – What Is It and Why Should I Use It?

App Indexing takes mobile marketing to a new level. Before the massive shift from desktop to mobile usage, optimising your web pages for SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) was an essential element to marketing your business. The more effective your SEO, the higher you reach in Google’s search rankings, thereby increasing your visibility and the likelihood you will be found when consumers are looking for what you provide.

However, as the majority of users now perform searches from their mobile devices than from their desktops, Google recognised the need to make SEO work across the web and mobile platforms; hence the introduction of Google App Indexing (now called Firebase App Indexing).

What is App Indexing?

With mobile usage dominating search and marketing, SEO has to evolve constantly to keep up with it. Businesses have found it increasingly difficult to get up the rankings in Google search via traditional website listings, and many have developed apps to help them compete and drive traffic their way. However, even when users have installed these apps, businesses can find they are rarely, if ever, used. – Google came up with App Indexing as a solution.

By marrying the content of websites and apps, Google now indexes mobile apps just as it does with websites. So, when consumers search from their mobiles, they can be taken directly to your app content from the search results if they have your app installed. If they don’t have your app on their mobile, Google provides an option beside your website result for the user to install it.

According to the Google Blog, by adding these install links, Google can use App Indexing to help you rank higher in the search pages, whether they have your app installed or not.  By doing so, it hopes to increase the number of installs and increase user engagement. So, it’s worthwhile considering getting your app indexed, especially if usage of your app has stalled, or you’re getting little traffic.

Benefits of App Indexing

  • Enhance mobile user search experience – the greater the content indexed, the better the search results and experience for users.
  • Provide users with a choice of how to view your content – from your website or your app.
  • Provide faster and easier access to your content.
  • Increase user engagement via your app.
  • Achieve a higher ranking in search engines.
  • Grow your mobile presence and increase discoverability of your business.

If you’re looking to maximise your SEO across mobile and desktop platforms, App Indexing could be a way forward. App Indexing, once available only for Android users, can also be implemented on iOS and Window devices, and on other search engines such as Bing and Safari.