Apple allowed iOS app marketers to bid for advertising space in the US App Store for the first time when it introduced Search Ads in Q4 2016. The platform has just been rolled-out for iGaming brands in the UK as well as Australia and New Zealand.

We recently discussed how app store advertising (ASA) overcomes the limitations of app store optimisation (ASO) and also looked at ways that the affiliate channel supports player acquisition via this new channel.

Here’s what the latest changes mean for UK-facing operators and affiliates.

Recapping the News

Since launching in the US, Search Ads’ high conversion rates and strong retention metrics have received positive feedback from developers. According to Search Engine Land, Apple reports that more than 50% of its ads are seeing installs when a user clicks.

Its successful launch has led to the platform expanding into three new markets, including the all-important UK. Now, the operators of iOS iGaming apps targeting UK players will be able to take advantage of ASA to boost their app installs.

What Does this Mean for Operators?

On top of being a useful tool for achieving higher search rankings, ASA also means more cost-effective marketing. According to Business Insider, the average user acquisition costs are $1 USD or less with Search Ads, compared to an estimated excess of $3 USD on Facebook.

Search Ads is therefore beneficial in terms of acquisition and retention for small to mid-tier brands. Especially, as, according to Marketing Land, Localytics found an app retention of just over 40% after 30 days of running Search Ads campaigns.

How are Affiliates Affected?

Affiliates’ own Search Ads campaigns will directly support brands’ app installs, but that’s not all. The affiliate channel will also be important to more sophisticated marketing approaches in the future, as we discussed in our recent blog about the new channel.

Will it be Successful?

Search Ads has given UK-facing iGaming apps the opportunity to promote themselves in the App Store. Its success in the US bodes well for the UK market in particular, where around a third (33%) of all gambling takes place online, as reported by the Gambling Commission.

Looking to use Search Ads for your business and need to develop your own mobile marketing strategy? Reach out to our Marketing Services Team to discuss our ASO and App Store marketing services and our Mobile App-Tracking tool