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According to SplitMetrics, only 2% of users read the full app description. Optimizing screenshots gives a 21-24% conversion uplift; app video previews: 17%. Therefore, it is very important to choose screenshots and videos that will help increase the number of installs. We are going to answer the questions that most developers have when starting ASO. 

This article is based on the Performante guide, where Maria Chernoplyokova shares her tips on optimizing screenshots and previews. We have updated and supplemented this guide in accordance with the latest trends and expert opinion. Read on to find out how to make your visual optimization more effective.

The App Store and Google Play screenshot guide

Screenshots: horizontal or vertical? 

A 2021 ASOdesk study found that about 96% of the top apps use portrait (vertical) screenshots. But, when we look at games, the statistics vary somewhat — around 80% have vertical galleries. 

One of the primary goals of screenshots is to demonstrate the superior features of your app compared to competitor apps. Portrait orientation will assist you in offering more information to your target audience. Users can see three portrait screenshots at the same time. If you opt for a landscape orientation, there will be only one screenshot per frame.

Experts also note a higher conversion rate for horizontal screenshots. During the ASOdesk live stream in Clubhouse, Artem Tkachuk and Ekaterina Sibirko stated that horizontal screenshots almost always win in tests. Sometimes horizontal screenshots turn out to have higher conversion rates — even for vertical games. Ekaterina Sibirko said that If your competitors’ apps above and below you in the search results have horizontal screenshots, and yours has vertical screenshots, you will be less noticeable in search results and users will be less likely to click on your app. 

Google recommends adding three horizontal screenshots. This is necessary for the “Suggested” section where the apps are displayed using one horizontal screenshot. If your gaming app is vertical, you can add horizontal screenshots after the vertical.

Before making a decision, conduct A/B testing of the application page with vertical and horizontal screenshots. Compare conversion rates, and then make a choice. 

Screenshots: how many?

With Google Play you are allowed a maximum of 8 screenshots. In the App Store, 10 is the limit. According to ASOdesk, publishers generally tend to use only 5–7 screenshots. Only 12% of publishers make use of the maximum number of screenshots allowed in the App Store. This number is only slightly higher on Google Play, where 18% of publishers use all available screenshots.

The optimal number of screenshots will depend on the specifics of your application. If your app has a lot of features to show, use as many screenshots as possible. If you have a simple application, you can settle on fewer screenshots. For instance, a simple calculator only needs a few screenshots to demonstrate all the main features of the app.

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