ASO Teardown: How Uber Eats Competes Against Rival Food Delivery Services on the App Store
Welcome to ASO Teardowns, a series where we dissect the strategies apps use to gain visibility on the App Store and Google Play for you to learn from.
Uber does a great job with their ASO, offering much to learn from. Today we're going to look at Uber Eats, the company's food delivery app. Coming up with a good keyword strategy for an app as popular as Uber Eats may seem trivial, but it's quite the opposite.
As we initially expected, Uber's strategy here is almost spot on and is likely heavily tested. But some things can be improved.
Overall, Uber Eats gets an A-
FYI - We reverse-engineered the strategy by examining the app's page on the App Store. We weren't involved in putting it together.
In this guide:
- Uber Eats by the Numbers
- Uber Eats vs. the Competition
- Analyzing Uber Eats' ASO Strategy
- Even Uber Needs ASO!
- Are You ASOing?
Uber Eats by the Numbers
Before we start examining, here's Uber Eats' performance on the App Store in the US:
- 📈 1M estimated downloads in the last month
- 3️⃣ #3 in the Food & Beverage category
- ⭐️ Only 11% of new ratings were positive in the last month
- 👋 Audience is young and split evenly between men and women
- 💰 Primary competitors include DoorDash, Postmates, and Grubhub
Uber Eats vs. the Competition
While there are quite a few food delivery services, only a few cater to enough markets to be popular in the App Store. In this case, the main competition to uber Eats comes from DoorDash, Grubhub, and Postmates. Download-wise, DoorDash is the leader with more than twice as many downloads as Uber Eats. Grubhub is almost the same as Uber Eats, and Postmates has about half the downloads.
However, that doesn't mean their keyword ranks follow exactly:
Putting them all side by side, we can see Uber Eats is the late entrant. It's doing fairly well to keep up but doesn't have the top rank for any of the primary keywords they're all fighting over.
The leader in this group is DoorDash, which isn't just the one with the most downloads but also creativity. Uber could learn from it and incorporate terms like "chinese food" (popularity = 22) or "pizza delivery" (popularity = 23).
- Keep an eye on the keywords that work for your competitors. They may have discovered something you haven't, which you can borrow.
Analyzing Uber Eats' ASO Strategy
Now, let's look at the key components of ASO: keywords, to get found and send more people to the app's page, and visuals, to convert those people into users (aka. downloads).
For iOS apps, there are three areas Apple looks at for keywords: the app's name, subtitle, and keyword list. The first two are public, so we'll start by analyzing those:
- Name: Uber Eats: Order Food Delivery
- Subtitle: Local restaurants to your door
Based on these, it looks like Uber Eats' keyword strategy is targeting the following keywords:
- Uber eats
- Order food
- Order delivery
- Food delivery
- Food order
- Local restaurant(s)
- Local food
- Restaurant delivery
Here's how the app's ranked in these, along with keyword insights:
Uber eats is doing all right. The competition is pretty tough, the app's name is a bit less focused than the competition, and the subtitle doesn't contribute towards the most important search term.
Note: The subtitle likely mentions "door" so it can combine with a keyword in the keyword list to spell a competitor's name (DoorDash). It's a clever technique we see more apps starting to use.
Beyond these keywords, the app ranks in a few other popular keywords:
- To get ahead in a very competitive/popular keyword, you should focus the app's name on it and only it.
- Using keywords in the subtitle that don't combine with those in the name to target high popularity keywords is wasteful.
- If you target a competitor name, which we advise against, break it apart and include one part in the visible metadata and the other in the keyword list.
- Focus the name only on "food delivery." It's the most popular of all relevant terms.
- Use popular foods that are common for ordering, such as pizza, burgers, and sushi in the subtitle.
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Uber Eats' Keyword List
The keyword list is private and can only be seen by the developer and Apple's search algorithm, so we're going to have to reverse-engineer it as well. Based on keywords the app ranks in that aren't already in the name and subtitle, we believe it looks something like the following:
- Uber Eats is focused on competitors. This strategy isn't recommended, but in this case, there is a good reason for it--these services are somewhat replaceable, which means ranking for a competitor's name is an opportunity.
- Mixing languages can work if the words are simple and have a high popularity score. In this case, "comida" (food, in Spanish) has a popularity of 24, which is high enough to be interesting.
How do you "sell" a food delivery app? Uber's way is by selling its convenience. That seems to be the focus of the screenshots here. And at that, they do a great job by highlighting contactless delivery, easy payment, and order tracking.
But there's another way. Food creates a craving. It looks like they try to leverage that with the first screenshot, but the food is covered, the text is relatively small, and there are too many options.
- A light background with dark text makes reading the titles very easy.
- Short sentences and a large font mean people are more likely to read the text.
- Every screenshot's copy starts with a verb, making it very actionable.
- We'd test the first screenshot without the app's UI and instead highlight 3-4 most ordered types of food.
Uber Eats doesn't use an App preview. This isn't common among apps that provide a service. While videos are a great way to convey how easy an app is to use, which seems to be the focus of the screenshots, Uber Eats' young crowd may not need a video to show them that.
However, a video remind users that they're hungry, and that Uber Eats is the solution, so it's worth experimenting with.
- A video needs to address the user's main "concern" or point of friction in whether they'd download or not. It's not always an obvious one.
Even Uber Needs ASO!
Although Uber is an extremely popular brand, on the App Store, it has to invest in ASO to be seen. Its direct competitors do that too, which means Uber has to continue iterating over its strategy to remain competitive.
Are You ASOing?
How's your ASO strategy performing? The key to success with ASO is to constantly make changes, and base those on data. Appfigures has all the tools you need to find and evaluate keywords, track performance, and monitor the competition. Get started