5 Best-Practice Tips for App Screenshots

Posted in March 2016 by Silke Glauninger

App Store Optimization

Regardless how you bring potential users to your app, they all have to go through your app store page. One of the most important and striking elements on this page is your screenshots set. Although screenshots have no direct impact on your app’s store ranking, the screenshot set is a powerful tool to convince users. It will be the main determinant for most of your users to download your app.

There are various ways to design screenshots. No matter if you choose feeling oriented, feature-oriented or art oriented design, your users should be impacted by that images. All in all, screenshots demonstrate the functionality, look & feel of your app. They are welcomed by users, as a majority will not read through the whole app description to find out, what your app is about.

5 Tips to optimize your App Screenshots

In the following article, we will provide you 5 crucial tips and best-practice examples of screenshots to generate more downloads for your app.

1) Show them how your app looks and behaves

The main purpose of app screenshots on an app page is to show what the app looks like. Users visiting your app details page want a quick visual preview of your app and its features.

App Screenshot Example Instagram

Screenshots like those of Instagram, are the easiest form of providing this impression. They use standalone screenshots without any additional text, background or images. However, with these screenshots, it quickly gets clear, what the app is about. Although such classical screenshots do not work for every kind of app. Nevertheless, they do not need huge effort to be created.

2) Describe your app’s main features

Besides showing visitors how your app looks like, also make sure to highlight its main features. Users should quickly know what your app’s main purpose is.

App Screenshot Example WhatsApp

WhatsApp follows this rule. As the app’s purpose mainly is about real-time messaging, they put the screenshot describing this feature at first place. Additionally, they follow a specific screenshot trend, slowly establishing in all app stores: They added some text to clearly describe the visualized feature on the particular screenshot. As some of the most successful apps also use some additional text to describe the app screenshot, this approach got very popular.

Quick Tip:
Your main feature should be shown within the first screenshot!

3) Tell a story

Screenshots are a very powerful tool to keep potential users on your app page. In fact, the term “screenshot” by now is a bit misleading. The most successful app pages do not only upload random screens but use rich imagery to visually tell a story. This means you should try to reach your visitors with powerful screenshots so that you can engage them to download your app.

App Screenshot Example Lottoland

Lottoland uses a very innovative approach to app presentation. They not only provide well-designed app visualizations, but use them to tell a story. All images form a set together. Moreover, they address human emotions with imagery and text. Users are automatically led to scroll through all screenshots. Additionally, the last Screenshot indirectly asks the user to download the app, however positively completes the visual story.

4) Adjust the language

On App Store and Google Play, one screenshot per localization is required and up to four (App Store) / seven (Google Play) more screenshots are optional to add. This means if you offer your app for different localization with different languages, you should make sure to offer your screenshots in the correct language. If you don’t want to take screenshots in different languages, you should at least adjust the additional text if added to the screenshot images.

App Screenshot Example 1Password

A good example for this is 1Password. They really put effort into their screenshots and provide different screenshots adjusted to different countries. So they not only translated the additional text fields, but took different screenshots of amazon in particular languages.

5) Use the right dimensions

Different mobile devices mean different screen resolutions. While Google Play only demands a minimum and maximum dimension for screenshots, Apple makes this whole story a lot more complicated. Offering your app within Apple App Store, you have to add your screenshots for every possible iOS screen size. This might get very time consuming if you want to take a screenshot of your app on every available iOS device. A possible workaround could be seen in the following example.

App Screenshot Example Snapchat

Snapchat for example, uses a very efficient approach of providing app screenshots for different screen dimensions. They put simple app screenshots into matching devices surrounded by an abstract, colored frame. This classic frame delivers a high recognition value and keeps you flexible designing your screenshots for different screen dimensions. Of course, this imagery especially works excellent, because Snapchat already established it’s branding.

Quick Tip:
This approach allows you to take your screenshots in one size, paste it into a device with frame and simply export it to the required dimensions.

Free Template for Best-Practice iOS Screenshots coming soon…

Are you also sick of investing hours in your iOS Screenshots? Then be prepared for our next post, in which we will provide you with a free Best-Practice iOS Screenshot Template. It will come with a short screenshot guidance. So stay tuned and register below, in order to not miss future App Marketing News and Tips.

Silke Glauninger
Silke is Marketing Manager at App Radar. When not writing about app marketing, you can find her looking for new places to explore or watching series with a cup of tea and chocolate.

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