A picture speaks louder than countless words and plays a crucial role in marketing. This is the role of screenshots in app marketing.
Screenshots and app icons help you to narrate your app’s story and to create an impression of its features and functionality in the user’s mind. Screenshots are one of the key driving factors in attracting potential users to achieve higher downloads. The primary function of the app screenshot is to provide relevant information to the user and give them a sense of what they can expect from your app. Neglecting the importance of screenshot can certainly prove to be a huge mistake in your App Store Optimisation (ASO) strategy.
Importance of Screenshots in ASO
Screenshots are one of the key elements of ASO. After performing a search query on app stores a user can easily get overwhelmed with a huge list of apps that he/she has to choose from. Most likely the first thing a person does after discovering your app, is checking the app screenshots to get a first impression. This is where your well-optimized and attractive screenshots come to action.
FiftyThree attempted a split-test on screenshots while localizing an app for the Chinese market which resulted in the improvement in downloads up to 33%. This also shows that when it comes to boosting the app’s conversion rate you should always focus on reviewing, redesigning, and optimizing your app’s screenshots based on specific requirements, audience, and platforms.
Another important aspect of having appealing screenshots on app pages is that most of the users make quick judgments based on the looks rather than reading the entire lengthy description of the app. Moreover, users are quite impulsive and often their emotions drive decisions. A study shows that only 2% of users actually click on the “Read More” button to learn further about the app.
Top Tools to Create Attractive Screenshots for App Stores
Here are 11 different tools which can help you design stunning screenshots to boost your ASO strategy.
AppScreens is an app screenshot tool to design high quality screenshots for Android and iOS. It supports all iPhone, iPad, Android and Android Tablet sizes and simplifies the process of designing screenshots for multiple Android and iOS devices simultaneously from a single design.
AppScreens is a pretty unique mobile app screenshot generator that offers auto resizing of the text across the whole project and smoothens app localization. It also has flexible layouts (including landscape), and Panoramic backgrounds. You can create customized designs with plenty of templates and export them in multiple device sizes at once. Most importantly, you’re able to translate your screenshots to 35 languages to localize your app for different markets.
Limitations: The free plan is available for one project and the pro features can be tried out only with watermarks.
Appure is a tool for localized screenshots. It offers a dedicated workflow to localize your app in 28 different languages supported by Apple App Store and Google Play Store. It lets you design screenshots with plenty of features such as background, images, frames, shadows, positions, rotations, fonts, and more. It also lets you create random layouts and new designs in every single click.
With paid plans, Appure lets you work on 10 different apps simultaneously. With such features, multi-project management, and dedicated localization options, Appure is one of the most powerful app screenshot generators available on the market.
Limitations: Appure doesn’t offer template library which proves to be a bit time-consuming and it creates a repetitive process. Due to its complex interface, you might need some time to familiarize yourself with all the configurations and get used to the tool.
Previewed is a mockup generator which can be used to create app mockups, 3D device renderings & animations. You can create panorama screenshots for a variety of iOS and Android devices in just a few clicks. Additionally, there is an app store preview video maker which can help you dress up your app’s video preview, to make it stand out in the app stores.
Previewed supports all latest devices in different styles and colors and has easy customization to create and export multiple screenshots at once. All your saved templates and mockups are available and backed up in the cloud. The Drag ‘n Drop editor offers a customer-centric and intuitive usage.
Limitations: Previewed doesn't offer free plans nor localization.
AppLaunchpad is a tool available to create screenshots for Android and Apple devices. It offers a range of layout options, pre-designed screenshot templates, and comes with a free and paid plan. The free plan offers 3 standard templates with limited device frames whereas the pro plans give access to 14 different screenshot templates and additional customizable features.
AppLaunchpad offers a user-friendly interface with a variety of options such as customizable backgrounds, templates, fonts, and colors. The range of device frames can be used to optimize your app’s screenshot for specific formats and platforms.
Limitations: With AppLaunchpad, you need to create separate projects for iOS and Android. Additionally, there's no panoramic backgrounds and localization of apps might become a challenge as it has 5 languages only.
App Screenshot Maker by AppInstitute
AppInstitute has created a free app screenshot maker to create iOS and Android screenshots for your app. It’s a free app screenshot generator but has limited layouts and customization features.
App Screenshot Maker from AppInstitute comes with 8 basic templates and 4 different device frames. Its “cloning feature” lets you quickly copy a set of design and use it for other apps or during app localization. You can easily customize major elements like background, fonts, and colors, but you won’t find any dedicated options for minor detailings.
Limitations: Apart from the limited customization features, App Screenshot Maker doesn’t support iPad and iPhone X devices.
Snapshot by Fastlane
Snapshot by Fastlane is a screenshot generator that makes the process of taking screenshots easier and faster. Namely, instead of taking screenshots manually, this tool helps you to do it automatically and for different versions of your app. To be more precise, Snapshot can save hours of work by simply returning a collection of screenshots of a certain feature/element in multiple languages for multiple devices. This also makes it easier to localize your app. It also fixes the issue of blurry texts, wrong frame size, and scaling which can occur quite often.
Limitations: Snapshot is more suitable for app developers and programmers. Therefore it’s not so easy to use the tool as it requires certain coding skills and technical knowledge to operate it.
App Store screenshot
App Store Screenshot is a free app screenshot tool where you can create great designs without even signing up. It offers a nice modern interface where you can design screenshots for almost all the devices.
App Store Screenshot is highly recommended if you want to create a quick screenshot for free with a decent amount of customisation. It’s one of the fastest and most straightforward tools to create app screenshots from scratch.
Limitations: The disadvantage with the App Store Screenshot is that it doesn’t let you change the design for each screenshot hence you have to use the same layout for the entire set of screenshots. It doesn’t support Android tablet layout and it doesn’t offer options for app localization.
PlaceIt is not a screenshot tool but offers a different kind of solution - it's one of the biggest mockup sites for products. With such a huge library of templates, they also have an exclusive set just for iPhone screenshots. There are over 60 layouts for iPhone devices.
PlaceIt offers a library of pre-designed templates, so you can create screenshots easily by using the drag-and-drop feature and placing any screenshot on mockup layouts. You can get iPhone and Android screenshots in various angles and styles with some additional customizations like background, font, and colors.
Limitations: One of the limitations of Placeit is that screenshots have to be generated one-by-one, device-by-device which is time-consuming. As the screenshots are not lined up side-by-side, you cannot get an idea of the finished product until you've exported them.
Apply Pixels is a highly customizable app screenshot platform. It offers a marketplace of well-structured and well-documented templates with some of the best designs you could find on the market. It consists of templates for iPhone, Android, iPad, and tablets with different sizes, colors, and fonts.
The advantage of Apply Pixels over other tools is that it’s available for offline use. Moreover, you can easily export your screenshot design to Adobe Photoshop and Sketch which makes customisations limitless.
Limitations: It lacks the automation options to quicken the process of creating app screenshots which means you have to manually design each screenshot every single time.
ShotBot is another free app screenshot generator that helps app developers to design screenshots for Apple App Store. This tool returns 5 layouts of matching designs to showcase your app and allows you to publish them directly. Customization options are limited as you cannot change much other than fonts.
Limitation: ShotBot is an exclusive iPhone only screenshot generator. This means there are no options to create Android and iPad screenshots. Additionally, there's no modifications or editing allowed on the layouts.
DaVinci Apps is a screenshot generator tool which offers a wide library of templates and customizations for both Android and iPhone screenshots. It comes with both free and premium plans.
DaVinci Apps includes an editor that lets you quickly build and edit beautiful screenshots from scratch using its massive range of layouts and templates in no time. The tool supports all device frames.
Limitations: The customization and editing options are limited. For instance, changing the font style and sizes is not possible while using pre-designed templates.
StoreShots is all about presenting your app in the right device frame. It offers a bit of a different billing approach. Each template can be redeemed using 1 credit to design the screenshot. The credit price may differ depending on the package from 0.05$ to 0.12$.
StoreShots offers plenty of customization options and supports all the devices including iPhone X, iPad Pro, Android smartphones, and tablets. The most unique feature of this tool allows you to bulk-upload screenshots and frame them for any device using automated export integrations.
Limitations: StoreShots doesn’t offer any template library and the complex user interface can be a bit overwhelming at times with the number of menus and options.
Which App Screenshot Maker Tool Should You Choose?
When selecting an app screenshot tool, make sure to focus on your specific needs. There are a few things to keep in mind before selecting the best screenshot tool. First is pricing, do you have the budget available or are you looking for a free app screenshot tool? However, free tools often come with limited designs and customizations. When it comes to fast and easy screenshot designs, consider pre-designed templates. When you need to go into detail, choose tools that offer high customizations. But if you for instance have a large app portfolio, make sure to select a tool that offers automated workflows and integrations in order to save time.