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Expanding Keyword Opportunities on the App Store

ASO, App Store Optimization, Keywords1 min read

App Store Optimization (ASO) is crucial for iOS and Android apps, particularly for iOS apps where the keyword list in App Store Connect plays a vital role.

Sometimes, the 100-character limit can pose challenges, especially in certain languages. However, there's a clever trick that can help expand your keywords: utilizing the keyword field for other languages that you aren't currently targeting.

Example and Table

Let's illustrate this with an example:

Suppose you're targeting English (United States) and find the 100-character limit insufficient. You can leverage the cross-indexing of languages provided in the table below. For instance, if you're not already targeting Spanish (Mexico), you can include additional keywords in that localization's keyword field, and they will also be indexed on the United States App Store.

CodeCountryPrimary LanguageCross Indexed Languages
AFGAfghanistanEnglish (U.K.)
AEUnited Arab EmiratesEnglish (U.K.)Arabic
AGAntigua and BarbudaEnglish (U.K.)
AIAnguillaEnglish (U.K.)
ALAlbaniaEnglish (U.K.)
AMArmeniaEnglish (U.K.)
AOAngolaEnglish (U.K.)
ARArgentinaSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
ATAustriaGermanEnglish (U.K.)
AUAustraliaEnglish (Australia)
AZAzerbaijanEnglish (U.K.)
BBBarbadosEnglish (U.K.)
BEBelgiumEnglish (U.K.)Dutch, French
BIHBosnia and HerzegovinaEnglish (U.K.)Croatian
BFBurkina FasoEnglish (U.K.)French
BGBulgariaEnglish (U.K.)
BHBahrainEnglish (U.K.)
BJBeninEnglish (U.K.)French
BMBermudaEnglish (U.K.)
BNBruneiEnglish (U.K.)
BOBoliviaSpanish (Spain)English (U.K.)
BRBrazilPortuguese (Brazil)English (U.K.)
BSBahamasEnglish (U.K.)
BTBhutanEnglish (U.K.)
BWBotswanaEnglish (U.K.)
BYBelarusEnglish (U.K.)
BZBelizeEnglish (U.K.)Spanish (Spain)
CMRCameroonFrenchEnglish (U.K.)
CACanadaEnglish (Canada)French (Canada)
CGCongo, Republic of theEnglish (U.K.)French
CHSwitzerlandGermanEnglish (U.K.), French, Italian
CIVCote d’IvoireFrenchEnglish (U.K.)
CLChileSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
CNChina mainlandSimplified ChineseEnglish (U.K.)
COColombiaSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
CODCongo, Democratic Republic of theEnglish (U.K.)French
CRCosta RicaSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
CVCape VerdeEnglish (U.K.)
CYCyprusEnglish (U.K.)Turkish
CZCzech RepublicEnglish (U.K.)Czech
DEGermanyGermanEnglish (U.K.)
DKDenmarkEnglish (U.K.)Danish
DMDominicaEnglish (U.K.)
DODominican RepublicSpanish (Mexico)French
DZAlgeriaEnglish (U.K.)Arabic, French
ECEcuadorSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
EEEstoniaEnglish (U.K.)
EGEgyptEnglish (U.K.)Arabic, French
ESSpainSpanish (Spain)Catalan, English (U.K.)
FIFinlandEnglish (U.K.)Finnish
FJFijiEnglish (U.K.)
FMMicronesiaEnglish (U.K.)
FRFranceFrenchEnglish (U.K.)
GABGabonFrenchEnglish (U.K.)
GBUnited KingdomEnglish (U.K.)
GDGrenadaEnglish (U.K.)
GEOGeorgiaEnglish (U.K.)
GHGhanaEnglish (U.K.)
GMGambiaEnglish (U.K.)
GTGuatemalaSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
GWGuinea-BissauEnglish (U.K.)French
GYGuyanaEnglish (U.K.)
HKHong KongChinese (Traditional)English (U.K.)
HNHondurasSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
HRCroatiaEnglish (U.K.)Croatian
HUHungaryEnglish (U.K.)Hungarian
IDIndonesiaEnglish (U.K.)Indonesian
IEIrelandEnglish (U.K.)
ILIsraelEnglish (U.K.)Hebrew
INIndiaEnglish (U.K.)Hindi
IRQIraqEnglish (U.K.)Arabic
ISIcelandEnglish (U.K.)
ITItalyItalianEnglish (U.K.)
JMJamaicaEnglish (U.K.)
JOJordanEnglish (U.K.)Arabic
JPJapanJapaneseEnglish (U.S.)
KEKenyaEnglish (U.K.)
KGKyrgyzstanEnglish (U.K.)
KHCambodiaEnglish (U.K.)French
KNSt. Kitts and NevisEnglish (U.K.)
KRRepublic of KoreaKoreanEnglish (U.K.)
KWKuwaitEnglish (U.K.)Arabic
KYCayman IslandsEnglish (U.K.)
KZKazakhstanEnglish (U.K.)
LALaosEnglish (U.K.)French
LBLebanonEnglish (U.K.)Arabic, French
LBYLibyaEnglish (U.K.)Arabic
LCSt. LuciaEnglish (U.K.)
LKSri LankaEnglish (U.K.)
LRLiberiaEnglish (U.K.)
LTLithuaniaEnglish (U.K.)
LULuxembourgEnglish (U.K.)French, German
LVLatviaEnglish (U.K.)
MARMoroccoEnglish (U.K.)Arabic, French
MDMoldovaEnglish (U.K.)
MDVMaldivesEnglish (U.K.)
MGMadagascarEnglish (U.K.)French
MKNorth MacedoniaEnglish (U.K.)
MLMaliEnglish (U.K.)French
MMRMyanmarEnglish (U.K.)
MNMongoliaEnglish (U.K.)
MNEMontenegroEnglish (U.K.)Croatian
MOMacauChinese (Traditional)English (U.K.)
MRMauritaniaEnglish (U.K.)Arabic, French
MSMontserratEnglish (U.K.)
MTMaltaEnglish (U.K.)
MUMauritiusEnglish (U.K.)French
MWMalawiEnglish (U.K.)
MXMexicoSpanish (Mexico)
MYMalaysiaEnglish (U.K.)
MZMozambiqueEnglish (U.K.)
NANamibiaEnglish (U.K.)
NENigerEnglish (U.K.)
NGNigeriaEnglish (U.K.)
NINicaraguaSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
NLNetherlandsDutchEnglish (U.K.)
NONorwayEnglish (U.K.)Norwegian
NPNepalEnglish (U.K.)
NRUNauruEnglish (U.K.)
NZNew ZealandEnglish (U.K.)
OMOmanEnglish (U.K.)Arabic
PAPanamaSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
PEPeruSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
PGPapua New GuineaEnglish (U.K.)
PHPhilippinesEnglish (U.K.)
PKPakistanEnglish (U.K.)
PLPolandEnglish (U.K.)Polish
PTPortugalPortuguese (Portugal)English (U.K.)
PWPalauEnglish (U.K.)
PYParaguaySpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
QAQatarEnglish (U.K.)Arabic
RORomaniaEnglish (U.K.)Romanian
RURussiaRussianEnglish (U.K.), Ukrainian
RWARwandaEnglish (U.K.)French
SASaudi ArabiaEnglish (U.K.)Arabic
SBSolomon IslandsEnglish (U.K.)
SCSeychellesEnglish (U.K.)French
SESwedenSwedishEnglish (U.K.)
SGSingaporeEnglish (U.K.)Chinese (Simplified)
SISloveniaEnglish (U.K.)
SKSlovakiaEnglish (U.K.)Slovak
SLSierra LeoneEnglish (U.K.)
SNSenegalEnglish (U.K.)French
SRSurinameEnglish (U.K.)Dutch
SRBSerbiaEnglish (U.K.)Croatian
STSao Tome and PrincipeEnglish (U.K.)
SVEl SalvadorSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
SZEswatiniEnglish (U.K.)
TCTurks and Caicos IslandsEnglish (U.K.)
TDChadEnglish (U.K.)French
THThailandEnglish (U.K.)Thai
TJTajikistanEnglish (U.K.)
TMTurkmenistanEnglish (U.K.)
TNTunisiaEnglish (U.K.)Arabic, French
TONTongaEnglish (U.K.)
TRTurkeyEnglish (U.K.)Turkish
TTTrinidad and TobagoEnglish (U.K.)French
TWTaiwanChinese (Traditional)English (U.K.)
TZTanzaniaEnglish (U.K.)
UAUkraineEnglish (U.K.)Russian, Ukrainian
UGUgandaEnglish (U.K.)
USUnited StatesEnglish (U.S.)Arabic, Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), French, Korean, Portuguese (Brazil), Russian, Spanish (Mexico), Vietnamese
UYUruguayEnglish (U.K.)Spanish (Mexico)
UZUzbekistanEnglish (U.K.)
VCSt. Vincent and the GrenadinesEnglish (U.K.)
VEVenezuelaSpanish (Mexico)English (U.K.)
VGBritish Virgin IslandsEnglish (U.K.)
VNVietnamEnglish (U.K.)Vietnamese
VUTVanuatuEnglish (U.K.)French
XKSKosovoEnglish (U.K.)
YEYemenEnglish (U.K.)Arabic
ZASouth AfricaEnglish (U.K.)
ZMBZambiaEnglish (U.K.)
ZWZimbabweEnglish (U.K.)

This table, slightly modified from, provides a comprehensive list of cross-indexed languages. It's worth exploring their site for a variety of useful articles about ASO. Additionally, I noticed in my own experiments that the additional keywords used for Japan were listed as English (U.S.), not English (U.K.), so I've corrected that above(I think it would be the same for Korean but haven't properly checked yet).

The Intent

The underlying intent here is to ensure that people whose first language differs from the predominant language in their country can still discover apps in the app store when searching in their native language. However, it's worth noting that adding English keywords somewhat circumvents this intent.

Something to Keep in Mind

While the keywords you use will indeed be indexed on the United States App Store, even when added to the metadata for Spanish (Mexico), there are a couple of caveats:

  • Keywords won't mix between languages.
  • Although not confirmed, there may be some weighting involved in how keywords are ranked.