Boost Your Mobile Game’s Visibility and Mobile SEO With Branch

When launching a mobile game, half the battle is creating it. The other half is making it stand out among the 472,000 games available in the Apple App Store and 393,000 in the Google Play Store. To more quickly build an audience of players, mobile game marketers should increase their game’s SEO ranking and visibility. With Branch, you can solve SEO app attribution challenges, build deep links that drive users into your app, and attribute clicks to web content. You can even leverage Branch deep linking and attribution functionality on any accelerated mobile pages you use without compromising their architecture.

Here are four ways to boost your game’s rankings with Branch. 

Take users directly into your game from search results

One of the biggest decisions in mobile SEO is choosing whether an organic search result link will take users into the app or to a mobile website. If you choose to deep link a user into app content, you lose the attribution data that indicates where the user came from. On the other hand, directing the user to the mobile web will preserve valuable attribution data but sacrifice the convenience of deep linking the user to where they really want to go: your game. It boils down to a choice between UX and attribution insights. 

Branch’s unique SEO App Attribution solution solves this common problem with deep linking functionality that maintains attribution insights. You no longer need to choose between a great UX for players who have your mobile game installed and key analytical data that helps you make better marketing decisions. 

Image depicting SEO app attribution without Branch: 1. User clicks a link from organic search 2. If deep linking is enabled, they are taken to the app, but there are no attribution insights. 3. If deep linking is not enabled, the user is directed to the mobile website instead of the app, but attribution insights are preserved.

While this approach removes UX frustration for users who already have your game installed on their device, it still leaves the question of where to direct new users. 

Acquire new users with SEO App Attribution + Journeys Banners

To maximize your mobile game’s growth potential, you need a strategy for how and where to direct new users who discover your content through search engine results pages (SERPs). This is where smart banners come in. 

By combining Branch’s SEO App Attribution with Journeys web-to-app smart banners, you can create a seamless pathway to your app. When a user without the mobile game installed clicks on a SERP link, they are taken to the mobile website. Once they land on the mobile web, they see a Branch Journeys banner prompt to download your game in the app store. To increase web-to-app conversions, Journeys smart banners allow you to customize the banners with graphics from your mobile game properties and tailor their look, feel, and behavior using CSS or HTML. This winning combination ensures that you maximize your user acquisition efforts while providing the best possible player experience. 

Branch Monster Game banner: Collect and customize your favorite Branch monsters! Button: Open

In addition to thinking about SEO in a mobile web context, mobile game companies need a strategy in place to improve web SEO from mobile game content clicks. 

Attribute content clicks to web URLs for SEO

In a typical scenario, clicks on mobile app deep links don’t improve your content’s SEO. This means that even if you drive a myriad of users into your app and deliver an excellent user experience, those clicks do nothing to improve your rankings. A major downside. 

However, Branch lets you add a web URL to the content in the deep link, ensuring every click counts toward your SEO efforts. 

When you create a Branch link in your Branch Dashboard, or via SDK or API, one of the most important fields to use is $canonical_url. This field stores the web URL where you want to attribute content clicks for SEO purposes. 

For example, in the Branch Monster Game app, users may be able to post content to social media via a share button. Typically, clicking this shared link (e.g., will open the app and deep link the player to the relevant content in the game app. If the $canonical_url is set to the web equivalent for this content (e.g.,, then whenever a user clicks, the SEO score for will increase. You can assign the $canonical_url when creating the link in the Branch Dashboard, edit the link data if the Branch link is already created, or add the query parameter to the end of a link, like this:$canonical_url=

Link Data field in Branch Dashboard: Add the data that you want to be passed to your app via this link. This data is also used to configure link functions like routing, attribution windows, etc. All the keys and values are case-sensitive. Shown fields: Key: $canonical_url Value:

While attributing clicks to your website will boost its SEO ranking, you also need to ensure the site itself is optimized using Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)

Improve conversion rates using AMP

Google’s AMP framework is a great tool to make your website load faster on mobile devices and boost your SEO ranking. If your website already uses accelerated mobile pages and you want to utilize Branch’s Web SDK, we have an AMP-specific version of our Web SDK. Aside from typical Branch Web SDK functionality like deep linking, attribution, and event tracking, it also allows you to show AMP-friendly Branch Journeys banners. This is important because AMP pages are designed to make it difficult for users to navigate to any location other than back to Google Search, which makes it nearly impossible to convert users who are accessing content through your mobile web pages. 

Branch’s AMP-compatible Journeys convert mobile web traffic from Google Search results to your app and take advantage of extra traffic from AMP pages. To create an AMP-compatible Journey, select the “AMP web” checkbox during the Journeys creation flow in the Branch Dashboard. 

Branch Dashboard showing: Select the audience you want to target. Platforms: mobile web and/or AMP web Devices: Android phone and/or Android tablet and/or iOS phone and/or iOS tablet

Recap and next steps

Here are four tips to optimize your game’s Google Search ranking:

  • Use Branch’s SEO App Attribution to take users directly into your mobile game without missing out on attribution insights.
  • Combine SEO App Attribution with Branch Journeys banners to nudge users to download your mobile game.
  • Leverage the $canonical_url when creating Branch links so that content clicks are attributed to the web links.
  • Use Branch’s AMP-compatible Web SDK and Journeys to ensure fast load times and higher SEO ranking.

Want to learn more about using Branch in your mobile game apps? Learn how you can boost mobile game user acquisition and reengagement using Branch. 

To get started, request a demo with our team.