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The Power of Analytics in App Development

As with any marketing initiative, you will want to measure the performance of your app. Not only does it confirm that you have made the right design choices in the first place and confirm your return on investment, it can help inform future developments to improve performance.

For some strange reasons, apps are sometimes seen as a separate entity to other marketing activities by businesses and organisations. They may be focused on tracking promotions and other advertising online but when it comes to their dedicated app they can often leave things to luck.

The app gets uploaded to the store, there’s a bit of cursory advertising online and then it’s left to fend for itself.

But why wouldn’t you want to know who is downloading your app, how often they are using it and what they are buying or doing? In truth, app metrics have long lagged behind other forms of measurement but that is beginning to change dramatically. Apple and other platforms now include developer consoles that can be used to take a deeper look at performance across the board.

Here are the key metrics that you should be looking out for:

  • The average number of daily or monthly users. You can segment this into who is using your mobile app on different platforms such as iOS or android. It could show that your performance is skewed towards one platform more than another or indicate that your app needs to be updated because the number of users is falling.
  • How long are users staying on your app site. This will need to correlate with how long it should take to engage with a particular activity such as signing onto an event or buying a product. It will vary depending on what you provide. If you have a banking app for example, someone checking their balance will only take a few seconds. For a gaming site, you will certainly expect longer stays.
  • Time for each session. This is important but so is the time spent over a set period. How regularly are users engaging with your app over a period of say a month or a year? Is this increasing or decreasing? You can also test for revenue over a period of time.
  • Tracking how new users download your app. Another important metric that can point to strengths or weaknesses in your advertising campaigns, for example, on Facebook Ads or other social media outlets.
  • Testing initial impact. How many of your users return to the app after engaging with it the first time? You can also check how updates and changes to your app impact on usability and engagement.

Of course, analytics can also be broken down into demographics such as gender and location which can further influence how you advertise and market in the future. While measuring various parameters is becoming easier, understanding how individual metrics can be used to further develop your app and engage with customers more deeply is another question altogether.

Get it right, however, and they provide a powerful tool for further development and better engagement with consumers.

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