Mobile Marketing

3 Experts on App Metrics that Matter

Three stories caught our attention this week, all highlighting the importance of picking app metrics that matter.

In this interview from Denham Sadler with Carnival Labs co-founder Cody Bunea speaking at the Lean15 conference in Wellington, New Zealand, Bunea likened the emphasis on downloads without trying to retain users to trying to continually fill up a leaky bucket instead of fixing the actual holes.

“Getting someone to download your app is like receiving a ‘like’ on Facebook, Bunea says.”

In his article It’s Nice Somebody Installed your App but is Anybody Using it? Brett Relander says “An app provides no benefit if all the consumer does is install it but never actually uses it, yet app marketing is largely driven and measured by the number of downloads and installs obtained.”

He highlights that “Digital marketing measurements must remain dynamic to keep pace with changing technology.”

More than just reporting on App Installs Brett recommends focusing on App starts, usage metrics like content views, in-app purchases or adding items to a cart as better ways to assess performance.

Which ever metric you choose Brett says you need to be able to put a value on it “For example, if you should decide that registration offers the greatest chance for generating future revenue, you will then need to assign a value to that particular event. The revenue generated by this action will determine that value.”

Finally Mark McDonald from Appster highlights the 5 Mobile Marketing Metrics he thinks matter most.  Below are McDonald’s insights on the value of each of each of these metrics.

1 – Average Revenue Per User (ARPU), Lifetime Value of Customer (LTV)

LTV is your primary revenue metric. It represents the financial value of the app and how much each app user or customer is worth in his or her lifetime.

2 – Cost Per Install (CPI), Cost Per Loyal User (CPLU)
The CPI measures your customer acquisition costs per one acquired customer. CPLU refers to the cost of acquiring an active user. Of the two, CPLU is the more meaningful metric.

3 – Retention

Acquiring users is hard, but compared to retention it’s practically a piece of cake. There are 1.5 million apps, and according to Nielsen Research, an average user has only about 42 apps on their phone.

Not surprisingly most apps get deleted after only being used once. And the total retention rate you can expect for an average app is about 4% in 12 months.

4 – Engagement

There is no particular definition of engagement; it’s something that can be measured by other metrics such as session length, session interval, interactions, etc. However, it is very important. The top apps also generate the most engagement.

5 – Net Promoter Score (NPS)

One of the top metrics of customer satisfaction and app virality is the Net Promoter Score. It’s measured by asking your users the following question: ‘On a scale of zero to ten, how likely are you to recommend X to a friend?’ According to McDonald, this metric is pure gold, and there is heaps of research supporting that statement.

Check out 5 Mobile Metrics That Actually Matter for more detailed information and charts illustrating each metric.

If you’re in the process of reviewing your app metrics, hopefully these expert insights shed light on the best ones for you to focus on.

What other metrics are you measuring to determine app performance? Feel free to share your insights in a comment below.

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