This column is authored by Ankit Singh, Business Head, Techugo
Developing a mobile app is just a phase to get your business out in the front and make it available to users. The real purpose of the app and the struggle to get it on people’s devices are the challenges one has to face to meet the actual business propositions and generate profits.
In the beginning, it’s fascinating to see a huge number of app downloads for your app which is good but shouldn’t be taken for granted and be relied upon as a success metric for your app. The number of downloads for your app doesn’t guarantee the fact that users will cling on to your app and would use it. Even if the number of downloads is high, a glitch in the app or poor feedback or anything else can lead to immediate uninstalls of your app. Under such circumstances, it becomes difficult for the app owners to rectify the glitch or hindrance and thus, to solve this issue, it’s crucial that businesses have a fair idea about the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for the mobile app.
They are the driving force behind the success or failure of your app and present you with areas where work is needed to be done to ensure app’s success.
We’ve discussed this umpteen number of times that an app provides individuals and organizations with the ability to maintain a perennial presence in front of their customers. Irrespective of the time and place, an app is accessible at all times. So, if the users find the worth in your services and they feel that a purpose is being served, they’ll stick to the app (Conditions applied). This is called the ‘Stickiness’ factor. Stickiness value helps in determining the actual app usage. If your app usage is relatively high irrespective of the number of downloads, your app is a success. Vice versa and your app would be seen marching towards doom if not taken care of while there’s still time to rectify things.
To realize the performance metrics for your app, certain goals are needed to be realized and then the metrics should be identified in order to achieve those goals. Bear in mind that the metrics and their values vary depending upon the vertical of your business and rightfully so because two different businesses can’t be judged on the same parameters. For starters, the sign-up page after the app download could be a metric to find out about consumers who actually downloaded the app and registered themselves on it. Let’s now proceed and discuss a few things about some of the important must have KPIs for your app.
1. Active Users Of The App
We all use smartphones and mobile apps. There are some apps on our devices that we use daily and some that we use seldom. And then, there are a few apps on our devices that were used just once or twice and were never used again. Now from the app’s perspective, we are the Daily App Users (DAU) for the apps we use everyday and for the apps that we use seldom, we become the Monthly App Users (MAU). This information about users is vital to the app owners as they can make changes in the app and the services provided through the app accordingly and try to convert the Monthly App Users (MAU) to Daily App Users (DAU). It should be ensured that the content of the app is engaging and relevant which interests the user and compels him to return to the app.
2. Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) Of The App
The aim for businesses to develop an app is to generate revenue. It’s not a charity and, nevertheless, hard work should be rewarded. An app generally generates revenue through the in-app purchases or by developing a paid app. The purchases of any kind shouldn’t be overlooked and while they should be observed closely, the overall sale part of the in-app purchases shouldn’t be ignored. Also, it’s worth remembering that ARPU should be relatively high if your app has a huge user base. For instance, an app shouldn’t generate a revenue of $50 when it has 10,000 users.
3. UX Of The App
We’ve spoken volumes about User Experience (UX) and have always proved that UX is ‘THE’ component of the app. It is what a user sees and feel. Not all users are technically sound and thus, not everybody looks at the technical aspect of the app. An app can successfully engage users if the content, look and feel of the app is interesting and engaging enough. A user might be holding on to your app because of just one specific thing and the rest of the app could be completely useless to him. Alternatively, a user who genuinely finds a use for your app would spend a long time with it. Additionally, bugs, frequent crashes, data thefts, etc. can also lead to people uninstalling the app.
4. Acquiring User Base
For an app to be a success and a business to prosper, the most important thing that’s required is a vast and dedicated user base. To expand the user base and profits, it is necessary to study the behavioural statistics of the existing user base, figuring out a pattern, how did they get to know about your services, organic-inorganic channels, app referrals, paid search, etc. the ways are endless and it is in the best interest of the company to have detailed information about each channel.
5. Session Length For The App
The session length for an app determines the time users have spent using the app. It can vary for each individual but gives us a valuable insight on the type of customers the app has. A customer that spends hours and hours and is engaged with the content of the app, tells us the type of things he’s looking for on the app. Repeat the process for all the customers, it can easily be determined who’s here for what, and for the people who depart the app as soon as their problem is solved,a more effective way should be found out to keep these users busy for more.
6. Lifetime Value For The App
Lifetime Value is a metric that determines the future revenue generation of your app and the profits your consumers can generate for you. LTV is the total revenue generated by the user before he stops using the app. A monthly average of this data can provide us the details about the future revenue generation of our app.
7. Launch/Boot Time For The App
An app is more likely to be rejected and uninstalled by the users if it hampers the performance of the user’s device. There’re many other apps present in the market, courtesy your competitors. If your app doesn’t meet the user’s needs, they’ll choose a different app for the same purpose.
8. User Retention Rate For The App
An app’s success is calculated on the basis of the number of users currently using the app. The longevity of the app is a much bigger factor than the number of downloads for your app an given day. App owners should keep an eye out on the stats of a week and a month’s user retention rate. As suggested by the title, a week retention rate provides details for the users who uninstalled the app in the first week of download and a month’s retention rate provides data for the users who stayed with the app for a month or more. This helps in understanding what went wrong and why did the former uninstalled the app early and constructive changes could begin in that direction.
9. App Usage
People only use an app when they find a use for it. However, it is important for app owners to know the analytical details of their consumers. Hence, a business should know about the demography of their consumers. The place where they access the app the most, whether they use it during the day or night, the platform on which the app is being operated, the device on which it is being used, the way they navigate in the app, the frequency of the app usage, etc. This practice helps in narrowing down on the flaws and can help you to attend to them in a better way. Working on your weaknesses and rectifying them can help you deliver a better app and draw a larger consumer base.
Conclusion: Deciding the KPIs for your business helps you in achieving the goals you’ve set for yourself as an enterprise. Once the KPIs are defined, it’s the job of Analytical Tools to do the data crunching and present you with a refined result.