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Digital Marketing Insight

How important are 7 day retention rates in mobile apps?

Kontagent Mobile App Retention

When it comes to mobile apps, it can be a challenge getting customers to try your app, but making sure you keep them coming back can be even trickier. In today’s highly saturated mobile market, content is the most important thing when it comes to app retention.

Most business owners believe their product to be unique. While that normally holds true, undeniable market trends emerge that tell how people use categorically similar products, including apps. A good strategy for maximizing app retention is to research your competitors and decide what you can feature in your app to set it apart from the rest. Also knowing your competitor’s retention rate could help to spotlight your app’s strength and weaknesses.

While most companies new to mobile analytics believe seven days make up a typical week, that isn’t always the case. When thinking about your average week, it probably seems pretty routine, such as work, dinner, sleep, and other normal activities. Customer’s app usage cycles are the same way-routine. Customers tend to repeat the same usage cycle every seven days, therefore making the seventh day the obvious choice to measure retention. When measuring app retention, it’s also important to track Key Performance Indicator (KPI) to be able to anticipate how your mobile app will fare in the future.

Although seven day retention rates might make the most sense to those new to mobile analytics, mobile app retention is best measured on app-by-app basis because an app may not necessarily need to be used everyday. For instance, apps that provide services like online food ordering, online banking, or online bill pay may not be used as much as apps that feature games, videos, and social networking. An example of this is my personal phone. On my iPhone, I have the Chipotle online ordering app and the game Temple Run. If my mobile usage data was analyzed, it would show that typically once every 10 days I use the Chipotle app, whereas I use the Temple Run app every day.

To go back to the original question: Do 7 day retention rates matter? They do, but only if they are pertinent to your app and your expected customer interaction. Before you start worrying that your retention rates are too low, stop and think about your app’s purpose and how it fits into their daily needs.