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Mobile app analytics: 10 metrics every business should track.

March 7, 2023 By: Hannah Middleton

The mobile app industry is growing: 230 billion mobile apps were downloaded in 2021, a 63% increase from only 140 billion apps in 2016. Audiences are expanding, but the market is also set to be more competitive than ever. Customers are exposed to a broader pool of options and can quickly shift to a competitor when your business doesn’t meet their needs. 

So, how do you know what metrics to track in this evolving market and to ensure customer satisfaction? Here’s a guide to mobile app analytics and mobile app metrics to track to stay competitive.

What are mobile app analytics?

Mobile app analytics capture, measure, and analyze customer behavior and experience while users interact with your mobile application. Mobile app analytics tools reveal insights on customer pain and friction points when using your application, allowing you to improve the customer/user experience.

There are two types of mobile applications: native and hybrid. Native apps are specifically developed for a mobile operating system (i.e., android or iOS).

Native and web apps combine to form hybrid applications. Hybrid applications are connected to the company’s website but connect to the mobile platform’s capabilities once installed, operating similarly to a native app. However, they’re restricted to the website’s navigational elements.

A mobile-first design approach is essential for customer satisfaction for native and hybrid app development.

Why is a mobile-first design approach vital?

The mobile-first design approach is vital for usability, user experience (UX), customer experience (CX), and mobile device popularity.

Customers spend more and more time on their smartphones.

There are 6.3 billion smartphone users globally. These users check their phones once every 4 minutes—amounting to 344 times daily. Eighty-eight percent of this time is spent on mobile phone applications

Customers use mobile devices to interact with businesses, making a mobile-first approach essential. They want a mobile experience that’s as good as desktop.

A mobile-first approach improves brand UX and accessibility.

Mobile-first design approach improves a brand’s overall UX and accessibility. Mobile has the most limitations—including screen size and bandwidth—compelling you to optimize. When you get that right, you’ll enjoy seamless scaling, which is essential for omnichannel marketing campaigns.

Mobile-first indexing is Google’s default for website ranking.

Google crawls the web using a smartphone Googlebot to ensure that brands show customers the same content on the website and mobile. However, it primarily uses the mobile version to rank web pages on the search engine results page for organic searches. So, you should optimize for mobile. 

It leads to more clicks and recommendations.

Websites optimized for mobile devices get around 15% more unique clicks than websites that aren’t. Mobile-friendly sites rank higher on Google, so more customers see them, leading to more clicks.

Add to that, 57% of consumers don’t recommend businesses with poor mobile websites. In addition to not sending you more business, 40% of these consumers leave and shift to the competition after a bad mobile experience. Worse still, they leave without stating their reasons. So, you won’t necessarily know how to improve.

Taking a mobile-first approach improves your conversion rate.

The average conversion rate on desktop is 1.98% and 1.81% on mobile. But, the gap is closing: customers want mobile sites that are easy to navigate and view images. They also respond well to call-to-actions (CTAs) placed in thumb-friendly locations.  

Benefits of mobile app analytics.

Mobile app analytics tools help gauge the efficacy of a mobile-first approach. Generally, mobile app analytics metrics inform you about user behavior and how to optimize their experiences to beat the competition, increase revenue, and boost customer satisfaction.

1. Data-driven insights on consumer behavior and experience.

A data-driven approach advises your organization’s strategic approach based on data insights from data collection, analysis, and interpretation.

Data-driven insights via mobile app analytics help you understand your application’s uptake by analyzing retention rate, stickiness ratio, churn rate, user engagement, and the number of installs. You can also quantify customer experience and the extent of friction/pain points.

2. Better functionality for increased ROI.

Organizations that use key performance indicators (KPIs) to track their mobile application’s success experience positive returns on investment (ROI). Tracking the right metrics help improve functionality, leading to better ROI.

Your team should recognize the synergy between performance, functioning, network configurations, and in-app use. When these factors align, you can develop user-friendly mobile applications, meet industry standards and demands, remain competitive, and recoup the investment.

3. Collect accurate data to make informed decisions.

Mobile app analytics eliminates the guesswork. You save time and money dealing with issues relevant to your business by directing only the resources needed to handle the issues.

4. Customize mobile apps to optimize for an actual need.

Mobile app analytics tools offer a detailed user journey view, replayed via session replays. You get to see how each customer interacts with your application so that you can customize the application for actual customer needs.

Customizing in areas that matter saves time and money, improving efficiency and focus.

5. Track channels that meet your brand goals.

Popular channels may not work for your business. Analytics identifies the most beneficial channels. For example, Google Play is the most popular app store, yet most of your loyal and active customers use the Apple app store.

Mobile app analytics helps you optimize for what works for your business, not based on what’s most popular.

Ten mobile app metrics every business should track.

To realize the benefits of mobile app analytics fully, you need to know what mobile app metrics to track. Let’s look at which ones to keep an eye on.

1. Daily & monthly active users.

Daily and monthly active user metrics show the engagement level after app installs. Daily active users (DAUs) show you the number of unique users on your mobile application daily. Monthly active users (MAUs) show you the number of unique users within a 30 to 31-day period.

The importance of daily and monthly active users depends on your industry. Gaming, retail, and travel businesses should track these metrics and ensure they’re on an upward trajectory.

2. Cost per install or cost of customer acquisition.

Your application should make business sense. Calculate the money spent on app development, app maintenance, and cost per install to estimate the total cost of the application. The cost per install (CPI) informs you how much you spent acquiring each user.

Calculate the cost per install by dividing the ad spend over a period and the number of new installs from the same period. The average CPI in North America is $5.28.

3. Stickiness ratio.

The stickiness ratio gives an accurate picture of app engagement, usefulness, and customer loyalty by dividing the number of DAUs by MAUs, then multiplying by 100. The higher the ratio, the more engaging your app is.

For example, the stickiness ratio for an airline with 3000 DAUs and 10000 MAUs is 3000/10000*100=30%.

4. Retention rate.

The retention rate is a valuable mobile app metric, especially for the marketing team. The average app loses 77% of DAUs within the first three days after installation, and the loss is 90% within 30 days.

The retention rate reveals the value of your application by showing how many users return within a time frame. Loyal/returning customers are cheaper because they don’t cost money to acquire, yet they’ll spend money.

However, offer excellent customer experience to keep them happy. Tools such as session replays and customer journey analytics reveal friction and pain points to ensure a smooth user experience.

5. Churn rate.

The churn rate looks at the rate of app installs and subscription cancellations or downgrades by a paying user. The churn rate significantly affects revenue, especially when your top revenue-generating users churn.

Use customer journey analytics to determine why users are leaving and rectify the problem.

6. Exit rate.

The exit rate shows at what point/screen users drop off the mobile app. The screen with the highest exit rate indicates the most problematic stage of the customer journey.

Calculate the exit rate by dividing the total number of visits on a screen by the total number of drop-offs from that screen.

Suppose 60% of users don’t complete the signup process that takes five screens on your banking app. Exit rate metrics will show you which screens have the highest exit rate. So, you can run page analytics and performance monitoring to get experience alerts, pointing out the exact issues. Improve conversion rate once these are sorted.

7. Customer lifetime value.

Customer lifetime value looks at the customer-brand relationship. It helps you understand the value of each customer based on how much they spend on your app, paying for in-app purchases and subscriptions. The average consumer spend on mobile apps per smartphone is $4.86.

8. App crashes.

Users uninstall apps with poor performance. App crashes, errors, and freezes cause 62% of app uninstallations. Gamers get frustrated when they start over again because of app crashes. It’s worse when your application doesn’t auto-save.

9. App load time and latency.

Poor loading time also affects the retention rate. Users want apps that load within 3 seconds or less, and 63% of users are patient up to the 5th second, abandoning the app when it takes longer.

App latency complements load time. Customers want responsive apps that respond to requests/commands within 20ms to 40ms, although the average user can tolerate a wait time of up to 0.1s.

10. App rating and reviews.

Seventy-nine percent of users read reviews and check ratings before installing a new app. Fifty-five percent do the same before making in-app purchases. Your ratings and customer reviews influence installs: 100% of customers install apps with a 5-star rating, while 50% install apps with 3-star ratings.

Your team should constantly read and respond to positive and negative reviews and ratings. Couple these customer responses with analytics to solve problems and improve usability, performance, functionality, security, and customer service for great customer and user experience. So, app store optimization is key.

Quantum Metric’s mobile analytics tool has endless possibilities.

An excellent mobile analytics tool should have capabilities that allow you to track all critical mobile app performance metrics and customize the information to suit your business needs and priorities. 

Quantum Metric’s mobile analytics tool presents six possibilities out-of-the-box, allowing you to note app crashes and capture behavioral indicators, API performance, and conversion data.

Reproduce sessions via session replay.

Gain perspective and empathize with customers with instantly reproduced native app sessions. This feature allows you to relieve each customer’s journey when using the mobile application, taking note of any issues they may have—consciously or unconsciously—encountered.

You save time by promptly noting the problem and addressing it to the correct department.

2. Create custom dashboards.

Quantum Metric’s mobile analytics tool allows you to assess the performance of your application based on industry standards and your custom goals. Create robust and interactive dashboards and visualizations relevant to all teams in your company.

Custom dashboards help refine brand strategy, creating synergies between departments for healthy organizational growth.

3. Build complex segments using the segment builder.

The analytics tool creates analyses as complex as you need via the segment builder. Use hundreds of available metrics to cover all bases to produce a seamless mobile application. Different iterations give you a view into custom scenarios and how to optimize for the best customer experience.

4. Understand consumer intent using interaction heat maps.

Get into your customers’ brains, and you’ll understand two significant areas of the digital journey. The first is why they interact with your brand the way they do. And the second is what they intend to do. Heat maps also help you gauge the level of interest customers have in your brand by seeing how far down they are scrolling and what areas on a screen interest them.

Information from interaction heat maps helps you develop your mobile application in a more user-friendly way, improving engagement levels and conversion rates.

5. Get immediate alerts to issues.

Customers have ever-changing needs that need immediate attention. Your team is alerted to issues within 60 seconds of occurrence. The alerts also include insights with automated funnel analysis and anomaly detection, allowing you to quantify the impact on the business quickly.

6. Track custom events remotely.

Quantum Metric’s user interface allows you to configure events remotely and track custom events. You don’t need the application code.

Start improving your mobile conversions today with Quantum Metric.

A mobile-first approach is vital for your organization: it’s Google’s default for website ranking, improves brand UX and accessibility, and leads to more clicks. You’ll also find most of your customers on mobile phones as they spend most of their time on mobile devices.

The most important mobile app metrics to track work to assess engagement, app performance, and ROI. They include daily and monthly active users, retention rate, churn rate, exit rate, stickiness ratio, cost per install, customer lifetime value, app crashes, app load time, app latency, and app ratings and reviews. 

App ratings and reviews also serve as customer surveys, giving insight into issues customers consciously want you to address. 

Quantum Metric’s mobile analytics tool gives you feedback beyond simple surveys, allowing you to improve the application beyond areas consumers are aware of.

Want a competitive edge? See how to track your metrics with Quantum Metric to get business, behavioral, and technical data to improve conversions today.

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