Keep Users Coming Back to Your App: Customer Retention = Increased Revenue

Studies continue to prove what diehard marketing gurus have known for years: keeping customers is far easier and more profitable than gaining new ones. 

According to research by Invesp, it costs as much as five times more to attract a new customer than it does to retain an existing one. Similarly, existing customers are often more profitable, as it’s estimated there’s a 60-70% chance of selling to an existing customer, versus a mere 5-20% chance to a new prospect. In the same vein, 50% of existing customers are likely to try new services and spend 31% more in comparison to new customers. In spite of this, 44% of companies focus on customer acquisition, while only 18% focus on customer retention.

The app industry is no exception, with many companies making the mistake of trying to continually entice new users rather than focusing on keeping the users they already have. As a result, it’s estimated that most applications lose as much as 71% of their users within 90 days.

Here are several ways you can increase your app retention rate.

Push Notifications

We’ve talked about it before, but the fact remains that push notifications are one of the most underutilized tools at your disposal. All too often, companies are afraid of annoying customers—or losing them altogether—by using push notifications.

Fortunately, these fears are often unfounded. In order for an app to push notifications to the end user, the customer must first agree to receive the notifications. This means these customers have, in essence, asked you to provide them with relevant information, special offers, tips, etc. Making wise use of this tool can make all the difference between retaining—not to mention up-selling—existing customers or having them look elsewhere for what you could provide.

Use Engagement Links

Engagement links are also on the list of tools that do not always get the respect they deserve. Engagement links—Universal Links on iOS and App Links on Android—are a way for URLs to be redirected to an installed app.

As Bitly, the popular link optimization service, explains: “If you’re trying to access a news publication on the mobile browser, it will automatically direct you into the content in the app that you’ve downloaded on your phone. If you don’t have the app downloaded, it will bring you to an interstitial page where you have the option to download the app.”

By making full use of engagement links, your customers are reminded of your app’s relevance—even if they may have temporarily forgotten it.

Frequent Updates

Another important way to keep users engaged is by frequently updating your app. Unlike the traditional desktop development approach, where major applications may only be updated once or twice a year, mobile users expect more frequent updates. Failure to do so can result in users getting bored or, worse yet, believing the app has been abandoned and moving on to something else.

In view of this, it’s much better to release smaller updates that focus on one or two new features, rather than waiting to release big, monolithic updates.

Integrate With Social Media

Screen showing app icons.

One of the most commonly overlooked methods of user engagement is integration with social media. It’s estimated that teens now spend up to nine hours a day on social media, while 30% of all time spent online involves social media interaction.

To have the best chance of keeping your users engaged, it’s important to make sure your app integrates with social media, allowing users to share content via their favorite platforms.

Use Mobile Performance Analytics

Mobile performance analytics is another critical tool that simplifies customer retention. The data that mobile performance analytics provides can give you invaluable insights into exactly how your users are interacting with your app. By helping you see where users are spending most of their time, where they’re spending less time and at what point they’re exiting the app, you can gain a complete picture of what features are and are not important to your users.

Even more important, the usage data can help you identify pain points that are interfering with your customers’ ability to use the app, or causing them to give up on it. This, in turn, can help guide your development process and streamline your focus on what really matters.

Increased Revenue Through Customer Retention

With millions of apps available on both the iOS App Store and Google Play Store, now more than ever, it’s vital to focus on retaining customers rather than acquiring new ones. Doing so can lead to increased revenue and stability for your company. Contact Embrace to see how our mobile performance analytics platform can help.


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