Directing users to an app is the best way to create paying customers and increase the value of their lives. However, just because they download an app doesn’t mean they’re creating a business – so they need to use the app constantly, and that’s where things get tricky. The average mobile app loses 71 percent of its users after 24 hours of download, 90 percent of its users after a month of download, and 96 percent of its users after three months of download.
User leaving is unavoidable, but just because someone has stopped using the app doesn’t mean they are finished with the brand that created them. If someone has downloaded an app and used it in the past, they will find value in it – and reminding them of that value can help them see it again.
There are a number of time-tested ways to re-engage users who have been muted or inactive, and all of them can mean a boost to the brand’s bottom line.
Here are five ways to recover inactive app users:
Email marketing is one of the easiest (and least expensive) ways to reach customers. The company email list gives a direct path to any user they want to reach. With 70 percent of emails opened on mobile, there’s a great opportunity to deep link from email directly to an app and reactivate lapsed users instead of sending them to a mobile website.
The success of an email marketing campaign is measured in many different ways – open rates refer to the number of emails that recipients open, while click-through rates reflect the number of users who click on links sent in emails. Finally, conversion rates let marketers know how many sales are generated by their email campaigns.
Of course, there is a whole host of email marketing best practices that, when followed, guarantee the best success rate. One critical factor is the correct deep link, where links sent in emails seamlessly lead users to the correct pages in apps. Fully functional deep links keep your click-through rates (and therefore conversion rates) as high as possible.
Push notifications are the most common tactic that brands use to get customers to re-engage with their apps. Personalizing push notifications increases the likelihood of users interacting with them – brands can take advantage of users’ history with their apps to include their names, interests, and past purchases in push notifications. Not only does this make notifications more attractive to users, but it allows them to feel as if their past interactions with the respective brands were appreciated on more than just a transactional level.
It’s critical for brands to ensure their push notifications contain deep, functional links to their apps – if a brand is getting customers on their mobile devices to ask them to use an app, they should also provide a direct path for them to do so.
QR codes are unique among app marketing tactics because they allow brands to communicate with users when they are not using their mobile devices. A printed or digital QR code can be placed anywhere – from a direct mail ad to a poster to a TV screen or computer screen – and when a user scans it with their smartphone, it will be transmitted to a website or mobile app, depending on where the code is designed to be sent.
Getting the most out of QR codes also requires fully functional deep links. QR codes are great for connecting customers deeply to specific app pages – for example, “Scan here to get 10 percent off” or “Track this order in the app.” It is critical to make sure that these links work and that customers have the smoothest possible experience with their online internet connection – otherwise the results will be obvious in the form of a withdrawal.
Banners and Interstitial Ads
Just because customers have stopped using an app, it doesn’t necessarily mean they are finished with the brand the app supports – they may still interact with the company’s mobile website. However, app traffic is always best for businesses – since the app is the easiest place for a user to make a purchase, app users have the highest lifetime value for brands.
Mobile sites can direct users back to the application through the use of banners and interstitial ads that appear to users as they browse the sites. When properly designed, banners and interstitial ads will preserve user behaviors (such as visiting certain pages or adding items to their shopping carts) and bring them to the app, where they can perform transactions with minimal effort.
Retargeting mobile ads refers to showing a user personalized ads in order to bring them back to the app. As with personalized push notifications, this tactic combines users’ history to deliver a customized set of ads designed to specifically engage them.
It is important to note that ad retargeting is contingent upon the ability to access device-wide information about user behaviors. Due to the privacy rules that came into effect with the release of iOS 14, the information of Apple users cannot be accessed without their consent. For Apple users who give consent (estimated around 15%), or for Android users, ad retargeting is still a valuable tool for re-engagement.
Apps tend to run faster and store user information more efficiently than mobile websites, making them a more convenient (and popular) place for users to make purchases. For this reason, it remains essential for brands to attract as many users as possible to their apps – especially over-aged users who have already shown an interest in the past. Engaging these users in myriad ways and providing them with career paths for deep linking to pages within the app can help bring them back into the fold.
Mada Seagate is a co-founder of the branch, the preferred mobile growth platform for over 50,000 apps and 2 billion monthly users worldwide, where she leads marketing and development of new markets. Born and raised in Romania, Seghetti came to the United States to study electrical and computer engineering at Cornell University and then earned a Master of Engineering and an MBA from Stanford University. she Invests in early-stage businesses founded by women as angel investor and partner at xFactor Ventures and hosts the popular Growth Podcast How did you grow this.