As the number of apps in the App Store continues to grow at an astonishing rate, apps have to fight even harder and optimise to fit within the market in every possible way. Fortunately, we have a new recommendation for these apps. To them we say two words – deep linking!

Now, many of you are aware deep linking isn’t exactly a new concept – it’s actually been around for years. Don’t be fooled, however: we’re all missing an exciting new development.

For those that don’t know, basic deep links can launch specific, defined screens within an installed app. The development that many large players have yet to implement is the use of deferred deep linking. In fact, only 22% of the top 200 apps in 2014 had even adopted basic deep linking.

Deferred deep links allow a clicker to launch the specific screen they wanted, even when the link has to take the user through the app store! Still not excited? Here are the main reasons this should be important to you and your app:

  1. Deferred deep linking creates a fast and seamless experience for an ever more demanding user, as well as a more personal experience tailored to their needs
  2. Optimisation is more accurate: while the App Store usually absorbs any information about where a user has come from, these links can preserve the information, allowing you to learn much more about your user
  3. Connections between the website and the app can aid in other areas such as the discoverability of your app through iOS 9 search or Google search
  4. These links make it much easier for friends to recommend or share specific content within the app  – 92% of consumers believe recommendations from friends and family over all forms of advertising

So why are we talking about deep linking now?

Deferred deep links are still pretty new, and have much more potential than the basic deep links. Their ability to not only open up possibilities for acquisition and retargeting, but also a smoother on-boarding process and more accurate optimisation, makes them an invaluable resource in the saturated marketplace.

Additionally, subtle opportunities are originating from 3rd parties such as Google and Apple, which will continue to keep the importance of deferred deep linking on the rise.

The uses of deep linking

We’ve spoken a lot about the theoretical advantages of deep linking. But what about the real-world action-taking possibilities?

  1. Deep links can allow a more targeted and effective email marketing strategy. From hot deals of the week to reminding a user about their abandoned basket items, the ability to be taken to a specific screen is essential
  2. Deep linked advertising allows you to focus on much more relevant content to a number of more specific audiences. Facebook also supports deferred deep linking, so this can also be implemented on social media campaigns
  3. The ability to share links between friends will allow for more personal recommendations than you could ever wish for with a marketing campaign!
  4. Some deferred deep links have the ability to take a user to a preview of the app screen within their mobile browser. This allows them to see the content they were hoping for immediately, hopefully tipping them over the edge to commit to an install

If all that isn’t enough to convince you, here are some stats: deferred deep links have been shown to increase signups by 80%, engagement by 100%, and retention by 90%.

While many are unaware of the changes in deep linking, their potential has increased exponentially. The only downside is that because the industry is still evolving, there is no standard way of doing things. The creation of links for Android and iOS can be very different, and it may require a good understanding of the way each OS reads the app code. But with that one cautionary warning, you should now know all the basics to the new deep linking industry.

We suggest you get involved before everyone catches on!

 

Want to find out more about optimising your app and keeping up with the latest OS capabilities? Get in touch by visiting the Contact Us page. Follow us on LinkedIn, chat with us on Twitter @yodelmobile, and join our #mobilemarketingUK LinkedIn group.

Read more from Megan: What Yodel Wants from Apple’s WWDC and A Merging of Worlds: Discovering App & Web Content