When it comes to user metrics, one size doesn’t always fit all.

In this post, we will cover some of the most fundamental things you need to know about your users to make sure you have the all the data at hand to optimise your mobile marketing strategy. But it’s important to keep in mind that different business models have different requirements.

Daily App Installs

An obvious metric to keep a close eye on is daily installs of your app. But it’s not as simple as checking iTunes Connect or Play Developer Console. More importantly, understanding exactly where each install has come from will help you optimise your paid acquisition campaigns and understand how your app is performing organically. There are plenty of third party tracking tools on the market, such as AppsFlyer, Tune and Adjust which will help you evaluate the effectiveness of your advertising channels, so be sure to check out this video for more information on how to pick the right tool for your business.

Retention Rate

Further down the funnel we have the retention rate, which can be calculated in a number of different ways – once again, this will depend on what you’re trying to find out about your app and your users. This metric lets you know what percentage of your customers you’re retaining over a specified time-frame.

In addition to app usage, you could also measure retention from first app download or first login, depending on what you’re trying to find out.

However, retention rates might not always be relevant to your business. Take, for example, a dating app, where the app’s success lies in finding good matches for their users, who then leave the app happy. A better metric for this scenario might be session duration and time spent in-app. These engagement metrics measure how long the user spends in your app per session, as well as how much time they spend in your app over a period of time. This might also tell you, for example, what time of day, or what day of the week users are the most highly engaged with your app, and can guide your mCRM and push messaging strategies.

Session Length

Whilst session length is a crucial metric for most media and entertainment apps, this might not be the case for you. Your app might pride itself on taking your users from point A to point B as quickly as possible. For example, a food ordering and delivery app’s goal is to satiate your hunger in the shortest possible amount of time. Here is where having an efficient UX is essential to ensure its users can easily find what they’re looking for and quickly order their food. The fewer number of clicks on-screen, the better.

Daily Active Users (DAUs) and Monthly Active Users (MAUs)

A more important metric to consider for them, might be Daily Active Users and Monthly Active Users. Daily Active Users measure the number of unique users who open your app a day. Monthly Active Users measure the number of unique users who open your app in a month. This can be either the number of unique users who have used your app in the past 30 days, or the number of unique users who have used your app in any given month. Most mobile marketing platforms will use one of these approaches to automatically capture MAU.

Lifetime Value (LTV)

Lastly, let’s talk about LTV, or life-time value. For apps that generate user-driven revenue, user LTV is a crucial metric to track to make sure you can get ahead of any unforeseen problems in your revenue flow. Looking at LTV will also help you target high value users who continue to spend in your app. This can be helpful in two ways – you can use it to optimise for your highest value acquisition sources, as well as to identify and encourage high LTV users to continue spending in your app.

These are just 5 of the most commonly tracked user metrics, but the most important takeaway is to consider how they are relevant to your specific business model.

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