Mobile app engagement on the rise…but there’s a catch

Mobile apps account for a majority of digital media time spent in the US. According to Comscore, app audiences spend more than 3 hours per month on the Top 1000 apps on average – about 18x greater than what mobile web visitors spend on their Top 1000 properties.

However, it needs to be said that app engagement remains a challenge for most apps: the average Android app loses 77% of its daily active users (DAUs) within the first three days after the install, and 90% within the first 30 days.

In this context, comes the news that time spent on using the top 100 apps increased by nearly 10%. According to a report from Opera Mediaworks, the time spent per day has reached 33.5 minutes per day in mobile apps that fell into the Top 100 ranking of their platform. The catch is that such an increase is only seen in the most popular apps. Chances are, most app owners are still struggling with issues like app discovery, install and retention. A robust process implemented way before the process of app development begins is one way to improve the chance of app engagement.

Other highlights of the report include:

  • News & Information is now no.1 for impression volume; more than 1 in 4 ad impressions were served in apps with daily utility to users, such as weather apps and a mobile reader for Reddit.
  • The highest engagement levels are seen on ads run in the Education and Travel categories, with a performance of 1.9X and 1.7X the average platform CTR.
  • Games is still the top converter, followed by Sports, but Health & Fitness and Productivity have moved into the Top 5 for the first time.

The report goes on to say that many brands are looking beyond app installs as the key metric and optimizing for post-install events that add to the value of each user. Post-install event optimization can fall into three buckets: retain, engage and monetise. Each of those objectives can have further goals such as activation, registration, tutorial completion, level achieved, reservation, add to cart and so on.

Check out the infographic below on the summary of trends. Download the full report here.


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Neha Gargi Marketing Communication Associate. A caffeine and technology addict, Neha loves to read and write - on a variety of subjects ranging from lifestyle, technology to films

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