So, your app has been featured by Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store. Great!

But then there are thousands of apps hitting these app stores every day.

Your job does not end with crafting an amazing app that delivers a rich user-experience and which has been featured by app stores. That is just half the battle won.

The other half is to ensure users keep using your app and engaging with it. In fact, engagement index is a key performance indicator of the success of your app.

So, how can you increase the user engagement potential of your app?

Here are some of the techniques that lead to better app engagement:

1. Analyze Your App Performance

You need to keep track of the engagement index of your app. For this, analyze app user behavior:

See who your app users are and how exactly they use your app.
Identify factors that made them abandon your app.

Insights into these details will help you while upgrading your app and forming strategies and tactics to bring latent users back to your app.

Dig deep into metrics like retention, drop off rates and session length. Be patient and study how you can improve user experience to increase engagement levels.

2. Encouraging Regular Users

Regular users are the right patrons of your app because they have already liked your app. So, encouraging them to keep using your app is the easiest thing you can do to improve your app engagement.

Here are the tactics that will help you with it:

• Sending In-app Push Notifications: One of the most important UX decisions is to send push notifications at the right time. In your app settings, ask users about the kind of alerts they would like to receive. Once you know about their preferences, send them content that will appeal to them. This will encourage them to re-engage with the app.

App users who opt-in to receive push notifications show significantly higher engagement and retention.

• Offering Incentives: By offering incentives, businesses can persuade users to keep coming back to the app; incentivizing the use of products or services is one of the smartest ways businesses can increase user engagement. For instance, the Starbucks app hands out coupons and offers in addition to recommending apps to its regular users.

• Prompt to Update: Don’t force users to download the latest version of your mobile app; rather, when they are using a feature that you’ve updated in the newer version of the app, prompt them with a message like: “We have made this better! Would you like to download the new version of the app now?”

Lack of ‘pushiness’ is something that is always appreciated and ensures users don’t abandon your app; it will also encourage them to keep re-engaging with your app.

3. Retargeting Users Who Abandoned Your App

Businesses or mobile app developers generally spend top dollar for getting users to download their app, so it doesn’t make sense to stop trying to reach out to these users once they’ve downloaded your app. Continuous interaction is a must if you want to convert them into loyal users of the app.

Here are some of the tactics that you can use to drive user engagement:

• Showcase Customer Ratings and Reviews: This is one of the simplest things you can do. Create a campaign targeting your non-users with banners or ads that showcase your app’s reviews and ratings. User reviews or social proof will help build trust in your app and increase its engagement levels.

• Remind your Users You Miss Them: Send a push notification to your inactive users saying “You have been inactive since ‘x’ days and we are missing you!” Also, ensure you include some incentives for persuading them to start using your app again. It could be anything from a promise to displaying their reviews on your site or a chance of winning something.

If you think, all this is too complicated, there are several popular retargeting platforms that can help you retarget your users. These platforms ensure users are followed back through sponsored feeds or regular ads whenever they open their Facebook app. Similarly, you can use Twitter to help you retarget the user through promoted tweets.

4. Attracting New Users

If you are serious about growing your app business and boosting the engagement potential of your app, you need to start attracting new users.

Here are some of the tactics that you will find helpful:

• Integrating social within the app: This will help your current users share the app with their networks. Offering incentives for sharing your app will prompt them to share more and will help you generate app awareness in your target audience. For instance: Candy Crush Saga, a match-three puzzle game has made social media an important part of its game play.

• Building trust: New users need to understand the value of your app – why is it a must-have? Make a great first impression on your app visitors by crafting a well-designed splash screen and highlighting information about your app’s top features.

• Providing the option of not registering: The most frustrating thing for app users is the compulsory registration before they are allowed to use the app. This usually makes them abandon your app immediately. Add a “Skip for now” or “Register later” option on the registration screen so the user can hop into your app quicker.

Take a Note: All the strategies mentioned above work simultaneously.

5. Using Other Mediums to Foster Engagement

Apart from leveraging your app, there are many other ways you can foster engagement:

• Leverage Social Platforms: Connect with your users across multiple social platforms. You can even use your Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn profiles to promote the app.

• Use Cross-Promotional Networking: Look for apps that have the same audience as yours but are not direct competitors, and promote your app via such apps.

• Promote the App Online: Get active on app sites (148apps, AppStoreApps, AppAdvice), forums, review sites, news sites, blogs, etc. Participate in online conversations, comment on articles, and request reviews for your app. Also, reach out to industry influencers and bloggers in your target audience to review your app.

Promoting your app through all these mediums will give your app exposure and will attract new customers thereby leading to an increase in engagement levels.

In an overly crowded mobile app world, use the above mentioned tactics to create a buzz around your app and to boost its engagement potential.


Pete Peranzo

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