In more than half of the cases users can't even remember the name of the app they downloaded a week ago. Good news is it can be fixed. In this article we've gathered the most powerful tactics that will help you increase Mobile App Retention.

  1. The Problem of retaining users in the app;
  2. Best strategy to increase Mobile App Retention;
  3. The anatomy of a powerful cross-channel Retention Strategy.

The Problem of retaining users in the app

Mobile app's acquisition metrics have long been considered key ones when it came to mobile app business performance valuation. A lot of brands still spend a huge amount of money on acquiring new users in order to get more App Installs and DAU. But the most significant events always happen after users get into the product and decide whether to use it or not.

Customer acquisition strategy success mainly depends on your ability to reach and attract new users, while customer retention relies on your ability to provide value, build relationship and personalize user experience with the right messages sent via the right channels at the right time.

According to Quettra research, there’s a direct correlation between Retention rate and app’s position in the Google Play Store. Marketers and developers who know how to engage and retain users of their mobile apps typically see their products in higher positions in the Google Play Store much more often than those who don't.

In most cases, users make a decision on the further use of the application within first 3-7 days. That’s why it’s important to get them interested in your product as fast as possible. The question is, how?

Best strategy to increase Mobile App Retention

To know the answer to this question, Pushwoosh product team conducted a survey among its clients. It occurred that most companies were able to achieve better Retention rate with the help of cross-channel onboarding. User onboarding is basically a process of introducing new users to a product. You can have multiple secondary objectives for it. But the main ones should always stay the same: increase product usage and reduce churn rate.


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Basically there are 3 main types of onboarding you they found effective:

▪︎ Benifits-Oriented Onboarding

The main goal of benefit-oriented onboarding is to show the application's value to users and encourage further conversions. Permission requests for location access or sending push notifications are often used in this case.


▪︎ Functions-Oriented Onboarding

If you feel like to educate your audience teach them to use their application. This method is equivalent to a product tour with specific instructions on how to get started and how to perform specific actions in the app.

▪︎ Progressive Onboarding

Shows users new information about the product gradually as they move through the product. Most often progressive onboaridng is a set of instructions that is displayed on a specific page and helps users explore the app faster and in a more effective way.

The biggest mistake you can make while creating onboarding flow is to make it too difficult for users.

How to avoid it?

  • Minimize the number of steps your users have to make;
  • Don’t overload users with all your features explanations;
  • Make it interactive. Teach through action, not words.

Now let's move to the nature of a cross-channel Onboarding as the best way to increase Mobile App Retention Rate.

The anatomy of a powerful cross-channel Retention Strategy

1.As trite as it may sound, at first you need to answer yourself why your app needs onboarding and what do you want to get from it.


The answers may be

  • The application functionality is too difficult and highly tailored;
  • The product has unique features which makes application's UI different from standard patterns;
  • You need user information to get started. The typical case of financial vertical.

2. Map your users' journey


Mapping your customers' journey will show all the interactions your clients have with your product. It can perform 3 main functions:

▪︎ uncover problems you might not know about;
▪︎ show weaknesses and gaps in the service;
▪︎ will tell you in which direction to move.

So, now we know exactly why we need onboarding and what should we improve first. Let's do it!

3. Create a unique engaging experience

There are several communication channels you may use to create and test your Onboarding hypothesis: Push Notifications, In-App Messages and Emails. The most difficult thing is to make them all play one tune. In Pushwoosh you can solve this kind of problem with the help of Customer Journey Builder. With it, you can easily set up cross-channel campaign of any difficult within minutes and trigger your App's users with the right messages at the right time.

All you have to do is just

  1. Configure your app into Pushwoosh Control Panel;
  2. Create Customer Journey workflow;
  3. Create event triggers to reach your audience at the right time;
  4. Create content;
  5. Enjoy!

Do you want to learn more about Customer Journey Builder?


If you only make your first steps in building onboarding workflows we advice you to test the effectiveness of each channel individually. Let's see what you can do with them.

Push Notifications

Welcome messages

Congratulations, you have a new user! However, the work is far from done. You need to show your attention early on and start building long-lasting loyalty from the very first minute.


A simple welcome message will show you care!

Engaging messages

Once you've gained a new user, it's important to show them around and share some tips on how to start using your app and get the most value from it. A series of push notifications containing useful tips will do the job and help newcomers avoid confusion, improving user experience.


Exclusive offers

Personal discounts, promo codes or coupons can be highly effective for making users return. Nothing screams "we want you back" louder.


In-apps


Mobile Carouselles

With Mobile Carousels you can highlight your killer features, share special offers,  product announcements, or provide your customers with insighful tips on how to use your app. In-app message create a full-screen experience that fully matches your app's unique style and helps build better engagaement.

Product Tours

With Product Tours you can walk your new users through your product to show it's functionality and demonstrate how everything works.

Ask for users feedback

They best way to engage users is to interact with them and ask their opinion. You can embed survey directly into the app or use external services and just insert the link into your In-app call-to-action.

Emails

1. Welcome Email

This email is one of the first touchpoints you have with your customers after they sign up into your product. Don’t make it too long and complicated. Keep it simple, highlight your value proposition and benefits relevant to a specific user. Make it personal by including your team photo and names in the email. There are 5 main goals you may want to achieve with your welcome emails:

▪︎ just say hello;
▪︎ help to get started;
▪︎ thank them for registration;
▪︎ make a short product overview (video is better);
▪︎ make an Offer right away.

2. Motivational Email

Feel like users lost they interest in the app after first visit? Sometimes they just need a little motivation to continue exploring your product. Reward them for taking actions:

▪︎ offer discounts;
▪︎  think about nice bonuses;
▪︎ start competition;
▪︎ collect suggestions and ideas;
▪︎ make them feel a part of something big and exciting.

3. 'Need a Help' Email

You can’t always know what exactly your user feel about the app and what kind of problem do they have. So, as not to guess, just ask them, if they need any kind of help from you regarding product understanding, it's usage or any kind of technical issues. It will not only help you reduce churn rate, but also create a special contact with your audience. They will know you really care about them.

These are some basic scenarios you can start your onboarding with. To create them you may use different tools or try to create cross-channel onboarding experience with the help of just one. Like Pushwoosh. If you want us to show you the product and tell you more how it may help to build onboarding and increase Retention Rate, book a call with our product team.