Cohort Analysis in Mobile App Promotion


One of the main tasks for app developers after the invention launch is the user engagement. We are not referring to the customer acquisition. That’s the first step. When you get many app installs it’s time to start the analysis.

How to retain users? What makes your digital product engaging? Answers to these questions are very important in terms of further development.

What is engagement?

The user’s activity within an application is a relative concept. It may vary depending on the app category. Thus, some applications are opened by people every day (e.g. to-do apps). When it comes to business or invoicing apps, customers use them once a month.

Nevertheless, marketers try to develop some standard metrics. Such indicators as daily sessions, the session length, churn rate help business owners to estimate the app stickiness.

At the same time, entrepreneurs often need additional, more sophisticated analytical tools. To increase engagement marketers also study cohort of users.

Action Cohort Analysis

A cohort is a group of users linked by the same characteristic. This is a particular feature, behavior over a certain period of time. Cohort analysis implies the research of the user’s actions. Why, when, and how do people perform those actions (sign in, click, install, etc.)

Such analysis is a deep look into the customer’s behavior (when they open an application, make in-app purchases, buy a premium version, abandon an app.)

Besides, the consumer’s activity is changing in the course of time. That provides marketers with an opportunity to estimate the app performance, better understand the preferences and expectations of different customer groups. App owners can see all changes, the user’s response to innovations and updates. That allows startups to find the best methods of improvement and, finally, leads to the revenue growth.

Cohort Analysis for different app categories

When you want to implement such analytical tool keep in mind that tracking of the user’s actions will differ depending on your app concept, its features. Let’s look at the different app categories and the examples of cohort analysis.

Business apps

Business or productivity applications enable people to manage various tasks. In this case, it would be appropriate to track the number of users who started an app session and then added new tasks. You can estimate how often people enlarge their duty lists with new actions. The record of the app sessions also allows noticing some difficulties that users usually face when adding assignments.

Mobile games

For those who promote an entertaining app, it is important to check in-app purchases patterns. Examine the way people make purchases within a game (buy coins, some extra features). When there was the first, the second purchase. You may do such analysis on a daily, weekly or monthly basis.

Health and Fitness

Such apps usually involve the onboarding process for users. The people are asked to fill in the form with the information related to their preferences (types of exercises, diet, weight, height, and so on.) Only those users who have completed the onboarding process will work with your digital invention. So, at first, better to set up an action cohort as completed onboarding. Then add another action—started app session. You should also track instances when users start session without completed onboarding process.

The key to successful analysis

To provide an effective cohort analysis remember the following rules:

  • choose appropriate parameters for the user’s behavior according to your app category;
  • use powerful analytical tools that allow you to see the whole thing beyond quantitative metrics.
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