The success of a mobile app is often determined by the number of downloads it gets and the retention rate at which the app is able to keep its users vested. Based on a recent study conducted by Localytics, the news for most app developers is not very good.
According to the study, there are more that 3.0 million mobile applications in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store combined. Of that number, only a small percentage of the apps ever make onto a user’s mobile device. Even more alarming was the fact that only 25% of the apps that made it onto a mobile device were used more than once.
Upon close examination, the Localytics report could be viewed as a good news – bad news report on the state of the mobile app development industry. The good news is that the year-over-year retention numbers improved from 34% to 38% for the two most recent years included in the study. The bad news is the current 38% retention rate average is still well-below expectations.
Between this study and another study performed by Appboy, it was determined that neither iOS apps nor Android apps held any discernible advantage over the other. Other than that, there were a couple of other interesting and surprising statistics to come out of yet another study done by Apsalar.
It would seem that games and travel apps have the lowest 4-week retention rates. It’s not surprising to see that gamers uninstall game apps with regularity given the fickle nature of the people involved, children included. What was surprising was that travel apps are something one might want to keep hold of for quick and easy access to travel information. As it stands, it looks like users were downloading these apps to book one trip or reservation and then immediately hitting the uninstall function.
When it comes to the apps with the best retention rates, shopping, lifestyle and on-demand service apps come out on top with retention rates ranging between 72% and 88%. The upshot of all these studies is that app developers had better be looking for ways to draw interest and retain customers.