Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Embracing Mobile Application Analytics

Mobile applications are the future of analytics and the future is happening right now. Mobile traffic growth has doubled year-over-year for the last four years and is expected to continue this trend of growth explosion through 2016. The number of mobile-connected devices is currently presumed to have outnumbered the amount of people on the planet. By 2016, that number is expected to increase to 10 billion. 

Where Mobile App Analytics are Heading

With this rapid rate of growth, mobile app analytics are becoming more critical to the success, return of investment (ROI), conversion, and reputability of any company that is trying to establish an effective mobile strategy. Mobile-connected devices are increasingly becoming a central focus of business marketing campaigns. According to a recent study by ClickZ and Google Analytics:

  • 87% of marketers are planning to increase emphasis on mobile during 2013
  • 48% plan to increase engagement in mobile advertising 
  • 41% hope to develop a mobile app

Current Hurdles to Overcome

The mobile market is a difficult one to successfully break into. There are more than 50 million apps in the iTunes App Store and Google Play. Gone are the days where success is measured merely by the number of app downloads. The number of installs does not provide an effective understanding of customer behavior, experience, value, or other strategic parameters.

With mobile applications available almost instantaneously at the fingertips of consumers, keeping them engaged repeatedly or for extended periods of time is a daunting task. Unlike the desktop application market, it is no longer viable to expect mobile customers to remain connected to the application for hours at a time. Mobility is centered around a life on the go.

An additional hurdle in mobile app analytics is avoiding negative reviews. Nothing hurts brand or company reputation faster than receiving public complaints and negative app store feedback. If issues go unaddressed, it will often lead to user abandonment or stagnation. Stagnation promotes failure and is difficult to recover from.

Create a Mobile Strategy

Mobile app analytics provide key consumer insights. Finding out as much as you can about your customers - as quickly as you can - will help you to increase the chances of the mobile app becoming a success. An effective mobile strategy can only be accomplished if the correct pieces are in place. For a successful mobile campaign, there is a need to know who is actually using an app rather than simply trying the app once and then ignoring or deleting it – like many of us do so often. Keeping the customer engaged and interested in returning is a critical factor that can lead to financial success in the mobile space.

Likewise, creating a positive user experience may not only keep the consumer engaged, but also give them reason to promote the application to friends or colleagues. If there are issues with performance or usability, these issues will need to be addressed quickly. Customers will let you know what they think about your app when they rate it. This can either stifle success or promote it.

Remaining fluid in the mobile approach, is of utmost importance in mobile app analytics. Monitoring user interaction can enable continuous refinement of the user-experience. This will allow for more data to be collected. The more data that is collected, the more the application can be optimized towards the specific interests of the customer. This level of personalization and optimization will help to improve the mobile applications ability to convert usage into financial success.

Finding Relevant Mobile App Analytics

A good place to begin a mobile approach is by finding a mobile app analytics vendor with a service that is tailored towards the mobile application. There are a handful of mobile app analytic vendors which are currently available to the market. A few of the most well-known vendors in the space are Flurry, Google Mobile App Analytics, Mixpanel, and Localytics.

Moving Forward

In order to achieve the best results for the mobile application, it is important to begin using mobile app analytics early on in the development process. If companies are slow to embrace the data that mobile app analytics can provide, they may find themselves at a major disadvantage as the rapid growth of mobile-connected devices continues.




Further Readings:
A concise and informative series of Mobile App Analytic tips can be found at: http://mashable.com/2012/11/14/mobile-app-analytics-tips/
A Long List of Mobile App Analytic vendors can be found at:
A Short List of Mobile App Analytic vendors with concise list of features provided can be found at:



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