Alpha Software Blog

How to Personalize your Mobile Apps to Increase Retention Rates

I've written before about the secret no one in the mobile business likes to talk about: Low app retention rates. A report by Localytics found that the overall average retention rates for apps ranged between 18% and 24% over the last four years. It defines retention rate whether people were still using an app within three months of when they first opened it.

One of the best ways to improve retention rates is to personalize your app --- it keeps people engaged and consistently using it. Personalizing mobile apps is easier than you think. This DZone blog by Justin Perro shows eight ways you can personalize your app.

Best Tips for Personalizing Apps

Rather than repeat every one of the eight steps, I'll highlight what seem to me the four most important ones as detailed in the blog:

    • Send push messages to users based on their location. Mobile, after all, is all about location. So sending relevant information to people based on where they are will keep them interested and engaged. The information can be about nearby services and shopping, places of interest and so on. For example, ProximIT sends push messages to people based on their proximity to MBTA public transportation in the Boston area, telling them when nearby buses and trains are arriving.

    • Track users' recent interactions in the app. There's a good chance that they'll want to continue doing what they did the last time they used the app, so make it easy for them to go to their last interaction. A good example of this is how Spotify remembers the last music someone listened to.

    • Suggest content based on past user data. If someone has previously read election news, for example, your app should recommend similar content. Flipboard does a good job of this, taking into account articles that you've "liked" and your preferences.

    • Populate the app with previous purchased items. If someone has bought a certain brand of shampoo or vitamins, there's a good chance they'll want to buy it again. So save the items they've bought before and make them visible so it's easy to buy. The master of this is Amazon.

Read Alpha Software's survey results that identify the top 10 end-user features for highly adopted and used mobile apps.
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About Author

Amy Groden-Morrison
Amy Groden-Morrison

Amy Groden-Morrison has served more than 15 years in marketing communications leadership roles at companies such as TIBCO Software, RSA Security and Ziff-Davis. Most recently she was responsible for developing marketing programs that helped achieve 30%+ annual growth rate for analytics products at a $1Bil, NASDAQ-listed business integration Software Company. Her past accomplishments include establishing the first co-branded technology program with CNN, launching an events company on the NYSE, rebranding a NASDAQ-listed company amid a crisis, and positioning and marketing a Boston-area startup for successful acquisition. Amy currently serves as a Healthbox Accelerator Program Mentor, Marketing Committee Lead for the MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge Launch Smart Clinics, and on the organizing team for Boston TechJam. She holds an MBA from Northeastern University.

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The Alpha platform is the only unified mobile and web app development and deployment environment with distinct “no-code” and “low-code” components. Using the Alpha TransForm no-code product, business users and developers can take full advantage of all the capabilities of the smartphone to turn any form into a mobile app in minutes, and power users can add advanced app functionality with Alpha TransForm's built-in programming language. IT developers can use the Alpha Anywhere low-code environment to develop complex web or mobile business apps from scratch, integrate data with existing systems of record and workflows (including data collected via Alpha TransForm), and add additional security or authentication requirements to protect corporate data.