6 Proven Strategies to Increase Mobile App Engagement and User Retention

Today, mobile applications are the hottest means to get connected to the Internet for modern-day, tech-savvy customers. The ease of usage offered by handheld devices makes them immensely popular among digital customers for connecting to the internet through different mobile apps. While the increasing demand of mobile apps among customers might be good news for you as a mobile app development firm, it can also become a challenge.

As the number of apps increases further, it might get difficult for you to engage and retain mobile users. Why? The reason is simple: with millions of apps present on the play store, it takes seconds for users to delete poorly performing apps that deliver minimum value, from their smartphone. To save your app from getting uninstalled, it’s important to make them entertaining and valuable for improved app engagement and user retention.

Mobile app engagement and user retention are two main metrics that businesses from retail & ecommerce, banking, healthcare and other sectors can use to get genuine insights about the success of an application. High engagement and retention equal to the app success whereas low app engagement and retention are a recipe for failure.

So, before we move on to the strategies to boost mobile app engagement and user retention, let’s first understand:

What is App Engagement Exactly?

App engagement: It is directly related to the set of metrics that measures user interaction with a mobile app. Put it simply – app engagement tactics give a reason to app visitors to keep coming back to your mobile app, or open your app and perform the desired actions you want.

User Retention: This is a highly subjective term. As per the industry benchmark, it refers to the percentage of app users who return back to your app within three months, after they install it. To make it more specific and quantifiable, it can be defined as the number of users that returns to your app at least once in 30 days, after installation.

Note: Every brand has set its own benchmark to measure user retention rate, which depends upon the nature or type of the app they built.

Common App Engagement metrics include:

Active Users: It refers to the number of users who open your app at a particular time (session/day/month). This metric is further subdivided into:

App Retention Rate: As an app developer, this metric provides you with an idea about the percentage of users who keep coming back to your app after they install it for a certain period of time.

Churn Rate: This metric simply denotes the percentage of users that your app is unable to retain.

Session Length: This simply tells you about the time a particular user spent on your app, every time they open it.

The Challenge: App Engagement & User Retention

Achieving higher mobile app engagement and user retention is a difficult task today, even for the top mobile app development companies. According to last year statistics, only 32 percent of users returned to a mobile app after they installed it globally. And, what’s more, interesting is that 25 percent of the users stopped the usage of a mobile app after one use.

The above stats clearly indicate that retaining mobile app users is getting harder for app developers in today’s challenging market, especially with people having a lot of app choices.

How to Solve it?

Follow the below-given tactics or strategies to improve app engagement and user retention or your mobile app. It will also help your enterprise achieve the desired results or get the ROI you expect from your investment in mobile app development services.

Top Ways to Increase App Engagement & User Retention

Simplify App Onboarding Process

As an iOS or Android app development agency, make sure you deliver an excellent app onboarding experience for higher user engagement. The poor onboarding experience can leave a negative impact on your app engagement efforts. Simplified app onboarding experiences increases the lifetime of an app of up to 60 per cent. To make sure a user doesn’t abandon the app during registration, it’s important you allow them to enter the app smoothly. Wondering how? Follow the steps below:

  • Reduce registration steps for users while they sign-up
  • Minimize the total number of information fields.
  • Get user information through innovative ways ( for eg. use buttons, icons, images for capturing user data)
  • Most importantly, keep it simple & straightforward.

Send Relevant Push notifications

Push notifications are one of the powerful techniques to grab app user attention and engage them. But, stay aware – if you use this in a wrongful way, it can become the reason for your app deletion from a user’s phone. Wondering how often you should send push notifications? Well, you must try to provide value through push notifications to keep users engaged. How? Think about personalization and value-service while crafting your personalization strategy. Follow the below strategies for grabbing your apps’ user attention and improve retention rate:

  • Send relevant push notifications only to your app audience. (Don’t spam, deliver notifications that provide value to users)
  • Send location-based notifications (If your app works with GPS functionality)
  • Deliver highly target push notifications


You can send a push notification via your food delivery app to customers as soon as they enter one of your partner restaurants for a quick meal.

Follow the Old School Marketing Trick – Send Emails to Engage

Another interesting tactic that you can use to engage with your app audience is by sending them classic, old-school emails. Even though this channel might seem old-fashioned to you today, it carries a significant value for your brand as you can send personal greetings and your company information. All big brands – from retail to banking to food businesses – use email marketing to greet customers when they onboard their mobile app. Sending timely reminders about products, services or other important issues via email is also common for brands.

Here are some tips that you can follow to boost app engagement via email:

  • Introduce a new feature or product update via email.
  • Provide tips or suggestions to explore the unused feature of your mobile app
  • Notify them about the discounts or freebies available on your app.
  • Greet customers on important dates such as birthdays and anniversaries
  • Notify customers about the upcoming product events

Think About Your App Personalization

Note this – when you will place personalization at the core of your app engagement strategy, your app engagement metric will automatically improve. Remember smartphones have been designed, keeping the idea of delivering private messages to users. So, it’s important you communicate with every app user on a personal level. Being a mobile app developer, think about the user journey, clearly define KPIs and learn how users want to engage with your app. As an app owner, it’s important to partner a reliable mobile development company to deliver our personalized messages through in-app or push alerts.

Use In-App Analytics Tools for Deeper Customer Insights

As an app developer, remember that every app is unique with a different set of engagement KPIs. If you want to take your app engagement efforts to the next level, you must learn about mobile app analytics. With mobile app tracking tools (e.g., Localytics, Good Analytics, Mixpanel, etc.), you can gather invaluable insights about the app elements that attract the users most. You can also use this data information to know your customers better such as who are the users of your app, You can also categorize them into age, gender, nationality and frequency of app usage, and track their usage pattern.

Choose Advertising to Connect with App Audience

With the help of reputable app developers, you can use different forms of digital advertising to improve user engagement for your mobile app. Display ads related to app discounts, rewards, etc. on different channels (e.g. social media, search engines, etc.) to connect with your audience. Investing in search ads helps you connect with potential customers who are looking for services, similar to the ones offered by you.

Wrapping Up…!

Hope you enjoyed the above list of measures that are useful to boost app engagement & user retention for your mobile app. Remember that one-time sale is not the key to your app success, you have to attract, retain and deliver value to your customers for long-term to increase app engagement.

By partnering a reliable Android and iOS development company like A3logics- you can craft a robust app engagement strategy to retain and engage customers like never before.

Contact us today to know more about how we can contribute to your Mobile App Success.

Common FAQ

What is App Retention?

App retention simply refers to the percentage of people who actively users your mobile app in a given period of time

How to drive an App Engagement?

Use a combination of tactics: simplified customer on-boarding, active engagement like push notifications, personalized app experience, etc. to drive app engagement and retain customers.

How do I Increase Adoption of my Mobile App?

For increasing your mobile app adoption, apply strategies like social sharing in communities about your app, provide selective in-app offers to build customer loyalty, request customer feedback, run effective campaigns, and deliver personalized app experiences to users.