We recently analyzed over 10 million e-commerce and travel app users in India and Southeast Asia and stumbled upon some staggering trends about mobile app retention. In this article, you will find the insights and the strategies needed to retain mobile app users from Travel & Hospitality and E-commerce industries.
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There has been a sudden boom in smartphone usage in both India and Southeast Asia in the past few years. There are two primary reasons for this:
Samsung, Xiaomi, Oppo, and One Plus have all released multiple devices at affordable prices. At the same time, service providers have successfully penetrated many of the under-serviced areas in these regions.
Did you know that India has the highest mobile-first online population, with 74% of web pages accessed via mobile phones? The smartphone audience in India and Indonesia is more than four times the desktop audience.
India and Southeast Asia are mobile-first societies
India and Southeast Asia have leapfrogged the desktop phase and have far surpassed North America, Europe, and the Middle East in the number of mobile users. If you’re a data-driven marketer, then the data from these regions should define your app retention trends and benchmarks.
According to our research, over 56% of e-commerce app users uninstall their apps within the first week of install, and about 23% of them do it within 24 hours! This means e-commerce apps are losing more users than they are acquiring in a week.
As an e-commerce marketer, you’ve got to be cautious when dealing with new users. Here is how you can retain more users and beat the industry benchmark:
Take a look at Mobile App Retention: Benchmarks, Strategies & Best Practices
Our study showed that about 27% of travel app users uninstall their apps within the first week of install.
App uninstall numbers are higher for online shopping apps than travel apps. Due to aggressive competition and varying price ranges in the e-commerce industry, people have more alternatives for the same product on multiple platforms and prefer purchasing the least expensive one. On the other hand, the price ranges on travel & hospitality apps don’t differ by a considerable margin.
Both e-commerce and travel industries show the same trend – tier 1 cities have higher app retention than tier 2 and tier 3 cities.
The primary reason for this is a lack of localization and hyper-personalization. According to Wikipedia, English is the first language of only 0.02% of the population in India, and only 10% of Indians speak English! Similarly, the number of English speaking users in Southeast Asia from tier 2 and tier 3 cities is considerably lower than tier 1 cities.
If you are communicating with all your users in English, you’re bound to lose users in tier 2 and tier 3 cities to your competitors. By not leveraging the power of vernacular languages to send push notifications and text messages in your users’ native languages, brands are losing out on more than 2.5X conversions!
Once again, both e-commerce and travel apps show a similar trend – as the number of user sessions increases, app retention increases proportionally.
Here are some tips to get your users to use your app regularly:
Another proven way of getting users to open your app regularly is by leveraging the power of bite-sized content. If you’re from the travel industry, you can create short videos or interactive graphics on your app. The topics could be ‘Top destinations to go to during summers’ or ‘Five food destinations for your inner foodie.’ E-commerce app marketers can run seasonal campaigns through content like ‘Best gift ideas this Christmas for your loved ones.’
As a bonus, the content you create will also act as a channel to convert more users, so keep in mind that the content you create for them is actionable! You can also leverage emails to share this with your users and deep-link it to your app.
E-commerce and Travel & Hospitality app marketers can leverage the power of push notifications to increase user retention. Our study showed that as the number of notifications increase, app retention rises steadily. However, there is a catch!
Look at the uninstall trends for e-commerce apps:
If you notice uninstall rates increase slightly after two push notifications. We believe two push notifications is the sweet spot, and any more will make your users feel you’re spamming them.
Here is the impact of push notifications on travel & hospitality app retention rate:
Similar to e-commerce apps, app retention decreases after two push notifications are sent to travel app users.
To summarize, two is the optimum number of notifications required to retain e-commerce and travel mobile app users.
Three messaging apps, Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger, and WeChat, have more than a billion active users. And on these three apps, more than 123 billion messages are sent daily!
Marketers must remember that billions of people using these messaging apps use it to have private conversations. Nobody wants to receive promotional messages and advertisements.
Instead of sending sales announcements and offers, use this communication channel for customer support (to update ticket status) or to share transactional information (like receipts and booking confirmation).
You can also use messaging apps to reach out to users who haven’t yet installed your app but have done a transaction online, or have uninstalled your app but still interact with your website.
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