For marketers, mobile & web applications are an essential tool for growing their business. People spend a growing amount of time on apps. Globally users spend 88% of its mobile time in apps rather than browsing the web. And when a customer has your app, they are more likely to be loyal and have higher lifetime value. In a recent Kantar & Google co-research report found that 87% of retailers agree that their app users are more loyal and have a greater lifetime value than nonusers.
Consequently, mobile apps are becoming increasingly important to marketers. In fact, 81% of retailers and 75% of e-commerce companies plan to increase their promotional spending in the next year.
Building a foundation of consented first-party data can be made easier via apps.
In an uncertain economy, an app can be extremely useful in retaining your most valuable customers, as well as building a durable foundation of consented first-party data. It is becoming increasingly important to develop a robust first-party data strategy as the advertising industry moves away from third-party cookies.
Here are three key ways to ensure your app marketing strategy delivers results today – and tomorrow – in an era of competing priorities and tradeoffs.
1. Ensure that first-party data is prioritized
There is no denying the fact that companies that make use of their own data, also known as first-party data, are currently performing better than those that don’t. Studies indicate that businesses that incorporate first-party data into their strategies can increase their revenue by as much as 50% per ad, communication or marketing campaign, in comparison to those that have limited data integration. Furthermore, with the trend of personal identification being on the decline, the disparity between companies that have a robust collection of consented first-party data and those that don’t is only set to increase.
“The key to building first-party data is to create a two-way value exchange with customers.”
To effectively build a collection of first-party data, it is vital to establish a mutually beneficial relationship with customers. One way to achieve this is through mobile apps, which can serve as a powerful tool. Whether it’s through offering a loyalty program or enhancing an omnichannel experience, such as streamlined in-store checkout, it’s crucial to give customers a reason to share their information with you. A study by Boston Consulting Group found that tailoring value exchange to specific consumer segments and providing relevant incentives can be especially effective. For instance, research shows that younger generations and new parents tend to be more willing to share their email addresses for lower value rewards than retirees.
When it comes to implementing a successful first-party data collection strategy through mobile apps, research has revealed three key best practices. Firstly, ensure transparency with users regarding how their information will be used. Secondly, demonstrate to users how they will benefit from sharing their information with you. Lastly, make it easy for users to create an account within the app and sign in.
2. Make web-to-app user experiences seamless
Creating a seamless experience across all channels is essential for a successful app strategy. This includes ensuring that the user experience is smooth whether they are interacting with your brand online or offline. While many marketers focus on optimizing the transition from offline to online, it’s also important to consider the experience between different platforms such as a web browser and app. Studies show that the average consumer switches between mobile web and apps five times during a 30-minute session. So, the web-to-app experience you offer can greatly impact their perception of your brand and likelihood of making a purchase.
“One way to improve the web-to-app experience is by implementing deep linking, which has been shown to lead to a more than 2X increase in conversion rate for advertisers.”
For example, if a customer uses a mobile browser to search for a gift and comes across your ad, with deep linking they will be directed to your app where they may have saved their payment information and can complete the purchase quickly. However, implementing deep linking can be challenging due to the disconnect between web developers and marketing teams. To address this, a tool called Web to App Connect will be introduced in beta early next year to help marketing and developer teams easily set up deep linking. If you’re interested, you can express your interest in being a part of the beta.
3. Adapt to shifts in platform standards on iOS and Android
As the digital landscape shifts with updates such as Apple’s AppTrackingTransparency framework and SKAdNetwork, it is important for marketers to stay ahead of the curve. One way to do this is by implementing on-device conversion measurement for iOS campaigns, which was recently announced as a privacy-friendly solution.
For Android campaigns, Google Ads is participating in the Privacy Sandbox initiative, with plans to share learnings and updates in 2023.
“Brands prioritising apps and invests in their app strategies are better positioned for success now and in the future.”
By staying informed and investing in app strategies, marketers can continue to drive success in the ever-evolving world of privacy and consumer behavior.