January 10, 2023

App Stickiness - How important is it?

1hr 24mins per day, 9.8hrs a week - That’s how much time an average person spends on mobile gaming. Get your users hooked for more gaming thrill and that’ll give you more opportunities to monetise - through ad views or in-app purchases. While Retention Rate is one common metric which we measure, app stickiness is the lesser known measurement that tracks the return traffic of your app.

The simple calculation is: DAU/MAU * 100%

You can now view this metric at Campaign and Country level in our Campaign Center:

Why App Stickiness?

App Stickiness gives a reality check on how frequent are the users engaging with your app. With CPI increasing across many ad networks, gaming studios and publishers are finding ways to retain its existing users in order to maximise their return. 

Better engagement > Higher return traffic > More opportunities for monetisation

With higher stickiness, you’ll get a group of loyal audience who will log in to your game every day rain or shine. This increases LTV, RR, ROAS… You get the drift. 

To get this number up, you will need to understand what makes your users want to come back to your app, how was their behaviour when using it? Some questions to start asking yourself as a Product Owner:

  • Do you have a daily “incentive” for them to play your game every day?
  • Does longer/shorter duration per session mean higher stickiness?
  • How does high abandonment rate of a certain game level affect app stickiness?
  • How can you modify your game mechanics to increase stickiness?

Monitoring this metric can help to improve your game experience to reduce churn. A great gaming studio focuses on sustainable development through engagement, persistence, and retention. Some other metrics available on Cost Center that indirectly affects stickiness include:

  • Level Play - Abandonment Rate, Remain Rate (in Level Analytics)
  • Level Fails per User (in Level Analytics)
  • Baseline & Variant Play Time and Sessions (in Advanced A/B Testing)
  • Retention Rate (across all reports in Campaigns, Creatives, SiteID, Events Picker)

Let’s build with stickiness in mind!

  1. Instant gratification with personalisation

Everyone loves a reward, especially an exclusive one. Reward based on persona helps to increase engagement with your game to form a long-term relationship with your users.

  1. Mould your user behaviour 

Prompts for frequent check-ins with reward awaits upon completion of tasks.

Start building a pattern around user’s habit by weaving game play triggers into their daily schedule. You can gamify the overall experience e.g. double the points if user plays during a certain time period, check in daily to gain extra booster.

  1. Balance game complexity 

Who doesn’t like a good challenge. But a difficult game level may cause higher drop-offs while an overly easy game level doesn’t trigger players’ competitive streak. Remember how Angry Bird kept everyone on the edge with its difficult level? It’s a good kind of frustration. Make sure to A/B test your gameplay to find the optimum performance for level abandonment and duration per session. 

  1. Optimising ads monetisation

28% of people uninstall apps because of too many ads and notifications. 

Apps need to make money at the end of the day, we understand. Sometimes displaying too many ads can distract users from the overall gaming experience. And more than a third of U.S. hyper-casual players have abandoned a game in this genre because of ads that showed up too frequently. Try creating longer, less frequent ad breaks over shorter, more frequent ones.

  1. Seamless onboarding & No bugs

Sounds like game development 101. Make sure you test your apps end-to-end to ensure the gaming experience is pleasant to avoid any unnecessary drop-offs. Too many steps to set up before playing the game can also push users to uninstall the app. 

With much said about App Stickiness, don't forget to check out the App Stickiness metric in our Campaign Center! Start monitoring your app stickiness now for a more in-depth UA analysis!

PS: Average app stickiness for hyper casual game is 11%



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