App marketing is serious business. With the number of app downloads now at record setting highs, there’s a lot at stake for marketers competing on the app store.
To win in this environment, we need to set goals, measure as much as we can, and optimize for the best user experience.
This is no different on mobile than it is on the web, and these 21 tools will help any marketer use smart data to optimize their app, increase its usage, and grow revenues.
We’ve divided this list into the various sections of the marketing funnel. We’ve selected the best apps to help you get more downloads, activate more users, convert them to paying customers, increase their lifetime value, and reduce churn.
Tracking and Measuring User Acquisition
One of the best places to start is at the top of the funnel, with app downloads and user acquisition.
These tools will help you better understand which traffic sources are actually driving downloads, so you can kill the poor performing ones, focus on the good ones, and experiment with others.
MobileAppTracking provides attribution analytics that measure the value of your advertising channels. You embed their SDK into your app to track downloads, so you know where your customers are coming from.
- Measures lifetime value per channel
- Very nice, very flexible reporting
- Simple pricing, generous free allowance
Pricing: Free up to 50K attributes / 50K+ priced at $0.002/attribution.
Kochava and MobileAppTracking are the two big players in the app acquisition tracking space. Both do similar attribution analytics, tracking, and reporting.
- Shows your ROI for up to 300 mobile ad networks (Facebook, Google, Twitter, Pandora, etc.)
- Specializes in game apps
- Dedicated account management team
Pricing: Not available on website.
AppsFlyer is the third company in this space, but they don’t get as much attention as the first two. They provide a lot of similar functionality, but with a few interesting twists.
- Runs pay-per-install campaigns
- Supports all retargeting ad platforms
- Integrated with 500+ partners
Pricing: Price per install: $0.05 (1k-5k/wk), $0.04 (5k-25k/wk), $0.01 (25k+/wk).
Tapstream’s Onboarding Links allow you to use mobile landing pages for both ad networks and organic marketing, while enabling the app to respond differently depending on the source channel of the user.
- Responsive mobile landing pages
- Drop-in app referral program
- Free attribution monitoring
Pricing: Free attribution plan / advanced plans start at $425 per month.
Onboarding New Users
Once you have your acquisition channels fine-tuned, you need to focus on the onboarding experience.
If 50% of your downloaders aren’t using the app after 30 days, it means that up to 50% of your acquisition budget is going down the drain. Or, to put it another way, it’s doubling your cost-per-active-user.
So, you might want to use these onboarding tools to turn downloaders into long-term users.
SparkPage lets you build automated onboarding campaigns using push, email, and SMS to convert downloaders into active users. Their analytics and A/B testing will help you continuously optimize and improve your conversion rates.
- A/B test message sequences to optimize conversion
- Integrates with existing platforms, no SDK needed
- Use email and SMS if push is disabled
Pricing: 30-day free trial / plans start at $79 per month.
User feedback is an important part of the “customer welcome” experience. With Apptentive’s in-app feedback and survey features, you can gain powerful insights to help you onboard and retain those valuable users.
- In-app messaging center
- Simple user surveys
- Easy-to-understand analytics
Pricing: Free up to 1K interactions / plans start at $49 per month.
Easily build and schedule push campaigns to engage new customers in a conversation. Get feedback and responses through your app.
- Interactive in-app messages
- Easy-to-read analytics
- Profile-based segmentation
Pricing: Free trial available / no pricing on website.
Appboy can help you automate your entire welcome process across multiple channels. Timed campaigns, with advanced segmentation, can give your new users the information they need exactly when they need it.
- In-app newsfeed
- Simple customer welcome campaigns
- User controlled notification center
Pricing: Free up to 1K users / plans start at $100 per month.
After you’ve used some of the tools to attract and onboard new users, you’ll want to measure and track their app usage over the course of their lifetime.
If you’re reading this, you probably already know about KISSmetrics and their fantastic web analytics software. But did you know it can be used to track mobile apps? In this blog post you can read how to use metrics on your mobile site to track app downloads and in-app usage with KISSmetrics.
- Track in-app events
- Build funnels to view user app journeys
Pricing: Plans start at $150/month for 500,000 events.
Localytics gives you powerful, flexible reporting with real-time engagement analysis, so you have the insight you need to take the right action at the right time.
- Lifetime value tracking
- Funnel management
- In-app messaging
Pricing: Free up to 10K users or 500K data points / plans start at $200/month.
Flurry is like the Google Analytics of the app world. They don’t provide “individual” level tracking like the others, but they are free to use.
- User path reporting
- Key demographic estimations
- User acquisition analytics
Upsight combines some of the analytics features of the last few tools with some basic marketing tools. They want to help app marketers take action on insight from analytics.
- Targeted in-app advertisements
- Geo-targeted messages
- Lifetime value prediction
Pricing: Free plan available / paid plans start at $500 per month.
A/B Testing Tools
After measuring, you’ll want to start making changes to your app to improve the experience. These tools will let you A/B test those changes to ensure you’re continuously optimizing the experience.
Artisan’s simple SDK gives you instant publishing ability, cross-device support, and powerful in-code A/B testing capabilities, so you can push your tests to end-users without the need to resubmit to app stores.
- On-device A/B testing
- Real-time reporting and analytics
- In-code A/B testing
Pricing: Free up to 10K monthly users / plans start at $500 per month.
Swrve is an all-in-one mobile marketing automation solution. From personalized in-app messaging and real-time segmentation to multi-layered analytics, they provide a complete picture of your user engagement.
- Engagement split tests
- Probability and trend mapping
- Responsive UX
Pricing: Free (limited) up to 10K monthly users / plans start at $200 per month.
Apptimize’s no-coding-required and “Visual Apptimizer” makes mobile A/B testing easy for everyone. Skip the app stores, publish instantly, and segment your roll outs to specific sub-sets of users to gain valuable feedback.
- Feature flagging and staged rollout
- Powerful analytics with cohort analysis
- Advanced targeting capability
Pricing: Free for up to 25K monthly users / plans start at $300 per month.
Make visual changes to your app on the fly using Optimizely’s code-free visual editor. Push changes to the app without waiting for App Store review.
- Code-free visual editor
- Customizable goal tracking
- Immediate changes without waiting for App Store review
Pricing: 30-day free trial / plans start at $19 per month.
Leanplum combines content management with marketing automation for the mobile environment. With their open source templates, you can easily create, test, and automate targeted notifications to optimize your user engagement and increase retention.
- Event based triggers
- Open source message templates
- Flexible delivery
Pricing: Free up to 500 daily active users / plans start at $79 per month.
Extra: Resources and Case Studies
All of the tools mentioned above are a great way to leverage your knowledge and ideas about how to improve your app experience and grow its revenue.
We also want to include a few great resources that should help give you inspiration for what to measure and what to test with these tools.
User Onboarding is a brilliant resource that literally walks you through each screenshot of a new user’s welcome experience with some of the top apps, like Instagram, Netflix, Shopify, and more. Included are some fantastic tips about what stands out and what should be left out.
- 25 apps reviewed
- Simple, relatable tips
- Smart commentary on the user experience
UX Archive provides a comprehensive list of screenshots for various apps, outlining the user flows, so you can compare the different styles without signing up for each one.
- Over 100 apps
- Searchable by category (e.g., purchasing, signing up, uploading)
- 2,000+ individual screenshots
GoodUI is full of information that helps you achieve just that – a good user interface. Loaded with suggestions and inspiration for A/B tests you can try, this is a resource that is worth the read.
- 48 useful ideas for A/B tests
- Bi-monthly updates
- Explanations for the motive behind each test and the expected outcome
Apptamin offers professional promotional app videos that will help you stand out from the crowd when pitching or marketing your app.
- Library of great app video examples
- “App Video School” launching soon
- Great blog on app marketing and ASO