Written by: Dan Ganancial, Senior Consultant at Ivanhoe & McToterson
Mobile marketers today are eager to explore and conquer the mobile frontier, but they face several challenges on their journey. Mobile will become the preferred way that customers access information and interact with companies, and it will also become a critical marketing channel. However, many businesses still haven’t figured out how mobile fits into their digital channels or how to measure its success. WebTrends® has stated that although mobile marketing budgets have increased, total marketing budgets remain fixed. This puts pressure on mobile marketers to justify spending as they try to convert millions of downloads into millions of dollars. Analytics can help mobile marketers justify their spend, but marketers are finding it hard to measure their digital marketing efforts – here is a blog on that subject.
The Aberdeen Group’s Metric-Driven Mobile Marketing report reveals that top companies are more than twice as likely (50% vs. 24%) than their peers to track, measure and report on mobile campaign results as a core strategy of their mobile marketing initiatives. In order to effectively measure your mobile marketing initiatives, you must first understand the mobile landscape. Mobile is changing how your customers access the Internet and how they connect with your company. The choices you make today in the development stage have a big impact on the level of success your mobile marketing efforts can achieve in the marketplace.
Currently, research shows that one out of every four mobile customers uses a smartphone. MobiThinking.com states that there were 6 billion mobile subscriptions at the end of 2011, and this number is expected to increase. In addition, mobile searches have quadrupled in the last year, and mobile browsing as a percentage of all web traffic has increased also. Mobile devices have drastically shifted the online landscape to the point that in 2010 more than 50 percent of all Internet access was being done via mobile handhelds.
When venturing into the mobile channel, it is important to first define your objectives and plan out your mobile marketing strategy before you head into mobile website or application development. Your goal should be to establish a foundation where you can measure performance and maximize return on investment. Decide how and what you will measure to assess your mobile channel’s effectiveness. Isolating what matters to your company and studying data that tracks mobile customer usage, behavior and patterns can help you develop the necessary tools that produces measurable returns on investment.
Mobile Website Metrics
1. Frequency of Visit – Ratio of the number of visits to the number of users over a period of time. This metric shows you how often your mobile website is being visited. This metric measures user loyalty.
2. Session Time – The average amount of time spent on your mobile site.
3. Depth of Visit – Number of screens viewed on average compared to the number of visits. Together with duration, this metric gives you insight into how engaged your customers are with your site.
4. Bounce Rate – Ratio of the number of user visits with a single view event to the total number of visits. This helps you understand the percentage of customers that leave your site in five seconds or less.
Mobile App Metrics
1. Total Downloads – Number of times your app is downloaded from an app store.
2. App Users – Number of unique application users over a period of time. This metric shows how many people actually use the application after downloading.
3. Active User Rate – Ratio of the number of app users to the total downloads. This helps you understand if you are gaining or losing your audience over time.
4. New Users – Count the number of users that first used your app during a period of time. This is a useful metric in comparison with active user rate to see if you are staying ahead of the customer attrition curve.
5. Retention Rate – This data point gives you a real idea of what your actual usage is like. Provides a sense over the short and long term whether your app is engaging users.
6. Usage Rate – This metric can be figured out using the Mobile Website metrics.
Mobile Advertising Metrics
1. Impressions – Number of times a specific ad has been accessed or viewed by a user.
2. Clicks – Number of times a specific ad has been clicked on after being accessed or viewed by a user.
3. Click-Through-Rate (CTR) – The number of clicks divided by impressions. This is a way of measuring the success of an online or mobile advertising campaign for a particular website or ad.
Other Important Mobile Metrics
1. User Acquisition Cost – Cost of your business to acquire a new user. This metric will help you track the effectiveness of your mobile advertising and marketing efforts.
2. Average Revenue Per User – Total revenue divided by the number of users. When compared to user acquisition cost, this metric will tell you if you are making money or not.
3. Conversion Rate – The rate at which users are converting on your mobile site or app. Conversions are defined by you, but can be anything from website newsletter subscriptions to in-app purchases to new user sign-ups.