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There is no single metric to calculate how engaged users are with your app. Engagement – the relationship that customers build with brands – means that a customer is in sync with your core values and integrates your product in their daily life. The benefits are almost self-explanatory. It’s the evangelism “oomph” that every business wants.

Captivating your customers is key to long term app success. When trying to figure out how to engage users within an app, you should focus on these customer factors:

1. Time

Time = engagement = money. The more time a user spends within an app increases the amount of ad revenue or the likelihood of a content purchase. That’s why it’s essential to reduce reasons why a user would need to click away from the app. You would be surprised how small steps such as an in-app clock, FAQ, or efficient customer service will keep users more focused on what you have to offer.

mobile retention

Mobile apps suck at retaining a user’s time. The average app loses 80% of their users after only four months. Good engagement gives users a reason to keep coming back.

How long it takes for an agent to respond to a ticket also affects whether a customer will remain loyal. Finding ways to quickly resolve tickets allows for your employees to tackle a growing userbase efficiently. Everyone wins.

2. Happiness

A happy customer is one that will revisit your app and likely become an evangelist. Nothing says engagement like a customer going out of their way to write a positive review and share your app. The impact of high ratings cannot be overstated – highly rated apps are more visible in the app store, are more trusted, and have an easier time maintaining a community around their product.

why customers leave app

Data on why customers leave gives insight to what makes them happy, and therefore shows why they write positive reviews. Marketingsherpa found that customers are far more likely to be unhappy due to bad customer service rather than price or features. A well made app can make customers happy, but excellent service keeps customers happy. Great communication is the key.

3. Empathy

Robotic facts are as important as they are boring for potential customers. Storytelling the power of your product promotes engagement by helping users discover what the app’s capabilities mean for their lives. A good narrative has been proven to affect parts of the brain that control empathy, memory, and willingness to participate. A great narrative turns your customers’ experiences into effective marketing campaigns.

wordpress mobile

One of our customers, WordPress, is a prime example of this. On the surface it’s a well designed free blogging platform, but its users think of WordPress as the place where publishing becomes democratized. Customers are in charge of their own personal stories and businesses. Blogs that users host are freshly pressed (showcased on the WordPress main page) daily, effectively using customer contributions to demonstrate what anyone can create with their site. WordPress’ new mobile app even has live chat for users to communicate with them.

Summary: Engagement with customers is essential for long term app success. Using tools and practices that improve your customers’ time, happiness, and empathy will allow them to more easily integrate your app into their daily life.

Interested in more tips for your app? Check out Helpshift and reach out to us on Twitter.

Published July 9, 2014
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