Usefulness, Referrals and Ads Drive Majority of App Installs

Posted Sep 15, 2015

While mobile app publishers frequently aspire to the top or featured charts of the app stores, attaining these coveted spots is not the be-all and end-all for app installs. Rather, according to a recent report by Business Insider and data from TUNE, immediacy, referrals and app install ads top the charts as the biggest catalysts for downloading apps.


From this data, 60% of app installs are driven by an app’s usefulness, referrals, and ads.

Granted, it’s not surprising that a user’s immediate need to complete a task would drive app installs. What may be surprising, however, is that the app’s perceived effectiveness at aiding task completion is more of a determining factor than friend referrals or chart placement.

Rather, app advertisements eked out chart placements and existing familiarity with the app’s brand as an install motivator, and users were 66% more likely to download an app as a result of an ad than through organic social channels.

What This Means for App Install Marketers
While app install marketers may inspire for top chart placement or organic social growth, these channels will likely only generate 23% of total installs. Instead, it is more imperative to:

  • Showcase features of the app that make it useful for the user
  • Integrate a referral and cross-promotion system into the app
  • Leverage paid app install campaigns that captivate and engage

By covering these bases first, improvement in organic installs and chart placements will typically follow as the benefits of the app are clearer to a broader audience.

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