Questing for Quality: What Mobile Publishers Look For

Posted Aug 15, 2017

To engage and retain high quality users is the goal of any sincere mobile publisher. While whales are coveted, it’s unrealistic to expect each user to become one. Instead, the potential minnows and dolphins must be identified and subsequently nurtured.

So what do top mobile publishers look for as indicators of a high quality user? The results of our Summer 2017 Mobile Publishing Survey provides some insight.

According to publishers surveyed, the best indicators of a high quality user are user retention and early purchase behavior, followed by their average session duration and whether they leave a positive user review.

Retention Over IAP
The first immediately interesting aspect of the results is the fact that publishers look more to user retention (82%) than to their in-app purchase behavior (68%) as an indicator of user quality.

This suggests that publishers are more concerned with keeping users than getting those users to convert into spenders quickly, a sentiment that makes sense in light of typical publisher revenue sources.

Session Depth Versus Frequency

Another Interesting aspect about the survey results is that publishers are more likely to care about the depth of a user’s session (45%) than the frequency at which those users have a session (34%).

Granted, both of these factors contribute to a user’s total time spent in an app on a given day. However, the tendency for publishers to look at session duration as a measure of quality more than session frequency suggests that publishers are seeking deeper engagement from their users.

This depth of engagement would then translate into the #1 indicator of user quality: retention. A user who sticks around — whether it’s within a given session or via sessions over time — has more potential to blossom into a high LTV user.

The real question: how can you keep publishers in an app longer? Stay tuned, as we’ll be covering the top engagement strategies used by mobile publishers next week!

About the Study
The AdColony Summer 2017 Publishing Survey provides insights, benchmarks, and trends from the world’s top-grossing app developers, asking over 100 detailed questions and enjoying a 50% survey response rate.

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