From Acquisition to Retention: Why Keeping Your Current Users Is A Smart Move

5 min readApr 6, 2022

User acquisition is an essential part of building a successful app marketing strategy. However, many app creators forget that the user journey goes beyond sales. User retention is also necessary to achieve ideal results for your mobile app.

Retention is the strategy of keeping your existing users for a long time, creating loyalty, appreciation, and a positive experience.

Retaining customers is one of the most important aspects of any business. The only way your business can grow is with repeat customers. But, how do you increase retention rates without losing profitability?

In our previous articles, we’ve covered the art of acquisition through 6 articles, and if you don’t have enough knowledge about the acquisition, you can read them before you start this article.

Understanding Acquisition And Retention

The acquisition is the strategy of onboarding new users, and retention is the strategy of keeping your existing users. Customer retention is the practice of building stronger relationships with customers in order to increase loyalty and drive repeat purchases. Customer retention strategies that are most effective are those that keep data secure and deliver relevant messaging to customers based on their preferences and interests.

A customer’s lifetime value is the projected value of that customer over the entire course of his relationship with your company. By targeting and retaining loyal customers — those consistently purchasing from your brand — your company can maximize its LTV more effectively. A retention strategy enables you to develop, communicate, and execute plans to increase the likelihood that customers will continue to carry out business with your company in the future.

When you sell to new buyers, your chances of making a sale are 5–20%, but when you sell to existing users, your chances of making a sale are 60–70%.*

Acquiring new users is 5 to 25 times more expensive than retaining your existing users.* Also, retained users buy and spend more than the new ones.*

How To Apply A Consumer Retention Improvement Strategy To Your Mobile App

Before you start to improve your retention strategy, you need to make sure that your mobile app’s features are working perfectly, and it functions at its best. Is it easy to use and is it user-friendly? From user experience and user interface to development, you must make sure that everything works smoothly.

Also, each feature of your app should be explained well. What is your app about? Who is your app for, and in which ways can your app be used? The answers to these questions should be explained clearly.

The next step to improving your retention strategy is building a user habit. To create user habits and encourage your users to interact with your app more than once, you should pay attention to the gamification elements. But what’s gamification? According to Google, this term means the application of typical elements of game playing (e.g. point scoring, competition with others, rules of play). It’s a marketing technique to encourage engagement with a product or service.

Besides gamification, an app should have a customer service or support system (mobile apps generally have a customer support number or mail address). You can also create a help center, or a frequently asked questions section where you identify which problems users might face, and make sure you provide enough information and help to them.

The final step to improving your retention strategy is churn reduction. Churn reduction is the action you can take to reduce your churn rate. But what does app churn rate mean? This term signifies the percentage of users who uninstall or stop engaging with an app over time. App churn can also be used interchangeably with abandonment rate. This app metric is typically measured at 30 days, 7 days, and 1 day after users first install the app.* So your strategy to reduce churn rate, should be to keep users who’re about to uninstall your app and encourage users who’ve stopped using it to start again. To decrease your churn rate, you can follow different strategies such as creating discount offers and personalized in-app messages based on behavioral data (device type, location, purchase history, etc.). Another strategy to reduce the churn rate is to build a strong onboarding flow by simplifying it, creating easy-to-take steps, and ensuring your users get the experience of your app as soon as possible.

Also, you should make sure you can identify users who’ve stopped using your app and calculate probable monthly churn. If you want to calculate the probable monthly churn of your app, you can use this formula that is created by Stefen Noble,

Let’s create an example.

Users at the start of the month: 1,000

Users at the end of the month: 1,122

Net new user gain: 122

Days in month: 30

User days in month: (1,000 x 30) + (0.5 x 122 x 30) = 31.830

Total churns in month: 366

Churns per day: 366/31.830 = 0.01%

Monthly churn rate: 30 x 0.01% = 0.3%

According to the results of churn rate analysis, you can gain a deeper understanding of the issue and create your strategy accordingly. During this process, you can work with a professional team of Cherry and make the best decisions with experts.

The main objective of retention should be to make your users have a great experience with your app and make them keep using your service. You can take advantage of the techniques we’ve covered in this article for your retention journey. Whether you are just starting out in the app marketing world or have an existing client base, it’s very important to retain your users and use your effort to give them the best experience.

A vital and overlooked aspect of an app’s success is how well it retains that initial burst of excitement and engagement. Without a healthy retention rate, an app may begin to flounder over time. This inevitability can be averted by focusing on the retention of customers from the beginning, alongside promotion and acquisition efforts.

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