Liftoff Releases Q4 2014 Mobile App Engagement Index; Measures the Impact of App Install Ads

By Dennis Mink | February 3, 2015

Mobile App Engagement Index

Today we are excited to announce the release of the Liftoff Mobile App Engagement Index. The index sets CPA benchmarks on a variety of post-install events taken by users acquired via app install ads, including registering, sharing, making a reservation or purchase, and subscribing to a service.

Most mobile app install campaigns are measured on a cost-per-install (CPI) basis. While buying on CPI is convenient for both the advertiser and the supplier, we found that CPI is weakly related to actual ROI of the advertising campaign, and masks the often poor value of acquired users.

To address this knowledge gap in the mobile marketing industry, we analyzed all of our Q4 2014 mobile marketing campaigns to establish benchmarks on both post-install conversion rates and effective cost-per-action for a variety of post-install events. Our analysis is based on 10.9 million app installs and 427 million post-install events across 6 distinct app categories: Dating, eCommerce, Finance, Social, Travel and Utility.


Some of our findings include:

  • Companies spent an average of $9.45 to acquire a registered user from mobile app install ads.
  • CPAs for non-transactional post-install events, including registering and sharing, decreased in December, while CPAs for transactional events (making a reservation, purchasing and subscribing) increased.
  • The cost to acquire a registered user on iOS was 23.4% more expensive than on Android.
  • Acquiring users that perform transactional events, including purchase, subscribe, make a reservation, was on average 30.9% cheaper on iOS than on Android.
  • Social apps had the highest install-to-registration rate at 88.4%, followed by eCommerce apps (70.6%) and Financial apps (52.1%).
  • Users who installed a Social app shared content an average of 19 times within the first 30 days after install.

To view the complete report, download it here.