Blog Exploring the state of the market in mob...

Exploring the state of the market in mobile app growth

Adjust and AppLovin’s Mobile app trends 2024: A global benchmark of app performance highlights the importance of creating a stable and consistent framework to successfully navigate the increasingly fragmented ecosystem. From diversifying channels and finding the right media mix, onboarding next-generation technologies, and continually adapting to meet the developing needs of users in the privacy-era, forming the basis for this stability can be complex. With the waves of change set to continue, however, it’s essential.

The report dives into methods that app marketers and developers can use to shift their strategies and enhance their tech and measurement stacks. There are plenty of steps that can be taken to maintain control and stay ahead of the competition, no crystal ball needed. From AI-driven personalization across app verticals to onboarding the right tools for impactful campaign optimization—for all data sets, aggregated included—there’s a lot of exciting new developments.

And the areas of opportunity don’t stop there. Adjust data reveals the regions and app verticals where performance was strongest in 2023 and where we see the most growth potential in 2024.

Download the report for all the granular details or read on for some of our highlights.

App growth opportunities for mobile marketers in 2024

App growth experienced a degree of stagnation in 2023, particularly (and now famously) for the gaming vertical, which saw installs decline by 2% YoY along with a sessions decrease of 7%. After over a decade of continued growth, this was a shock to the system for marketers in the industry.

Let’s first take a look at the overall picture. Following a general downward trajectory on the global market (all apps, all verticals, all regions) throughout the year, a bounceback started in Q4 2023, which rounded out with a 4% YoY boost. This growth trend is continuing into 2024 and we expect to see the line continuing to go up throughout the remainder of the year.

App download numbers from 2022 to 2023 via Adjust data.

Even within the gaming space, there were regions and subverticals that performed favorably and bucked the dominant trend. The LATAM region, for example, grew by 7% in terms of installs, while racing game installs increased by a huge 61% globally. Simulation and arcade games also charted impressive installs growth, at 53% and 38%, respectively. The biggest sessions increases went to arcade (19%) and adventure (7%).

Simon Dussart

CEO, Adjust

Gaming app stats 2023 via Adjust data.

The fall-off in session numbers indicates that games developers could benefit from incorporating personalization and longer-term goals into their onboarding and journey flows to ensure they’re optimizing for the most effective possible monetization according to each segment. For some subverticals, like hyper casual, the need to have session matching installs is less poignant, but as newer subverticals like hybrid casual are showing, even just a few engagement features can drive a significant amount of in-app revenue. All of this being said, every one of the gaming subverticals outlined below did see sessions growth YoY in 2023.

Mobile finance and shopping continue to boom

Fintech app installs and sessions both grew YoY in 2023, with the former up a huge 42% and the latter by 24%. This growth was reflected across the regions analyzed in the report, with APAC’s installs growing by 48%, EMEA’s by 26%, and LATAM’s by 2%. North America was the only region that saw a decline but session lengths increased and banking app sessions individually climbed by 6% YoY.

It’s also worth noting that North America had a drop off in the number of partners that each app was working with, which largely explains the decrease in installs and sessions volume. As apps expand their channel mixes and work on finding the right spaces for the right audiences, all of these numbers will likely see a turnaround and normalize in line with global trends.

Finance app downloads 2022-2023 via Adjust data.
Shopping app downloads 2022-2023 via Adjust data.

Pivoting to e-commerce, there was a similarly optimistic continuation of the upward trend throughout 2023, with global installs increasing by 43% and global sessions by 14%. The sharpest increase in installs was, as usual, seen in December, the busiest period for the vertical.

Looking at the installs to sessions ratio, which is even more pronounced in North America, e-commerce apps will benefit from adding more personalization and retention elements to their user journey, from ad creative through to post-install. The more accurately the ad reflects the experience they’ll have in-app, the more likely they’ll be to be sticky and continue driving revenue.

For more information on areas of growth and opportunity across the app marketing industry, download your copy of Mobile app trends 2024 today, or request a demo to learn how we can help grow your app.

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