Blog A deep dive into the explosive growth of...

A deep dive into the explosive growth of finance apps in 2023

The finance app market has faced significant hurdles over the past year and a half. However, amid the economic slowdown and uncertainty, fintech app usage has surged in 2023, demonstrating its resilience and the growing relevance of mobile financial tools and services worldwide. Projections indicate that the finance app market will generate over $1.55 billion in revenue globally by 2023, marking a remarkable 19% increase compared to the previous year. Looking ahead, the total revenue is expected to reach US$2.38 billion by 2027.

Let’s dig into the 2023 fintech app growth, exploring everything from installs and usage to how long and well users are sticking with these apps.

An uptick in finance app downloads

Navigating through the finance app landscape from 2021 to 2023, we see a very interesting shift in user adoption. Installs for finance apps grew only by a tiny 2% from 2021 to 2022. However, installs surged by a remarkable 50% compared to the 2022 average, signifying a dramatic pivot in user needs and behavior. Finance app installs in Q3 2023 were also impressive, at 40% higher than the previous year’s average.  May 2023 was the standout month, with installs notching up 33% above the H1 2023 average.

Delving into the nuanced dynamics of sub-verticals within the finance app arena, we observe differentiated growth narratives among banking, payment, and crypto apps in H1 2023. Banking app installs notably increased by 55% compared to the 2022 average, indicating a growing preference for mobile financial transactions, possibly driven by continuous improvements in user experience (UX) within these apps. In Q3 2023, installs grew by another 34% compared to H1 2023.

Payment app installs saw a more modest uptick of 5% above the 2022 average. This notches toward a recent study projecting a surge in mobile payment transaction volumes, expected to reach $49 billion in 2023—a remarkable 92% increase from 2021.

Despite the challenging market environment, crypto apps—along with a shifting narrative following the crypto crash in 2022—experienced a staggering growth of 454% in installs during H1 2023 compared to the 2022 average.

Finance app usage grows steadily in 2023

In contrast to the sharp spike in finance app installs, the use of finance apps has consistently increased throughout 2023. The first half of the year saw a solid 17% increase in app sessions compared to the 2022 average, indicating an increase in consumer comfort in using these platforms for their financial activities. Additionally, this upward trend continued into the third quarter of 2023, with sessions increasing by an additional 9% above the already elevated H1 2023 average.

Zooming in on the sub-categories of finance apps reveals interesting user engagement patterns through 2023. For instance, banking app sessions experienced a significant increase of 25% in H1 2023 compared to the average of 2022. This upward trend continued in Q3 2023, with sessions for banking apps rising an additional 12% above the average of the year's first half.

In H1 2023, sessions for payment apps increased by 18% compared to the average of 2022. This momentum carried into Q3 2023, with sessions increasing by another 10% over the average of H1 2023.

On the other hand, crypto app usage presented a different story. Despite the surge in installs in H1 2023, sessions decreased by 22% compared to the average of 2022, indicating a discrepancy between user curiosity and sustained engagement. Although, the users who are retained are spending more time in-app than ever.

Users spend the most time on crypto apps in 2023

The average session lengths for finance apps in the first half of 2023 experienced a slight decrease, averaging 18.36 minutes compared to 2022's 18.38 minutes. However, we see an increase in session lengths when we examine specific sub-verticals such as banking, payment, and crypto apps. Specifically, banking apps saw a jump from an average session length of 5.22 minutes in 2022 to 5.63 minutes in the first half of 2023.

Similarly, payment apps experienced a rise in user engagement, with session lengths increasing from 5.19 minutes in 2022 to 5.45 minutes in the first half of 2023. Despite already having relatively high session lengths, crypto app usage surged from 12.58 minutes in 2022 to an impressive 15.87 minutes in the first half of 2023.

A slight drop in user retention

In the second half of 2022, finance apps had a Day 1 retention rate of 23%. This decreased to 14% on Day 7, further dropping to 12% on Day 14, and ultimately settling at 10% on Day 30. In the first half of 2023, there was a slight shift, with Day 1 retention dipping slightly to 22%. Day 7 retention remained steady at 14%, but there was a slight decrease to 11% on Day 14, maintaining a 10% rate on Day 30. This suggests that while users are initially interested, they struggle to find continued value or face obstacles that discourage consistent engagement. The constant drop in retention post-Day 7 and leading up to Day 30 emphasizes the importance of intervention during this critical timeframe to boost retention.

When examining sub-verticals, banking apps retained 23% of their user base on Day 1 in the first half of 2023, while payment apps had a slightly lower retention rate at 18%.

Driving mobile finance growth into 2024

Our findings highlight the significant role that finance apps play in the lives of global users, evolving into a non-negotiable asset. However, simply acquiring a large number of users does not guarantee success. Retention and continued usage are crucial metrics. To ensure sustained growth of fintech apps into 2024, mobile marketers should continuously innovate and embrace emerging technologies and effective marketing strategies.

One strategy that stands out is integrating gamification within your app. This can enhance engagement and increase user lifetime value (LTV).

Utilizing mobile analytics can provide a robust toolkit to implement gamification tactics effectively and identify strategic moments for optimal deployment. Additionally, mobile analytics enable a deeper understanding of the user journey, empowering marketers to make data-driven decisions to improve engagement, reduce churn, and optimize conversions and downloads.

Learn more about trends in fintech in 2023 with our Mobile app trends report. Or, deep dive into fintech in INSEA with Adjust and MAAS's decryption of the fintech gold rush and learn more about crypto and digital currencies with Adjust and Apptopia's digital currency playbook.

Be the first to know. Subscribe for monthly app insights.