What is an uninstall?

Glossary Uninstalls

The definition of uninstalls

An uninstall refers to a user removing an app from their device. In the world of mobile marketing, it is one metric for holistically measuring an app’s performance. Uninstalls can occur due to a number of factors like performance issues with an app, competitor apps, unmet needs, problems with the user journey, or even a cumbersome onboarding process.

What kind of decisions can I make with uninstall data?

With uninstall data, you can analyze your:

By evaluating at which stage of the funnel your users uninstall, you can optimize your app to improve retention and ultimately net a more active user base with a better return on investment (ROI). Like all of the other in-app events you’re measuring, uninstalls are tied back to the current marketing source. This way you can analyze whether your users are uninstalling after making a big purchase or after getting a number of push notifications, for example.

Why (and when) should I track uninstalls?

Attracting users to install your app is only one side of the equation. Marketers must then spend valuable resources and money keeping those same users engaged to maintain strong retention. Understanding when your users uninstall can help you understand the why.

Keeping an eye on uninstalls should be part of your app store optimization (ASO) strategy, as this is one metric that is often said to be a likely algorithmic factor in app store rankings. However, uninstalls should not be the only metric you are considering when analyzing technical and campaign performance. This is especially true post-iOS 14.5, as on iOS users must opt-in to share their Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA) via the app tracking transparency (ATT) prompt for marketers to track their uninstall.

Combined with other performance metrics, uninstalls can help give marketers a full picture of the user lifecycle for comprehensive analysis at your fingertips.

Adjust uninstall tracking

Uninstall attribution works via push tokens. Adjust tracks app uninstalls by assigning each user a unique push token when they install your app. This unique token is used to send daily silent push notifications to check if the app is still installed. Once the push notification returns information that the app has been uninstalled, Adjust reports the last active session as the uninstall date. The app uninstall rate is then calculated by dividing the number of uninstalls by the number of installs over a period of time.

Learn more about Adjust’s uninstall and reinstall tracking.

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