Inside Knowledge from Developers on Mobile App Engagement


After first acquiring users, you then need to know how to continue to grow and manage your user base with mobile app engagement secrets from developers. In order to drive engagement requires potentially large investment, but it's worth it to sustain client relationships and perhaps ensure future profits. If your users are engaged with the app they are far more likely to show their app to their social group, give you feedback, make in-app purchases and develop a sense of brand loyalty.


Below, I’ll touch on the factors and four strategies that make an app engaging, along with mobile engagement examples from some of the top startups we work with at Appifany


What makes an app engaging?


The factors that make an app engaging will vary depending on its purpose and app experiences, and these can typically be classified into two categories: informational or experiential (escape).



An example of the former would be Instagram or Gmail – where individuals can gather information – while the latter are games or similar apps that provide entertainment. A study conducted to test the impact of branded apps on consumers showed that informational apps had a higher likelihood of engaging users. To engage users successfully, the following factors need to be in place: ease of use, rewarding and functionality.


Matt Goldhill, former Creative Strategist at Mobile 5 shares: “Make it as easy, compelling and as rewarding as possible to use. By focusing on that, it’s going to be engaging no matter what.”

The purpose that an app fulfills is also a key factor. This is especially so in an age where numerous apps are launched daily, leaving us bombarded with too many options to choose from.

Dave Sandler, previously Head of Media Products at Fetch elaborates: “There are so many apps that don’t need to be there. An app is about functionality and utility, where someone is looking to do a specific action quickly, so make sure that core functionality is front and centre.”


It’s much harder to define what makes an entertainment or gaming app engaging, as there isn’t a set list of factors or attributes. Stating otherwise would be the equivalent of saying that one can pinpoint the exact factors that made Pokemon Go viral, and replicate the strategy for another gaming app.


But perhaps a secret sauce may exist. Companies that have created successful gaming apps share that it boils down to having a focus on quality, coupled with continual tests and iterations.