How to launch your mobile app successfully

Let’s assume you either got lucky or invested a few thousand dollars in acquisition and within 90 days of launching your app you have as many downloads as you had set out to have, but did you know that 25% of users only use an app once after downloading it? asks Leverate’s Adinah Brown

How many times a day do you check your email on your phone versus on your desktop? How about Facebook? Your bank account? According to Ofcom consumer research, consumers in the UK are 17% more available on their smartphones than they are on their desktops or laptops. Mobile internet usage has surpassed that of desktop in almost every developed country.

What does this mean for you? Well, let me tell you that if you do not yet offer traders the ability to trade on mobile, you are putting yourself out of the game.

Traders today are multi-platform users. They no longer want to be tied to their desks when the markets are open, especially since the Forex market trades 24 hours a day. They want to trade on the go, they want to be able to open positions, close them, check news, analyze charts and basically have the same capabilities on their smartphones as they have on their desktops or laptops.

For an FX brokerage, having an app today is not a difficult venture. Financial technology providers have spent countless resources to develop the most avant-garde mobile applications and as a broker, you can offer those apps to your customers through white labeling. Your challenge as a broker of the mobile-led generation is not developing an outstanding app, it is the ability to market it.

With 2.8M apps on the Google Play store and 2.2M on the Apple app store, getting your app to stand out in this crowded market is no longer about simply putting it up on the store. The challenges of marketing an app are growing and having a marketing plan supporting the launch of your app is crucial to its success. Let’s talk about some of the things you should consider if you want to launch your trading mobile app successfully.

Do research. Market research is at the core of every marketing campaign, why shouldn’t it be at the core of your mobile app launch campaign as well?

What should you research? Start with your competition. When you have white labeled your mobile trading app, you have saved hundreds of thousands of dollars in development. The downside? So has every other brokerage in town, which means you need to find ways to differentiate yourself from the crowd.

Check out your competitors’ app descriptions, the names of their apps and special features they offer. Read the customer reviews. This can give you great insight into what customers appreciate from an app and what your competitors are doing right and wrong.

Define your Unique Value Proposition. Why is your app different from others? What will traders get if they download your app instead of your competitor’s? Define what your app will stand for, what it will provide compared to others in the same category, and use that to communicate with your audience on the app’s description, on social media, landing pages and any other relevant communication you develop to support the marketing plan of your app.

Optimize for the app store. Optimizing your app to stand out on the app store is critical to its success. Some of the things you should optimize include the name of the app, keywords and the description.

  • Name: If you name your app with a branded name (i.e. the name of your company), only people looking specifically for your app will find you. To improve discoverability you should consider combining the branded name with a keyword that ranks high in searches for your category, for example “MyBrokerage Forex Trading”. This way, those looking for Forex trading apps will find you even if they are not looking for you specifically.
  • Keywords: Most app stores allow you 100 characters for the keywords section. Apply the same principles you apply to your Adwords campaign and keep an organized file with every keyword you use and its impact on your app’s ranking.
  • Description: Guess what? People do actually read the description, though they might not read all of it. So, make sure you write the most compelling, engaging and conversion-inducing message above the fold (the first 2 or 3 lines that appear before users have to tap on “more”).
  • Market it. People need to know they can trade on mobile with your brokerage. Blog about it even before you launch, create a preview video to build up expectation and share it on your website and on social media, join forums and interact with potential users, contact influencers.

As you begin to build your user base, offer incentives to share and/or like the app on social media. Adding a Like, Tweet or Share button on your app is a good start, but users won’t take action unless they get something in return, so build incentives into your marketing budget so you can provide users with something of value to encourage them to take action.

Pay attention to engagement and retention. Let’s assume you either got lucky or invested a few thousand dollars in acquisition and within 90 days of launching your app you have as many downloads as you had set out to have, but did you know that 25% of users only use an app once after downloading it? The average mobile app retention rate in 2016 was 20%, which means a user returns to the app at least once within 30 days.

These are not very promising numbers if you are looking for active traders. Focus your efforts on engagement, pay attention to customer support and answer reviews so you create a solid user base of returning traders.

Track and measure. Tracking and measuring results is key to the success of any marketing campaign. Some of the KPIs you can set, track and measure for your app are daily and monthly active users, weekly and monthly retention rates, average revenue per user and lifetime value.

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