The Fiksu Blog

December app marketing costs surge to record high

Fiksu App Store Competitive Index December 2015

This month’s app marketing costs, measured by our Cost Per Loyal User Index, broke the September’s record high of $4.14 – hitting $4.23 in December. That’s a 19 percent jump in costs from November, and a 101 percent increase in costs since last year at this time. App download volume also increased– as was expected during the holiday season – as users activated new devices and downloaded new apps. December downloads reached 8.5 million; a 16 percent rise since November.

It was interesting to see the increase in costs outpace the increase in app downloads. This indicates that holiday app marketing is more competitive playing field than other marketing periods. The holidays are a time when brands and marketers are ramping up their efforts to capture both the attention and loyalty of prospective app users – so with those demands, come naturally escalating costs.

Cost Per Install (CPI) on Android also dramatically increased – a 144 percent increase year over year – to $3.34. This is evidence that marketers are seeing increasing promise in Android monetization. In stark contrast, iOS CPI settled at just $1.46, dropping five percent from last month. This discrepancy between Android and iOS is indicative of the fact that marketers were able to drive cheaper installs through incentivized methods in Apple’s App Store, which brought CPI down for iOS. However, this is not a strategy that is available in the Google Play Store.

We officially closed the books on 2015, but what can we expect for 2016? Let’s just say that wearables and connected devices will continue to penetrate the app ecosystem, and marketers will need to put in a renewed effort into reaching loyal users on those platforms.

To read more about the data, along with our full analysis and recommendations, check out the results here:

Thanks to all who covered the December Index, including VentureBeat.