Five easy ways to make your app sticky

Analytics from 2013 showed that only 16% of apps were used three times or more by users. With so much revenue coming from advertisements and in-app purchases, it’s clear to see why increasing the “stickiness” of apps is important for driving up revenue. Some ways are actually pretty simple, have you tried all of these?





Notifications are a double-edged sword. A good, steady stream of notifications will bring users back to your app by gently reminding them that your app is on their mobile device, or informing them of new features and developments with the app. Too many notifications annoy and frustrate the user and lead to deletions and bad reviews. Tread carefully.


Interact with friends



Nothing will keep your users coming back like pressure from their friends to log in. Top score charts are a good start, but largely pedestrian. Think of asynchronous gameplay like Words with Friends, Hero Academy or Great Big War Game. Think of Foursquare. Let the users encourage each other to keep coming back and get sticky.


Visual experience



Graphics and user interfaces need to be pleasing to look at to engage users. Think of Disney theme park rides. The mechanics are usually pretty standard, including log flumes and roller coasters, but they become something much bigger when draped in a story and visual theme. Surely, some of the success of Angry birds comes from its great cartoony style.


Social media



Social media offers tools to help engage users and make them feel that your app is a club they belong to. Facebook and Twitter log-in alternatives don’t just help you spread the word about your app; they also keep users from having to remember a long string of usernames and passwords if they have to re-download the app.





There is no time that you tolerate allowing a buggy or non-functioning app version to be available without having huge repercussions, including app deletion. It’s notoriously tricky to create something that works on all Android devices, so accept that. Don’t accept a post-update buggy spell that causes havoc on a new iPhone. Users will leave and not come back, and possibly leave a bad review as a parting shot.

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