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Building an app in 2019?
Then you need a roadmap. Sure, you can get an app up and launched. But if you truly want to succeed, you absolutely must track its progress.
Gone are the days when you could throw an app on the marketplace and get a few free users, guaranteed.
Back in 2008, the Apple App Store had under 30,000 apps. Ten years later, in July of 2018, that number had skyrocketed to over three million.
As more apps become available, the competition gets stiffer for every click, download, and share.
But that doesn’t mean all hope is lost. On the contrary, the competition has brought with it some incredible tools. As you track the key metrics for your app, you’ll control its growth.
These days, an analytics tool is a critical part of any successful app. But which one should you choose?
We’ve vigorously researched dozens upon dozens of app tools. All of them work, but some might be a better fit for your app or niche than others.
Today we’ll cover them all. But first, a little background on what you should look for when you go shopping for an app analytics tool.
Before we explore the top tools in our roundup, let’s cover a little bit of the terminology and criteria beforehand.
As you look to find an app that works for you, you’ll want to know these criteria ahead of time.
In-app tools show you analytics from user behavior within the app. This can include information such as demographics and generally how users interact with your app.
There are two types of in-app analytics: qualitative and quantitative.
While it sounds really technical, the distinction is actually very simple: quantitative data shows what happens (quantity), and qualitative data explains why (quality).
For example, this image shows session playback and a timeline of that session side-by-side.
These are examples of quantitative analytics (the screenshots come from Appsee, one of the tools we’ll cover here.)
Let’s also look at a real-world example.
Imagine you want more users to share your app on social media. You’re experimenting with changing the color of the “share” button from blue to green.
Qualitative data, like click rate, shows users click “share” twice as often when it’s blue than when it’s green. That’s good, right?
Not so fast. Let’s look at the other side.
Qualitative data, such as a click map, heat map, or watching session replays, shows that on most of those new clicks, the user didn’t share.
Instead, they immediately went back to the main menu and clicked on the green “settings” button right next to “share.”
Qualitative data tells us that users aren’t sharing more when it’s green. They’re confusing it with “settings,” which just makes users frustrated.
Both types of metrics serve different purposes, and they’re both useful.
This next category is simple: nobody can use your app if it’s down.
We often forget that “the cloud” is really just a set of computers. And just like that time you got a virus on your laptop or your iPhone crashed, the cloud can go down, too.
But that’s just one component of an app that works flawlessly.
Performance and crash data apps will provide information on the technical side of your app. Expect data such as load times, crash reports, and session details.
Here’s an example of performance and crash data from Firebase, one of Google’s analytics options on this list.
It doesn’t matter what type of app you’re running: you need to track crash and performance statistics.
Depending on the size of your team, though, this might not be information everyone needs.
All the data in these types of apps is developer-centric, and understanding crash reports won’t help the marketing department very much.
Unlike the previous types of tools which measure user interaction and app performance, most marketing analytics tools work outside of the app itself.
As you grow an app, you’re looking to find new users and encourage more downloads. Advertisements are one of the most common ways to do this.
But like any good marketers, you want to look at the data to ensure your marketing campaigns and ad spend are actually generating users and new revenue.
That’s where marketing and install analytics tools come into play.
If you’re familiar with ad analytics platforms, like Facebook Ads or Google Ads, much of the data you find on these tools will look very familiar.
The primary difference is that the objectives aren’t necessarily sales, email subscriptions, or website visits—they’re downloads, sessions, and in-app purchases.
For example, here’s an example of a media ROI report from AppsFlyer.
Some of the most important marketing metrics to track include impressions, clicks, installs, and conversion rate.
Now, with the explanations out of the way, let’s look at the apps!
Adjust is designed for app developers looking to deeply understand their marketing campaigns. You can view attribution, marketing analytics, and watch your audience grow.
AdMob is a tool from Google that measures how well in-app ads are performing. You’ll be able to see a variety of statistics to learn which networks are bringing in the most revenue, what types of click-through rates you’re getting, and which ad formats are performing best for you.
Free to use, you just pay for the ads you run—similar model as Google Ads.
Adobe Analytics offers a set of tools specific to mobile app measurement and data. This isn’t the main focus of the tool, but Adobe’s robust suite has earned a reputation for quality.
Aiden.ai separates itself from the others on this list by focusing on using artificial intelligence to generate recommendations and suggestions. It finds the best platforms and makes recommendations based on analysis of data.
Amazon Pinpoint is the analytics tool component of Amazon’s widely-used and highly-respected Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform.
Like AWS, Pinpoint’s pricing is infinitely scalable depending on your needs, starting with a tier that allows you to track up to 100 million events each month for free
Amplitude tracks a huge quantity of analytics from your app and allows you to split and splice the data to nearly any view type you wish. Its data storage capabilities use best-in-class security and keep information safe.
App Annie is a robust app analytics piece of software that focuses on pricing, sales, and download data. You can also keep tabs on how your app is being received by the market with its state-of-the-art ranking and review analytics.
Now a part of Cisco, AppDynamics provides detailed reports on app performance. You’ll be able to see whether the code is performing as it should and how that impacts the end user. AppDynamics also includes information on infrastructure metrics, including server, database, and network performance statistics.
App Store Connect is the custom software program of Apple and is provided for free to developers on the App Store. It includes three components—App Analytics, Sales and Trends, and Payments and Financial Reports.
While it isn’t as robust as some of the paid options on this list, it provides a hefty set of data across all areas, using direct information from Apple.
Included with membership to Apple Developer Program. This costs $99/year, with discounts for some nonprofits, educational institutions, and government entities.
AppLink.io covers a huge variety of use cases, industries, and types of apps that include SaaS, retail, finance, startups, and others. The system is designed to integrate three types of app data—analytics, engagement, and performance—to provide insights not available on other platforms.
Appsee focuses on top-notch qualitative analytics for in-app user behavior. You’ll be able to see user recordings, play back sessions, see touch heatmaps, track funnels and actions, view retention analytics, and see real-time reports and alerts.
AppsFlyer is one of the dominant app analytics tools out there, and you’ll find it on a huge number of the most successful apps. It works to improve marketing and attribution, keep user retention high, and improve app revenue through a host of analytics.
Appsumer analyzes user acquisition and marketing data to bring simple recommendations to improve marketing campaigns and acquire new users. Its focus is on demonstrating ROI from fragmented data and showing which platforms are performing the best.
Schedule a demo for pricing.
Apptentive works a bit differently than most of the analytics platforms on this list. Unlike most platforms that work on metrics derived behind-the-scenes, Apptentive asks customers directly about their experiences. This human feedback provides a unique tool to improve app performance and drive engagement and downloads.
Contact sales for quote.
Like Apptentive, AskingPoint focuses on building customer interactions, getting reviews, and building the app based on what customers are asking for. You can create surveys, run polls, send messages, and engage in two-way communication with users.
Formerly known as Appboy, Braze is an analytics platform designed around in-the-moment customer interaction. You can use Braze to track customer engagement, lifetime value, customer interaction, and other information.
Schedule a demo for pricing.
Buddybuild is a tool for development teams to gather analytics as they prepare to ship apps. You’ll be able to track analytics and data for beta users and get detailed analysis into their experience and issues with features like crash reports and beta tests.
Contact for pricing.
Chartbeat is focused exclusively around real-time content delivery, performance, and engagement. This is obvious from Chartbeat’s customer list, which includes publications like The New York Times, CNN, and The Atlantic. You can track a variety of metrics through mobile apps as well as web content.
Contact for pricing; starts at $7,000/year
Clicktale shows user behavior and customer journey data. You’ll be able to find both qualitative and quantitative data through Clicktale, include heatmaps and funnel tracking. Clicktale integrates with websites and mobile apps.
Request a meeting for pricing information.
Countly generates statistics on the customer journey for all types of applications and programs, including web-based and mobile applications. It offers impressive segmentation options, including “smart segmentation” that pulls segments without requiring manual coding.
If your app is a game, GameAnalytics is designed specifically for you. You can track player statistics, engagement, retention, and revenue all from the same platform. It’s designed to work with all types of game platforms and has dozens of integrations.
Google Analytics is one of the oldest and most respected analytics tools in existence. However, many users of its world-famous web tracking don’t realize GA also has a feature for mobile apps as well, both on Android and iOS.
Firebase is the third Google product on this list after AdMob and Google Analytics—so what makes it different? Firebase is an analytics program designed specifically for mobile apps. In addition to AdMob (which measures ad performance) and GA (which measures user behavior), Firebase also includes detailed reporting on app-specific features, like crash reporting. It’s also the only Google product on this list that isn’t free to use.
Flurry is an app analytics tool owned by Yahoo that works across different apps and combines that information into one interface for your entire portfolio. You can sort by a variety of metrics including demographics, custom events, or session activity.
Heap pulls in data from a variety of sources and allows you to analyze them at all at once. You can quickly check on user interactions, mobile app performance, and customer journeys, and make adjustments accordingly.
As its name suggests, Inapptics is a platform for in-app reporting. It also includes information on crashes based on the user perspective, such as crash playbacks (as opposed to error reports on the code). Inapptics includes quantitative data, like charts and graphs, as well as qualitative data like heatmaps and replays.
Kochava works to streamline customer attribution channels and combine data so app creators can make easier decisions.
Kumulos allows not only compiled data analytics but also a set of geotargeting features for push notifications, endpoint monitoring, technical and commercial performance, and other features.
Leanplum helps you create more effective campaigns with step-by-step guidance and cross-channel analytics. You’ll be able to see which ad strategies are working and which need improvement, and be able to react quickly and effectively to the data.
Contact for custom enterprise plan.
Localytics is an app analytics tool that uses detailed customer information and data to help you personalize your targeting and achieve better results. It includes tools for attribution as well as funnel measuring to track metrics like conversion rate.
Contact for demo.
Mixpanel is web analytics software that also has a mobile app component. It’s designed to be simple to use, yet fully featured unlike many of its “simplified” competitors. With the Enterprise plan, you can predict users who will most likely convert before they do.
Unlike other tools, Mixpanel charges based on the number of data points you use per year.
MoEngage is an analytics and messaging platform that uses the power of machine learning to engage prospects, create better apps, and increase conversions and engagement. You can use its recommendations to send push notifications, SMS, emails, in-app messages, and more.
Priori Data focuses on helping app developers succeed in the app marketplace by providing comprehensive information on app performance, attribution, and other metrics. Priori Data offers three aspects to its analytics—Keyword Intelligence, App Intelligence, and Market Intelligence.
Priori Data has individual offerings for each of its three plans.
Rollbar handles full-stack crash and performance reporting for all types of mobile apps (and web applications, too). It covers a huge variety of languages and platforms including iOS, Android, Ruby, Python, and PHP.
Listed prices are monthly. You can also save by paying yearly.
Segment provides an infrastructure for customer data through its platform. Segment builds connections between your different data sources and uses the combinations to create different maps of your data. Specifically, Segment provides protocols for data governance and personas for audience management.
Singular, formerly known as Apsalar, allows you to connect data silos and build out a profile of your user analytics. You’ll be able to track attribution across campaigns and devices, as well as use Singular’s powerful analytics and automations tool for custom recommendations and insights.
Contact for demo.
Swrve is built around real-time customer engagement. Using Swrve’s tools you can build strong relationships with customers and retain them, while creating an even stronger app that will result in more customer success down the road. Swrve contains tools for analytics, messaging, A/B testing, and segmentation all in the same platform.
Contact for demo.
Taplytics is a mobile app analytics tool with a special feature—personalization. You can create custom interactions and build trust and rapport with each user, while still keeping their data safe.
Contact for quote.
TUNE provides attribution analysis for mobile app creators looking to grow their user base and business. Measure and acquire new users and information from across different platforms and channels, then use that data to improve the effectiveness of campaigns and increase app installs.
Contact for pricing.
Upsight is an analytics platform that allows app developers to measure the effectiveness of user interactions and in-app marketing and ads, and track analytics from a variety of sources. Upsight integrates a variety of analytics together into one platform.
Contact sales for demo.
Woopra markets itself as clear statistics on the customer journey, broken down and ready for actionable changes and improvements. It works across a variety of platforms, including mobile apps, to bring customer data into one streamlined interface.
And that wraps it up—the best app analytics tools for 2019 and beyond.
Whether you’re looking to improve your current app, finalizing your launch strategy, or just in the brainstorming stage, there’s a tool out there for you.
The process to choose an analytics tool is simple. First, understand what you want to measure. User engagement? Downloads? Ad performance? Uptime?
Those questions will dictate what type of app you should be researching.
Next, decide your budget. Sure, you can go into the search process without one. But you might be setting yourself up for disappointment if your top pick is just too expensive.
Many analytics services provide discounts for yearly billing, so create a yearly dollar amount you’re willing to spend.
Based on your needs and budget, narrow the list down to the handful of apps that fit both specifications. And from there, you’ll want to dive deeply into the features and choose the perfect fit.
The ideal analytics tool for you is out there. Which one will it be?