A Compuware study (2013) shows that anywhere from 80-90% of all downloaded apps are used once and then eventually deleted by the users.
This number seems stark for a report produced in 2013, but it's only gotten worse since then what with the rate of new apps submitted to the app store.
With freemium or a subscription-based pricing model being the most popular means to monetize apps, appreneurs have to ensure their apps don't get deleted.
Here are some of the most common reasons why users delete your mobile app.
#1--Technical issues is the number one reason why apps get deleted
The most obvious one isn't it? Have you ever gone back to an app more than once that crashed while trying to get it to work? Or an app that was so slow in rendering the content that it made you question your wi-fi connection speed at one point.
Users are unforgiving when it comes to apps that have bugs, crashes or a slow response time. Ensure that by the time you submit your app to the app store, you've done complete testing at your end as well as through a set of signed up Beta users who can give feedback across use cases.
#2--Fail to convince the user about the value proposition--the app lands in trash
Discovery of your app in the app store isn't enough. How you communicate the value that your app provides to the user makes a huge difference in whether they continue to use the app or delete it.
When users are looking for a solution to a specific problem, ensure you have the right relevant keywords for app discovery. Once you've got their attention, clearly state the app's value proposition right up front in the description or the sub-text in the app name.
The more clearly you can state how a person can use this app to solve their problem, the better it is for your app to stay longer in the user's phone.
#3--Poor UX will confuse the user
User experience and interface design is so key to the app that if a user finds the navigation confusing and cannot get to the gratification quickly, they're likely to simply delete your mobile app.
UI and UX are not just about how the app looks, but also about how easy it is for the user have their problem resolved through your app quickly. A good UX is a factor of how well you understand the user's problem that you intend to solve to help them resolve quickly and also a factor of understanding who your customers are--their profile.
#4--Lack of value proposition by packing in too many features? Your app will land up in the trash
Does your mobile app pack in too many features? If with the first version you're trying to do too many things or address too many problems within the same app, you're not building a strong value proposition for your customers.
The best apps are those that do one thing, and they do that one thing damn well. Of course, over a period of time through customer feedback and natural extension of use cases, the scope of features your app offers will expand, but on day one, having a clear proposition and that communicated to the user will help them identify the app for that specific problem or solution.
There is a reason why Shazam doesn't also have a social network within the app!
#5--Asking for too much information upfront can spark disinterest
Oftentimes, it's challenging to communicate the complete value of a mobile app until the user has experienced it themselves. The value in the Shazam app is only when it can accurately detect the soundtrack for a user.
For a user, the app's proposition will only work once it's demonstrated. In this case, helping them get to that point of experience is key. Asking for too much information upfront before you even communicate value can be detrimental to your app's future engagement with the user.
If you must collect a whole lot of information from the user, stagger it at various intervals or at various points in the app where it becomes necessary for a good user experience.
#6--Not enough content or users for engagement
If you've built a marketplace or a social networking-based app such as Uber or Instacart or a dating app, this is your number one challenge when you launch the application.
When user generated content is crucial for the experience of all your users, finding no content or not enough can quickly disengage the user. And most likely, they wont come back again to the app.
When building such an app, ensure that you launch in a controlled environment and within a closed user group where you can bring the multiple customer segments onto the platform at the same time.
#7--Intrusive in-app purchases
There is such a thing as intrusive in-app purchases that can disengage a user, for pricing is an art and a study into human psychology.
Most make the mistake of not giving enough value upfront to the users before asking them to pay for the complete experience. In this case, you end up frustrating the user more than hooking them into unlocking premium features or content. Test your pricing model with the beta group to see if they're likely to pay while they're engaged. Let in-app purchase not be the reason for your users to delete the app.