As a mobile marketer, your priorities may seem at odds with one another:
- Deliver enough audience growth to impress investors and help your app compete in a cluttered marketplace
- Try and keep costs per acquisition (CPA) low, despite indicators that suggest CPA is only going to keep rising
- Ultimately deliver high lifetime value (LTV) per individual audience member
Instead of thinking of these as competing to-dos, the key is to realize that marketing a mobile app is a two-step process. The first step, acquiring users, should go hand in hand with this critical second step: onboarding and communicating with your new customers in ways that foster long-term relationships, mitigate churn, improve retention, and help achieve LTV goals. Getting this right is what has helped on-demand food delivery service Delivery Hero increase conversions by an enviable 85%.
The challenge with getting mobile customers to convert
It’s worth putting Delivery Hero’s success story into context within the overall ecommerce industry. As shoppers in general are increasingly becoming mobile shoppers, mobile commerce has a ton of upside, with yearly growth in revenue generated via apps and mobile web purchasing projected to total in the hundreds of billions of dollars by 2018. And it’s an equally daunting challenge, with conversion rates coming in at the bottom of the barrel (1.18%) on mobile, compared with 3.35% and 2.52% with desktop and tablet-based shopping, respectively.
So what can we learn from Delivery Hero’s onboarding and messaging strategy, given the company’s clear victory in boosting conversions?
Onboarding and messaging best practices that Delivery Hero implemented
Welcome new users
It may sound like a no-brainer, but simply sending a note—a thank you, a special offer, educational information, or a unique hello—when people first download your app has been found to increase app retention by 71%. Delivery Hero sends welcome messages upon app download and first purchase.
Leverage multiple channels to communicate with your customers
Pairing an email with a push notification, for instance, can help increase retention by up to 130%.
For Delivery Hero, using multiple channels vs. messaging on just a single channel is what has delivered that 85% uplift in purchasing.
Use personalization to humanize your marketing (not be creepy)
The on-demand app makes each communication with every individual unique by using attributes, such as order location (a given city) and the current weather in that locale to send messages that are specific and meaningful. For instance, a message on a rainy day shies away from what otherwise could be a generic, one-size-fits-all call to action (like “order in tonight”), opting for an intimate reminder of a service that’s there for you when you really need it, “Enjoy the rain, comfy at home and order in tonight!”
After testing out this kind of personalization, Delivery Hero has seen a 30.9% increase in conversions.
Get the timing right
Given that the majority of orders and purchases that are added to online shopping carts are abandoned and $4 trillion in lost sales is at stake annually, it’s no surprise that marketers across the spectrum send abandoned shopping cart notifications. But not all of these reminders hit the mark. When potential customers start ordering takeout and don’t follow through, Delivery Hero follows up with app users—at the right time.
The company tested time intervals for different customers and regions and has found the most effective time window for following up. Pinpointing this time frame has resulted in a 20x uplift in conversions for app users all over the globe.
Make gamification work for your brand
Each mobile customer is unique, and messaging works best when tailored to these individuals and their specific lifecycle stage. With active and loyal customers in mind, Delivery Hero implemented a strategy for gamification, using News Feed Cards to reward customers for achieving certain loyalty levels, which resulted in boosted retention rates among this engaged cohort of users compared with less engaged users.
Strengthened customer loyalty is within reach
Delivery Hero has taken the time think strategically about everything from that first welcome message to a follow-up note when a customer abandons an order. If you’re ready to do the same, you’re already on your way to strengthening your customer-relationship marketing.