App Annie has long been known as a reliable source of truth for app market data. Over 1000 customers from brands large and small around the world rely on its data to tell them how the market is looking, how they stack up against the competition on things like downloads and revenues.
App Annie Pulse is the company’s latest innovation, a mobile app, available to all App Annie users, which puts this data at their fingertips, on the move, on their phones, enabling marketers to react instantly to changes in the market, whether they are at their desk or not.
“We built App Annie Pulse for everyone, but our North Star persona is an executive on the go, to enable them to quickly see what is happening, and then be able to ping their team to ask them to do more analysis on the desktop,” explains Eric MacKinnon, App Annie’s VP of Product.
Insights from data
So what sort of data does App Annie Pulse offer the on-the-go app marketing exec? There’s a lot to choose from, but the app makes it easy to cut through the wealth of data available to deliver real insights.
Insights, in fact, is the name of one of App Annie Pulse’s key features. It analyses all the data available in the App Annie dataset and identifies significant changes in the download and revenue performance of any apps the user has chosen to follow, or asked to be alerted about. It then digs deeper into the data, to identify what the most likely underlying cause of the change is.
For example, a competitor app may see a spike in downloads on a given day. If it’s an app the user has asked App Annie Pulse to track, he or she will be alerted to the spike immediately, along with the likely reason for it, such as an increase in search visibility, or being featured in the app store. Even if the user has not actively asked App Annie Pulse to track a given app, it will surface information on apps that it thinks are likely to be relevant to the user, based on their past activities on the App Annie platform as well as markets.
A typical alert to a user might read something like this: “Downloads increased 145% day-over-day (4,148 to 6,015) after being featured in “Our Favourites” and “Top Free” in the Apple App Store”
Or: “Revenue increased 56% ($1,020 to $1,590) following a version update from 1.6.9 to 1.7.0)
The information is presented in a data feed, just like a social media news feed, making it easy for the user to quickly scroll through the feed and get the information they need.
Global Performance Score
Another key feature of App Annie Pulse is a Global Performance Score for apps. This creates a holistic ranking score with a maximum score of 100 for any app the user wants to look at, based on how good the app performs in four areas: Acquisition, Engagement, Monetisation and Sentiment.
“It’s a way of looking at all aspects of an app’s performance and boiling it down to a simple number to give the user a quick sense of how big a deal a new app might be,” says MacKinnon.
It's interesting to note that the app does not have to score well in all four categories to achieve a high total score. The app also enables the user to drill down into the score for each of the four factors, to get a feel for where the app is strong, and where it’s weak. Users can also compare Performance Scores for competing apps, in order to rank their app against the competition, or to analyze the race for power within specific markets).
If a user wants to see how an app ranks based on other criteria, they can create their own configurable metric, based on any thirteen metrics from a list that includes factors such as Downloads, Revenue, Install Base, Average Session Duration, Average Sessions per User, and Day 1 Retention.
These rankings also take account of the type of app under investigation, in a very intelligent way. For example, an app showing a long Average Session Duration would rank highly for this metric if it was a game, where you would want the user to stay in the app and keep playing. It would rank poorly, however, if it was a banking app, in which case a long Average Session Duration would suggest that it’s not as easy to get things done in the app as it should be.
Another key feature of App Annie Pulse is Top Charts. This enabless the user to see, at a glance, the top ranking apps in any country based on a number of different metrics, including App Store Rankings, Downloads, Revenues and Active Users. Users can choose to look at these rankings for apps on iOS, Android, or unified across both platforms. They can also drill down into any individual app’s Performance Indicators, once again using a set of pre-defined metrics of the user’s choosing.
“Really, App Annie Pulse is just one more way to stay connected to App Annie data,” says MacKinnon. “For sure, detailed, in-depth analysis is better suited to the desktop, but we felt that it was important to give executives instant access to insights that are important to them so they can act on them instantly. That’s what App Annie Pulse is all about.”