Leaked Snapchat data reveals major feature struggles

Tyrone Stewart

SnapchatSnap has plenty of reasons to be worried with the performance of its Snapchat app following the revelation that users don’t regularly use many of its major features – instead opting to use the app to communicate back and forth with friends privately.

According to data obtained by The Daily Beast, covering a five-month period between April and September 2017, users send personal snaps to friends more often than they post to Stories. In August alone, users were found to be 64 per cent more likely to send a Snap to a friend than post to Stories, and sent 34 messages each day on average.

Perhaps more worryingly for Snap, the data reveals that only 20 per cent of Snapchat users consumed content from publishers on Discover daily.

Over 40 publishers – including The New York Times, the Daily Mail, Vogue, and BuzzFeed – put time and resources into creating daily digital editions of their content for Snapchat’s Discover section. The numbers will make for disappointing reading for them, with Discover Edition unique users peaking at 38m – or 21 per cent of Snapchat’s 178m daily active users – on 24 July.

And it can only be expected to get worse with the app’s upcoming redesign shifting the Discover section away from the user content that people actually engage with. If this becomes a problem for publishers, the redesign could in fact leave a bigger revenue hole than previously.

Adding to Snap’s woes, its Snap Map feature – which arrived on the back on massive hype and controversy – hasn’t been setting the world alight since its early successes.

The data shows that, despite usage usually spiking slightly on Saturdays, Snap Maps was only checked by an average of 19m users – or 11 per cent of the app’s user base – each day in September.