Spend on Facebook App Install Ads Up, CTR Down

David Murphy

Facebook app install ad 2Advertisers who use Facebook mobile app ads to promote and drive downloads of mobile apps from Google Play and the Apple app stores, increased their spend on this ad unit over 2014, with monthly spend rising 235 per cent in December 2014, compared with January 2014, according to new Mobile App Ad Trends research released by Kenshoo. Impressions for these ads went up by 65 per cent during the year, while installs of mobile apps from the ads increased by 182 per cent according to the data.

At the same time, Kenshoo’s study shows that the clickthrough rate (CTR) on Facebook mobile app ads fell by 27 per cent over the year, indicating the greater competition for clicks in the sector, as more companies advertise their eCommerce (including retail), gaming and consumer apps.

Based on the findings of the report, Kenshoo says that marketers need to spend more than double the amount on mobile app ads to trigger an app installation on Apple iOS devices as they do on Android devices. Put another way, the cost per install (CPI) of Facebook mobile app ads on Apple devices is more than double that for Android devices. This could indicate either greater competition, perceived value, or just a price premium on Apple devices. Across app types, gaming apps carried higher CPI costs for Facebook mobile app ads than eCommerce or general consumer apps.

The cost-per-click (CPC) for Facebook mobile app install ads rose over the 12-month period, with December showing a 179 per cent increase over January. The CPC on iOS devices was 163 per cent higher than on Android devices.

While the overall CTR for Facebook mobile app ads decreased over the year, ads on Android devices deliver a higher CTR than those on iOS devices – in other words ads on Android devices are more likely to drive engagement.

Facebook mobile app install ads for consumer and eCommerce apps had relatively higher CTRs (and hence engagement) than ads for gaming apps, possibly because of the greater competition in the gaming sector.

The rate at which clicks on Facebook mobile app ads convert to mobile app installs increased by 135 per cent over the year according to the data, which shows that when people do click on an ad, they are much more likely to install the app on their phone. This indicates an improvement in targeting and/or ad creative and messaging on the publisher side and the advertiser side.

The Kenshoo Mobile App Trends report reflects an aggregation of advertisers using Kenshoo’s Adquant platform that are mobile-only and that have defined a mobile app installation as a conversion. The resulting data set comprises over $19m (£12.8m) in advertiser spend, and over 10m app installs, targeted across more than 100 countries. You can download the full report here.