June 9 2016

Nowadays there is barely a millennial out there that goes without ‘socialising’ even for a day. So how to make good use of this behavior and give your app the much needed engagement boost? One of the primary reasons that app developers need to focus on engagement strategies for their business, is the abundance of applications in the market. Every day there is a new app being launched that might interest your current users and take them away from you!

In a previous post, we mentioned why social engagement must be included in your game design and how you can achieve it without disrupting the natural flow. In this blog post, we decided to look into one particular aspect of social engagement in applications – chat. After testing and analysing some of the most successful mobile apps making use of this social feature, here’s how we think chats benefit an app in the long run:

The Benefits of In-App Chats

1. Shows that your app is a comprehensive experience

From entertainment to social interaction. Letting users communicate with each other takes your app to a whole new level. It’s no longer just a app but also a ‘social app’ that they need to be active on regularly – the same psychology behind Facebook and Twitter. Deeper interactions also lead to users forming the image of how robust and feature rich your app is as compared to others that only serve one purpose.

2. Keeps users engaged within your app

A typical mobile user definitely makes use of a chat application to communicate with his friends and family regularly. Now offering him the ability to chat up with his friends ensures that you won’t lose your user to an interesting ongoing conversation on another app.

Eradicating the need to switch apps to do what he likes, will enhance his experience as well as automatically increase your engagement rate.

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Ruzzle Adventure Chat

3. Increases the length of the app session

Chats make a user spend more time in your app than just the normal gaming time. Since he is already socialising with other users and his friends, the user doesn’t feel the need to move from one app to the other for regular communication.

According to a post on Localytics, app sessions are the basic unit of measurement for app engagement – wherein every launch of the app counts as a session and the time spent on the app helps developers understand if the users are ‘actually’ interested in the app and are using it for what it is meant.

4. It increases the frequency of app sessions

The longer a user spends time on the app – be it playing a app or simply chatting with his friends – the more likely he is to come back to it frequently. The need to stay on top of the conversation happening in his group, will increase the frequency of app sessions.

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Front Line Commando 2 Chat

5. Hooks your users into the Investment phase 

Increasing app session length helps you take your app growth to the next level: getting the user hooked to your app. The more time he spends on your app, the more likely he is to commit to it. Properly using the hook model will certainly make your app addictive.

The hook model works around creating triggers that are based on the user’s behaviour – his usage of the app and the way he interacts with it on an emotional level. The more relatable a trigger is, emotion wise, the more likely it is for the user to get hooked into your app.

If you are curious about integrating the hook model into your app, check out GetSocial’s ebook

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Adventure Smash Chat

Bonus Tip: Communicate with your users on a regular basis

The one thing that most apps lack is the interaction they can have with their users. With GetSocial in-app chats you can create avatars that can take on the roles of reps that offer tips, tricks and customer service to your app user.

This creates a direct communication channel and have one-to-one conversations effortlessly. You could use this channel to offer support if a user has any concern regarding the app.

Over to you

In-app chats give you the opportunity to regularly interact with your users and make the app more ‘human’. The personalization adds to the user experience, thereby increasing the engagement levels, app session lengths and frequency of app usage. They hold a lot more potential as a social feature than they’re usually credited with.

Have you used an in-app chat before or do you plan on using it?