Mobile App Trends 2016

As marketers saw in 2015, mobile apps continue to dominate the digital landscape in part for their convenience, speed, and relevance. This year marketers have seen mobile media time grow to in excess of 67% in the last year according to comScore. The app revolution is flourishing, giving marketers ample opportunity to reach consumers within respective markets.

This year’s comScore report, entitled 2016 US Mobile APP Report, touches on a broad range of channels and consumer behaviors such as audience trends, user habits, top apps, content categories, and app measurement. Below are the high-level trends that marketers should be aware of (for more in-depth analysis, register via link below to download the full report).


Key Takeaways from comScore’s Mobile App Report 2016:

1. Mobile Still Dominates Usage

Mobile App trends 2016
The graph above shows that mobile now represents 65% of all digital media time, with mobile apps dominating that usage. The data is an increase of 12 points over the last year. Share of digital time on desktop has decreased roughly 16 percentage points since 2013 and has declined to 33% of digital time spent.

That said, marketers should not abandon desktop efforts to focus solely on mobile, as the majority of ecommerce transactions still take place via desktop. Marketers should instead abandon the idea that desktop must be the primary focus area during multi-platform planning and look to utilize the increase in app adoption to deliver on consumer expectations.



2. App Usage Is Still Climbing

Mobile App trends 2016

Looking at the numbers above, one can imagine the millennial segment spends more time in their smartphone apps compared to other segments. Notably there has been usage growth across the board, especially within the 55-65 age group with a 37% increase over the last year.

The data gives great insight to marketers looking to identify gaps in marketing plans that have focused on more traditional means to reach audiences. It will be important to pivot efforts to capitalize on the growth of the different audience adoption.



3. Top Mobile Apps

Mobile App trends 2016

It should come as no shock that the top mobile apps are Google and Facebook. What will continue to be key in Google’s success is that they maintain the largest multi-platform audience by a significant margin given their ability to fit across multiple top app categories. Providing diversified offerings has allowed them to absorb a much larger share of unique visitor touchpoints.


4. App Usage is Imperative to Mobile Success

Mobile App trends 2016

Lastly, the data reflects that consumer apps dominate the bulk of digital time spent. As anticipated, lifestyle brands (think beauty, fashion, and food) have invested heavily in developing apps that assist in each phase of the consumer journey, seeing a significant increase in app usage over the last year. 



What Marketers Need to Know About Mobile Apps Moving Forward

Marketers will need to make larger investments of resources and effort into the development of strategies that both engage and retain the mobile consumer. With the materialization of consumers’ dependency on both apps and smartphone servicing attributes, apps have solidified themselves as the primary engagement source for entertainment across all demographics. Marketers should focus on continually finding creative ways to natively integrate themselves with in the mobile experience.




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