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Deep Linking: Key for User Retention and Engagement

Mrinal Parekh Mrinal Parekh, Senior Manager at CleverTap, has expertise in product, consumer, and digital marketing, with previous roles at Razorpay and Amazon.
Deep Linking: Key for User Retention and Engagement

User retention is the defining metric for successful mobile apps. The value of incorporating deep links into user retention strategies has been proven not just in quantifiable metrics, but also in intangible benefits like a memorable user experience.
In my previous post, I discussed the science behind deep linking and how to implement it. Now, let’s see why deep linking is a killer tactic for customer engagement and retention.
1. Prompt specific user actions
Here’s an example from Netflix: I recently received an email asking if I would like to continue watching a show I stopped mid-way. I was bored, so I clicked the link.
The link didn’t just take me to the Netflix homepage or simply launch the app on my phone. It triggered the app to open the player and start the show from the exact point where I left off.
By taking me right back into the action, instead of just taking me to my profile or my watchlist, I’m 100% re-engaged with the content and the app.
2. Assist and personalize onboarding
Apps put so much money and effort into acquiring new users, only to lose more than 60% of them after only the first couple of uses.Many businesses are already running personalized drip campaigns or push notifications to onboard new users — or maybe both.
But first-name level personalization isn’t enough. You need behavior-based personalization to truly engage users.
Duolingo is an excellent example of a deeply personalized onboarding flow. If for some reason you install and then do not return to the app, the way they reach out to you reminding of your progress and steps left to complete the onboarding.
3. Amp up your coupon code game
Are you still recovering abandoned cart like it’s 2015?Too many apps share a coupon code via email or push, leaving users to launch the app, navigate to their cart, add the coupon code… and not doze off in the middle.
Deep linking is so much more user-friendly.
Instead of sharing the cart link and a coupon code, a deep link can automatically apply the relevant coupon code when a user clicks. The user is taken right to their cart, sees the discount auto-applied, and clicks checkout. Isn’t that better?
4. Retarget like a boss
Retargeting or remarketing is one of the most effective engagement techniques. Remind inactive customers of your app with an ad that appears on any other website or mobile app they use, and get them back to your app.Adding deep linking to remarketing campaigns gives you an extra edge. When someone clicks an ad, they get to the exact point where they dropped off. Deep links deliver a seamless user experience.
Remarketing Campaigns
5. Get your referral marketing right
Many of today’s fastest-growing apps use referral marketing to lower their customer acquisition costs while engaging existing users.Take a look at Uber’s referral marketing, which takes advantage of deep links.
Uber Referral Marketing
When a user signs up with a referral link on Uber, their first ride is free. There’s no hassle of entering complicated referral codes.

The CleverTap and Branch Deep Link Integration

Mobile deep linking has a direct impact on improving the user experience. 
It ensures a seamless user experience and reduces drop-offs as users are redirected to the app or an app store instead of the browser. 
Deep linking allows app publishers to build creative app install campaigns, improve user onboarding, and also incentivize users to engage more, leading to better retention. In many cases, deep links can also be used to bring back hibernating users or make retargeting more impactful.
The CleverTap and Branch deep linking integration makes emails even more effective by focusing on a user’s core interests. Email continues to be one of the most used channels for customer engagement. Now when you embed universal deep links in email campaigns, not only will the user be directed straight to the app, but the CleverTap and Branch integration will also ensure that user behavior information is captured.  
By combining our segmentation and personalization capabilities with deep linking from Branch, app marketers can be highly calibrated and contextual in their outreach. Giving users what they want, in the fastest possible way, will always be the most effective engagement and retention strategy. What’s more, these deep links can be automatically generated, saving you the time and effort it takes to manually create and paste these links into email copy.

There’s no doubt that deep links are becoming an essential part of the mobile marketer’s toolkit. And we’ve now discussed how to use deep links to move the needle for user acquisition, engagement, and retention — the 3 critical metrics for mobile app growth.
Are you using deep linking in your mobile marketing campaigns? Share your thoughts in comments below, and let us know how you’re using deep links to improve your user experience.

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Last updated on March 12, 2024