Why ROAS Is The Best Metric To Measure The Success Of Your App Install Campaign

Mapendo Team
May 30, 2022
Why ROAS Is The Best Metric To Measure The Success Of Your App Install Campaign

When it comes to mobile app marketing, what is the indicator of success? The answer is simple: knowing the correct mobile app metrics you need to follow when analyzing your data. While it may sound simple, whichever metrics you decide will have a big impact.

While there are as many as 19 metrics, follow us as we show you why mobile app marketing ROAS (Return On Ad Spend) is the holy grail to assessing your apps’ performance, identifying what needs to be improved, and taking your app install campaigns to the next level.

Key Mobile Advertising Metrics to Watch

Before we delve straight into why mobile app marketing ROAS is a top choice, here are some other noteworthy contenders to keep your data driven app install campaigns on track:

  • CPI (Cost Per Install)

Definition: CPI measures the cost an advertiser pays a publisher for driving an install.

How much do you spend for each install? Knowing this is, without a doubt, critical. It’s important to match the CPI to the source and understand how that affects your return. Comparing the CPI to revenue-related metrics such as APRU (average revenue per user) and LTV (life-time value user) is another useful step.

  • Retention rates

Definition: The percentage of users who return to your app is known as retention.

A high retention rate is generally a good indicator of a “sticky” or valuable user experience. Understanding the link between traffic sources and retention can aid in the planning and forecasting of future app install campaigns, and targeting future users most likely to be high LTV users.

  • ROAS: The one to watch

Definition: Return on Ad Spend (ROAS) calculates how much revenue was generated for each dollar spent on a specific ad or campaign.

Mobile app marketing ROAS positive app install campaigns refer to campaigns where installs and in-app events bring advertisers more revenues than the money they spend. The formula for calculating the Return on Ad Spend is as follows:

ROAS = Revenue of Ad/ Ad Spend

We believe that the most significant metric for mobile app marketing is ROAS. While other metrics like CPI and retention rates provide useful insights, at the end of the day it is the mobile app marketing ROAS which determines whether a campaign is profitable or not.

Why is this?

Well, even if an app install campaign brought high LTV users who generated significant revenue, the app install campaign cannot be regarded as a success if you paid more than you earned from those users. Mobile app marketing ROAS is believed to be good as long as it is positive.

This is certainly at the top of the priority list for most mobile advertising campaigns, but it’s worth noting that all of the above metrics have an impact on your ROAS. Lower CPIs help increase ROAS, as well as a high retention rate, because it means that users are staying on your app longer and are more likely to generate in-app revenues through subscriptions, purchases, transactions for example.

Want to take it a step further and learn how to boost your mobile app marketing ROAS to its highest potential? Find here the top 3 most effective strategies all marketers should be using.


If you paid more to get high value users than they spent in-app, your ROAS will be negative and this is something no advertiser wants. A good ROAS varies for every company of course, but it must be positive.

This being said, keep in mind that establishing a positive mobile app marketing ROAS can take time and optimisation techniques on the app install campaigns. Lastly, early indicators of revenue will enable you to calculate your partial ROAS to see if you’re on the correct track.