Shopping Apps See Historic Engagement with 40% Boost in Purchase Rates, Driving Golden Age for Mobile Shopping

Annual report also suggests a mobile shopping renaissance in North America with 4x more purchase engagement, while Asia-Pacific struggles with fatigue 

PALO ALTO, CA, June 17, 2020 — Liftoff, the leader in mobile app marketing and retargeting, today released its fourth annual report on the rapidly growing market for mobile app commerce in partnership with the global app marketing platform, Adjust. The study, pulling from the most extensive dataset to date, shows that mobile shopping apps — the global “go-to” for inspiration and assistance in-store and everywhere — continue to experience significant growth. The report also identifies North America (NAR) as the mobile shopping leader as Asia-Pacific (APAC) struggles with shopping fatigue.

Analyzing more than 53 billion ad impressions across 10 million installs and 2 million first-time events between April 2019 and April 2020, the report found the following:

It’s never been a better time to be a retail app 

Liftoff and Adjust’s analysis points to a golden age for shopping apps. At $19.47, the cost to acquire a user who completes a first purchase has decreased by more than half year-over-year. Meanwhile, engagement has surged 40%, as 14.7% purchase rates tower over last year’s 10.5%. Observe the data over the past two years and the trend is even more apparent, with purchase engagement up 149%.

Plus, with COVID-19 driving stay-at-home orders, consumers seem to be leaning on mobile shopping even more readily: while install costs are relatively stable throughout the year, they drop to their annual low of $2.48 in March 2020 — just as shelter-in-place peaked.

“Last year, our analysis found that the rise of sales bonanzas from retail giants like Amazon, Flipkart and Alibaba were tilling the soil for other retailers, priming mobile users to shop year-round, and this trend is only continuing,” explained Mark Ellis, co-founder and CEO of Liftoff. “As consumers adapt to the changing retail landscape, they’re leaning on mobile more than ever. It’s never been a better time to be a retail app marketer.”

In a world where physical touchpoints are reduced, apps position brands to keep driving growth. And according to Adjust, companies have already stepped up their game by focusing on re-engaging and retaining their users.

“The e-commerce industry as a whole got a bit shell-shocked in the first few weeks of March in the wake of COVID-19, with marketers dialing back ad spend,” said Paul H. Müller, co-founder and CTO of  Adjust. “But as we saw the vertical start to rebound in April, there’s been a broader push toward re-targeting and re-engagement — in line with bringing customers back into the funnel and keeping their existing ones engaged.”

APAC shows shopping fatigue while North America surges 

Last year, the mature markets of APAC and NAR showed similar trends. While users were registering more readily for shopping apps, converting to purchases was a challenge, suggesting that users in these regions were ‘window shopping’ on mobile. However, the data shows a major flip this year:  APAC and NAR usage patterns diverge — with North America coming out in front.

Costs-per-first-purchase in NAR are down 4x (to a low $14.85), while conversion rates are up more than 4x — and 6x higher than that of APAC (27.6% compared to APAC’s 4.7%). Meanwhile, APAC costs have nearly doubled in the past year, up to $54.90. The region finishes last in engagement with purchase rates less than half that of last year, suggesting the region is ripe for a refresh.

To download the full report, visit:


The 2020 Shopping Apps Report draws from Liftoff internal data from April 1, 2019, through April 1, 2030—which spans 53 billion ad impressions across 10 million installs and 2 million first-time events. Specifically, the report tracks costs and conversions globally, breaking down key engagement activities and trends to compare performance across regions (North America, EMEA, and APAC) and profiles 5 countries (Germany, Indonesia, Japan, the U.S., and the U.K.).

About Liftoff 

Liftoff is a complete mobile app marketing platform that helps companies acquire and retain high quality app users at scale. Liftoff uses unbiased ML to find all best users for your app, creative testing to deliver the most engaging ad experience and a unique cost per revenue model to optimize for your LTV goals.

Liftoff is proud to be a long term partner to leading brand advertisers and app publishers since 2012. Headquartered in Redwood City, Liftoff has a global presence with offices in New York, London, Paris, Singapore, Seoul, and Tokyo.

About Adjust

Adjust is a global app marketing platform. Born at the heart of the mobile app economy and grown out of a passion for technology, the company now has 16 offices around the world.

Adjust’s platform includes measurement, fraud prevention, cybersecurity and marketing automation products. Together, they make marketing simpler, smarter and more secure for the 35,000 apps working with Adjust. Global leading brands including Procter & Gamble, Rocket Internet and Tencent Games have implemented its solutions to secure their budgets and improve results.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *