3 Ways Programmers Can Improve an App or Site’s Customer Retention

3 Ways Programmers Can Improve an App or Site’s Customer Retention

Whether your business’ main product is an app or website, you likely understand that those involved in developing the site or app can play a significant role in your business’ overall customer retention. A strong digital product is naturally more likely to attract a loyal customer base than a product that’s lacking in key areas.

However, developing an impressive site or app isn’t the only way programmers can help a business attract customers and keep them. The following are a few overlooked tips programmers can apply to boost customer retention to an even greater degree:

Leverage AI for Personalization

Artificial intelligence can allow an app to offer a personalized experience to users. The specific manner in which it does this will simply depend on the nature of the app or site.

A common example is that of an eCommerce app. With AI, the app can monitor and learn from each individual user’s behavior every single time they engage with it. The information an AI “learns” can make it easier for the app to offer product suggestions that are tailored to each user’s unique tastes.

Research indicates today’s consumers don’t merely want personalized experiences; they expect them. Thus, programmers who incorporate AI into sites and apps have a better chance of making the right impression on users.


Customers are more likely to return to an app or site if the experience of using it is in some way rewarding. Programmers can offer that experience by “gamifying” a digital product.

As the name implies, gamification involves designing an app or site so that the feelings a user has when engaging with it are similar to those they would have when playing a game.

Some apps are easy to gamify. Others may require more consideration on the part of developers.

That’s not to say some apps absolutely can’t be “gamified.” For example, many developers of fitness apps have found that gamification is a powerful way to maintain a loyal user base. Keeping users can be difficult for fitness apps, given that it’s not uncommon for people to abandon their fitness goals. Developers have overcome this challenge by designing a user experience in which achieving a new fitness goal feels similar to “leveling up” in a video game.

However, programmers and developers do need to remember that there are several ways to add game-like elements to an app. Examples include leaderboards, in-app currency, tiered challenges, and many more. A development team gamifying a site or app should thoroughly consider all options before determining the ideal way to transform their product into a gamer-friendly experience.

Emphasize Effective Onboarding

This is among the most crucial points developers can remember when designing a product. It’s also one of the most frequently overlooked.

Some apps are easy to use from the start. All their features and capacities are intuitive. To return to a previous example, very few users are likely to have much trouble learning how to navigate a basic eCommerce app.

That’s not the case with all apps and sites. Once a user learns how to navigate an app and take advantage of its features, it may be user-friendly, but a learning period might be necessary before a user reaches that stage.

Developers need to prioritize ensuring that learning period delivers a pleasant experience that thoroughly and efficiently familiarizes new users with an app’s capabilities. With effective onboarding, an app has a much stronger chance of keeping new users than it otherwise would.

That said, developers must remember that these are general tips. They still need to consider their own specific goals (or those of their business partners) when cultivating a user retention strategy. These suggestions will merely help them get started.