Mobile App Terminology simply explained

What Is MAU?

The monthly active users metric tells an app developer how many users are active in their app over a 30-day period. It is important to track this over time to understand your app’s popularity, stickiness, and if you have been successful in acquiring long-term engaged users.

To calculate MAU, you first need to define which action you’d like your users to complete in order to recognize them as an active user. These might include launching your app, making an in-app purchase, or creating a profile.
Key Takeaways
  • MAU helps you gauge how many users your app is retaining
  • Each user is counted only once, even if they are active several times during a month
  • MAU paired with various other KPIs can help show the healthy month-over-month growth of your app

Why Are Monthly Active Users Important?

Knowing your monthly active users is important to understanding how your app’s user base has changed month over month. For apps looking to sustainably grow their user base, they should make sure their marketing efforts result in a steady MAU growth rate. This steady growth can determine an app’s stickiness.

MAU in combination with various other KPIs can be used as a guide to improve your app’s performance over time. For example, it can tell you that you need to reevaluate your marketing strategy, pricing, or app design. 

Using MAU with Other Metrics

Above all, MAU can provide you with the bigger picture of your app’s health if you couple it up with other metrics. 

1. MAU Growth and Retention Rates 

If you are heavily investing in acquiring users, but it is not reflected in long-term MAU growth, you may not be acquiring users from the right channels. Consider optimizing your UA strategy and evaluating your channels to see which drive the highest user retention.

In addition to challenges finding the right channels, reevaluating your app’s experience could also help increase the number of users your app retains. Perhaps optimizing the user onboarding process or the frequency of ads shown will help increase the number of your app’s long-term users. 

Finally, you need a strategy to reengage your users. Send them push notifications or reminders to drive them further into the app. Or consider rewarded solutions to create a compelling reason for them to return to your app.

2. MAU and Revenue Growth 

It’s important to understand how the growth of your user base impacts the growth of your business. That’s why monitoring the demographic growth as well as the revenue associated with that growth is essential to ensure your app’s user base has a healthy month-over-month growth. If your MAU and monthly revenue growth doesn’t align with what you expect, then it’s time to reevalute things such as your app’s monetization strategy.

two young men looking down and smiling at a phone

Is MAU a Good Metric?

For one thing, MAU can’t measure immediate progress and will not be useful for recently launched apps. Besides this, a 30-day time period is also limiting. It measures your user base on a month-to-month basis, so you can’t pick up daily changes. If you need a more precise measurement, daily active users would be more appropriate. Especially, if you expect your user base to interact with your app every day. 

While a valuable metric that crucially indicates the stickiness of your app and how well you retain users, MAU gives you a pretty one-dimensional insight into how your app is performing. You should really monitor it along with other metrics to determine whether you are retaining and engaging users well enough to promote positive app growth. 


What Is MAU?

The monthly active users (MAU) metric gives you the number of unique users logging in on your app every month.

How Do You Calculate Monthly Active Users?

You can usually find your MAU metric in your MMP dashboard. It’s the aggregate of your daily active users over a 30-day period.

How Can I Increase My MAU?

You can increase your MAU by analyzing where your app’s problems lie. If you see that your MAU is low or decreasing, you should look into optimizing your campaigns or your UA strategy. To boost long-term retention and engagement, you should ensure users have a reason to keep opening your app – whether that’s through rewards, a compelling in-app experience, a way to escape everyday reality, or all of the above.

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