As a startup entrepreneur, you have a measure for success. For most that measure is customer acquisition; that moment where new users put money into your product also known as your conversion point. Now, this isn’t always necessarily tied to money. Your conversion point could be a user creating a profile or simply signing up for a subscription, but monetization is almost always the end goal. Defining your own conversion points can help you optimize acquisition strategy and make scaling to meet demand simple.

There are several approaches to successfully funneling app conversions, but for the time being let’s focus on the most prominent – identifying and fixing key issues. In our case this will be weeding out “window-shoppers.” Some conversion points are misleading. If you consider one of these points to be downloads, you’re doing yourself a disfavor. There is a vast difference between an install and an engagement. Unfortunately, a good majority of apps are downloaded and never even opened. That’s not a conversion – that’s a dead-end… that’s a window-shopper.

What you’ll need to do is leverage analytics or grassroots surveys to find why users aren’t engaging. You’re identifying the problem so you can fix it. You may find that your initial conversion point of a user signing up is actually part of what is turning them off. Some mobile companies have found that people balk at using an app when they are required to enter too much personal information upfront. Streamlining the process of getting users started could be exactly what your app needs to find success. Don’t let there be roadblocks between your product and customer. Keep it simple. Make them want to step inside.

Registration is where far too many mobile apps lose their users. Your first impression was a bad one, and you won’t likely get a second chance. Letting users experience the app first, before you ask them to register or to pay, could provide the bait and hook you need. Again, remove roadblocks. To keep the analogy going, let them try the dress on before buying.

The takeaway here is that you have to be honest with yourself when it comes to identifying your conversion point. Being delusional about your app’s success is only going to hurt you in the long run. Define true, tangible conversion points by people who are actually engaged with the product. A brick and mortar store doesn’t consider window-shopping a sale and neither should you.


CEO and Co-founder of Neon Roots Ben Lee is the co-founder and CEO of Neon Roots, a digital development agency with a mission to destroy the development model and rebuild it from the ground up. After a brief correspondence with Fidel Castro at age nine, Ben decided to start doing things his own way, going from busboy to club manager at a world-class nightclub before he turned 18. Since then, Ben has founded or taken a leading role in 5 businesses in everything from software development to food and entertainment.