Google, Facebook still dominate mobile app advertising: AppsFlyer

  • Google leads SEA retention index; Facebook comes up top in re-marketing
  • Non-organic installs on iOS dropped 17% in 2H 2020 in SEA; Android saw 9% increase

Google, Facebook still dominate mobile app advertising: AppsFlyer GOOGLE and Facebook ad networks are still key to retention and re-marketing in Southeast Asia, the latest AppsFlyer Performance Index finds.

The 12th edition of the index by the mobile marketing analytics and attribution platform analysed over 492 media networks and almost 6.4 billion installs over 8,331 apps across APAC.

They found that Google and Facebook still dominate in the performance index, though each network plays on different strengths, AppsFlyer said in a statement.

Google Ads, for one, rank top when it comes to retention in Southeast Asia (SEA), while Facebook Ads fare better when delivering high quality users from re-marketing campaigns across Asia Pacific (Apac), the index finds.

In mobile app marketing, the index found Google extending its lead over Facebook at the top of the retention index’s SEA power ranking, claiming first spot in all gaming and non-gaming categories, especially finance-based apps.

Indonesia’s Financial Consultant App, Pendanaan Teknologi, ranks third place in the overall finance-based apps SEA, followed by Cashcash and Akulaku, the company said.

In all lifestyle non-gaming categories (such as shopping, life & culture, and social), Facebook ranked first in SEA, followed by Google Ads and Apple Search, the company added.

The Remarketing Index findings, showing Facebook leading the pack (Source: AppsFlyer)

In the re-marketing Index, Facebook comes in first place across all categories. While it also retained top spot in both gaming and non-gaming categories, Google Ads came in second in non-gaming, while Remerge was second in gaming.

Although Facebook dominates both volume and quality metrics, Google has managed to grow its share in the app re-marketing conversions by 66% from the first half to the second half of 2021, AppsFlyer said.

iOS non-organic installs dropped

While Apple’s App Tracking Transparency (ATT) framework won’t be enforced until early spring, AppsFlyer’s Performance Index shows it is already causing shifts globally.

The share of non-organic installs (NOI) on iOS dropped 17% in the second half of 2020 in Southeast Asia (compared to the first half of the year), while NOI on Android saw the opposite effect — increasing by 9% in the same period, the company said.

This is especially relevant in Southeast Asia, where AppsFlyer’s data from H2 2020 shows that Android users contribute 84% of organic installs, versus just 13% for iOS.

“2021 is going to be significantly different to previous years for marketers with end users enabling Limited Ad Tracking (LAT), and growing attention around user privacy alongside Apple’s privacy changes,” Beverly Chen, marketing director of AppsFlyer Asia Pacific.

“iOS reliant networks and advertisers using them need to start thinking of active solutions to limit impact now.”

A 30% jump in the cost per install (CPI) on iOS in H2 2020 was a key factor behind the significant drop (Android cost increased by only 10%). As a result, mobile app marketers generated fewer installs for the same budget, she argued.

The rise in media cost for iOS users was driven by two main elements: An increase in demand due to accelerated digital transformation caused by Covid-19, and a decrease in supply due to a 40% rise in the share of users who enabled Limited Ad Tracking (LAT).

Continuing the trend from AppsFlyer’s 11th Edition of the Performance Index released in November 2020, TikTok ads saw significant growth on iOS (up 52% in its share of the pie). From 2019 to 2020, TikTok Ads recorded 82% more NOIs in APAC, climbing five spots in the global iOS gaming power ranking to reach an impressive #9 position from #14, AppsFlyer said.

In the IAA (In-app Advertising) Index, which ranks networks based on their ability to drive users who generate revenue from ads, Google Ads claim first spot in all categories.

Unity Ads is pushing its way through the market across SEA, especially in Hyper Casual gaming. For casual and midcore gaming, Facebook clinches the top spot.

 

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