Looking for mobile attribution platforms that will help you optimize your mobile marketing campaigns?
Look no further – I’ve compiled a list of the best mobile attribution tools, along with a guide on how to choose the best one for your business.
But before we get into the list, I’ll cover some attribution basics.
What Is Mobile Attribution and Why It’s Important?
Mobile attribution is essential for a data-based approach that helps you understand the source of your conversions. It links a conversion (e.g., app install) or event (e.g., in-app purchase) to an ad campaign. In other words, it helps you connect an effect with a cause.
Mobile attribution covers the entire user journey and allows you to track what made the user install your app or game as well as any action they take after installing it.
Knowing where users discover your app or game is invaluable and helps you make better marketing decisions.
How to Choose Mobile Attribution Platforms
You’re probably wondering, what are the criteria for choosing a mobile attribution platform?
Here’s what you should consider.
As a mobile marketing agency, we’ve tried quite a lot of mobile attribution platforms. One of our top considerations when choosing the one is how accurate the data is.
Here’s the thing.
When you compare data from an attribution and UA platform, ideally, there should be no differences, and if there are any, they should be minimal. Oftentimes, that’s not the case and the data can vary, which creates confusion.
For example, we’ve experienced that an attribution platform data showed 20% more installs attributed to Google than our Google Ads dashboard. That means something’s not right because there’s a discrepancy between the two. We’ve also had instances where some of our paid installs were attributed to organic installs.
All that makes it hard to accurately analyze our data. Not to mention it creates problems on the reporting side because campaign numbers don’t seem to match up, causing mistrust with clients. For example, when we’re talking about a large number of installs, knowing whether the CPI was $0.50 or $0.40 makes a huge difference. Because of that, accurate data is imperative.
Features It Offers
This also depends on your specific needs, but generally speaking, you want the attribution platform to have a wide range of useful features and attribution methods.
For example, mobile attribution platforms usually use multi-touch attribution. The goal here is to find out the value of each customer touchpoint that results in a conversion. That enables platforms to determine which channel or ad campaign is responsible for the conversion and thus helps you make informed choices.
However, this is an example of a very general feature – you might look for something more specific in attribution platforms. For example, the ability to track data in cohorts and the ability to choose time zones to avoid any data deviations and increase accuracy.
Whatever it may be, make sure the attribution platform you choose offers it.
As a mobile marketing agency that specializes in mobile game user acquisition, we highly value good reporting on a mobile attribution platform. Reports are very useful, not only for our clients but for us as well, as it allows us to track results of our campaigns and optimize them accordingly.
It’s important to note that the type of reporting depends on the type of mobile game we’re working with, as we have different campaign goals for different games.
Because of that, one of the most important reporting features is a high level of customization, as we want to track different metrics for different clients and campaigns. Furthermore, the ability to get as much data as possible on one page makes our job easier since it allows us to skip many additional steps.
Thus, the more filters and dimensions reporting has, the more time you save.
How long you have to wait for attribution data is another big deciding factor when choosing a mobile measurement partner.
Let me explain.
After the iOS14 update, it takes up to seven days for iOS data to be attributed, so that’s more or less the same for all platforms.
When it comes to Android, attribution speed depends on the platform. Of course, it would be ideal for attribution data to be available a few hours after the install or on the next day at the latest.
However, with some platforms we’ve used, the data was often more than a day late. That creates several issues. One of them is that monthly reports are late because we have to wait for attribution data. Another thing that might happen is that an attribution platform doesn’t show the full number of installs, which then makes the CPI seem lower than it is.
Because of that, it is extremely important how fast installs are attributed.
Security and Fraud
Keep in mind that the mobile attribution platform you choose will have access to your user data. For that reason, it needs to have best-in-class security features, as you don’t want to risk any breach of privacy.
Furthermore, fraud prevention and detection is another essential feature a mobile attribution needs to have. It’s something that costs you millions of dollars and prevents you from making good decisions. So make sure to avoid it by choosing a tool that helps prevent fraud.
The Number of Integrations
How many integrations the attribution platform has is an important deciding factor. Naturally, the more integration it has, the better. However, that also depends on your specific needs.
The Devices It Covers
For mobile businesses, it’s essential that an attribution platform covers mobile devices. Luckily, most platforms offer mobile attribution, and many specialize in it. However, depending on your business, you might also require attribution for desktop and TV, which many tools also offer.
As you might expect, pricing is another big factor when choosing a mobile attribution platform.
If you have a smaller company or a startup, your best choice is to choose a tool that has a free plan. That’s also useful for companies of all sizes because it allows you to try out the platform before committing to a premium plan.
For bigger companies who require access to additional features and a customizable experience, it’s best to go with a platform that offers custom enterprise plans.
Top Mobile Attribution Platforms
When it comes to the top mobile attribution platforms, four market leaders are AppsFlyer, Adjust, Kochava, and Branch. I’m going to explain what each one offers in detail.
However, I’ve also included a couple of other mobile attribution platforms worth checking out – Singular, Tenjin, and Attribution.
AppsFlyer is among the best mobile attribution platforms out there. It’s a simple tool that helps you see where your conversions come from, i.e., their source. What’s great is that you can see the entire user journey across all channels and devices, while preserving user privacy.
Furthermore, it provides insight into which campaigns and channels perform the best and give you the best ROI.
That, in turn, allows you to optimize your advertising budget accordingly.
Some of the interesting features AppsFlyer provides are multi-touch attribution, SKAdNetwork attribution, as well as retargeting attribution.
What’s great about AppsFlyer is that there’s a free basic option with a 30-day trial of premium features, ideal for startups.
But more on that in the following section.
- Zero – This is a free for life plan that includes 12k conversions and other basic features
- Growth – This plan costs 6 cents per conversion and is great for small businesses. You get everything in the Zero plan plus mobile attribution, cohort and retention reports, LTV analytics, and many other cool features.
- Enterprise – This is a custom pricing plan where you get all features AppsF lyer has to offer and is geared towards bigger companies that have a wide range of marketing needs.
Adjust is a mobile measurement company and it’s another one of the top-rated mobile attribution tools perfect for mobile companies. It helps you grasp the entire user journey, across many different channels. Naturally, that will tell you which channels perform best.
Furthermore, with Adjust attribution, you can identify which ad creatives work best and why. More specifically, you can find out which campaigns are bringing you high-quality users, whether it’s those who make a purchase, engage with your app, or have high LTV.
Beyond that, you can also track how users interact with your app. For example, when they churn. This is essential because it helps you improve user experience.
Some of Adjust’s clients are popular gaming companies like Zynga and Tencent, as well as giants like Booking, SoundCloud, Duolingo, and Spotify.
Adjust has three pricing plans, catering to different needs. Here’s a short overview of each one.
- Base – With the basic plan, you get up to 1,500 monthly attributions, which is perfect for small mobile businesses and indie developers. This plan is free.
- Core – Offers 250,000 annual attributions, which makes it great for medium-sized businesses. For pricing, you need to contact Adjust.
- Enterprise – With this plan, you get more than 250,000 annual attributions and is geared towards larger companies. For pricing, you need to contact Adjust.
Kochava collects engagement information including impressions, clicks, installs, and events, which are then attributed to the correct source.
When it comes to impressions and clicks, Kochava uses anything from unique device identifiers to IP addresses. If no device identifier is available, Kochava uses fingerprinting logic, which is 90% accurate.
When tracking events, advertisers can choose which post-install events constitute a conversion for a particular ad campaign.
Reconciliation factors include Lookback Window, Match Integrity, and Click time, the first one having the highest priority and the last one the lowest.
What makes Kochava unique among mobile attribution platforms is their Marketers Operating System or m/OS. It’s an omnichannel platform that unites all different solutions and goes beyond mobile attribution. In other words, it allows you to manage every aspect of your marketing efforts in one place.
A great thing about Kochava is that it gives out raw data, even for free users or during a trial.
Kochava works great for companies of all sizes since it offers three different plans. Wondering how much Kochava will cost you? Check out the following section.
- Free – Kochava’s free plan includes App Analytics, Attribution, and more, along with many useful features. We recommend this plan for smaller companies, startups, and those who want to try out Kochava’s m/OS.
- Foundation – This plan gets you 10k conversions per month for $100/month. It includes everything from the free plan, plus additional features like configurable attribution by app and partner.
- Enterprise – This plan includes 5k monthly active users and starts at $100/month. You get everything from the Foundation plan and premium features like tracker-level configurable attribution
Branch’s mobile attribution solution is designed specifically for a post-IDFA world, as it doesn’t rely on probabilistic methods. Instead, Branch uses a unique predictive algorithm that delivers accurate attribution even when there’s no universal ID.
Furthermore, Branch focuses on people-based attribution, which makes it different from all other mobile attribution platforms.
This tool claims to offer complete data, helping you make sense of fragmented user journeys that happen across multiple platforms by connecting all the dots. Unlike some platforms, which see each fragment as a different user.
By integrating Branch into all channels, you get accurate measurements that allow you to improve user experience.
Some of Branch’s standout features are configurable attribution windows, view-through attribution, cross-channel insights, data freedom, and fraud protection.
Branch has only two plans, which I’m going to explain in the following section.
- Launch – This is a free plan that includes up to 10k monthly active users and it’s perfect for small businesses. It offers all of the basic features, including cross-platform attribution.
- Enterprise – This custom pricing plan is for more than 10k monthly active users, which makes it ideal for bigger companies that require complex attribution solutions.
Singular is another one of the top mobile attribution platforms that assists you with determining the performance of your marketing campaigns with accurate attribution solutions.
What’s great about Singular is that you get a complete ROI overview. Every advertising dollar you spend is connected to attributed installs and their source.
Other valuable attribution features Singular offers are touchpoint prioritization, lookback windows, customized re-engagement flows, and multi-touch tracking.
Additionally, Singular claims to have best-in-class fraud prevention.
Some of Singular’s clients include top gaming companies like Rovio, Supercell, Zynga, Riot Games, Electronic Arts, Ubisoft, and Glu, which is quite impressive.
For Singular’s plans, check out the following section.
- Standard – This is a free 30-day trial that allows you to try out the basic Singular features. It’s great for smaller teams.
- Premium – Thin plan is perfect for growing companies who need more marketing insights. The pricing is custom.
- Enterprise – Suitable for larger companies that require custom solutions.
Tenjin is a platform that offers marketing data for mobile app and game developers. Many top f2p games use this software as it aids user acquisition and monetization.
What’s unique about this platform is that you get free mobile attribution if you use Tenjin. They believe install attribution should be free, which is why they “don’t charge for paid installs that are tracked through Tenjin”, their website states.
Another great thing about Tenjin is that their pricing plans are suitable for any company size and the pricing is scaled according to your needs.
Here’s more info on pricing.
- Free – With the free plan, you get all available features, including attribution, except for premium support and data science consulting. Furthermore, you get up to one million events per month. Every additional one million events cost $150.
- Advanced – It includes everything from the free plan, but you get up to 150 million events per month. Furthermore, the additional cost per one million events is $50. For this plan, you need to contact Tenjin.
- Pro – With this plan, you also get all of the features like native or 3rd party attribution, analytics dashboard, and cost and ad revenue aggregation. However, you get more than 150 million events, and premium support and data science consulting is a $1,000 add-on. For pricing, you need to contact Tenjin.
The last mobile attribution platform on this list is the fittingly named Attribution app. Like most other tools, it offers multi-touch attribution, with which you gain insight into each touchpoint and see how it affects your marketing campaigns. The data collection is automated across popular ad platforms.
With the Attribution app, you can see detailed user history across multiple devices, data on ROAS by cohort and unattributed journey to conversion. Furthermore, you can compare your ROI by channel or campaign.
Pricing plans are not available on Attribution’s website.
Wrapping Up Mobile Attribution Platforms
We’ve come to the end of our list of best mobile attribution platforms. Hopefully, this article will help you choose the best attribution tool for your mobile business.
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