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What mobile marketers really need to know about deep links

I am surprised by the number of mobile marketers who do not use deep links properly, if at all. Deep linking is a way to enhance the user experience, allowing customization and driving conversions. In the highly competitive world of mobile applications, no publisher or publisher can afford to neglect these benefits.

How far liaison work can become technically complicated. While it's important to have a general understanding of its features, the most important is to understand why this is important and how you can use it to improve the performance of your application.

Deep connection and user experience

A deep link is a very specific URL that takes users to a specific page on a website or at a specific location in an application. Applications do not behave like browsers. If users want to access a specific page of a website, they can simply type that address into a browser. That's why you do not hear about deep linking in the office context. With applications, however, they must be configured correctly to ensure that when users click on a link, they direct them to the desired location in the application.

Deep coupling is particularly important for mobile because the mobile landscape is fragmented. In less than a minute, a user can pass an email to the mobile web, to an application, to a text message and vice versa. Mobile users expect this experience to be transparent in the same way as on a desktop computer, where they rarely encounter broken links or bad turns. If things go wrong, a mobile user will bounce back, and, chances are, they will not come back.

As marketers, we work hard to convince people to install and use our apps. A study by comScore shows that even though consumers spend 57% of their time using digital media in mobile apps, it's hard to get them to download new apps.

Then there is the challenge of keeping them engaged. Less than 25% of users will return to an app after they have downloaded and used it once, according to a 2016 study by Braze (then Appboy).

With such high stakes, there is no room for error. Deep linking is a way to connect all moving points, so users can have a smooth experience.

Do not neglect the deep deferred ties

A common mistake made by mobile marketers is the neglect of deep deferred links, which is not exactly like a deep connection. They both lead to the same end result, but the deep deferred links must navigate a detour. It comes into play when a user has not yet installed the destination application.

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Suppose that an electronic trademark advertises a banner on the mobile web for "20% off your first purchase". When people click on this ad, they expect to be redirected to a relevant page. "Congratulations, here's your unique promo code of 20% Now start shopping."

If users have already installed the application before clicking on the ad, the deep links will allow them to land on the appropriate destination in the application. For users who do not have the application yet, marketers must use the deferred deep link to direct them first to the app store to install the application and then to the appropriate page of the application when they open it for the first time.

Without a deep deferred link, a user who downloads the application after clicking on an ad will launch the app and display the homepage, not the corresponding promotion. The chances of backing up to try to activate the promotional code are slim. More likely, they will leave the application and not come back.

Deep links are the only way to get users directly to the point of sale after they've already become a user of the application. Deep links and deep deferred links are also critical to a marketer's personalization strategy.

These technologies allow user information to successfully complete the application installation process, allowing application publishers to deliver a personalized welcome message or other type of application. 39, personalized experience. In addition, they help to unify the experience in an environment where people jump from email to mobile in response to offers.

To better illustrate how you can use deep linking and delayed deep linking to improve your marketing, let's take a closer look at four specific use cases.

1. From the mobile web to the application

Marketers and publishers typically use deep links to redirect mobile web users to their applications, as I mentioned when I explained the deep deferred links.

2. Society

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Marketers or mobile app publishers can place a link to the content of their app on a social channel, such as Facebook or Snapchat. With the right approach of deep links and deferred deep links in place, this unique URL will take the user to the appropriate location in the application, which they already have installed or that they first have to visit the app store to download it.

3. E-mail

Traditional messaging service providers (ESPs) allow you to track clicks on links, but they do not always have the ability to route the user to a specific location in the site. Application or in the application store. Marketers can create deep link URLs programmatically or manually and place them in the email to create a better user experience.

4. SMS and references

Advanced deep linking technologies allow marketers to create short URLs in the app that allow users to share the application or information about an SMS referral program. When the user clicks on "share", marketers can take advantage of the deep linking API to create a short link and stuff it with the data they need, for example promotional codes, strings of content or even the name and user ID of the referent.

When recipients click on a link, they are immediately redirected to the desired location in the application, even if they first have to visit the app store for download it.

Understanding the relationship between deep connection and attribution

The attribution and the deep link are the key to the growth of a marketing application. Indeed, your performance marketing efforts can only be profitable if you (a) know which source (s) contribute (s) to your growth and which others, and (b) make sure your users receive a superior first impression of your application through deep links.

Marketers are sometimes disturbed by the relationship between deep links and attribution. Deep linking relies on attribution data to properly route a user. That's why you should never work with two separate vendors for assignment and deep linking – because the technology has to work together. Working with a single provider will simplify your process, reduce technology debt, save money and ensure consistent reporting.

Let's explore the following example to illustrate this point: A user clicks on an ad or link. Their device is fingerprinted, which means that the browser logs identification information on the device so that it can "know" the user later. Then the link redirects the user to the application store, where he or she can install and open the application.

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Once the user has opened the application, all attribution providers and deep links work in exactly the same way. The user is associated with the impression created before the installation of the application. This footprint usually includes a combination of the IP address of a device, the size of the phone, the size of the screen and the version of the operating system. Then the provider responds to the application with attribution data, such as the referral campaign, the media source and the URL.

Mobile marketers face many challenges, ranging from unsubscribing to uninstalls and lack of commitment. The deep links allow us to offer the kind of seamless experience that users are entitled to expect. It's worth working through any confusion or misconceptions, so you can unlock the benefits of deep links.

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land. The authors of the staff are listed here.

About the author

Shani Rosenfelder is responsible for Content & Mobile Insights at AppsFlyer, the global leader in attribution analysis and mobile marketing. He has over 10 years of experience in key roles in marketing and content for various businesses and online start-ups. Combining creativity, analytical prowess and a strategic mind, Shani is passionate about brand awareness and brand awareness through innovative, content-driven and data-driven projects.