Gender divide opens up as mobile apps become the preferred way of booking travel

The latest annual Mobile App Engagement Index from app marketing platform Liftoff shows that travel reservation bookings on mobile have finally hit critical mass adoption.

Users are becoming accustomed to doing more on mobile and reservation apps are increasingly popular. This year's data shows that for businesses the cost-per-first-booking has dropped. In 2017, the peak cost to acquire a mobile user who made a reservation was $36.95, nearly half of last year's peak cost of $61.09. What's more, the average cost-per-reservation in 2017 ($27.98) was $16 less than the 2016 average ($43.88).

There is a divide between the sexes when booking travel though, women are costlier to acquire and less engaged overall. Men are both 42.9 percent more likely to register and 45 percent more likely to make a reservation on a travel app.

A similar pattern shows up with finance apps. Women show initial interest, but male users drive more value in the end. Liftoff's data indicates that female users are more likely to register for finance apps (32.5 percent) than their male counterparts (28.2 percent). But when they get to the point of activation in a finance app (for example, depositing funds or connecting other financial accounts), men are cheaper to acquire at $34.60, compared to women who need a $198.07 spend.

Conversion rates are better for males too, with 16.3 percent continuing to make an account activation compared to only 3.7 percent of females, a 341 percent difference. The cost of acquiring a female user who goes onto make an account activation in a finance app is up 21 percent from 2016.

The best months for mobile marketers are October to January, with low acquisition costs and high rates of engagement. Spring is the toughest time with engagement dropping 5.40 percent in March and acquisition costs peaking at $95.20 in May.

You can read more in the full report which is available from the Liftoff site.

Image Credit: Rido / Shutterstock

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