Factors that Increase User Retention in Financial Apps

Learn about the five factors that keep users engaged and increase user retention metrics and how Okra can help

Factors that Increase User Retention in Financial Apps

Over the past three years, there has been an explosion of financial services apps across the African continent, with the number of apps increasing threefold. With alternative lending and financing applications taking over the playing field. However, users typically churn pretty quickly, with many uninstalling the apps less than a week after the initial download ("Most Apps Get Deleted Within a Week Of Last Use - Insider Intelligence Trends, Forecasts & Statistics”). For a fintech business, this means lost revenue and customers.

There are challenges to creating fun or exciting experiences for a financial services product, and it takes a nuanced understanding and creativity to build a service that users love, leading to reduced churn over time.

In this article, we'll look at the five factors that keep users engaged and increase user retention metrics.

Simple User Experiences

They say first impressions stick, and that remains true even within the world of mobile applications, especially when dealing with finance. Lengthy onboarding flows that cause frustration or complicated requirements can slow down user adoption and increase churn.

A great example of simple and intuitive experiences include social apps like Snap or Instagram that allow the user to focus on one thing - creating content. A user shouldn't have to make more than three taps to get an action done. Seamless experiences develop a sense of efficiency and accomplishment. These are the little wins that drive retention.

Using Okra's Auth and Identity products, you can create simplified onboarding flows and allow your team to focus on the app and customer experience.


Our financial lives are just as meaningful and private as any part of our existence. So we need to feel like we're having a private conversation with our financial services. This means creating truly tailored experiences for each individual. The more personal the experience, the higher the chances a user will return to an app.

Make users love your service. A tailored experience like Duolingo that utilizes characters to teach users new languages helps create a more memorable experience. Bespoke experiences help users feel like they're not interacting with an organization but with a humanized persona. Feeling connected is essential to keep users around.

Using Okra's Income and Transaction products, you can better understand the various customer segments of your service and deliver unique personalized experiences that drive your churn down.


One of the main reasons we use financial apps is simply spending less time doing the things we need to do with our money. Whether a financial management app or a simple loan service, the app should deliver a seamless service experience.

Open finance APIs, like Okra, create an opportunity for unique experiences built on financial data making it easy for everyone to find and use financial applications. The more data your team can work with, the better the experience that can be created. The resulting effect is long-term user relationships.

Users want to feel like their lives got more manageable by using your service. But unfortunately, it's difficult to understand how finance management or wealth creation works; if a user takes the time to learn but can't get the services to work for them, then churn is inevitable.

Re-engaging churned users

Users typically expect to find value in an app as soon as they get past onboarding. Typically though, this is not the case. Most users either delete or forget about financial services apps pretty quickly. This does not mean, however, that they are not potential customers. Reaching out to your churned customers with offers and sharing new updates to your service or app helps remind them that your service exists. You never know; they might need you sometime down the road.

A great example is how streaming services like Netflix and HBO Max reach out to churned customers over their new shows and special discounts. It's essential to understand user cohorts and customize messaging and offers for each.

A comparison of Average User Retention vs. Average churn within the first three months of installs “Mobile App Download Statistics & Usage Statistics (2022) - BuildFire.” BuildFire, buildfire.com, 20 Dec. 2021, https://buildfire.com/app-statistics/.

Privacy & Security

Everyone wants to keep their money safe and what they do with it secure. This is the case in any user's financial situation. Banks have traditionally served this role; however, with so many financial services apps, user data is more available and accessible than ever. With data privacy in the collective mind of users worldwide, it's crucial to protect your users’ data. Any data breach significantly reduces trust amongst your users leading to unprecedented churn.

Ensuring your users are aware of your data privacy policies allows for a feeling of trust and safety. Trust is essential to building a long-term relationship with users. For example, a long-time internet browser player, Mozilla, has created a robust reputation among power users as one of the most secure browsers.

At Okra, we work internally alongside regulators, banks, and our partners to ensure that data on our platform is as secure as possible. We keep all user data encrypted and provide a portal where users can see which organizations have access to their data. In addition, the MyOkra portal allows users to take action on their data including revoking access to apps that they no longer use.

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If you are passionate about available finance, you definitely should visit our website to see other services that might be appealing to you.

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