AppsFlyer, the marketing measurement and experience platform, released a biannual Performance Index that ranks the top media sources in mobile advertising.
This index pioneers the SKAN Index, a SKAdNetwork ranking that reflects the new reality of privacy generated by the enforcement of Apple’s App Tracking Transparency (ATT) framework.
AppsFlyer’s Performance Index analyzed a total of 623 media sources, 33 billion installs, and more than 17,000 apps. From this, the SKAN Index covered 150 million postbacks from more than 3,000 apps. The data reflects the period between August 1 and September 30, 2021.
The data shows that Apple’s ATT impact on the mobile industry has been substantial.
While Facebook dominated AppsFlyer’s pre-SKAdNetwork iOS rankings, TikTok for Business claimed the number one spot in the first SKAN Index.
Facebook dropped to second, and lost the top spot to Apple Search Ads (ASA) in the Retention Index among consenting users. Google continues to dominate in Android and drive the largest number of installs in app marketing.
TikTok For Business managed to adapt best to SKAdNetwork about six months after Apple’s ATT enforcement -- capturing first place in the power ranking, and reaching fifth place in the volume ranking.
Facebook took the No. 2 spot in the power ranking, losing ground since the enforcement of ATT, but took the No. 1 spot in the volume ranking due to its scale, according to the data.
AppLovin ranked No. 3 in the power and volume rankings. Google Ads came in at No. 4 in the power ranking, and placed No. 2 in the volume ranking.
Google continues to drive the largest number of installs in app marketing. The search giant ranked No. 1 in the Retention Index’s power and volume rankings in all Gaming and non-gaming categories, with the exception of racing games.
Most of its growth came from Gaming, where it increased its share in global app installs by 5% comparing the first half of 2021 to the first half of 2020.
Most of Google’s growth came from Android-dominated countries -- particularly in India, Latin America, and Southeast Asia, according to the data. Its reach with Android remains the reason why it is ranked number two in the In-App Advertising (IAP) Index power ranking with a score slightly lower than Facebook’s.
AppsFlyer also found that among consenting users, Apple Search Ads (ASA) ranked No. 1 in both the Retention Index’s global power and volume rankings.
More iOS marketers flocked to ASA following the enforcement of ATT, with the search ad unit reaching nearly 60% of its traffic from the previous index, which covered the entire second half of 2020 in seven weeks.
ASA is the only media source in iOS that functions independently of SKAdNetwork and deterministically attributes users, the study shows.
ASA’s success was driven by non-gaming apps where it ranked first. It secured the top spot in the Life & Culture group in seven regions--Eastern Europe, Greater China, Japan and Korea, Latin America, Middle East, North America, and Western Europe.
In Gaming, ASA ended up third in the power ranking and fourth in the volume ranking. Its performance in Gaming was largely driven by its first-placed power rankings in the Casual Gaming group in Japan & Korea, the Middle East, Western Europe, and North America.
Apple’s search ad also overtook Facebook for global power and volume ranking, driving quality users at scale, with the No. 1 spot in non-gaming and second place result in Gaming.