We know that data tracking is an important part of optimizing your apps for user engagement. It’s also a crucial factor in marketing and monetizing your apps, improving the user experience at every touchpoint with the right data.
Apple’s new App Tracking Transparency (ATT) policy, however, is changing how apps can track user data in a major way. It’s asking users if they want to grant permission for apps to track off-app data, instead of automatically opting them into data tracking.
This is a major change, and pre-permission prompts are our best (and in some ways, only) option for increasing the number of users who will allow for data tracking post-iOS 14.5 update.
In this post, we’re going to discuss how to optimize your iOS 14.5 strategy with pre-permission prompts for best success.
The ATT is perhaps the most significant iOS 14.5 feature, and the biggest change is simple.
Previously, data tracking was automatically enabled and users could delve into the app to disable it, but they had to do it proactively.
Now, when users log in post-update, they’ll be asked if they want to allow data tracking. They’ll see a message from Apple, with the first option saying not to allow tracking. It’s essentially a new version of a user consent form. You can learn more about how this works here.
This change is powerful; so far, data has shown that only 4% of U.S. iPhone users have opted back in to ad tracking on Facebook.
Unlike with the GDPR, you cannot customize the message users see when they’re being asked whether they want to enable or disable data tracking. Apple’s message is what’s displayed, and their language doesn’t exactly encourage users to opt in.
While you can’t change the permission prompt, you can create a pre-permission prompt. This is a full-screen prompt that will appear before Apple’s message, and it gives you your chance to say your piece about why data tracking can be valuable to the user experience.
You can see Facebook’s pre-permission prompt here:
In order to increase the likelihood that users do allow your app to track data, it’s essential to follow these four steps.
Apple does allow for pre-permission prompts, but they have strict guidelines about what you can and cannot do with them.
You are allowed (and encouraged) to explain what users get out of enabling data tracking. These need to be straightforward and specific, so keep it short and avoid passive voice.
You could say, for example, that data tracking allows your app to:
Here’s an example from their site:
While creating your pre-permission prompts, make sure that you don’t violate the four following rules:
There are a number of tips and tricks that copywriters use to create persuasive, enticing messages that will resonate with their target audience.
When creating pre-permission prompts, you’ll want to use the following strategies:
In larger text across the top of the prompt, you can say “Enabling data and location tracking allows us to do the following.” This explains what you want users to do, and it positions them to be more likely to take that direct action.
The prompt below is a great example, stating exactly what does and doesn’t happen when you enable or disable data tracking.
Let’s say that you have a weight loss app, and if users allow for data tracking to check in with your fitness app, they can provide more insight into calories needed to lose weight daily based on your diet and activity. This is a great example of how a single feature can make a big impact on the user experience.
Make sure you’re quickly explaining how different features will benefit from tracking, and how this will impact the user in turn. In the example below, you can see that data tracking allows the app to keep content relevant to each user and to share up-to-date deals, price drops, and special rates.
Be straight and to the point. Short, simple sentences are going to be key; you want to persuade users without drowning them in information. If they’re overwhelmed, they’ll likely skip the prompt and go straight to a “no.”
Bullet points with graphics are a great way to make your point in a concise but still persuasive way. The pre-prompt below from Instagram is an excellent example.
There are some pre-permission prompts that tell users they should allow data tracking in order to “keep the app free long-term” or to “keep the app glitch-free.” This can backfire; it doesn’t impact users right away and it’s only a maybe that anything would change. That’s not persuasive enough.
Whenever possible, address benefits that will impact them right now. Let them know what they’ll be missing if they pass up on data tracking and all of the benefits that are included.
If they disable data tracking on their budgeting app today, for example, they won’t get personalized alerts any longer if they’re overspending. This has a direct and immediate impact on the customer and their bank account; that’s persuasive.
This is what will get them to hit “Allow” on the next screen.
You want to make sure that you’re explaining that they can still use the app without allowing data-tracking and you’re not trying to trick or threaten them into it. (Some prompts, unfortunately, come off a little threatening). Instead, explain what is involved and how you’ll use that data. See an example below from Skyscanner:
When you’re using clean, simple, and bright designs, it does accomplish several things at once:
The following design tips can help:
We’re willing to bet you put a great deal of time into tracking your overall app performance, including revenue, engagement, downloads, and more.
Assessing the efficacy of your ATT pre-permission prompt can be just as important. To help app developers determine how many users are enabling or disabling data tracking, we’ve released a new metric here at myTracker: the ATT Status.
This report tells you how many users opted in and out of tracking permissions, or if permission has not been requested. If you have a particularly low opt-in rate, it’s a good sign that you may need to test other prompts to see if they’re able to increase the number of users who do allow tracking.
The Apple iOS 14.5 update is turning the app developer’s world upside down. It could impact monetization through in-app marketing directly, along with hindering your app’s ability to function to its full potential for all users.
Putting time and effort into creating strong, persuasive pre-permission prompts will be well worth the effort, and with more and more users downloading the update by the day, this is something that you want to do now. If you haven’t already, put together a pre-permission prompt immediately to avoid missing out on crucial data from any more users.
Want help tracking the efficacy of your pre-permission prompt? Create a free account with myTracker here.