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Search, Consumption, and Monetization in the App Economy

  • Author(s): Mao, Shengjun
  • Advisor(s): Dewan, Sanjeev
  • et al.
Abstract

Mobile technology redefines business models and reshapes consumer behaviors, creating a huge and emerging economy of mobile apps. For more efficient monetization and successful development, the app distribution platforms and app developers should consider consumer choices and usage habit into their ranking strategies and app designs. In this dissertation, I conducted three studies to explore consumer choices on apps, platform ranking strategies to display apps, and consumer usage habit formation in app consumption. On consumers’ app installation choices, I examine consumer click and conversion responses to app characteristics at an app distribution platform. For platforms’ ranking strategies, I propose a theory-based hybrid personalized ranking method to display apps in order to maximize revenues. To understand post-installation app usage, I explore consumer habits on app consumption which vary with consumer demographics and app features. I acquire rich data from different sources and adopt theoretical and empirical models, in combination with machine learning, to high granularity data. My analysis finds robust evidence of the impact of app features on consumer consumption and platform profitability. I discuss implications for developer to design, for platforms to display and for users to consume apps.

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