What Is Deep Linking?
Deep linking is a process that uses specific types of links – known as deep links – to send customers directly to mobile apps instead of a web page. Deep-link technologies streamline the user experience by directing customers to certain in-app pages or indexed web content and reducing the amount of time and energy that customers exert to find a page themselves.
Deep linking uses an intent URL for Android smartphones or a custom URL scheme known as iOS Universal Links to open a page on an installed app. You can also use deep links to direct users to an event page, blog post, or product, making it easy to integrate mobile apps into marketing campaigns. Further, a deep-linking API allows you to track, sort, measure, and analyze user data through direct and deferred links.
Deep links come with countless benefits across virtually every industry, including boosted engagement, installation, and conversion rates. That said, deep linking’s most important feature may be its ability to make content more accessible to mobile users who interact with brands through email, social media platforms, or an app store, such as Google Play. As a result, it provides a low-cost and highly effective solution to increase access to messages, information, website content, and more.
How Does Deep Linking Impact Businesses?
Deep linking plays a significant role in improving the user journey. Consider the following scenario: Your company makes a social media post or writes a blog mentioning a piece of content located in its mobile app.
Without a deep link, your customers would need to leave the app or web browser they were in, navigate to your company’s app, and search through the app’s content to locate the correct page. If they haven’t downloaded the app already, they would need to search through their mobile app store to do so. Some customers may complete the journey, but the majority will give up and miss out on the content, which translates to fewer conversions, subscriptions, or downloads for you.
Deep linking also makes it easier to retarget users through online advertising and direct them to a particular page, product, or prize, resulting in a seamless customer journey. Thanks to user-friendly deep link API technologies, you don’t even need to hire a developer to create a one-step, point-and-click transition from a website to a mobile app.
Other benefits of deep linking include:
1. Streamlined Customer Experience (CX)
Deep links streamline the customer journey by eliminating guessed paths and signposts. Instead, the link sends users to their intended destination with a single click, reducing the effort required to locate a product, service, or piece of web content.
You can also use deferred deep links to improve CX. If a user clicks on a deep link but doesn’t have your mobile app, a deferred deep link will redirect them to the App Store or Google Play Store instead. After installing the app, they can still access the intended web page or product without returning to the original link and clicking again.
2. Increased Conversions
Deep links have some of the highest conversion rates on the market, far surpassing other types of links. Companies that incorporate deep linking into their customer journeys enjoy a conversion rate of 51%, along with higher retention rates and happier customers.
3. Reduced Churn
Simply put, positive customer interactions result in lower customer churn. For example, consider the following:
- More than 50% of U.S. consumers will change their minds about a purchase following a poor interaction.
- 33% of shoppers will switch companies because of one negative interaction.
- 80% of customers believe that speed, accessibility, and knowledgeable help are essential elements of a positive customer interaction.
Deep linking results in a fast, accessible customer journey. While it won’t eliminate customer churn entirely, you can use deep linking to boost satisfaction and reduce the risk of a clunky, frustrating user journey.
Streamlining the Customer Experience with Deep Linking
Your business can use deep linking strategies to enhance the user experience, boost marketing efforts, and simplify navigation between social media apps, emails, smartphone browsers, and branded mobile apps. That said, easy navigation isn’t the only benefit of a deep link. The URLs are powerful tools for reducing customer churn, boosting conversion rates, and improving customer retention through shorter user journeys.