What is cost per install?
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Cost per Install (CPI)

What is cost per install?

Cost per install (CPI) is a common performance marketing pricing model that indicates the fixed price an advertiser pays a publisher each time a user downloads and installs an app on their mobile device. 

How does cost per install work?

Used exclusively for measuring campaigns run by mobile app marketers, CPIs are the gold standard for mobile marketers because any further engagements must follow an install.

Types of cost per install:

App marketers can measure two types of CPI:

  • Target CPI: This is the maximum amount an advertiser is willing to pay for an install.
  • Actual CPI: This is the average amount an advertiser pays for an install

How to measure cost per install:

Dividing total ad spend by total installs determines the cost of each installation. For example, if a client spends $10,000 on ads encouraging consumers to download an app, and the campaign yields 2,500 installs, then the CPI is $4. The lower the CPI number, the more efficient the campaign. 

Why is cost per install important to marketers?

In one of the purest forms of performance marketing, CPI reflects user intent and that a campaign is reaching the right users. While other engagement metrics might measure how many days a user engages with an app, the time it takes them to spend money, and more, it all starts with an install. 

Who needs to know what cost per install is:

  • App marketing manager
  • User acquisition manager
  • Performance marketing manager
  • App developer
  • Digital marketing manager
  • Paid search specialist
  • Affiliate manager
  • Marketing analyst

Use cost per install in a sentence:

“CPIs remain one of the most important metrics for mobile app developers because it reflects user interest. While installing an app doesn’t guarantee app interactions, the act of downloading and installing indicates that you have reached the right person.”