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Monthly Active Users (MAU)

Updated on March 21, 2024
Article byPrakhar Gajendrakar
Edited byPrakhar Gajendrakar
Reviewed byDheeraj Vaidya, CFA, FRM

Monthly Active Users (MAU) Definition

The monthly active users (MAU) is a business metric that reflects the total number of unique users visiting a website or application within 30 days or one month. MAU is often used as an essential key performance indicator (KPI) for businesses and digital platforms to assess their user base and overall engagement.

Monthly Active Users (MAU)

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The MAU number is a significant metric for businesses to track and monitor a business’s growth, stability, and marketing health. A business may have a website and a mobile application, and the MAU differs for both. Based on the MAU, a company is likely to predict future profitability and work to make changes for better results and customer experience.  It is typically used by social networking platforms and other e-commerce businesses or brand websites to count the number of monthly visitors.

Key Takeaways

  • Monthly active users represent the total number of unique visitors to a website or business during 30 days.
  • The MAU is a benchmark for any business’s overall growth, popularity, and performance.
  • No particular industry standard is followed, and each company can have a separate methodology, which sometimes makes it difficult to use the metric correctly.
  • It refers to the total number of unique users who engage with the platform at least once in a given month.  Meanwhile, DAU represents the total number of unique users who engage with the platform on a daily basis.

Monthly Active Users Explained

Monthly Active Users (MAU) is a metric commonly used to measure the number of unique users who engage with the platform within a specific month. Simply put, it is a counting number of customers interacting with the website, product, or service during a month.

Every business has its technique and application of the MAU, and it is often coupled with other metrics to deduce a comparison or data insights. The indicator depends on the product type, audience, and website or service the business offers. Moreover, many companies use it as a direct measure to compare it with their competitors. In contrast, others use it to track growth, determine performance, forecast future market changes, and make improvements.

A high MAU ratio indicates that a significant part of the underlying platform user is active daily with a higher stickiness rate and repetition. In contrast, a low MAU ratio is a concerning factor referring to a platform lacking enough daily use. Here, users are counted only once, regardless of how frequently they engage with the platform during the month. This means that if a user logs in multiple times within a month, they are still counted as one monthly active user. Thus, this metric is widely used in the tech industry, especially for online services, social media platforms, mobile apps, and other digital products. In addition, companies often track MAU over time to identify trends in user engagement.

Additionally, the conversion rate of monthly active users would represent the percentage of users. Who transition from being inactive or casual users to actively engaging with a platform or service on a monthly basis. Furthermore, the monthly active users pricing model is scalable. Therefore, this means that as a business or platform grows and attracts more users, the pricing adjusts accordingly.

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Formula

The calculation of monthly active users typically involves counting the number of unique users who have interacted with the platform at least once during the 30 days.

MAU = Total active users of each month/12

Moreover, the formula is simple, but it provides valuable insights into the platform’s user base and engagement level over a specific time period.

Examples

Below are two examples of monthly active users:

Example #1

Consider an online social media platform as an example of Monthly Active Users (MAU). In a given month, the platform had 10 million unique users who actively participated by logging in, sharing posts, liking content, and engaging with other features. These users collectively formed the MAU for that month. The MAU metric is valuable for the platform’s operators as it helps gauge the popularity and vibrancy of the social network. If, for instance, the next month sees an increase in MAU to 12 million, it suggests growth and heightened user interest.

On the other hand, a decrease in MAU might prompt the platform to investigate potential issues affecting user engagement or satisfaction. By regularly tracking it, the platform gains insights into user behavior, facilitating strategic decisions to enhance user experience and ensure the platform’s sustained appeal and growth.

Example #2

Elon Musk, the owner of X, previously known as Twitter, announced that the social networking platform has garnered a significant milestone in monthly users. As per him, the latest count of active monthly users has surpassed 541 million, bringing a big surge in user engagement. In 2022, the same company had 229 million monthly active users.

The company’s leadership seeks to restructure its growth and profit sustainability strategies and techniques. The platform is also going through many organizational changes. Under Musk’s leadership, X has gone through an array of swift product and corporate variations; the most popular is the paid service for users to have a bluetick as a sign of authenticity.

How To Increase?

The simple ways to increase the monthly active users for any online business or mobile application are –

  • Many critics believe a business cannot solely depend on the MAU value. Therefore, it must be coupled with other metrics to reach a more accurate conclusion.
  • Focus on the product and user experience; people often return to websites that are fast, simple, and easy to understand.
  • Make the onboarding process swift and short so users can reach their value within 2 to 3 steps.
  • Reduce the excess walkthroughs that generally bore a potential customer.
  • Discuss the issues as to the key areas where a visitor struggles the most while on the platform.
  • Try to provide and improve on better customer support.
  • Moreover, the business should try minimizing the website’s load speed; customers do not intend to wait and leave the website.
  • Use push notifications and email reminders to bring users back to the platform.
  • Integrate social sharing features to encourage users to share their activities on your platform with their networks.

Monthly Active Users vs Daily Active Users (DAU)

Both MAU and DAU are two important business metrics when it comes to online tracking of unique visitors, but both are different in concept and application; the key difference is:

MAU is a monthly count of active users. In comparison, DAU refers to the number of active users in the time window of one day or 24 hours.

  • Moreover, it can be the sum of 30 consecutive DAUs. In contrast, a daily active user is an individual counted value.
  • From a corporate point of view, MAU is a more meaningful and valuable insight than DAU because of its extended time.
  • Hence, the former reflects the platform’s ability to attract and retain users over a more extended period, showing overall user interest and retention. The latter indicates the platform’s ability to maintain daily relevance and capture the attention of users on a regular basis.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is a good monthly active user rate?

No particular standard is followed, and it is so because of the product and service variability. For any business tracking its MAU, the higher it is, the better it is for business and future growth. It is also observed that each company has its technique to derive the monthly active users.

What are the benefits of monthly active users?

The benefits of monthly active users are –

– It serves as a gauging indicator for monthly active users.
– MAU helps in improving customer engagement and retention.
– Moreover, it provides a quantitative value for any product or business’s size and strength of customer base every month.
– Helps track performance and makes changes if required.

What is the difference between monthly active users and Weekly active users?

The critical difference between both metrics is the time. The former is for 30 days or one complete month. In contrast, the latter defines the number of active users during the week (7 days). Also, multiple consecutive WAU sums up to make a single MAU value, which is not possible as vice versa.

This has been a guide to Monthly Active Users and its definition. We explain its formula, comparison with daily active users, examples, & how to increase it. You can learn more about financing from the following articles –

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