At today’s F8 conference, Facebook announced plans for a new analytics tool, designed to let mobile developers track user behavior in their apps.

The new tool is available now and it’s free, Facebook’s director of product management Deborah Liu said.

The tool will do a number of things for app developers:

It will allow them to detect parts of the app that users find difficult to use. For instance, a check-out section of the app might ask users for too much information, causing them to bail out.

A “Cohorts” feature can provide historical insights on user trends. For instance, the tool might compare the usage habits or install rates of current users with users from a month ago. This can help developers understand user retention, user lifetime value, and repeat purchase rates.

The tool can provide information on the geography, age, gender, and language of app users. A segmentation feature can be used to drill down on key user groups to learn more about what makes them engage in certain behaviors — either positive or negative to the developer’s business.

The analytics tool also lets developers learn about the people who click on app advertisements on Facebook. They might be able to learn where those users are coming from and where they go after they click on the ad. Other analytics points may be available from Facebook’s vast store of personally identifiable information.

While developers may also use the tool to track app advertisement campaigns on other social platforms, the bells and whistles will be heavily geared toward measurement on the Facebook platform, one VentureBeat source said.

Facebook will present all of the analytics data to app developers on a unified dashboard, Liu said.

Zuckerberg said 95 percent of apps on the Apple and Google app stores are integrated with Facebook.


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