Trinity Mirror Case Study

Trinity Mirror harnesses Appsee's mobile app analytics to reduce crash rates and examine in-app user behavior.

Key Results

Identified pivotal user behaviors and optimized screen navigation
Achieved a crash-free rate of 99%

The Company

Trinity Mirror is one of the largest and leading publishers in the UK, with 150 newspaper brands, and 80 online news brands. When it comes to mobile they are also at the forefront, with apps for 15 of their news brands on both iOS and Android. This suite of apps is anticipated to grow to 18-20 by the end of the year. Aside from The Mirror, which is their flagship national news brand, their business also has a significant focus on regional news with apps like Liverpool Echo and Newcastle Chronicle. Technically, what differentiates their product from the myriad of other news apps, is the fact that they use a single codebase and API to ‘power’ 15 apps on 2 platforms.

UX-wise, Trinity Mirror fully embraces the high standards of today’s mobile users and consistently endeavors to ensure the most feature-rich, high-performing and relevant news experiences possible. They also place great value on in-app customization, and are currently working to expand their apps’ features to include registration, commenting, and algorithmically generated content recommendations.

Overall, it has been an exciting and busy year for Trinity Mirror’s mobile team. Last June they transitioned from outsourcing the development of their apps to building their own in-house. The rollout of their slick new apps was completed by November, and their old apps were discontinued in January.

Even though they are in a state of “post - launch”, Trinity Mirror is fully aware of the fact that their work is only half done.Now is the time more than ever to gather invaluable user feedback and refine their apps effectively.They are currently in the process of launching some major changes to their relatively new apps, with the goal of positively influencing ranking and reviews in the next few months.

The Challenge

The biggest hurdles for legacy publishers like Trinity Mirror who are creating news applications, is the reality of the huge number of news content apps that were born in the fast - paced mobile age.Given the time of these apps’ inception, they have been able to streamline their editorial processes and adapt to the rapidly changing market in the most agile of ways.Logically, the transition to mobile for publishers like Trinity Mirror poses more notable, yet not unsurpassable, challenges.A key challenge for Trinity Mirror is to create mobile apps that preserve their brand voice and feel that their readers are accustomed to from desktop (and print), while also embracing the elements necessary for a high-caliber mobile user experience.The main reason Trinity Mirror set out to find a solution like Appsee, is because they have recognized that to keep pace with the aforementioned apps and make their own apps a success in this market, they need to take insights and data very seriously.They want to cover all their bases, equip themselves with the best solutions out there, and obtain the most actionable data possible.Specifically, Trinity Mirror had been missing a solution that provides insights on UX and user behavior.

The Solution

Enter Appsee, the market leader in UX app analytics. Appsee is unique in that it not only provides real-time, quantitative data on in-app users, it also supplies exceptional qualitative insights that can help one accurately understand the “whys” behind certain stats and trends. Appsee’s powerful technologies, such as user recordings and touch heatmaps, actually enable clients to see how users are behaving within their app, where users are tapping, and where users are allocating their precious attention. So how did Trinity Mirror specifically harness these capabilities? Let’s explore.


*Appsee’s terms of service require app publishers to hide all sensitive user information (this can be done with a simple method call). In addition, Appsee automatically hides sensitive information such as emails, password fields and camera views.

Detecting and Solving Crashes

With any new app, there are bound to be crashes. Yet if these crashes are not solved quickly and accurately, they can have a significant negative impact on user experience, retention, and overall brand reputation. Trinity Mirror needed a robust, accurate solution that didn’t require them to spend hours pouring over code and attempting to reproduce crashes. Thanks to Appsee’s crash recordings, Trinity Mirror obtained invaluable visual context behind their app’s crashes. By watching Appsee’s user recordings of crashed sessions, Trinity Mirror could instantly identify the exact sequence of user actions that led to a crash. In addition, because Appsee automatically detects all unique screens, gestures, and user actions in an app, Trinity Mirror did not have to conduct the unecessary grunt work of predefining in-app events in advance. Ultimately, Appsee’s unparalleled crash recordings have enabled Trinity Mirror to better understand and reporduce their crashes than ever before, which has allowed them to reach and maintain a 99% crash-free session rate.

UI Analysis and Optimization

Since Trinity Mirror is in the midst of further enhancing their new apps, they were also in need of a tool that would provide them with powerful aggregate insights on user interaction with their interface. Specifically, they were already aware of the fact that their users were spending a substantial amount of time browsing articles but curious as to exactly “how” they were browsing. Thanks to Appsee’s clear-cut touch heatmaps, Trinity Mirror was able to identify key user behaviors on their article pages and optimize their navigation accordingly. In particular, contrary to common belief, they discovered that the majority of users rarely swiped through articles and were much more likely to utilize “read more” links to navigate. Thanks to this actionable user behavior insight, Trinity Mirror is now rebuilding and optimizing their “read more” links, with the target of increasing their articles-per-user by 20% within the next 6 months.

A CONTINUED COOPERATION

Trinity Mirror is greatly looking forward to their continued work with Appsee- especially after they launch the range of new changes to their apps. In particular, they are eager to utilize Appsee’s Action Cohorts module, which will become exceptionally important when they launch their in-app registrations feature. The Action Cohorts will allow them to analyze engagement trends over time, such as how many users from a specific cohort came back to read an article after signing up to the app. Trinity Mirror intends to make many more powerful, data-driven discoveries with Appsee’s suite of unique features.