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Product Management

Daily Active Users (DAU)

What is daily active users (DAU)?

Daily Active Users (DAU) is a measurement of the unique number of users that have used your product or application each day. This metric is one of the primary measurements of engagement or growth for companies developing web and mobile apps.

How to measure daily active users

The first step of understanding how to measure your daily active users is to define what you consider "active" to mean. Active can mean many different things for your company, so it's important to choose a definition that is useful to your organization. If there's no clear intention behind your definition of active and product teams can't use DAU to take action, the number can quickly become nothing more than a vanity metric.

Here are some common ways to define what being active means:

  • Visits or logins
  • Account creation
  • Feature use or task completion
  • Session duration threshold

What are the benefits of tracking daily active users?

Once you've created activity thresholds that are useful and depict daily activity in your product or app, you can benefit from measuring DAU in a few ways:

  • It helps you understand the quantity of support traffic.
  • It complements stickiness metrics to help you understand retention and churn.
  • It helps you determine whether or not marketing and sales efforts are paying off.

Pairing daily active users with other metrics

The main challenge of using DAU is preventing it from becoming a simple vanity metric or confusing DAU as a signal of quality engagements. If your DAU is high, but users aren't really using or returning to your app it's an indication your app is becoming unsuccessful.

Daily active user examples

  • Facebook - According to Statista, in Q2 of 2021 Facebook reported 1.9 billion daily active users.  
  • Instagram - In 2018, Instagram reported 500 million daily active users using Stories.
  • Twitter - According to Statista, in Q2 of 2021 Twitter reported 206 million monetizable daily active users.
  • Tiktok - In 2020, TikTok reported 50 million daily active users in the U.S.
  • Snapchat - According to Statista, in Q2 of 2021 Snapchat had over 293 million daily active users globally.
  • Youtube - In 2021, Youtube reported over 122 million daily active users in the U.S.
  • Zoom - In 2020, Zoom reported it had 300 million daily active users
  • Slack -  in 2021, Slack reported it had 12.5 million daily active users

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