What is IDFA and Why Apple IDFA is important?

IDFA stands for Identifier for Advertisers. It is a unique, resettable ID assigned by Apple to each iOS device, used to track user activity for advertising and attribution purposes.

Apple’s IDFA framework provides developers with a standard way to track analytics around advertising performance and user engagement within iOS apps. Understanding IDFA is important for iOS developers to effectively monetize and market their apps.

How Does Apple’s IDFA Work?

When a user downloads an app from the App Store, the app can request permission to access the IDFA. If the user consents, the app receives the IDFA which persists on that device until manually reset.

This IDFA allows the app developer to:

  • Track user engagement within the app for analytics purposes
  • Attribute app installs and in-app conversions to specific ad campaigns
  • Measure the performance of different ad networks and creatives
  • Identify high lifetime value users acquired through advertising
  • Run retargeting campaigns for users acquired through ads

Apps must clearly disclose to users how IDFA will be used. Apple also allows users to opt out of sharing their IDFA.

Why is IDFA Important for App Developers?

Here are some key reasons IDFA provides value to iOS developers:

1 . Monetization and Ad Revenue:

  • IDFA enables attribution of app installs and in-app purchases to specific ad clicks. This allows for optimizing ad spending to profitable campaigns.
  • Advertisers will pay more for inventory with high-precision attribution enabled by IDFA. This increases potential ad revenues.

2 . User Acquisition and Retargeting:

  • IDFA powers the measurement of user acquisition channels like paid social and search ads. Developers can double down on channels yielding high-loyalty users.
  • Retargeting current users with IDFAs allows cost-effective re-engagement campaigns.

3 . Analytics for Product Improvement:

  • Granular analytics powered by IDFA provides insight into which features and campaigns drive long-term retention. This guides product development priorities.
  • IDFA enables creating user cohorts based on acquisition channels to compare behaviors.

4 . Competitive Advantage:

  • Sophisticated attribution and analytics enabled by IDFA data provide a competitive edge for mobile developers.
  • High-quality analytics helps secure funding by demonstrating traction and growth potential to investors.

5 . Compliance with Data Guidelines:

  • Supporting IDFA allows complying with Apple data and privacy guidelines. Non-compliance risks app rejection or removal.
  • Clearly, the IDFA framework provides mobile developers with powerful capabilities to grow their app business. 
  • Implementing IDFA tracking and attribution should be a priority for iOS developers.


Q1: How does IDFA affect advertising?

A1: IDFA enables attribution, measurement, and targeting for app install and re-engagement ads, allowing advertisers to optimize spend.

Q2: How many users opt out of IDFA?

A2: Studies indicate 10-20% of iOS users globally opt out of IDFA tracking when prompted.

Q3: What is the difference between device ID and IDFA?

A3: Device ID uniquely identifies a device while IDFA is specific to app tracking and advertising, is resettable by the user.

Q4: What is Apple replacing IDFA with?

A4: Apple is replacing IDFA with App Tracking Transparency requiring opt-in consent from users for cross-app tracking.

Sunil Gill
Sunil Gill

A digital entrepreneur with over 9 years of experience in digital marketing. Over the years, I have developed a strong passion for app marketing and love to create engaging and informative content around it.