Health & Wellness is social: top 5 features successful apps share

How often has your audience made a resolution to manage their mental health and chronic pains, or enhance their general well-being by practicing mindfulness and meditation? While this might mean new sign-ups for health & wellness apps, only a few users follow these apps religiously—many feel defeated by a lack of motivation and discipline, eventually uninstalling them.

With 25% of users abandoning an app after one use and health & wellness apps having a user retention rate of a mere 3.7% after 30 days, you need some noteworthy features to steer your app in the right direction and achieve continued adoption. 

If you’re not sure about which features can increase user engagement, here are five must-have features you can add to your app, along with strategies the top health & wellness apps employ to build a loyal user base. 

Let’s dive in!

The rise of health & wellness apps

Did you know health & wellness apps were downloaded 400 million times in 2021?

There are literally hundreds of apps out there, each boasting of providing a revolutionary change in their user's health. But how many actually serve their purpose?

Today, most health & wellness apps are infusing new and trendy features to attract users, but ignoring features that could bring a paradigm shift in how users use these apps — social features.

With 72% of consumers more likely to return to a health & wellness app that creates a robust online community and an engaged community paying off five times its value,  adding social features to your app can be the difference between success and failure.

But before exploring some must-have health & wellness app features, let's look at what some of the top apps are doing right to succeed.

Decoding success: what we can learn from leading health & wellness apps

From offering personalized experiences to comprehensive features, health & wellness apps empower users to take charge of their health like never before. Here is a list of leading health & wellness apps and what they're doing right to engage their users (hint: they’re all social!).


Headspace is another meditation and mindfulness app providing guided meditation sessions and sleep sounds to promote mental well-being. To enhance user experience and motivate users to focus on their mental health, Headspace offers a range of social features. 

The "Buddy System" for support: Headspace fosters a sense of community and encouragement with the "Buddy System". Users can share their meditation experiences, goals, and progress with others, making the journey more enjoyable and motivating. This social edge gives users a reason to engage with the app.

Guided group exercises and challenges: Headspace differentiates itself by providing guided group exercises and meditation challenges. These group activities promote a sense of community and belonging, encouraging users to stay engaged with the app and committed to their mental well-being.

Sharing achievements and experiences: By creating a space for users to share their achievements, the app fosters a positive and supportive environment. Sharing experiences with like-minded individuals enhances the user experience and encourages continuous engagement.

Personalization and customization: Headspace allows users to create profiles with personal preferences, meditation goals, experience level, and focus areas. This personalization empowers users to tailor the app to their specific needs and interests.

Wim Hof Method

The Wim Hof Method is a breathing app that helps users control their breath, achieve a state of deep relaxation, and ward away diseases. This app improves users' well-being by focusing on breathing techniques. Wim Hof Method uses various social interaction and support features to help users go that extra mile in their health & wellness routine.

Peer-to-peer interactions: The Wim Hof Method app allows users to create public profiles and connect with like-minded individuals. This feature encourages collaboration, sharing of progress, and mutual support, creating a sense of community within the app, directly influencing engagement and retetion.

Progress tracking and sharing: By sharing their achievements, users motivate and inspire each other to go the extra mile in their health and wellness routines. This feature promotes accountability and creates a supportive environment within the app, giving users more reason to return.

Access to live workshops and webinars: Users can participate in live workshops, webinars, and Q&A sessions hosted by trained and experienced instructors. This interactive aspect of the app fosters learning, engagement, and collaboration among users, enhancing user experiences.

Community feedback and guidance: Within the app, users can receive feedback, share insights, and request guidance from other community members. By creating a collaborative and supportive environment, the app helps users build a strong sense of community and increased app engagement.

Perx Health

Perx Health is a chronic condition management app that tracks treatment milestones while providing a motivational community for users to develop a sustainable lifestyle—and share their treatment journey with others. 

Community interaction and support: The community feed allows users to engage with each other through likes, comments, and meaningful conversations, creating a positive and encouraging environment. The Perx Health app utilizes social features to encourage support and engagement. 

Personalized recommendations and insights: Perx Health offers personalized recommendations and custom insights based on users' profiles and preferences. By tailoring content to individual needs, the app successfuly increases user satisfaction and engagement.

Reward system for goal achievement: The app includes a reward system where users are incentivized with gift cards and promotions upon achieving wellness goals. This feature provides a sense of accomplishment and encouragement, while enhancing user engagement and retention.


BSWHealth is the largest healthcare system in Texas, with a focus on enhancing people's lives through quality care and innovative approaches. By incorporating social features, BSW Health has established an outstanding support system on their app, uplifting their community.

Establishing a support system: By incorporating social features, such as the BSW community feed, the app provides an intuitive platform for users to share their health concerns and connect with others. This creates a supportive environment that enhances lives and encourages users to return to the app.

Connecting through likes and comments: The BSWHealth app allows users to engage with each other's posts and show support. By facilitating interactions and meaningful conversations, the app fosters a sense of belonging and encourages users to actively participate in the community and the app.

Unique prayer wall feature: BSWHealth goes beyond typical social features by offering a prayer wall. This feature enables users facing health challenges to interact with priests and send wishes to others in similar situations. This unique space to connect sets the BSWHealth app apart.

Top 5 features of thriving health & wellness apps

With an average user installing 40 apps and spending 89% of their time on 18 of these apps, there are 22 apps that remain inactive. Your health & wellness app could be one of them. One of your primary goals should be to prevent them from happening. By including social features listed below you can ensure your app is loved by your users.

1. Fuelling collective wellness through groups and forums

Nowadays, thriving online communities are extremely popular because they provide a place where users can share their experiences, ask questions and connect over their common interests. 

Connecting your users to a vibrant online community is your app's real game changer, unlocking its full potential. These communities bring your brand and its users together. With this connection comes unparalleled user engagement and loyalty. 

With 72% of companies agreeing that this sense of community is critical to the app’s mission and objectives, this feature is definitely one you should consider for your health & wellness app.

2. Keeping users inspired and motivated through activity feeds

Activity feeds allow users to create engaging content, encouraging others to comment, react and share. Besides bringing novelty and generating curiosity, these feeds allow users to personalize content. Apps with activity feeds give users a space to talk and be heard, reducing reliance on social media platforms.

With 2.7 times more users likely to stay in an app for a sense of community and belonging, your activity feed is the best way to increase app engagement, keep users motivated, and enhance user retention.

3. Redefining health & wellness apps by creating user profiles

Creating user profiles is an excellent way for app users to have their personal space. On their profile, users can track their health & wellness progress, see their achievements and personal statistics and create a personal brand including their favorite thoughts, pictures, and passions. It's a way to showcase their personality. 

4. Elevating support and connectivity by using chat features

Most successful health & wellness apps have one thing in common: a chat feature. While a meaningful community is the building block for user engagement, including a chat feature forms the backbone of real-time user engagement. 

Apart from allowing users to interact with each other—and experts—and build a stronger sense of community, live chat features collect real-time sentiment data, improve conversion rate and boost user engagement.  

5. Transforming wellness through video streaming

Using video streaming and live lessons, health & wellness apps bring together users worldwide. This feature greatly enhances app engagement and creates monetization opportunities. Live video streaming enables the user to be a part of the collective experience, like in the real world.

Companies can record these live sessions so users who missed them can watch it at their convenience, creating even more app engagement and retention 

It's time to make your app social

Following a health & wellness regime takes more than just sheer motivation and determination. And given the innate desire of humans to connect with others, adding social features to your apps can be the game changer that sets you apart. 

Social features like groups & forums, feeds, and profiles, video streaming, and chats will build and grow your user engagement. After all, this is what the top health & wellness apps do – create a community where users can share experiences and achievements with others, provide personalized feeds based on user profiles, and ask questions, get answers, and interact with users and health instructors.

With these must-have health & wellness app features in place, first-time users will likely stay engaged and committed to experiencing and enjoying the unique community and social interaction features of your app.

Supercharge your app’s growth and help your users join the wellness revolution using these social features. Get started today and learn how creating a community-driven app sets you apart from others!

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