There are three different ways in which you can measure users and view their retention. Each of these reports uses the same methods of calculation but allows you to specify which event and property combination performed is creating the user buckets and measuring your user retention.
Recurring Retention allows you to specify a single event and see the retention of users coming back to perform this same event over time. This report can tell you how often users come back and perform the same events.
First Time Retention
First Time Retention allows you to specify one event to create the user bucket you are measuring, and another event to measure the retention on. Similar to recurring retention, you also have the option to choose “anything” as the event. This report is useful for tracking users who performed a specific event (such as sign-up), and how often they came back to do some other action on your site.
This report retrieves the first instance of the bucketing event in the defined time range, but it doesn’t take into account whether it’s the first time of all-time a user has done a certain action. For example, if you select “Add payment method” as your bucketing event, the user buckets will include all users who did the event “Add payment method” during the report time frame, not the first time in that user’s lifecycle.
Addiction Retention allows you to specify an event and see how often a user performed that same event in the future. Whereas the above retention calculations will return the number of users who performed an event, addiction will actually calculate the number of times each user who came back performed the event. This allows you to see how "active" your users are over the course of a given time period.
Using the addiction report will allow you to see how many hours in a day, days in a week, or days in a month your retained users are performing a specific event. As with the other reports, you also have the option to choose “Anything” to see generally how often users are performing events.