As per Statista, 230 billion mobile applications were downloaded globally in 2021, and 95% of them were free to install. Despite this, the entire app industry earned whopping revenue of $400 billion that year.
As per another study, 90% of iOS Apps and 94% of Android apps are free to install. How can they generate this huge revenue when the apps are free-to-install?
The answer is – App Monetization!
App monetization involves a process through which you can generate revenue from your app users. There are multiple strategies to monetize your app, like displaying ads, having in-app purchases, subscriptions, and many more.
With a well-researched monetization strategy, you can create an enhanced user experience that enables you to retain your existing app users and boost your revenues.
Reasons to Monetize Your App
Before embracing any app monetization strategies, you should know why you should monetize your app.
Below is a list that portrays benefits that can be enjoyed when you monetize your app:
● Your mobile app generates increased revenue
● An enhanced user experience that leads to retention of users
● A low-risk app monetization strategy can generate high profit
● Your paid app enables you to start generating money the moment your app is downloaded
As of now, when you have known about the benefits of monetizing your app, let us dig a bit deeper to know about all the app monetization strategies:
1. Paid Downloads
After paying an upfront fee, users can download your app. Hence, the higher the upfront fee, the higher revenue you generate. But, ensure that the price for downloading your app is not too high as compared to your competitors.
● Start generating revenue the very moment users install your app
● Intact user-experience
● Limited maintenance and storage
● Engaged and loyal users
● As other monetization content is less, your app UI appears to be less cluttered, bestowing enhanced user engagement
Example: Nintendo’s Super Mario Run is available for $9.99 on App Stores. This game has successfully generated revenue worth $60 million. Facetune is another popular paid-app example.
2. In-App Purchases
The in-app purchases model can be used with free apps. This model is gaining momentum as users can try various app features before purchasing. This app monetization method helps generate revenue by selling physical or virtual goods within the app. Games apps and eCommerce apps generally approach this method.
● What you are selling through your app hardly matters. It can be clothing, accessories, gadgets, etc.
● Provides users with virtual buying options that ultimately enhance customer engagement
● Hefty profits can be made as no maintenance or storage of physical stock is required for virtual goods
● Add-ons improve user experience and boost loyalty
● Can be combined with other app monetization strategies
Example: VSCO – a photo editing mobile app generated massive revenue from its thirty million monthly users. Wordscapes is another popular app with an in-app purchases option in the header of its app store.
3. In-App Subscriptions
The users can access a limited amount of content for free in free apps. This app monetization method permits the users to access more features, contents, or services after paying the weekly, monthly or annual subscription fees.
● A perfect model for blogs, live music/video streaming, and news apps
● Easy to attract and amass users as accessible trails are offered to users before paying subscription fees
● Auto-renewing subscription option helps in creating recurring revenues until the user cancels the subscription
Example: Apps such as The Wall Street Journal, Reuters Digital News Report, Apple music, Netflix, and Spotify use this subscription monetization model.
4. In-App Advertising
In-app advertising is the most popular app monetization strategy that followed globally. Revenue is generated by showing ads of the user’s interest.
● The app being free-to-use, you can amass users
● By displaying the right and relevant ads, user engagement can be enhanced
● Users see pop-ups or small banners with ads that enable you to earn money without charging extra from your app users
Example: CNN and Instagram are the best examples
In this app monetization model, the app can be installed for free, but to unlock some features, the users will have to pay.
● The free version helps in creating a steady user base
● Large profits can be achieved
● Grants reliable and stable income generation option
Example: The perfect example is Angry Birds.
Certainly, you must understand now why you should monetize your app and how. It would help if you adopted a robust and relevant app monetization method to generate good revenue through your app.
However, not all apps benefit from the same app monetization model. The app monetization strategies differ from app to app and industry to industry. The best way to figure this out is by partnering with an app monetization expert so that you can explore and adopt the optimum monetization strategy.
Author Bio: I’m Akash Yadav, an experienced Digital Marketer, and Strategist, been in the IT Industry for the last 5+ Years. Currently working with AppBroda Tech – a mobile advertising platform that helps app publishers and developers reap and optimize ad revenue. Skilled in constructing a Digital Strategy, Growth Hacking, etc.