How to make money with a Free Mobile App?
Once successfully developing a product, your next step is definitely to figure out a monetization strategy that fits your app the most and generates as much revenue as possible. In this article, we will introduce 3 methods of monetization to app publishers who make a free mobile app.
At the moment a new app is launched to the market, most likely, it does not have many users. Advertising comes in like a savior because of its simplicity and handy manner, in the meantime, it also generates more than enough revenue so that app publishers could make a free mobile app for users. And obviously, this only happens when you do it right!
As a consequence, businesses have moved their ads from websites to apps.
In fact, if your business doesn’t execute this method in the right way, chances are that in-app ad will irritate your users and this results in app uninstalled. Our recommendation when applying this model is choosing the right content (or, it’s essential to stay away from lame ads), displaying it at the right time to the right audience.
Moreover, there are 3 things to consider when using ads as a way to generate revenue when app developers make a free mobile app:
- Choose the most suitable ad network. Ad network works as a bridge between app publishers and advertisers.
- Set up the right ad format. Based on your demand and app specificities, you could feature some ad formats such as banners, native ads, interstitial ads, videos and offer wall ads alongside your app content.
- The last activity is selecting these common ad pricing models: cost per mille, cost per click, or cost per reaction, etc.
2. In-app purchases
Numbers don’t lie when they show that in-app purchasing is becoming the most profitable method of app monetization. According to Statista, more than 50% of revenue from apps was brought in by this very model.
Perhaps many of us would say things like “Who the hell pays to use premium features?” But much to our surprise, people do! Let’s see the below statistic to get more insight into how much app publishers generate millions with in-app purchasing method.
Candy Crush Saga and Pokemon Go are two obvious names here. When there’s nothing left to do, users will launch them to kill time. So the big question here is how could this dating app make that much money?
The phenomenon was launched at the end of 2012 and became a hit soon. 3 years later, Tinder applied the freemium model called Tinder Plus, which charges users to use some special features such as unlimited swipes, passport (find love anywhere in the world), rewind (undo the last swipe), etc.
Let’s people at Designveloper explain a bit about freemium. It refers to one of the most common in-app purchasing methods. At first, people downloaded apps without spending a penny and they are able to use plenty of its features and tools.
For your information, Pokemon Go’s users put in $1.5 million every day. Thus, if businesses are able to develop essential apps that have exclusive features, or in other words, your advanced features are really worth paying then why not go freemium?
The second method of monetization with in-app purchases is the subscription model. Apps that have a large number of monthly users should definitely take this strategy into action. Most of the time, they are streaming apps, cloud services, online magazines or online publishing platforms, etc. Following is a great example from Medium.
Long story short, people will pay to extend the use of apps and upgrade their experience even when you make a free mobile app.
The thing is that making people pay for a certain feature is a challenging game. But experts at Designveloper have conducted a few tips app publishers could use to encourage their users spending some money:
- Tell them about the value of the feature or content. It’s worth knowing notifications increase users’ decision on in-app purchasing 9.6 times and drive their spending by 16%.
- Offer free samples or trials.
- Use a made-up currency, especially when your app is a mobile game.
As a bonus, here is a complete guide to master the in-app purchasing strategy on the App Store.
3. App developers who make a free mobile app could monetize with data
Since the world goes crazy because of data, this very strategy of monetization starts to shine. But let’s look for the answer of why data is a big hit at the moment. Apparently, companies could base on facts and figures to shape their business, visions, and missions.
It’s getting handy when app developers are able to access user data through apps. App publishers who make a free mobile app will collect, analyze and segment data and transfer legible information to data collectors.
As a user, you may be freaked out because of this data selling activity, but there’s nothing to worry about. App publishers can only gather and sell non-personal identifiable information.
Furthermore, app developers need to grow the amount of daily active users to at least 50.000 because data collectors will acquire such a large data source so that the output could be precise and valuable.
- First of all, data monetization will generate sustainable incomes since data collectors will pay for the information month by month. In other words, the inventory won’t lose its value with time.
- Secondly, any apps could make money with this strategy as long as the amount of your daily active user is high.
- Thirdly, your app will offer a better experience when there are no advertisements or in-app purchasing activities needed to generate money.
In the end, each type of app monetization has its own pros and cons. As a result, businesses that make a free mobile app should decide which one to use based on several criteria such as the target audience. How advanced and unique your app is, the number of users, etc.
We hope this article will give a better insight into how free app makes money and help you generate more revenue in the future.