You finally accomplished it – you created a fantastic mobile app for your business.
Now, your customers can interact with you never like before, and the data you are pulling from the app helps you think of all kinds of new ways to market your brand.
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But there is something else you can do to make your app even better for your business, that is, monetizing.
You heard it right! Your mobile app can act more than a tool. It can also work as the best source to bring additional revenue to your business.
Intrigued, aren’t you?
Now it’s time to tell you about the ten ways to turn your app into a profit-generating machine.
It is a best practice to promote your app for free to attract more traffic and earn more money.
You might not think of this as a reasonable first step, but using an email strategy tie-in with your app is a fantastic way to get more engagement from your target customers. This will lead to earning more money for your app and brand as well.
Because people rarely change their email addresses. That makes an email marketing campaign easy to make sure users see your content and engage with it. Sending regular emails is a good practice as it keeps your brand at the forefront and makes the customers more likely to buy from you.
A study by Wiselytics says that the entire life of a Facebook post is only a few hours. On the other side, a Tweet’s lifespan is just an hour. When it comes to email, the lifespan gets extended to 12 days. That’s much time in digital marketing.
One of the best ways to collect those email addresses is to integrate an email subscription form into your app.
Integrating the in-app subscription form can give your mobile app a real boost by compelling app users to enter their email IDs. Users get more attracted when you tempt them with some great exciting benefits valid only for email subscribers.
You could add a gift coupon or something small but attractive to make people subscribe.
And your email strategy can be pretty varied. If you have promotions or deals, send an access code in the email to enter the app. If you regularly work on a newsletter or manage a blog section on your site, you can promote them through email and remind users about the content you produce, and they can read it on their smart devices.
So, either you want to make your users return to your app after a while or wish to draw in new app users, email lists work as the marketing gold. You only need to implement it tactically to see the positive results.
If you don’t include ads in your app, you might be missing out on a phenomenal opportunity for monetization.
Digital advertising using mobile apps has dramatically improved communication between consumers and advertisers. This is mostly due to the crazy amount of time people spend on their phones. People talk for around 90 minutes in a day; this is equivalent to 23 days a year.
And many times, people don’t want to pay for the apps they spend all that time on. The temptation to download an expensive app is alive until users see a cheaper or free mobile app alternative.
Do you know why most of the apps only survive only 9-12 months? You need to know this to keep your app away from such failure. This is very important as you should know how you can avoid mobile app failure.
Today, almost all the apps are available for free reduces the chances for app owners to earn additional revenue from the app.
Before, there were no such options to monetize the app apart from making them paid for download. But now, an app owner can earn optimum revenue from their apps even after making it free to download for all.
So, what different ways will you opt to overcome app failure and still monetize?
It is quite simple. You can do this by making your app free for users and also by utilizing in-app advertising.
There are five types of ads that are typically used by advertisers:
- Interstitial/full-screen ads are placed at different natural pause points – like moving between menus. These ads don’t interrupt the app’s UX; instead, they generate clicks without creating user frustration.
- Notification ads – These types of notifications pop up in the mobile device’s status bar, making users aware of the ads’ presence. Be aware of such ads as these are not the most loved and sometimes could damage your mobile app’s reputation.
- Capture form – Capture forms are the best alternatives as these offer incentives (like points or tokens) for website visitors who enter their valid email addresses. You can find capture forms in most of the mobile games.
- Advanced overlay – Using this option can help transition points like interstitial ads. These are interactive as compared to simple clickable images. Advanced overlays are considered as a mixture of full-screen ads and capture forms.
- Banner ads – Here come the banner ads that are mostly placed at the bottom or top of the screen. Sometimes such ads can be ineffective because of the distraction they create that other forms don’t. For users, these can sometimes be irritating. So, you need to think twice before plan to incorporate them into your business’s app.
What you need to focus on the most through these ads is improved customer engagement. It’s an idea many brands are struggling to define. Put: the better the experience, the higher the engagement. Your ads should be designed to attract the user and not frustrate them.
So, when are you planning to integrate an advertisement for your mobile app? To get an exact idea, you need to be clear about a few questions:
- How can users have a more meaningful experience when dealing with these ads?
- What sort of ads would the target audience prefer?
- How can these ads tie back to my brand?
- Will these ads be too clunky or ugly, potentially ruining part of the experience for users?
Your advertisers could pay you a considerable chunk of change for hosting their ads. But it all depends on your brand. A study by Gartner Research says mobile advertising is predicted to reach $18 billion annually.
Here, you have to choose the wise option to make a massive difference in your mobile app’s profitability ratio.
Sponsors and Partnerships
It would be great to partner with another brand to step up your app monetization game significantly.
You’ll need to find a partner with a similar customer base who can add something to your users’ experience.
A partner or a network of partners can enormously benefit your customers and your businesses alike, especially if you create an integrated experience – like when Optimizely and Localytics partnered and decided to offer mobile analytics together through a single platform.
Suppose users on some other app see your brand logo or an interactive element that they consider appearing as part of the mobile app they are currently on. This strategy could potentially convince users to download your app that ultimately increases CTR and app download ratios.
If your partner incorporates ads featuring your apps, there are chances that users might click that ad to switch straight to your mobile app. The process is called click-through rate (CTR) that can significantly be high in some instances.
Once you decide to host and share advertisements, you need to consider establishing partnerships to strengthen your brand reach.
Creating Strong Code
If you create error-free and successful code for your app, your app will become famous, and it opens up the path for other brands to approach you to know the techniques to solve their purposes. By licensing your code, you can earn a lot of money without disrupting your app’s user experience.
For reference, you can consider the example of the popular game Temple Run that was re-skinned to create Temple Run Oz as a film tie-in.
There is one more thing to consider besides code-sharing, i.e., your app’s endgame. After your business has gotten a possible value out of your app and is preparing to move onto the next step, you can sell it as a whole to a buyer who wants to use your existing framework to create their app.
Luckily, this can be accomplished using Apptopia, a popular marketplace, facilitating the buying and selling of mobile apps.
Creating While Label code gives you the liberty to sell it from the ground up even without selling off your IP. The only drawback is, there can inevitably be multiple versions of your source code bouncing in the marketplace.
No matter which one you choose, one thing is sure that you’ll make money by saving other developers from creating app code from scratch. All it takes is for your app to be initially constructed out of robust and desirable code.
Most app downloads are unpaid, but that does not mean the users can never spend any money.
In-app purchases work best to make by allowing customers to interact and engage directly with your application.
This is the most vital part of “freemium” mobile apps (typically mobile games), where users don’t have to pay the upfront cost. They only need to pay for gated features. Any business can utilize this strategy to earn money from the proposed app.
Using this strategy, you can provide users with the facility to purchase products or app premium features directly from the app. On the other hand, if you run a business that offers services, it will again become easy for users to opt for in-app service billing.
The negative aspect of in-app purchases is that developers work on a fine line that includes enticing users with too many free options and offering limited features. So, be careful if you are planning to choose this app monetization method.
You can notify users of app updates, send them reminders for contests and promotions straight to their text message inboxes by using in-app prompts used for accumulating email addresses. This marketing method is a more effective way to strengthen your brand because it drives users back to your app.
Let’s take the example of BLUE LION mobile GmbH, a German company that launched the mobile app Qeep. The app was the world’s largest mobile social platform that used SMS messaging to reach and retain high-value users.
BLUE LION set the target to reach and reactivate app users who hadn’t used the proposed application for days or weeks. And the brand made it successful by achieving an impressive response rate, i.e., above 10 percent.
Giving SMS marketing a try would be great to enhance customer engagement and loyalty towards your product.
Freemium apps are free to download, but they typically come with the in-app purchases option that helps app owners make money.
To make your users satisfied and earn money, you can create an entirely different and separate version of your app with features that ensure a complete user experience.
Developing a free or cheaper version helps users understand what your is all about and what it can do to accomplish their purpose.
Think of it as a teaser. After using the free version of your app, your customers will soon realize that the app can serve an essential role in their lives that they don’t want to live without.
Once the users start enjoying the app’s existing features, there are chances that they might be willing to pay for the premium app features.
Remember, if you are approaching users to pay for your app’s premium version, your responsibility as an app owner is to offer a high-quality product that is worth it. This way, you will be able to receive positive reviews and recommendations for your premium app version.
Strong Content Strategies
One of the more specific ways to convert new or infrequent users into lifelong, paying users is to refresh your app’s content regularly.
Website blog in this sense is the best to distribute new and relevant content to the users. This way, you can make the newest post available to your users via your app’s blog section. On the other hand, if you post industry news and stories, the users can read them natively. But make sure the news you publish is up to date.
This is how you can provide your users with a strong reason to come back to your app to explore more.
Most of the paying users only make one or two in-app purchases and never return as they don’t find anything new to explore in the app. But if you keep your app updated with a constant stream of new content, it not only attracts paying users but also compels non-paying users to download and explore it for more.
So, while performing regular app updates, always ensure that there should be something irresistible in the content that makes users come back for more.
Multiple Payment Options for Subscription Services
If you regularly update your content, consider creating a subscription service for those customers who keep coming back. The users will be asked to pay for a quarterly or monthly subscription amount, and in return, they will get access to all new content without even having to remember to buy it.
But when you use the subscription service option, seek to differentiate between tiers of access to your content. The Economist used this strategy that allows users to opt for a subscription model, including web-only, a print-only, or both.
Many users observed the utility in spending adds the value of access to both web and print subscriptions. Therefore, when you monetize your app, consider offering various options, including a subscription package, comprising all the services as an app premium package. If you do this, you can make your app much profitable.
Know how you can monetize your app in three simple steps “How to Make Money Making Apps.”
The best way to optimize your app’s ability to generate revenue is by studying the robust analytics you collect from your user base’s behaviors and putting those insights into fair use.
Using this method, you can figure out who is spending the most time and money on your app and prioritize those users instead of spending most of your development time to acquire new users.
A study by Localytics explained that 20% of users never used an app the next time after using it for once. Or you can say, a considerable chunk of such users that you have acquired may not engage on any level of your app other than the initial download.
When you can learn why users are abandoning your app upon registration and comparing their behavior with loyal users, you gain knowledge that can further optimize the user experience.
If you want to get the highest ROI from your app, you need to be aware of the efforts that offer you the most successful results to win your target audience. The best way to get this done better is to focus on performing the same efforts that provide fast and profitable results. You will your app is getting more attention, engagement, and revenue that ultimately benefit your business.
The best part is, the data you collect doesn’t have a limited scope; rather, it has a value outside of your business. Here, behavioral data can work as a gold mine to app marketers. On the top, if your app is prominent, it will attract other marketers and compel them to purchase the app’s success data from you.
You are well aware of how excellent a mobile app can be for your bottom line by this point. It can expand your brand and make strong connections with customers you might never have connected with before. And as you’ve seen in this post, it can also be a significant source of revenue.
You can even create white-label apps as a way to make extra money.
If you want to skyrocket your mobile app, you need to start taking advantage of all the above-mentioned mobile app monetization strategies. It will help you generate excellent app revenue than ever.
Mohit Maheshwari is Chief Strategist at NMG Technologies, a full service IT Company offering android and IOS mobile app development services. He has been in the industry since 2000 and focuses on long-term strategies, intuitive user experience, and successful customer acquisition. Follow Mohit on Twitter and LinkedIn