You have to make a critical decision once the product creation process is finished before you make it available on the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.
Will you charge users for downloading it? Or are you going to make it open for free?
One of the reasons why so many people prefer to charge for downloads is that they don’t know any other way to raise revenue for the product. They believe the only way to get a return on the big investment is by charging a fee per download after investing so much money on growth. This is a common misunderstanding. Free apps can generate real money.
That’s right. You just have to make sure you take this plan with a smart approach. There are plenty of major players out there who make lots of money. If you follow a few very big monetization techniques, you can also accomplish this comparable achievement.
- Understand the users
- Understand the competition
- In-app purchases and advertisements
- The art of subtlety
So if you’re up in the air on whether or not to offer your app for free, I’d say free is certainly your best choice. All you need to do is follow these tips, which I’m going to outline as we proceed in more detail.
The majority of downloaded apps are free. Smartphone users are not accustomed to paying for their apps, so they are unlikely to make an exception for yours.
There is something similar on the market that is affordable, so they should just get it somewhere else for free.
So, selling or offering it without charging something is your best option. Try to get as many downloads as possible and look for other revenue stream options. As an industry professional who has been through this before, We can assure you that it works from personal experience.
Here’s a Guide on How Free Apps Make Money
Understand the Users You Have
You have to take the time to do some analysis before you do something else. Think of the individuals who are actually using or will be using your app. This will be simpler for some of you compared to others.
The demographics of your app users will mirror your current clients for those of you with an existing business. But if you intend to launch an app that is not an extension of an existing company, you will have to concentrate on the new target market. You have to consider how these individuals think and act.
For starters, the operating system that your software is accessible also influences the actions of the user. Apple users and Android users act differently. You would not be able to understand something if you don’t understand your users. But take this one step further. Understanding the user means far more than just knowing what kind of mobile device they are using.
To get started in the correct direction, ask yourself these three questions.
- Who is using the app?
- What are they using it for?
- How are they using it?
You will begin to find out what your customers are doing if you can answer these questions. Compare this activity to your app now.
Does this comply with those considerations?
If the answer is yes, then you are in a good place to move to the next steps. Before you skip forward, just make sure you start with the consumer.
Comprehend the Rivals
The study of rivals is a marketing strategy that so many corporations frequently forget. They are so busy concentrating on their own business that they fail to see how their competitors are doing.
The first phase in this involves defining your rivals before you can move on. After you have completed that part of the process, you can begin to examine the components of their operation.
If your rivals do something similar to you, see if they do it differently. There is no shame in learning from someone else who succeeds. You can easily apply the same tactics to your own monetization plan for your mobile app.
On the flip side, when you perform this analysis, you can also find out what your rivals are doing poorly. You can take notes on these errors and make sure you prevent them as you introduce those improvements to your own app. Once you evaluate the market, you have to come up with a plan of distinction.
What makes it special to your app?
Think about what you can do better than anyone else and make sure that’s the core of your marketing campaign. Branding the app properly can make revenue much easier for you, even though it’s available as a free download.
Now that we have discussed the preliminary components of your app monetization, it’s time to concentrate on what is actually going to make revenue.
There are two simple ways that you can make money from free software.
- In-app purchases
But you can add one or even both of these approaches to your app. Each one has a lot of advantages. I’ll describe in more depth how both of these work, so you know exactly what to do.
Purchases from In-App
An in-app purchase includes new features and additional options for users. These enhancements help enhance their loyalty and improve user experience. How much money the average user spends on in-app purchases per month.
The majority of smartphone users do not buy updates from the results. Users on the iOS platform are prepared to pay more than users of Android.
But you can’t afford to pay money on every single person that installs the software for free. That’s not a practical or feasible target. So you have to focus on the community that is willing to buy those improvements. These extra features can add a layer of difficulty depending on the design of the app and the scope of its functionality. You have to find a way to hook the customer and keep them coming back for them
For example, games do a better job of convincing users to buy updates that improve their gameplay. So anyone can download and play the game for free, but without purchasing money, they cannot access certain maps or game features. Coin or token systems are a great way to do this to get users to pay more per purchase. Instead of telling anything that costs $1, you can sell it for 100 tokens.
So for example:
- $5 = 500 tokens
- $10 = 1200 tokens
- $20 = 2500 tokens
There are four major forms of in-app purchases, according to Apple Support.
- Non-renewing subscriptions
- Auto-renewing subscriptions
So the coin example will come under the category of consumable.
Upgrading a paid edition of an app that has included benefits such as no commercials will be a non-consumable purchase. Non-renewing subscriptions are scheduled for a fixed period of time.
So if you had a sports app, you could sell a subscription for just the NFL, NBA, or MLB season.
An auto-renewal subscription is something that is continuing and will not expire for a few months. This category will come under a subscription to a newspaper such as The Wall Street Journal. Video and movie subscriptions such as Netflix, HBO, or Hulu are also examples of auto-renewal subscriptions.
To find out what kind of update your in-app purchase would qualify for. All of these are feasible strategies, but as we’ve seen with the above examples, some work best with different kinds of applications.
Advertisements are fairly self-explanatory. If you have a website, you understand how advertisements work. It’s the same idea for your app. Based on views or clicks, you’ll be paid. The type of advertisements available on your platform will also influence the pay rate.
For example, as opposed to a static ad or banner, you might charge firms more for a video advertisement.
Advertising works with certain models and applications. After evaluating your customers and rivals, you will have to determine if this is a fair approach for you to consider.
Although these will make you money, the user interface can also be distracting. So you don’t want to go crazy with advertising.
With that said, you can also merge your promotional strategy with your business model of in-app purchases. Let’s say you use all of these strategies to make money. You can provide a premium upgrade for consumers who do not want to see ads when using the app. It can be achieved at the same time by using in-app purchases and advertisements in the same app.
The most important aspect of making money using free apps is to persuade the consumer that they want to purchase stuff to better their experience. You have to build the feeling that they need to spend money to get the most out of your app.
The free parts of the app need to be decent, but not great, in order to make this possible. It’s a slippery slope. If you make the free version fantastic, the user won’t have much reason to spend extra cash. But if you withhold too many free version features, users won’t experience enough to know they want to do or see more.
But you have to find the middle ground. With those improved functionalities and advantages, subtly tease them. If you’re going to use ads, make sure they don’t obstruct user navigation.
For instance, each time they open the app, a user does not have to watch a 30-second video. But some popups or banners might not be irrational from time to time.
In order to decide which monetization strategy works best, it takes a detailed study of the app, your customers, and the industry. You have to find out which will result in the highest revenue.
When it comes to making money with free software, there’s no silver bullet. But there are certainly ways you can learn to take advantage of opportunities when they present themselves.
In order to use your software, do you need to charge users?
No, not at all. Free apps can make money.
On the market, the top apps dramatically throw the averages away. But, if your app doesn’t make money hand over fist right away, don’t be discouraged. It takes time. There’s always plenty of money to make, it just takes some time and effort.
Start by analyzing the target market. Once you can understand the user, the best approach for making money would be easier for you to come up with. But after doing user analysis, the preparation does not stop. You will have to evaluate the competition. Take some of their strategies if they are effective and integrate them into your own approach. But you have to distinguish yourself.
Don’t be afraid to try. There is no one strategy that is the only way to generate revenue for free software. As you’ve already noticed, with both in-app purchases and in-app ads, there are many ways you can do this.
Your approach should be subtle. Try to make the consumer think they need to invest money to get the full benefits of the product. Take advantage of any resources available on the market that allow you to run experiments and explore the solutions that could work better for your app. Once you’ve figured this out, you can commit to creating the right app for you.