5 Winning App Monetization Strategies wave

How to Monetize Apps:
5 Mobile App Monetization Strategies That Actually Work

tips 10 min read

The number of mobile apps is on the rise. According to the latest figures, there are 2.2 million apps on the App Store and almost a similar number of apps on the Play Store as well. This makes it extremely difficult to make a successful app since the competition is stiff.

You must know how to monetize an app if you really want to profit from it. In this article, we'll highlight some of the best app monetization strategies to help you monetize apps.

However, before we move ahead with the ways to monetize apps, let's talk about the need to monetize apps. Here are some stats to highlight the importance of app monetization.

  • The mobile app market is expected to hit 188.9 billion US Dollars by 2020. This shows just how important mobile monetization is.

  • About 68% of mobile users prefer to use apps instead of browsers. Hence, there is a dire need to consider monetization models.

  • Mobile users spend about 3 hours a day browsing different apps. This number is expected to jump to 5-6 hours in the next 4 years. This shows how the need to utilize various app monetization strategies is only going to increase.

People are willing to pay for apps but only if you know how to monetize them. Now without further ado, let's have a look at five great ways to monetize apps.

Pre-Monetization Checklist

Before you start monetizing your app you should check whether your app is ready for that. Here are a few things you should keep in mind:

Do's Don'ts
Run A/B Tests Bugs — death by a thousand cuts
Minimum of 3,000 MAU and 250 conversions/mo Provisional features
Collect data / analytics before starting Poor design / UX
Develop conversion funnels Error messages
Install heatmaps to track actual user behavior Distract user from value/action
Test hypothesis. Your A/B tests should be more than simply changing button colors Demand too many actions
Each screen = one purpose Empty states should not leave a user hanging

Monetization Strategy #1 Advertise Through Your App

This is usually the first tip on most monetization models. Advertising through your app is a great way to earn money. However, the advertisement must be relevant to your audience and not be a hindrance in using the app. If it is, it would discourage users and force them to try other platforms.

Knowing your audience is extremely important. This will help you choose the most relevant ads that cater to them the best. Try to make use of native advertising and integrate ads into the content.

  • Native

    Native ads provide an integrated ad experience with layouts that match your app design.

  • Banner

    Banner ads occupy a spot within an app's layout & stay on screen while user interacts with the app.

  • Interstitial

    A full-screen ads that cover the interface of the app and grab users' attention ensuring high eCPMs.


Monetization Strategy #2 Offer a Premium Version

If your app is a success, you can offer a premium version to users for more benefits. The freemium app model is the most successful among mobile app monetization strategies. Almost all apps use this tactic, even well-known companies like Tinder.

Tinder offers a special premium package for an additional fee that gives users access to certain features. All you have to know what people are interested in and how much they would be willing to pay for such a service and then come up with it.

The premium service provided should be a superior version that is worth paying for. However, remember that only about 2% of all users will pay for your services. Still, the freemium app model can be a good option as 2% of 2 million can be 40,000 users. If each user pays a monthly subscription fee of $1, you will still take home $40,000.

But make sure to think long and hard when working on the app monetization model. Mobile monetization will not work if the subscription fee is too high so be sure to keep it reasonable. Charging a one-time fee or a monthly fee is the best option.

Do a bit of research so that your app monetization strategy will be successful.

Monetization Strategy #3 Sponsorships

Once your app is a hit, you can try to get in touch with sponsors and promote their content through paid sponsorship programs. This technique can pay a lot depending on how popular your app is.

You can partner with advertisers and different businesses to have a share in their profits. Many businesses offer rewards to users for completing certain actions, such as watching a video or downloading a game.

Monetization Strategy

You can put such content or reward opportunities in your app and earn every time a mission is accomplished.

Monetization Strategy #4 In-app Purchases

This is a very effective technique that can help you make a good amount of money given that you plan carefully. The popular game, Ludo Star, uses this technique well. It offers in-game assets that people can purchase in order to rank higher in the game and increase their chances of winning.

In-App Purchases

However, in-app purchases do not necessarily have to be virtual goods. They can be physical items as well. For example, you can sell clothes or other items through your app. You'll need to implement a strong delivery system if you wish to go full e-commerce.

Monetization Strategy #5 Have a Trial Run

Offer users the opportunity to know what you have to offer before they purchase it. This is a common technique in the world of information technology where users are allowed to experience a service for a limited amount of time or with limited features after which they can decide to purchase the full version.


This is quite like offering users a premium version, but with there is a difference. Here, you can offer it all for free but for a limited amount of time - one day or one week - depending on the nature of your app to lure people into buying the app.

Ways to Monetize Apps: Things to Remember When Planning App Monetization Strategies

While all these strategies are great, not all of them may work for you. Here are some valuable tips on selecting the perfect app monetization strategy to monetize apps.

  • Use a Mix of Mobile App Monetization Strategies
    Do not use any single strategy. Instead, use a mix of monetization models so that you can benefit more. This will also assist you in understanding which option will benefit you the most.

  • Do Not Be too Hasty
    Go slow. Angry Birds developers, Rovio Developers, failed dozens of times before they hit the jackpot with Angry Birds, which allowed them to truly benefit from app monetization. So give it some time.

  • First Know about Mobile Monetization
    Make yourself familiar with what mobile monetization is and how app monetization strategies work so that you can choose the right mobile app monetization strategies to monetize your apps.

  • Do Not Try Too Hard to Monetize Apps
    First, concentrate on user experience and then move to a mobile monetization strategy. Also, keep trying different monetization models to see what works. There are several monetization models to choose from so this should not be a problem.

  • Pay Attention to the Quality
    Monetization models will not work if your app is substandard. Nobody will be interested in advertising on your app or paying for premium content if it's not worth it.

We are hopeful these app monetization strategies will help you in mobile monetization and creating a solid monetization strategy. It is very important to know how to monetize an app so that you can make some money from it.

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