iOS has long held the crown as the most profitable platform for mobile developers. In fact, according to a recent research, the average app on the Apple App Store generates as much as four times the revenue as its counterpart on the Google Play Store.
In spite of that, the Android platform represents a tremendous opportunity for developers, because of the sheer size of the platform. Even so, many Android app developers wonder about the best way to monetize their Android app.
One of the most popular ways of monetizing an app is to utilize the freemium model. Basically, with this approach, the app is offered for free with some of its features disabled until the customer pays.
The advantage of this model is that no one is restricted from using the app, and the app can even be enjoyed without a customer having to pay a dime. The key to making this model work is twofold: create an app that people enjoy without paying while making the upgraded features compelling enough that they want to pay.
Another popular model is the subscription method. Rather than paying upfront, the user pays a small monthly or yearly fee to use the app. Alternately, an Android app developer can combine the subscription model and the freemium model. This allows users to use the app for free and, rather than paying a lump sum, pay a small subscription fee to unlock advanced features.
The advantage of this model is that it helps provide a steady income stream for the developer, as many customers will pay 99 cents to $2.99 a month, even if it’s for an app they rarely use.
Ad-based revenue is yet another option for apps. This model can be used either on its own, or hand-in-hand with the freemium model. In an ad-only approach, the application’s entire feature set is available with ads providing the sole source of revenue. In an ad/freemium model, the free version is supported by ads, while paying for an upgrade removes the ads and possibly unlocks additional features.
This model – especially the ad-only variant – can be an excellent option for Android app developers who don’t want to deal with the hassle of payments, refunds, etc., while the ad/freemium model ensures that the developer makes money off of both the free and paid versions. The challenge of this model is to use the ads in a way that is minimally intrusive and does not degrade the user experience.
Commercial licensing is, of course, also a viable option for monetizing an Android app, although apps that use this model do well to price the app at a point that encourages impulse buys. A $30 mobile app, with no free version to preview, is a much harder sell than a $2.99 app.
Android Monetization: The Sky’s The Limit
Whatever method you choose, monetizing an Android app has never been easier. The Android market is a healthy, thriving ecosystem where talented developers and quality apps can generate a healthy income.
You can get started today by hiring a qualified developer to create an Android app and help you find the best way to monetize it.
Contributor: Michael Kelley <firstname.lastname@example.org>
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