We all have been hearing that Android app revenues are all set to top the iOS revenue in 2017 and that global app market revenue is also expected to reach $102 billion by 2020. One can easily be forgiven for thinking that each and every App developer is growing his bank account by the day. However shockingly as per data from Vision Mobile, 64 per cent of Android app developers are earning less than $500 per month in revenues.
When we think about money from Apps, it is very easy for us to only think of the WhatsApps, Facebooks and Instagrams of this world, however in reality there is a very active and vibrant group of ‘part-time developers’ who are on the other side of this revolutionary money making App economy. Vision Mobile says that around 43 per cent of mobile developers are either developing Apps for fun or some are independent developers who work on them as a side project.
Monetization of the App is the biggest need of the hour for the App industry in today’s time. The App developers can utilize the option of in-app purchases which is very popular especially for the gaming apps. The freemium model can also be beneficial, Freemium basically means that users can download the app for free, but some of its features are paid. The most common way to use Freemium, is to remove apps through an in-app purchase. Users understandingly hate ads, and the option to pay for removing these ads from the apps is something users will be willing to buy. The App developer can also add a few additional features which can be charged accordingly. In-app advertising, in-app purchases and freemium are great options for the developers but with the growing number of new Apps and increasing competition, these options may not always yield good results.
For example, In-app advertising can work well only if it is an App which is regularly used. However, most of the Apps irrespective of how good or useful they are, are not used regularly by users. Some developers have started exploring new options, which include adding a secondary functionality to rarely used apps to boost their relationship with the users. Secondary functionalities like caller ID can be added, enabling users to interact with the app not only when they open the core app, but also each time they make a phone call. A re-engagement message can also be added to ensure that the people remember the core app. Few Apps like Simple Notepad and Mega Voice Changer increased their revenues by 10-fold within one month after incorporating a secondary functionality to their App.
Some developers monetize by selling their app data, often anonymously and untraceable back to the user, to companies who are in need of information for number of reasons. Consumer privacy is understandably an important concern in this area and it is necessary on part of the developer that any data collection is done with the full knowledge of the user.
With the expected growth of app revenue, part-time app developers and owners should wisely explore all the available options, ensuring for themselves a steady and growing income.