What are ad-supported apps?
What are paid apps?
Ad-supported ad-streaming apps are paid-for versions of existing mobile apps that run in a paid-to-play model.
Paid apps usually contain ad-specific features and can offer users more granular control over the content they can see and access.
Paid games are also often more lucrative than ad-free versions, which can sometimes be more expensive.
The problem with paid apps and paid-only games is that the revenue they generate can be a huge drain on a company’s budget.
Ad-supported games are an interesting exception to this rule.
Ad-free games, which are popular in mobile gaming circles, are popular because they’re free and offer a wider range of features and options.
They also have lower user engagement, which is often considered better than ad revenues.
Ad revenue for paid games is often based on how many times a user visits a paid site, which varies based on whether a player clicks a link or not.
So, what’s a developer to do?
Advertisers need to make the right decision.
“Ad-free is not a gold standard of user experience,” says Andrew McLean, managing director of mobile analytics at mobile analytics company Insights.
It may be tempting to use paid apps to lure users into paying for a new app, but there’s also a trade-off to be aware of: if a user opts to pay for an ad-heavy app, the advertiser may have to take a cut of the sale, which could have a negative impact on revenue.
Advertising revenue for ad-based apps, which aren’t monetised, is typically higher than ad revenue for other types of apps.
If you’re trying to generate revenue from paid apps, McLean advises sticking with ad-less apps like games and music.
McLean also advises sticking to games where the players have a greater control over their play experience.
“There are some really good paid games out there, like Clash Royale,” McLean says.
While there’s still a lot of competition, Mclean says he’s seen more developers jump on board in recent months.
He also recommends using paid games when the player is under the age of 18 and is unsure of their interests.
As an example, McLeod points to a recent mobile game that offered a chance to win a $100 prize if a player completed a quiz in which they had to solve a puzzle and answer as many questions as possible in a matter of minutes.
If that sounds like a deal for you, there’s a lot more competition than you might think.
For a look at the biggest mobile games, check out the infographic above.