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How Do I Make Money Off My App Idea?

Because that’s the end goal, right?

Whether your app is a standalone, Words With Friends style gaming app or a sidekick to your software application, you likely want it to reach a large audience and make you money.

Making significant money off an app is easier said than done, though. For every great app idea, there are tons of other folks with the same or a very similar idea. Because of this, monetizing an app can be difficult.

We’ve created mobile apps for hundreds of clients, and we’ve learned a thing or two in the process. Before you get started developing your app, our marketing team suggests you consider the following things:

  • What are the unique features of the app?
  • Which problem/issue is it specifically addressing?
  • How would it make the life of its users easier (in a way few others do)?
  • Why is it preferable to other apps in the category?
  • Would the target audience be likely to pay for the app? Why? (Your reasons for this will have to be solid, not wishy-washy, since this will determine if the app is a success or not.)

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Watch the Competition

If you’re up in the air about which business model to adopt, look at the competition. Take a look at the ultra-successful apps in your niche, as well as the flops. This will help you understand which features your audience like and which ones they can do without. To do this, download the apps and use it yourself. What do you like and dislike about it? App Store reviews are also helpful in determining how the audience feels about certain features and the app in general.

But each app is unique, or at least, you should aim to make yours so. There is a ton you can learn from others but do not end up copying someone.

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Place Personalized Ads Within the App

You won’t sell anything to the users but you can provide the data the users share with you to third-party publishers who then place ads within the app for the interested users.

Personalized advertising has been shown to engage rather than annoy users. Actually, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram all do this rather seamlessly. All the biggest blogs and media publications are doing this, too.

Also, ads for products or services relevant to the users’ interests have higher chances of being accepted, or at least, tolerated. Pop-ups, random intrusive bits, and banner ads will only result in a loss of business.

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Make Your App Free…at First

The New York Times just recently started this tactic to make increase revenue.

Once upon a time, the NYT Recipes app was free, but last month they decided to begin charging for it. That is unless you’re already a NYT subscriber, then the app is just an added bonus.

As a user, I was hooked on the app. And, I was convinced that I couldn’t just quit using it, so I purchased the app. They got me.

If you’re looking at using this tactic, you have to first ensure that users are thoroughly vested into the free version of the app in order to upgrade to the professional one.

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Make it Social

Nearly every gaming app gets you to invite your Facebook friends to play, too, if you want to move to the next level without having to wait for what can feel like an interminable amount of time.

Certain e-commerce apps do this, too. They have in-built messengers, which they encourage you to invite friends over for or ask you to snap a picture of the dinner you created from a recipe on the app and share it with your friends.

When you suggest your users share with or invite their friends, you are guaranteed to increase your audience significantly.

The way an app is developed and marketed determines its success. If you’re looking for a software partner to take your app idea and make it a reality, let’s talk. At SOLTECH, we were here at the onset of mobile app development and haven’t slowed down yet. We’ve worked with hundreds of clients to take their apps from just an idea to a tangible and profitable piece of software.

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