How can mobile applications make money?

Remember the advertisements that show when viewing movies on YouTube or the pop-up banners that appear when we visit an online store? These are instances of how companies monetize their websites; the same principle applies to paid and free mobile applications. Free applications dominate the app industry, accounting for 96 percent of revenue on Google Play and 90.3 percent on the App Store. However, because such programs are free, how can they earn money?

You can develop an ideal app that can be downloaded by thousands of people in the first month but hold on. What happened to the money? While your amazing concept and excellent software will not generate revenue, your monetization approach is likely to pay off the costs of mobile app development services. Are you curious about the revenue potential of your app? This is dependent on the approach you want to use. There are two primary monetization methods available. Therefore, let us examine each of them in more detail.

In-app advertising

Almost certainly, you’ve seen this model before. Using the in-app advertising strategy may eliminate the cost barrier to buying your software and make it available for free download. Your objective is to build a sizable user base and collect data on the individuals who use your app. This data is then processed and sold to app publishers to display targeted advertisements inside your app.

Facebook is an excellent illustration of this. Although its customers do not pay Facebook directly to download or use their digital application, Facebook uses a large quantity of its data to sell precisely focused advertisements. This technique has proved successful for Facebook. According to reports, the social media giant’s yearly ad income will reach 84,169,000,000 in 2020.


Typically, banners/display advertisements of various sizes are shown at the correct angle of the screen. Although users may continue to use the program even with a banner on the screen, they are obnoxious. Since customers have developed a greater awareness of customer experience (UX) and user interface (UI) design, the utility of advertisements has reduced. Additionally, their click-through rates are poor.

Direct purchase

You’ve undoubtedly noticed that certain premium applications are not accessible for download before purchase. The title, video, photos, and reviews are the only elements you may check initially. Convincing users to download a premium app is a difficult job, which is why all accessible content must be very enticing.

Nonetheless, it is feasible, as Minecraft Pocket Edition demonstrates. It is the most profitable app on Google Play. When it was released in 2011 for $6.99, it quickly became the most downloaded game on Android.


A paid app marketing strategy implies that your application is not available for free download. To utilize your app, users must first download it from an app store. Paid applications range in price from $0.99 to $999.99, and businesses earn upfront money with each new user. The key to success with this approach is that you hire a dedicated app developer who can demonstrate your app’s perceived value via a killer app listing that incorporates screenshots, five-star ratings, and so on) that sets your app apart from rivals.

Consider Calendars 5, a premium productivity tool available for $4.99 in Apple’s app store. Calendar 5’s iTunes listing instantly presents the software as a “smart calendar” that combines tasks, human speech, and reminders into a sleek and colorful interface. The app’s listing page features several screenshots highlighting its clean appearance and rave testimonials about its excellent performance. The app may convince you that it is superior to Apple’s default calendar and, therefore, worth the money within a few minutes.


The freemium approach, comparable to the subscription model, enables you to monetize a free app. The primary distinction is that the mobile user may use the free iOS app with limited functionality indefinitely. However, users must pay monthly or yearly fees to use the enhanced feature-rich app version. According to statistics, just 0.5-2 percent of app users purchase a premium app version. On the other side, a free version of your software will reach a larger audience and help spread the word about your product.

Subscription. The best method to sell your app is to incorporate a subscription. Anyone who acquired it is charged on a monthly or annual basis. Compared to all other monetization methods, this form of monetization is the most often used. According to data, it allows app owners to make up to 50% more revenue for every user after a single usage. It’s both a fantastic and challenging project from a financial viewpoint, but it’s a difficult but possible job for development. What’s important is to provide better and more information to guarantee that customers renew their subscriptions. So, you may need to hire a team of designers to work on your app continually.


In comparison to paid applications, free mobile apps have a larger market share. There are many ways to earn money from a mobile app, and each one generates a different level of cash and has a varied user engagement rate. We suggest that you choose a revenue strategy appropriate for your app’s specialty, purpose, and target audience.

As the mobile application industry expands, developer rivalry is fierce, and competitor research is necessary before creating an app. Thus, all you truly need today is a game-changing concept and the support of a competent technology team!

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