8 Tips to Earn Money through Free Apps

Chirag Leuva
by Chirag Leuva 15 Oct, 2014

Mobile app development involves several critical tasks, but what happens after is equally important. Once the app is developed and uploaded to the marketplace successfully, companies need to think about app monetization. 

Since free apps earn better than paid apps, here are some useful tips for you to earn money through the former. 

1. Develop for the User

Design your app by keeping the user perspective in place. Your app will automatically garner appreciation and downloads if it is fun, engaging and marketed well. Since the competition is tremendously high, you need to find your niche audience and take your pick from one of the categories in the application store.

The app whether a business app, a travel app or a game needs to keep users hooked to and provide repeat value because of its usefulness. 

2. Offer Novelty to Users

With every update, you need to offer more novelty in your app features. With this, users will always be inquisitive about the features you have integrated in the app. They should also not get tired of the app. Offer additional ideas and solutions for customization, and even offer a good reward for promoting apps socially among their friends.

3. Work with Freemium Model for Maximum Returns

While most app users prefer free apps instead of paid apps, some advanced users do not mind shelling out money for access to premium features. A free "lite" version of your basic app can help you to enter the market and then create interest so users will want to gain access to advanced features. Ensure that the premium levels are worth the cents or dollars with several more interesting levels to offer to the user. Do advertise the benefits of having a paid app, or users may never know what they are missing. 

4. Include In-App Purchases

Including in-app purchases works well with the incorporation of third-party advertisements within apps and also on the advertorial (more on that below). While using in-app purchases, do not issue too many messages or it might prove to be counterproductive. 

5. Cross-Market Your App

You could approach and contact different app developers for diverse platforms, by cross-marketing the app. The ad exchange program for example mentions information about your app while also marketing a similar app attached to your theme. Consider affiliate marketing and other forms of digital marketing to promote the app on different platforms. 

6. Include Real Money Gaming

Try to include real money especially in games where possible. Real money has generated a massive market in regions where such games are legitimate, and adhering to regulatory and law enforcement issues. Real money gaming ups the excitement and the UK is noted to be the biggest market for such games, as seen in its many releases.

7. Use of Analytics to Assess the Prospect Customer Market

Use analytics data to understand user behavior. Analyze the user movements on the screen through analytics and introduce concepts based on a typical user's needs and demands. 

8. Keep it in the Limelight

Finally, ensure that your app is in the limelight since the more you market it through online sites and through the top social media channels, the more potential you have to reach users. Promote and work on the app to keep building the hype through updates. Keeping the user interest alive is a tough option but one can boost the app ranking, enhancing chances of making money on it.

Some Additional Tips for Mobile App Development and Money

- Use mobile ad networks including InMobi and AdMob for in-app advertising. The networks help in easy integration with apps, thus helping you to earn revenue immediately. Although the CPM rates are very low, take the time and improve the app as it's app's popularity catches on with users.

- Employing rich media ad networks including Greystripe for creating the desired interest in the viewers, to get them coming back. Since the ads are always appealing, it is sure to attract more viewership and higher CPMs. There might be some server strain through this, but everything can be worked out easily.

- Ad Exchanges can be of immense help big time, since it helps in ad network integration at one and the same time. Thus guarantees higher fill rates too, instead of a single ad network.

- If you are the developer, try avoid the marketing stuff and leave it to the experts. If your time and resources are wasted, the cost involved is sure to reach sky-high. It may also lower net returns in the long run.

- Getting mobile app sponsorship gets assured high returns. An app specific to the advertiser also entails smoother and better app integration with the sponsor. The downside here is that the app needs to be a perfect fit for the sponsor's brand. Big-shot publishers can hope to sustain such relationships with sponsors and will not work with newbie developers. 

In short, mobile app development for free apps is lucrative if marketed and strategically planned based on the niche segment of users. Always, highlight the benefits offered by the app and how it can change the status quo. This approach will also help you get fresh funding and ad revenue from user clicks.

Chirag Leuva is the CEO of Yudiz Solutions, an android app development company. A app developer and avid gamer, Chirag was fed up with what others sites were offering in the android games blogging arena and decided to start his own.