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Monday, November 21, 2022

How to monetize a mobile app? Here's a complete guide

Among 7 billion people on Earth, out of which more than 5 billion people own a cell phone, and an ever-growing number of these are smartphones. Over the last five years, the number of people who access the internet through their mobile phones has more than doubled, including mobile app users.

As a mobile app developer, certain aspects of the industry can be irritating. One such example is trying to appease a broad group of users. When choosing to develop an app, the quest to support multiple users and come to terms with app monetization queries can be taxing. 

This means that developers now need to come to terms with the fact that their apps are not just a platform; instead, they can be a significant source of income. That is what mobile app monetization is all about! 

What is app monetization? And why is it Important? 

App monetization or monetizing an app means making revenue from a mobile app without actually charging for it. Users generally want free apps but do not know that free apps are 98% of Google Play's revenue. 

One of the options available to monetize an app is to advertise within the app itself. 

Mobile app monetization is crucial because users would instead download a free app than a paid one. To account for this, the app business model needs to be readjusted. Developers need to shift their revenue-earning process from pre-download to post-download. This is where strategizing your mobile app monetization comes in. You need to make sure that two things happen when users download your app: 

  1. Your app generates revenue. 
  2. Your users and the user experience remain intact. 

Most app builders forget to look into the second aspect, where most drop-offs or app uninstallation occur. 

What are the different App Monetization strategies? 

Free and paid mobile app versions model: 

Mobile app monetization strategies include having free and paid versions of your app. With this, you can have some features in the free app that encourages the users to upgrade to the paid app, or you could monetize the free app with in-app ads. 

This strategy has two significant benefits - a) It offers users a free option to test and experience the basic functionalities of the app at zero costs b) it provides app developers with a growing user the base for potential monetization.

Free app with in-app purchase model:

In this model, the basic app features are free. But, if the user wants to advance to the next level, for example, enjoy premium features or get extra lives or weapons in a gaming app - then they need to make in-app purchases. 

Another adjustment is when the app developers make sure that only specific sections are free, and to move forward, users need to make in-app purchases. 

The Free app with Subscription plan Model: 

In this strategy, the app is free to use with limited access to the services offered. To enjoy the full benefits, you need to take a subscription plan. This model is primarily seen in service-oriented apps (for example, Headspace, Spotify) or content-centric apps like newspapers (Times of India, New York Times). 

This model helps apps become easily discoverable in the app stores under the Free section when users look for related content. It also allows developers build their initial user base that can be cultivated into paid subscribers. 

The paid app model:

In certain cases, developers make their apps completely paid. Generally, these apps have a Unique Selling Point (USP) that is hard to find anywhere else. But, you need to make sure that your apps have that unique feature(s) that is unavailable in the market; otherwise, you will not be able to build a user base to generate revenue.  

The partnership model:

If your mobile app is top-rated in your niche, companies may approach you for sponsorship opportunities to get their brand in front of your users. But, when planning the next app to build, you can consider the user base and the type of brands interested in that app. If the user base is significant, then you can monetize through brand sponsorships, acquisitions, and partnerships. 

Now that we are clear with different types of models, you need to see the best app monetization platforms to monetize your apps. 

Best platforms to monetize your apps 

When you are planning to monetize your apps, various platforms provide simple and convenient services for developers to raise revenue through high-quality ads. Our top 2 picks of the best app monetization platforms are- 

Google AdMob:

Considered to be the best mobile app network, millions of advertisers use the platform. 

How does it work? 

  • Developers need to allocate the required ad space in the app 
  • Advertisers then set bids for the ad slots 
  • Google AdMob selects the most profitable and interesting ads for your users

Pros: 

  • Complete security maintained with ad verification systems 
  • Integrated with Google Analytics to track user interactions with in-app ads 
  • Ability to set broadcast time and track impressions 
  • Ad network mediation to work with multiple ad networks simultaneously 

Added Advantage:

Google AdMob uses the hybrid monetization model where developers can also use in-app purchases with reward ads. 

Google Ad Exchange

Google Ad Exchange or Google AdX is a marketplace where developers can sell and purchase ads with real-time bidding. Advertisers can run campaigns and offer publishers maximizing revenue options. 

How does it work? 

  • Integrate Google AdX with Ads Manager is a prerequisite to using the platform 
  • Easily manage and exhibit ads on the apps 
  • Segregate between direct, programmatic, and in-house ads 
  • Complete control of ads and even options to define pricing 
  • It can be used to determine where the ads will be displayed 
  • Monitor and track ad performance 

Pros: 

  • Google AdX has a higher demand than any other platform as it unites multiple ad publishers
  • You are in control with the ads displayed, who they are positioned to, and which ads are displayed on the application 
  • Publishers can define the price floor for the ads to generate the highest eCPM 
  • App publishers and companies of the same niche can get into direct deals that result in higher eCPMs
  • Publishers can make their ad inventory branded, semi-hidden, or entirely anonymous for buyers 
  • Advanced targeting options are available based on location, audience, and device

Added Advantage:

Google AdX has an innovative reporting tool that provides comprehensive reports for deeper insights and analysis of data. 

What are the Different ad types used to monetize an app? 

According to a study done by Statista, mobile ad spending is predicted to be around $280 billion in 2022. So, when planning to monetize your app, you need to understand the different ad types available to you. 

In-app ads:

In-app ads provide a dynamic and flexible user experience with options to create animations and interactive ads. These include ad types like native ads, mobile interstitial ads, ad banners, reward ads, and more. 

Pros: 

  • Does not distract users 
  • Highly interactive 
  • Can be easily controlled and managed

Interstitial mobile ads: 

These are ads that are built between levels of the app with SDKs. These ads cannot be closed until the interval ends and guarantees the best user experience. 

Pros: 

  • Ads are highly memorable 
  • It leaves a lasting impression 
  • Highly converting

Rewarded Video Ads:

These ads provide incentives or rewards for users who watch the ad and are primarily used in gaming apps in return for extra lives, hints, or bonuses. Users can also watch or skip the ads. 

Pros: 

  • High completion rates as users want the bonuses 
  • Highly interactive 
  • Increased engagement with users as they can see the complete ad

Mobile Video Ads:

Mobile video ads have some of the highest engagement rates out of all the options. There are three places where these ads play - pre-roll (before the video plays), mid-roll (middle of the video), and post-roll (after the video). 

Pros: 

  • Highest engagement rate 
  • High levels of interaction by users 
  • High conversion rates 

Mobile Native Ads:

These ads include video or textual ads that imitate the app's editorial content. And are not viewed as direct ads, which increases the users' loyalty. 

Pros: 

  • Cost-effective option 
  • Non-intrusive for users 
  • Aligns directly with the design 

Mobile Banner Ads:

These static ad units are displayed as standard banners (top or bottom of the screen) and include full-screen banners that take the whole mobile device screen. 

Pros: 

  • Easy to launch and affordable 
  • Universally supported 
  • Cost-effective option 

Playable Ads:

These interactive ads are mostly gaming apps that offer test versions as ad units. Typically they last from 15 seconds to 1 minute and are a great option to promote gaming apps. 

Pros: 

  • Highly interactive 
  • High engagement rates as users can interact with the game before download 
  • High conversion rates 

Mobile Game Ads:

Mobile game ads are highly interactive and memorable user experiences, including reward videos and interstitial ads. These can be static or dynamic based on what ad publishers create. 

Pros: 

  • Cost-effective option 
  • Highly interactive 
  • Universally supported 

Mobile rich ads:

These ads are considered one of the best as they are not banner specific and can include all elements such as audio, video, and highly engaging animations. Mobile rich ad formats can also include HTML, JS, CSS, and image files. It lets advertisers get creative and offer build ads that are entirely unseen in the market. 

Pros: 

  • Highly engaging ads 
  • Because the ads are different, users interact with them more 
  • High converting ads 

Evolution of App monetization - trends to watch out for: 

The mobile app market will be around $407 billion by 2026. It is essential to look ahead to the upcoming trends that will affect the market. Here are some app trends and monetization methods to watch for: 

Multiple revenue sources - 

App developers need to start looking into multiple options for app monetization. This act like a safety net and lets user preference dictates how the app is shown. In 2017 a report by app testing firm Swrve highlighted that 2.2% of gamers spent in-app money, while 46% of revenue came from the highest-spending 10% in that group. So, diversifying your revenue sources means you are less reliant on a small user group and have an overall comprehensive mobile app monetization strategy. 

In-app bidding to become more competitive -

In-app bidding is a one-way ad generator auctioning a publisher's inventory. It means ad publishers bid against each other to get that app space. According to a study by DigiDay, in-app bidding results in a 13-27% increase in Average Revenue per Daily Active User (ARPDAU). This will push app builders to auction more of their inventory via in-app bidding. 

Rise of AR -

As Augmented Reality or AR becomes more commonplace in the mobile app sector, marketers are looking for avenues to monetize mobile apps using AR. One of the best examples is IKEA's AR app. This app allows users to impose IKEA products in their household to see how each item looks before purchase. 

Final Thoughts

As an app publisher, understanding the nitty-gritty that goes into your app's monetisation can be difficult and time-consuming. With the negativity surrounding app developers selling their user's data to third-party platforms, and the number of fake sellers/publishers for apps online, it is no wonder that most developers lose interest in mobile app monetization. So, why not trust the experts at KalaGato

Firstly, you get a response from the experts within 72 hours of inquiry >> Secondly, you receive an offer in 2 week >> Finally, your app is sold within 30 days!

KalaGato offers a Free evaluation of your app as well. So, if you fulfil their criteria of: 

  1. 100k Monthly Active Users, 
  2. 1500 or more organic downloads, and 
  3. Day 1 retention benchmarks as high as 45%.

So, talk to the KalaGato experts to sell your app online! 

KalaGato
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How to monetize a mobile app? Here's a complete guide

Among 7 billion people on Earth, out of which more than 5 billion people own a cell phone, and an ever-growing number of these are smartphones. Over the last five years, the number of people who access the internet through their mobile phones has more than doubled, including mobile app users.

As a mobile app developer, certain aspects of the industry can be irritating. One such example is trying to appease a broad group of users. When choosing to develop an app, the quest to support multiple users and come to terms with app monetization queries can be taxing. 

This means that developers now need to come to terms with the fact that their apps are not just a platform; instead, they can be a significant source of income. That is what mobile app monetization is all about! 

What is app monetization? And why is it Important? 

App monetization or monetizing an app means making revenue from a mobile app without actually charging for it. Users generally want free apps but do not know that free apps are 98% of Google Play's revenue. 

One of the options available to monetize an app is to advertise within the app itself. 

Mobile app monetization is crucial because users would instead download a free app than a paid one. To account for this, the app business model needs to be readjusted. Developers need to shift their revenue-earning process from pre-download to post-download. This is where strategizing your mobile app monetization comes in. You need to make sure that two things happen when users download your app: 

  1. Your app generates revenue. 
  2. Your users and the user experience remain intact. 

Most app builders forget to look into the second aspect, where most drop-offs or app uninstallation occur. 

What are the different App Monetization strategies? 

Free and paid mobile app versions model: 

Mobile app monetization strategies include having free and paid versions of your app. With this, you can have some features in the free app that encourages the users to upgrade to the paid app, or you could monetize the free app with in-app ads. 

This strategy has two significant benefits - a) It offers users a free option to test and experience the basic functionalities of the app at zero costs b) it provides app developers with a growing user the base for potential monetization.

Free app with in-app purchase model:

In this model, the basic app features are free. But, if the user wants to advance to the next level, for example, enjoy premium features or get extra lives or weapons in a gaming app - then they need to make in-app purchases. 

Another adjustment is when the app developers make sure that only specific sections are free, and to move forward, users need to make in-app purchases. 

The Free app with Subscription plan Model: 

In this strategy, the app is free to use with limited access to the services offered. To enjoy the full benefits, you need to take a subscription plan. This model is primarily seen in service-oriented apps (for example, Headspace, Spotify) or content-centric apps like newspapers (Times of India, New York Times). 

This model helps apps become easily discoverable in the app stores under the Free section when users look for related content. It also allows developers build their initial user base that can be cultivated into paid subscribers. 

The paid app model:

In certain cases, developers make their apps completely paid. Generally, these apps have a Unique Selling Point (USP) that is hard to find anywhere else. But, you need to make sure that your apps have that unique feature(s) that is unavailable in the market; otherwise, you will not be able to build a user base to generate revenue.  

The partnership model:

If your mobile app is top-rated in your niche, companies may approach you for sponsorship opportunities to get their brand in front of your users. But, when planning the next app to build, you can consider the user base and the type of brands interested in that app. If the user base is significant, then you can monetize through brand sponsorships, acquisitions, and partnerships. 

Now that we are clear with different types of models, you need to see the best app monetization platforms to monetize your apps. 

Best platforms to monetize your apps 

When you are planning to monetize your apps, various platforms provide simple and convenient services for developers to raise revenue through high-quality ads. Our top 2 picks of the best app monetization platforms are- 

Google AdMob:

Considered to be the best mobile app network, millions of advertisers use the platform. 

How does it work? 

  • Developers need to allocate the required ad space in the app 
  • Advertisers then set bids for the ad slots 
  • Google AdMob selects the most profitable and interesting ads for your users

Pros: 

  • Complete security maintained with ad verification systems 
  • Integrated with Google Analytics to track user interactions with in-app ads 
  • Ability to set broadcast time and track impressions 
  • Ad network mediation to work with multiple ad networks simultaneously 

Added Advantage:

Google AdMob uses the hybrid monetization model where developers can also use in-app purchases with reward ads. 

Google Ad Exchange

Google Ad Exchange or Google AdX is a marketplace where developers can sell and purchase ads with real-time bidding. Advertisers can run campaigns and offer publishers maximizing revenue options. 

How does it work? 

  • Integrate Google AdX with Ads Manager is a prerequisite to using the platform 
  • Easily manage and exhibit ads on the apps 
  • Segregate between direct, programmatic, and in-house ads 
  • Complete control of ads and even options to define pricing 
  • It can be used to determine where the ads will be displayed 
  • Monitor and track ad performance 

Pros: 

  • Google AdX has a higher demand than any other platform as it unites multiple ad publishers
  • You are in control with the ads displayed, who they are positioned to, and which ads are displayed on the application 
  • Publishers can define the price floor for the ads to generate the highest eCPM 
  • App publishers and companies of the same niche can get into direct deals that result in higher eCPMs
  • Publishers can make their ad inventory branded, semi-hidden, or entirely anonymous for buyers 
  • Advanced targeting options are available based on location, audience, and device

Added Advantage:

Google AdX has an innovative reporting tool that provides comprehensive reports for deeper insights and analysis of data. 

What are the Different ad types used to monetize an app? 

According to a study done by Statista, mobile ad spending is predicted to be around $280 billion in 2022. So, when planning to monetize your app, you need to understand the different ad types available to you. 

In-app ads:

In-app ads provide a dynamic and flexible user experience with options to create animations and interactive ads. These include ad types like native ads, mobile interstitial ads, ad banners, reward ads, and more. 

Pros: 

  • Does not distract users 
  • Highly interactive 
  • Can be easily controlled and managed

Interstitial mobile ads: 

These are ads that are built between levels of the app with SDKs. These ads cannot be closed until the interval ends and guarantees the best user experience. 

Pros: 

  • Ads are highly memorable 
  • It leaves a lasting impression 
  • Highly converting

Rewarded Video Ads:

These ads provide incentives or rewards for users who watch the ad and are primarily used in gaming apps in return for extra lives, hints, or bonuses. Users can also watch or skip the ads. 

Pros: 

  • High completion rates as users want the bonuses 
  • Highly interactive 
  • Increased engagement with users as they can see the complete ad

Mobile Video Ads:

Mobile video ads have some of the highest engagement rates out of all the options. There are three places where these ads play - pre-roll (before the video plays), mid-roll (middle of the video), and post-roll (after the video). 

Pros: 

  • Highest engagement rate 
  • High levels of interaction by users 
  • High conversion rates 

Mobile Native Ads:

These ads include video or textual ads that imitate the app's editorial content. And are not viewed as direct ads, which increases the users' loyalty. 

Pros: 

  • Cost-effective option 
  • Non-intrusive for users 
  • Aligns directly with the design 

Mobile Banner Ads:

These static ad units are displayed as standard banners (top or bottom of the screen) and include full-screen banners that take the whole mobile device screen. 

Pros: 

  • Easy to launch and affordable 
  • Universally supported 
  • Cost-effective option 

Playable Ads:

These interactive ads are mostly gaming apps that offer test versions as ad units. Typically they last from 15 seconds to 1 minute and are a great option to promote gaming apps. 

Pros: 

  • Highly interactive 
  • High engagement rates as users can interact with the game before download 
  • High conversion rates 

Mobile Game Ads:

Mobile game ads are highly interactive and memorable user experiences, including reward videos and interstitial ads. These can be static or dynamic based on what ad publishers create. 

Pros: 

  • Cost-effective option 
  • Highly interactive 
  • Universally supported 

Mobile rich ads:

These ads are considered one of the best as they are not banner specific and can include all elements such as audio, video, and highly engaging animations. Mobile rich ad formats can also include HTML, JS, CSS, and image files. It lets advertisers get creative and offer build ads that are entirely unseen in the market. 

Pros: 

  • Highly engaging ads 
  • Because the ads are different, users interact with them more 
  • High converting ads 

Evolution of App monetization - trends to watch out for: 

The mobile app market will be around $407 billion by 2026. It is essential to look ahead to the upcoming trends that will affect the market. Here are some app trends and monetization methods to watch for: 

Multiple revenue sources - 

App developers need to start looking into multiple options for app monetization. This act like a safety net and lets user preference dictates how the app is shown. In 2017 a report by app testing firm Swrve highlighted that 2.2% of gamers spent in-app money, while 46% of revenue came from the highest-spending 10% in that group. So, diversifying your revenue sources means you are less reliant on a small user group and have an overall comprehensive mobile app monetization strategy. 

In-app bidding to become more competitive -

In-app bidding is a one-way ad generator auctioning a publisher's inventory. It means ad publishers bid against each other to get that app space. According to a study by DigiDay, in-app bidding results in a 13-27% increase in Average Revenue per Daily Active User (ARPDAU). This will push app builders to auction more of their inventory via in-app bidding. 

Rise of AR -

As Augmented Reality or AR becomes more commonplace in the mobile app sector, marketers are looking for avenues to monetize mobile apps using AR. One of the best examples is IKEA's AR app. This app allows users to impose IKEA products in their household to see how each item looks before purchase. 

Final Thoughts

As an app publisher, understanding the nitty-gritty that goes into your app's monetisation can be difficult and time-consuming. With the negativity surrounding app developers selling their user's data to third-party platforms, and the number of fake sellers/publishers for apps online, it is no wonder that most developers lose interest in mobile app monetization. So, why not trust the experts at KalaGato

Firstly, you get a response from the experts within 72 hours of inquiry >> Secondly, you receive an offer in 2 week >> Finally, your app is sold within 30 days!

KalaGato offers a Free evaluation of your app as well. So, if you fulfil their criteria of: 

  1. 100k Monthly Active Users, 
  2. 1500 or more organic downloads, and 
  3. Day 1 retention benchmarks as high as 45%.

So, talk to the KalaGato experts to sell your app online! 

KalaGato

8.png

How to improve retention for a mobile app? A Complete Guide

Building and developing an app is only half of the work done. To be a successful app publisher, you need to ensure that people use the app consistently. This is not only a challenge but an extremely critical aspect of app building. On average, mobile apps have a retention rate of 42% by day 30 and 25% by day 90. This means that you need to keep acquiring new users. 

This is not easy; according to Statistica, the average cost of acquisition of users for mobile apps is around $4 per user. If your acquisition rates are that high, you need to make room in your marketing budget for app user retention so that you are left with a good ROI. But what strategies work to increase app retention?

Let’s find out!

What is mobile app retention, and why is it important?

There are over 2 million apps on Google Play Store alone, and the value of the mobile app industry exceeds over $100 billion.  So, when trying to compete with multiple competitors in the same market, maintaining app retention rates is very important. 

With retention rates, you can determine:

  1. The probability of keeping the new customers who download your app, 
  2. How long you are able to retain customers with your present strategy 
  3. How much growth you will achieve in the future

Mobile app retention rates are the percentage of users who are still using your app after a set period. That is commonly measured on Day 1, Day 7, and Day 30. The longer you retain users, the more likely your revenue will increase. Also, high retention rates are a great sign, especially for users with positive experiences. 

But, a low retention rate indicates issues with your app. For example, when you notice unusually high users leaving on Day 1, your app onboarding process is problematic.

Low retention rates can include problems that involve: 

  1. Customer satisfaction 
  2. Competing in an industry with better competitor

What is the good retention rate for mobile apps?

According to a study by Adjust, the mobile app retention rates from all verticals in Q1 of 2022 were: 

 

Days (out of 30)AndroidiOS
125%28%
711%13%
217%8%
306%7%

From this data, we can see that there was a drop (14% for Android and 15% for iOS) in app retention by the end of week 1. At the 30-day mark, retention rates stabilized at 6%. 

There are two ways app developers can benchmark retention rates - against other companies or themselves

Measuring your own app performance weekly or monthly is called retention analysis and reveals the trend that users follow. For example, if an app’s retention rate is trending down, you need to try to analyze the cause and isolate it. If the retention rate is up, then try isolating correlated feature changes, marketing campaigns, or cohort behaviors that lead to it. 

If you are measuring retention rates against other companies, then you need to track competitors' performance statistics.

So, let’s take a look at some mobile app retention strategies to help improve your numbers: 

Optimize the app onboarding process

For any mobile app, first impressions are the most important aspect. If a potential user sees your app and likes it , then they will continue using the app. But, if they find that the app does not deliver what was promised, they will uninstall it. In the app-development world, the first impression an app creates on a user is known as onboarding. The experience can be classified into 

  1. Benefit-oriented - Where the app's values are highlighted to the user
  2. Function-oriented - When your app has more features that the user may not know 
  3. Progressive - Mobile app users can see the features in particular sequences

The major aspect to remember about user onboarding is that it is all about the user's psyche. If you offer the users a sense of success, they will keep coming back.

Some other ways to optimize the onboarding process are: 

  1. Optimize the boarding to build trust
  2. Presenting users with details of their data usage 
  3. Keep terms and conditions simple and easy to understand 
  4. Ensure easy app navigation does not take more 2-3 steps 
  5. Make the logging in and account creation process easy 
  6. Try not to overload users with multiple details from the start 
  7. Add a ‘Skip’ button and make sure it is visible
  8. Optimize your total onboarding steps and check for anomalies 
  9. Make sure to segment users and implement contextual onboarding 
  10. Automate onboarding welcome emails 

Gamification to increase engagement

In a study by Apptentive, it was found that average mobile games retain over 36% of their customers after the day 7 mark. This is better than any other mobile app retention rate. But, you do not need to build a Temple Run navigation. It is becoming highly common to use gaming features in ordinary mobile apps. This is known as gamification. 

Adding gaming features are parts of your app that seem fun, like incentives, rewards, and accumulating points to get certain aspects unlocked. For example, if you have a reading app, you could give readers a level depending on how many books they finish in a day. 

Implement push notifications

Push notifications are messages that pop up on a user's device. These deliver relevant information to users even if they are not active on a specific app. In most cases, users are asked if they want to receive push notifications or not. 

Mobile push notifications are catalysts that help establish user engagement in the form of promotional, informative, and survey notifications. This again leads to increased mobile app retention rates as users will continue to use your app longer. 

Some ways to improve your app retention rates with push notifications: 

  1. Right Time - Do not send push notifications to users all the time. Your users may be in different time zones, and where it is 9 am for you might be 1 am for them. 
  2. Customize your notifications - Make sure you personalize your approach when sending push notifications. 
  3. Do not oversell - Do not bombard your users with hundreds of push notifications throughout the day. Again, do not send one a year.   

Incentivize engaged users

Incentivizing users is a great way to gain loyal followers. By creating loyal users, you can recommend them to use more paid features of your mobile app. Most consumers believe that recommendations from other people work better than traditional advertising.

Your incentive programs depend on the functionality of your app. For example, if your app uses in-app purchasing options as a monetization model, you can offer time-sensitive discounts to loyal users. You could also offer rewards such as cashback for new users, or offer them cashback for any referrals they provide. 

In-app messaging

Over 85% of users spend most of their time on smartphones. This means that people are constantly engaged in mobile apps. So, how do you keep mobile app users consistently engaged? Other than building meaningful apps, you can send in-app messages to increase retention rates. 

In-app messaging keeps users engaged with the mobile app. They create richer experiences and add value when they inform users about updates. 

Research shows that companies that use in-app messaging have increased their retention rates by 3.5X. So, if you want to increase your app retention rates, you need to send in-app messages to your users regularly.

Wrapping Up

We have seen the importance of user engagement and retention rates and we have looked at 5 strategies to increase user retention. You need to start tracking data from the beginning, and this allows you to optimize your mobile app onboarding the flow and personalizing the user’s experience.       

Now that you know the importance of user engagement and how to increase app retention rates, it may be a daunting task. So, why not sell it on KalaGato

When you connect with the experts at KalaGato, you are taken through a seamless process of app valuation and selling within a timeframe of 30 days. Understanding retention rates for every app you build is time-consuming and tedious, so let the professionals evaluate your app and showcase how it can be improved to get you the best deal in the market.

KalaGato

5 Ways to grow your app organically

5 Ways to grow your app organically

In the world of app marketing, there are two ways you can increase user downloads - organically and inorganically (paid).

Paid marketing options such as search engine ads,  in-app ads, and social media marketing are great ways to boost app installations. But, they are not always the most financially friendly option for app developers. 

Whereas, Organic installs rely more on the user downloading your app themselves. While this may seem to be free, it does involve strategizing to such levels that large amounts of users can organically view your app. It may include users who:

  • Have heard about your app on a blog or podcast and downloaded it 
  • Found your app with generic keyword research on the App Store 
  • Referred by another app user

So, organic app installs are the way to go!

Boosting organic app installs will help you get more users and increase your apps' retention rates. Another bonus is that it improves your app store rankings making your app visible to potential users.  Statistica 2022 report shows that the number of global mobile app downloads has increased to 230 billion in 2022, from 140.7 billion downloads in 2016. This means that there is a high chance you can get users to download your app without having to run paid marketing campaigns. 

So, let’s take a look at 5 ways to grow your app organically:

1) Improve ASO for the app

ASO or App Store Optimization is a marketing technique that helps improve the app by following the store’s guidelines. This technique also helps improve rankings for keywords to increase search presence and get higher organic download numbers. 

There are 2 primary ways to improve your ASO:

1) Keyword structuring and proper utilization:

The basis of ASO relates to the main keyword of the app. It requires you to find out what users are searching for and target those keywords on your app page to help boost visibility and encourage downloads. Once your main ASO keywords are ready, you must integrate them throughout your metadata. 

  1. Title- Integrating the main keyword into your title helps boost online presence in the store, improve overall ranking and eventually increase app installs. 
  2. Description - App descriptions are the main option app publishers get to describe their app and its utility. Here you have the chance to showcase what your app will achieve while adding keywords to connect with the app stores’ algorithm. 

However, If you are an Apple app creator, the store does not have a description field. Rather you can add the keywords directly in the Keyword section. As a keyword, you can enter up to 100 characters.

  1. URL - The URL for your app should have been integrated with the main keyword. Google Play Store considers backlinks on your apps, which works similarly to website SEO. 
  2. Keyword field - Choose a keyword that best describes your app and has minimal difficult rates. If you look at highly competitive keywords, chances are that your app will not rank in the top 5. So, look for keywords that are searched for by your target audience but are not the ones your competitors are ranking on. 

2) Creatives that connect with the audience:

Another way you can improve your app’s ASO is by adding strong creatives. This can help catch a potential user's attention and is a persuasive tool to bring the user into your conversion funnel. 

  1. Creatives include your app preview video and your app screenshots. Add bright, attractive creatives to capture the attention of potential users. 
  2. Choosing the best creatives that convert is through A/B testing. Tools such as StoreMaven and SplitMetrics run tests of groups of creatives to segment your audience and gather information on which performed the best. 
  3. When building your app icon, you must remember that it is the first thing a potential user will see. So, it should be at the top of the priority list. The icon should represent your brand, have your brand colors and be easily understandable. It should also be instantly recognizable and engaging. 

Do you know that average app users take only 3-6 seconds to decide if they want to download your app or not? Not a whole lot of time to convince someone to download your app. This is why you need to make the biggest impact at the beginning. ASO is not only about visibility or discoverability, it also includes Conversion Rate Optimization. CRO is the process of improving the percentage of people who convert into customers. This can only happen once you start improving your ASO for your app.

ASO is the best way to get your app in front of users. But, it is one of the hardest organic app installation methods.

2) Leverage Social Media

Social media platforms are some of the most important traffic sources app publishers can focus on. Your target audience spends the most hours on apps and platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Being active on your social media channels is the best way to get app installs and constantly connect with your users. Depending on the preference of your target audience, the social media platform will change. 

Facebook has over 2.8 billion monthly active users, while Instagram has over 1 billion. You can easily reach a wider audience by posting information about your app. 

How can you leverage social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram? 

  1. Share creatives and content relevant to your users that highlights the importance of your app
  2. Push content that shows your app’s features, benefits, and utility
  3. Showcase previous customer reviews to attract potential users
  4. Contests are a great way to increase app installs. You can offer free rewards inside your app when people participate in these contents
  5. Use hashtags to increase reach and engagement 
  6. Connect with online users who comment on your posts 
  7. Offer exciting rewards for new users 

When you engage with users on social media platforms, listen to what they say. Understand what they like or dislike about your app and try to solve the issues to avoid high churn rates.

3) Promote apps on sites like Quora, Reddit, Medium, etc

Just like social media platforms, sites such as Quora, Reddit, and Medium have their digital environments. People use them as sources of information to answer their queries. Because they are built to help people solve their issues, you can present your app to them to solve their problems. 

Let’s say, you create a finance tracker app. You can join personal finance subreddits or look for questions related to personal finances on Quora. 

Websites like Quora and Reddit that help people communicate and discuss their issues are gold mines for businesses that want to organically grow their backlinking, mentions, and referral installations for their apps. 

But, you must ensure that the app and the posted details add value to the readers. Reddit users are known to bash any kind of in-your-face promotions. People are there to read and learn, not look at ads.

4) Launch a website or blog

As an app publisher, you must have a website to showcase all your work. This creates a sense of security and confidence in users and helps improve app reach as people will first search for your brand or look for details about your apps. The potential search engine visibility that a website offers cannot be ignored. 

Just as you would prioritize your ASO for your app, you must also prioritize your SEO when creating, launching, and maintaining your website. The SEO orientation should be based on your app store pages and development plans. Any added information about your brand and your apps should not be missed. Also, the keywords you target should be relevant to the most searched topics of your app.

Blogging is another great way to increase your organic views. When you use the right keywords and write about topics that affect your users, blogs can help your app grow exponentially. Every time you create a new blog, you add a new page for indexing your website and appearing on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). This in turn increases the visibility of your app to potential users. 

Writing blogs can help grow your app organically by: 

  • Converting traffic to leads - When your blogs are informative and have the right Call-To-Action (CTA) attached, it can help generate leads. Your visitors come to your website, see the free offers via CTA’s (book a free session, download a few ebooks, etc.), click on it, add their information and submit their details to download the free offer. 
  • Drives long-term results - Blogs help answer any customers your users may have or explain how your app can help solve their problems. Creating valuable content establishes you as a leader or an authority on the topic and helps drive long-term results. When potential customers find the answers to their problems on your blogs, they will be interested in purchasing from you. 
  • Helps in building links - Backlinking is one of the 200 factors that Google considers when ranking a website on its SERPs. So, when creating articles, you need to remember that you are not only writing for your prospects and for other companies that see you as an authority figure.

5) Word of mouth

Sharing good user experiences greatly boosts brands in today’s digital ecosystem. Recently, an egg gang went viral on Instagram. Within a week, the egg hit 32 million likes and broke Kylie Jenner’s record of 18 million likes. The egg now wields the world record for 52.8 million likes. 

Humans, by nature, are social beings. 

People want to share the news with others when they find something new. The sharing of the egg story hit on this very nature. Word of mouth works extremely well because people trust the decisions of their friends and family. You can prompt users to share apps when they feel great about the app. The goal is to find that perfect in-app moment that pulls at the emotional strings of the user and helps achieve the sharing effect. 

One way you can achieve this is by offering rewards to users for sharing your app. All brands use this strategy to market their products or services. Let’s say you have a gaming app where you offer users $25 credit to invite their friends. For your friend who joins, also get a $25 credit. This is a win-win situation for everyone. Your app gets new users, and previous users get $25 credit. This is exactly how you can use word-of-mouth marketing to increase mobile app installs. 

To ensure the multiplicity of sharing, make sure that your users can share your app across multiple social media platforms. This includes messaging apps like Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger, and social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook.

Final Thoughts!

As an app publisher with multiple apps available for download, you may not have the time to build an organic strategy for your apps. But, if you succeed in making 

Considering that each strategy has to be built, nurtured, and analyzed, it can be quite time-consuming. Also, creating inorganic strategies are highly expensive in this competitive marketplace. 

Also, If you are looking to sell one of the apps from your portfolio, you can sell it on KalaGato.

With over 98% of publishers wanting to do repeat business with us, we provide app publishers with complete transparency in the entire selling process. The complete app selling process takes only 30 days, with initial offers being rolled out in a fortnight. Choose the experts to sell your app; choose KalaGato!

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ASO Best Practices 2022: 5 Tips To Help you with ASO

As an app creator, the greatest achievement you can get is having your apps downloaded and used by people. In a 2022 report by Statista, more than 3.5 million apps were available for Android users on Google Play. While Apple users had more than 2.22 million apps.

So, the biggest issue that most app publishers are facing today is not app building or app marketing but rather how to make their apps more discoverable. This is why in-app store acquisition tactics like App Store Optimization (ASO) are such a powerful tool. It helps increase an app’s visibility in the app store and if correctly done, will attract quality users for long-term success. 

But the problem plaguing app publishers today is not investing in apps or engaging with the audience. The main issue they face is how to help people discover their apps in the first place. 

Enter App Store Optimization (ASO)

What is App Store Optimization? 

App Store Optimization refers to the improvements made in an app’s visibility to engage users and increase conversion rates. Additionally, ASO focuses on the Click-Through Rate as well. To optimize for CTR, you need to convince people to click on your app. But before that, you must ensure that your app is visible. The typical CTR optimizations include your app: 

  • Name
  • Title 
  • Icon
  • Screenshots 
  • Videos 
  • Ratings and reviews 

When trying to understand your app’s ASO, multiple factors can impact your app’s visibility in the app stores and affect organic downloads. Depending on your brand’s goals, and KPIs, ASO should include:

  1. Keyword research to optimize metadata with closely related keywords 
  2. Optimized creative assets such as icons, screenshots, videos 
  3. Localizing the app’s product pages to include worldwide languages 
  4. Implementing a review strategy that ensures a consistent stream of positive reviews 
  5. Increasing the app’s visibility with featured stories 
  6. Monitoring app store changes and keeping updates on competitors' apps to improve visibility  

Why is it important for your app?

Getting more app downloads and growing your user base is among the most important KPIs all app publishers need to target. With millions of apps available online and more being added every day, ASO helps improve visibility in all available placements on app stores. Some reasons why ASO is becoming so important for app publishers:

ASO helps get your app noticed: 

Most people find apps by searching for them on the app store. Unless it is a specific app that people already know about, you need your app to rank better than your competitors. Google Play and Apple App algorithms index keywords used in an app’s title, subtitle, description, and in-app purchase titles. This is where ASO keywords come in.

ASO helps get your app in front of international audiences: 

The spread of technology has made it possible for everyone to connect globally. This means that when an app is optimized for multiple countries, it reaches a broader audience, and more people can find the app in Online Stores. 

This can be done by improving your ASO for each location. This includes translating and optimizing key app elements such as keywords, icons, titles, screenshots, and descriptions. Also, you need to look at design elements and the utility of search terms. 

ASO helps your app from being removed from App Stores: 

App stores are essentially app curators who want to provide their customers with the best. This is why, if any app has high retention rates, good reviews, and frequent updates, App Stores will feature them first. In 2016, Apple cleaned out its Apple Store and removed all dead apps that were of low quality or copies. So, prioritizing ASP helps keep your apps safe from removal. 

ASO does not only include adding relevant keywords. It also involves communicating with users to request reviews, adding regular upgrades to improve design and functionality, and increasing retention rates organically.

Helps cut User Acquisition Costs: 

As app publishers, spending resources on paid user acquisition and ignoring organic user acquisition is unfavorable. Users that come from paid channels do not stay long-term. Why? Because an ad pushed them to install the app. Soon they may realize that your app is not required leading to uninstallation. This will also hurt your app store ranking.

A well-executed ASO strategy brings your app to the front of people who are looking for it and interested in it. These people will not download your app but will use it frequently and even recommend it to their friends and family. Because of this, your user acquisition costs will decrease while active user earnings will increase.

ASO trends to watch for

App Store Optimization is always changing, and for app developers, this is a great opportunity to help make their apps more discoverable to potential users. Let’s take a look at 5 ASO trends to watch out for in 2022: 

Evolving Google Play: 

App publishers who developed only Android apps will know that A/B testing has been a reality in the Google Play world. But, there have been some recent changes in the Play Store recently. In 2021, Google announced big updates that immediately impacted ASP and downloads.

  1. Shorter and clearer names: App names can be only 30 characters long and cannot have any promotional words, emojis, or insinuate any performance features. This update helps make the app more discoverable for users. 
  2. New safety or privacy labels: New privacy section to list what apps can do with user data or information. While privacy labels have not influenced the download pattern of apps, it is a feature you need to look into as users are now looking at these labels more closely with the increase in data selling and fraud. 
  3. Localization + per-device rating: Ratings are slowly becoming some of the most important factors for ranks on Google Play. With the latest update, Google shows ratings by country instead  globally.

Apple Search ads to become more competitive: 

Last year Apple released its new App Tracking Transparency policy, and immediately, it became the only ad network that offers great returns on ad spend. With a system where bidding decides the costs, as demand increases, costs rise. High prices mean lesser return on investment, so app publishers start looking for alternatives. 

The best alternative is Organic discovery - App Store Optimization! 

As more app creators moved their ad budgets to Apple Search Ads, costs increased, and ASO became a bigger factor than paid ads. But, this meant more keyword competition.

Pay Attention to Keywords: 

When planning your strategy for ASO, one thing that both Apple and Google have in common is the usage of keywords in your app's metadata. Metadata is another name for the title and areas where you can add text. Apple’s metadata includes the app title, subtitles, and keyword list, whereas Google’s includes the title and short and long descriptions. 

You need to include words to highlight what your app offers so that the algorithm can place it in relevant searches. As easy as this sounds, keywords are highly important in 2022. But, not just any keyword - the Right Keywords matter. This is where ASO tools are important. Whether monitoring trends or looking out for relevant keywords, having the correct data helps evaluate essential keywords for downloads.

The second aspect is where the keywords are placed. Apple’s algorithm emphasizes words that appear at the beginning of the title. This has been the effect for quite some time, but in recent trends, the placement maybe even more important. It also offers more weight to the keyword list.

Page conversions are critical for Growth:    

Users' attention spans are becoming shorter, and competition is bigger. So, when you put these two together, you can see when someone lands on your app page, there are just a few seconds to turn them from a viewer to a downloader. 

So, the odds of getting it wrong are much higher than getting it right. 

But Apple has finally released its in-store A/B testing tool, which lets developers test for screenshots, icons, videos, and aspects that impact the view-to-download conversion rate. This is the most critical change in the Apple Store, as while improving your ASO, you also need to improve your conversion rates otherwise, your competitors will have the upper hand. 

On the other hand, Google Play Store has had these tools for quite some time now, which are highly beneficial to app publishers.

Know your Audience Thoroughly:

Shortened attention spans may seem like a problem, even with thorough A/B Testing, but it could also be an added advantage if your app page is customized for specific users, and the odds of a view turning into a download increase. 

The Apple Store is now offering a way to do it with Custom Product Pages. The concept is simple: create a customized version of your page, get a special link, and then use that link to promote your app outside the store. 

Google also has this feature, but it is limited and not as customizable as Apple’s.

What are the best ASO practices for apps?

Having an ASO strategy: 

Before you start keyword research or writing titles and descriptions, you must have a proper ASO strategy. Know who your target users are, what they are looking for, the type of communication they prefer, and what your competitors are doing. Map out a strong strategy so that the process becomes easier. 

Select relevant keywords: 

Research is easy, but selecting the right keywords is hard. The visibility of your app depends on those keywords, so you need to research what the target audience is looking for, and add the most relevant ones to your metadata.

Writing suitable titles and descriptions: 

The first thing a potential user will see is your app title. Having a creative title that is hard to remember will not help increase conversions. Keep it simple but memorable. Also, remember that you only have a 50-character limit for Google Play and 30-character limit for Apple. So, take full advantage of it. Include short titles with relevant keywords to make it catch.

You have the app description to add more relevant keywords and your features to attract potential users. Be sure to capture the most compelling features and benefits of your app so that users will immediately want to download your app post reading it.

Optimizing conversions with A/B tested icons, screenshots, and videos: 

Your app’s creatives help sell it visually to potential users. When scanning the results of a query, users decide within the first 2-3 seconds whether they want to click on your app for more details simply by looking at the screenshots and icons. If these are tested and optimized to grab the user's attention, it reflects on your conversion rates.

This is why it is always recommended to A/B test your creatives. Check which colors work better, or which font gets noticed more, and then run with those.

Localize your app listing: 

Localizing your app is a must for app publishers that want their app to be internationally available. This means translating it into multiple languages and making functionality adjustments so that it appeals to people from different cultures.

Localization helps increase app visibility and expands the reach globally. The broader your audience to whom your app is presented, the greater the download options.     

Final Thoughts!

App Store Optimization is very important for your apps to stand out from the crowds. Without ASO, your visibility decreases and gets lost in the hundreds of other options. But, keeping track of the latest trends and updates from app stores and optimizing for ASO regularly can be taxing. If you have multiple apps in your portfolio, sell them online!

Also, check out KalaGato, one of the best places to sell your app online. It helps sell your mobile app quickly and easily within 30 days. When you send a query to the team, you get a response in 72 hours, an offer in 2 weeks, and deal closure in under 30 days. Selling your app here saves you the time and energy to invent more apps!

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