How to Earn From Your Apps?


There is a wide network of mobile app developers who feel the heat of generating good revenues. App development has increasingly started presenting a gloomy picture of revenue. There are some top agencies that are rolling good money but there are people who are falling out. There is no set formula for app store success but you can surely increase your chances of success. Two most important factors that form an integral part of high revenues are using third party tools and targeting enterprises that individual consumers. Success also depends on making the right choice of platforms, categories and device types. Developers must understand the revenue models in order to be a part of the billion dollar race.

App Categories That Generate High Revenues

In a 2014 survey by VisionMobile, a leading market analysis and strategy firm it was found that Enterprise apps was in a leading position generating more than $5k (per app earning capacity) in a month. Next in line were business apps that stood at 24% followed by health and fitness apps with an impressive 23% revenue generation. Social networking and communication mobile apps reportedly brought 22% of total revenues. In the ‘other’ (undefined category) group, apps were found to render huge revenues of 24%.

This comes as no surprise since enterprise apps are regarded as high value productivity practices. However, what generates more interest and awe is the fact that the “other” category reportedly stands in the 2nd position. Developers must take note of the fact that set categories can be crossed. Smart business strategies implemented to draw niches outside the standard app categories is important for growth.

Although mobile app industry is a billion dollar marketplace but the truth is it is a volatile place where instability rules the roost. In order to compete with the big winners, counter-intuitive steps like user interaction must be included. Gauging the audience and applying market oriented trends and social statements are found to boost popularity of an app. Social networking must be implemented for all categories of mobile apps.

Lowest app categories in the list provided by VisionMobile are Kids (16%), Games (17%) and Education (17%). In spite of the numbers we are still running inside a game development industry that churns millions of dollars every month.

High Value Device Types

There are some top developers who are earning as high as $5000 per app per month from highest earning mobile devices. VisionMobile’s 2014 survey suggests Smart TVs and set-top boxes are in a leading position that generated as high as 30% of total app revenues. Internet devices earned 24% of app revenues. Apps created for tablets reportedly earned 23% revenues followed by Smartphone with 18%. Game consoles earned 18% revenues. Apps created for Desktops and Laptops churned 17% revenues.

TV platforms and internet devices being on the top spots suggest the importance of rich content. Apps for tablets earning above $5000 per month suggests the growing popularity of smart devices. Tablet apps are found to be targeting enterprises. It can be stated that targeting organizations and groups (like enterprises) means targeting heavy user groups. Revenue levels go up with heavy user groups.

Revenue Earning Models

Developers have reportedly been found to earn the most (32%) from ‘per device royalties’ in the leading revenue earning group. Contract work is another successful revenue model that made an impressive 30% followed by ecommerce (29%). Subscriptions for apps churned 29% followed by Affiliate or CPI programs earning 28% of the total revenues. Developer services rendered 26%.

Going buy the top revenue models we can bet on device royalties or licensing fees as they have been found to stand on top (as suggested by VisionMobile survey). Contractual labour is definitely a successful ride for app developers. Contracts churn high revenues but an app belongs to people for whom it has been built for. Contracting must be considered as a very low risk revenue model. Marketing and advertising has been found to be the worst models, as suggested by the survey but reality suggests that maximum efforts are put in these sectors to keep making worthier territories for app markets.

Paid downloads stand low in the revenue race but it surely makes a difference in the app marketplace. In-app purchases are also here to stay as free apps requires earning zones to flourish. There are numerous other ways to make money with mobile apps. Apps must be targeted (after selecting your revenue model) with a combination of factors to pull traffic and taste financial success.


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