Have you ever considered checking who the top 10 most downloaded apps are in both Google’s Play Store and Apple’s App Store? Even now, feel free to look around. You can also take things a step further and even check with the third-biggest app store market, Huawei’s AppGallery.
If you do so, you will find out that the vast majority of the most downloaded apps are free to download. You can even check the game app sections. There also, you will discover that the most downloadable apps are free to download.
Yet, almost by default, they all report great revenues.
The logical question is, how? What is their “dirty” secret, and how to apply that to your app?
Well, the not so big and “dirty” secret is in-app purchases. That’s how almost all of those high rated apps bring small fortunes to their developers each month. Here’s how you can also make the most of it.
Before we go into the peculiarities of in-app purchases, we need to explain what in-app purchases are in the first place.
In-app purchases present any fee paid by the user within an app for certain features or goods; digital, or otherwise. All major app markets allow games featuring in-app purchases. Even Huawei, which is the third-biggest app market after Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store, offers developers a HUAWEI in-app purchases feature.
So no, it is not just adding in-app purchases feature to your app/game, and money will start raining. You still need to have a great app/game – one that has a decent amount of active users.
Now, think about how to grow that base. Do you need to add more content? Do you need to start an advertising campaign and acquire even more users? Or, there is something else you can do to increase your user base?
If you want to earn money from all successful FREE to download apps, then you need to build a massive base of active users.
Then you will need to spend significantly more on servers. So yes, you read well, more expenditures on top of what you’ve spent to grow your user base.
However, this is when things get interesting.
Once you got your loyal users hooked up, you can introduce in-app purchases. You can offer certain features or goods for a certain fee. For example, let’s say your app is an RPG shooter. For a small fee, players can obtain certain weapons that are more powerful than the regular ones.
That will give those players a certain edge over the other players. Yet the gap between both types of players, regular and the ones with premium weapons, is not that big. That way, regular players are not discouraged from competing, whereas those eager to win at any cost won’t hesitate to spend a few bucks on some improvements.
The trick here is balance. Always try to sell as many goods as possible to many users, rather than a few expensive goods and features to just a few. If you got one-third of your user base buying features and goods, you know you have done an excellent job. That can be your basis upon which you can grow your app revenue.