How to monetize mobile apps


Published 27.02.2024

How to monetize apps without ads

In today's digital era, mobile apps have become an integral part of our everyday lives. Throughout our day, from morning to night, we engage with a range of applications that provide entertainment, knowledge, and support. This constant engagement presents a golden opportunity for developers and businesses to monetize their applications. However, finding the right monetization strategy is crucial to not only generate revenue but also to ensure a positive user experience.

Traditionally, app monetization has heavily relied on in app advertising and freemium models. While ads are a viable revenue stream, they often come at the cost of user satisfaction. Intrusive ads can disrupt the user experience, leading to frustration and uninstalls. Keeping the ads relevant has become even more difficult with stricter privacy regulations and provisions such as op-in tracking.

It's time to explore new avenues for app monetization that prioritize user experience while driving revenue. In this blog post, we will explore the challenges of traditional app monetization, introduce the concept of e-commerce as a app monetization trend and explain how it works.

Table of contents:

1. Challenges with Traditional App Monetization
2. Embracing New Monetization Strategies: The E-commerce Advantage
3. How it Works: Implementing E-commerce in Your App
4. How Reachu Elevates the Game
5. Conclusion

1. Challenges with Traditional App Monetization

The path of least resistance has been to incorporate advertisements and freemium plans as monetization methods. This method brings with it a host of challenges that ruins the very essence of what makes an app successful: a great user experience.

1.1 Intrusive Ads and User Disruption

One of the primary pitfalls of ad-based monetization is the intrusive nature of ads themselves. Pop-ups, interstitials, and banner ads can interrupt the user flow of an app, pulling users out of their engagement. The disruption caused by these ads can be more than just a minor annoyance; it can significantly impact the overall user experience, making apps feel less like tools for enjoyment or productivity and more like platforms for advertisement delivery. Often these go hand in hand with freemium models. Essentially many app developers make ads so annoying that users either pay for a add free version or uninstall the app altogether.

1.2 Impact on App Performance and Aesthetics

Beyond user disruption, ads can also affect an app's performance and design integrity. Heavy ad loads can slow down app speeds, leading to longer loading times and a sluggish performance that users find off-putting. Moreover, ads often clash with the app's design, breaking the aesthetic flow and making the app less visually appealing.

1.3 User Privacy Concerns

Growing awareness around data privacy, has made users increasingly wary of ads that seem too personalized or invasive. The use of personal data for targeted advertising can lead to privacy concerns, making users hesitant to engage fully with the app or, worse, leading them to uninstall it. With the launch of Google's cookieless policies and Apple's op-out of tracking displaying relevant ads has become increasingly difficult.

1.4 Diminishing Returns

Despite the prevalence of ads as a monetization strategy, many developers find that the revenue generated from ads does not justify the compromise in user experience. Users are becoming adept at ignoring ads or using ad blockers, significantly reducing the effectiveness of this monetization approach. Many developers either make the ads so annoying that app users are forced to purchase a paid ad free plan or simply uninstall the app. This is especially true for mobile games.

2. Embracing New Monetization Strategies: The E-commerce Advantage

In the search for a better and user-friendly monetization strategy, e-commerce emerges as a compelling alternative. This approach not only mitigates the drawbacks of traditional advertising but also offers an enhanced user experience by integrating seamlessly with the app's content and user interests. Here’s why e-commerce stands out as a better choice for app monetization:

2.1 Seamless User Experience

Unlike intrusive ads, e-commerce can be woven into the fabric of the app, providing a seamless experience for users. Whether it’s through in-app purchases, or a fully integrated online store, e-commerce enables users to shop without leaving the app, maintaining engagement and satisfaction.

2.2 Relevance and Personalization

E-commerce allows for the offering of products and services that are directly relevant to the app's content and the user's preferences. This relevance boosts the value users get from the app, making the monetization feel like a natural extension of the user experience rather than an interruption. For instance, a fitness app could offer workout gear, supplements, or personalized training programs, adding value to the user's journey. Essentially hand picked products and offers will enhance the value users experience.

2.3 Higher Revenue Potential

By selling products or services, apps can tap into a more direct and potentially lucrative revenue stream. Unlike ad revenue, which depends on clicks and impressions, e-commerce revenue is generated through actual sales, offering higher margins and more predictable income based on user engagement and loyalty. Partnering with the right brands can offer more than 20% commissions on sales.

2.4 Building Brand Loyalty

Integrating e-commerce into an app can help in building a stronger brand identity and loyalty. Users who purchase through the app develop a deeper connection with the brand, increasing the likelihood of repeat purchases and long-term engagement. This relationship goes beyond the app itself, creating a community of loyal customers and advocates. Given high conversion rates and user engagement e-commerce allows developers to offer their app for free.

3. How it Works: Implementing E-commerce in Your App

Integrating e-commerce into your mobile application can be a transformative and straightforward process. It's a common misconception that e-commerce requires transforming your operation from app development into a full-blown e-commerce enterprise. With the right strategy and partnerships, you can sidestep the challenges like inventory management and returns that many want to avoid at all cost. Here's an optimized approach to seamlessly incorporate e-commerce functionalities into your app:

1. Choose Your E-commerce Model Wisely: Begin by pinpointing the e-commerce model that resonates with your app's essence and business objectives. Whether opting for direct sales or a marketplace setup, select a model that caters to your user base's preferences and enhances their experience.

2. Prioritize User Experience in Design: When integrating e-commerce elements, user experience should be paramount. Craft shopping features that are intuitive and meld smoothly with the app’s overall flow. Utilize established e-commerce practices, such as shopping carts and checkout processes, to create a user-friendly environment.

3. Curate the Right Product Mix: The success of your e-commerce initiative relies on offering products that align with your app's theme and user interests. If you offer a fishing related app, make sure the products you sell are related to fishing, such as lures, rods, and filet knives. Partner with vendors and direct-to-consumer (D2C) brands that not only enhance your app's value but are also willing to share a fair portion of sales revenue. Such collaborations should reflect your app's quality and ethos.

4. Test, Iterate, and Refine: Before launching, thoroughly test your e-commerce implementation to iron out any glitches and enhance usability. Use this phase to collect user feedback and make necessary adjustments, ensuring the shopping experience not only meets but exceeds user expectations. The better the experience, the higher conversions and earnings will be.

5. Promote Your New E-commerce Capabilities: With e-commerce now part of your app, it's crucial to let your users know. Utilize app updates, email marketing, and in-app notifications to spotlight your new features. Motivate initial purchases with special offers or discounts to spark interest and engagement.

By thoughtfully integrating e-commerce into your mobile application, you position your app not just as a tool or source of entertainment but as a comprehensive platform that enhances user engagement and opens up new avenues for revenue. Concentrating on user experience, security, and strategic product selection allows you to craft an e-commerce experience that naturally complements your app’s content, delighting your users and fostering a deeper connection with your brand.

4. How Reachu Elevates the Game

At Reachu, we understand that integrating e-commerce into a mobile application goes beyond just adding a shopping cart or embedding product links. It's about creating a seamless, engaging experience that adds value for users while opening new revenue channels for app developers. Here's how Reachu is changing the game in app monetization through e-commerce:

1. Seamless Integration: Reachu makes it easy for developers to integrate e-commerce functionalities without the need to become e-commerce experts. Our platform is designed to work within your app's existing framework, ensuring that the introduction of e-commerce feels natural to users and maintains the integrity of the app's design and user experience.

2. Curated Product Selection: We believe in the power of relevance and personalization. Reachu helps apps offer products and services that are not just relevant but also tailored to the user's behavior and preferences. This personalized approach ensures that users see offers that are genuinely interesting to them, increasing the likelihood of conversion.

3. Partnering with the Right Vendors: Reachu takes the hassle out of integrating and dealing with vendors. We have established partnerships with a wide range of brands and suppliers, from emerging D2C brands to well-known names. This network allows us to match apps with the perfect product partners, ensuring a high-quality offering that aligns with the app's content and audience. While our integrations means you can bring any supplier that you want to work with.

4. Streamlined Logistics and Support: With Reachu, the logistical challenges of e-commerce are handled for you. From inventory management to shipping and returns, our platform manages the back-end operations, allowing developers to focus on what they do best—creating great app experiences. You don't need to hold any kind of inventory or manage returns.

5. Dedicated Promotion and Engagement Tools: Our platform includes tools designed to promote e-commerce features effectively within your app. From targeted notifications to exclusive offers, Reachu helps you engage users and encourage e-commerce interactions, driving both revenue and user satisfaction.

By choosing Reachu for e-commerce integration, app developers gain a partner committed to their success. Our approach not only enhances user engagement and satisfaction but also opens up new revenue streams without the complexity traditionally associated with e-commerce. It's about bringing developers, users, and products together in a way that feels intuitive, engaging, and rewarding for everyone involved.

5. Conclusion

In the evolving landscape of mobile app development, finding innovative and a user-friendly app monetization strategy is key to success. Traditional app monetization models, while prevalent, often compromise the user experience and can hinder an app's growth. The integration of e-commerce presents a promising alternative, offering a seamless way to enhance user engagement and open new revenue streams.

At Reachu, we're at the forefront of this shift, providing a platform that simplifies the incorporation of e-commerce into mobile apps. Our approach prioritizes the user experience, leveraging personalized, relevant product offerings and managing the logistical complexities of e-commerce behind the scenes. By partnering with Reachu, developers can not only monetize their apps more effectively but also enrich the user experience, fostering loyalty and driving growth. Wether you're looking for iOS app monetization or Android app monetization the Reachu Software Developer Kit covers your basics.

Check out some of our case studies or reach out to learn more and discover how you can increase app earnings while enhancing the user experience.

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