I’ve already discussed how ads can help bring in a lot of revenue in mobile games, including how developers make fortunes by applying non-intrusive and user-friendly advertisement strategies for their mobile games. But ads are not the only monetization strategy that are raking in huge amounts of cash, and they might not be applicable to all sorts of games.
A tried-and-true alternative that has seen just as much – and even more – success in making money for mobile game developers is in-app purchases (IAP), aka “microtransactions,” where users download the game for free, get a taste, and then pay to unlock extra features. This is a trend that started somewhere in 2010, when free-to-play mobile games kicked off, and has been on the rise ever since. Last year, the top ten mobile games that used this model earned over $5 billion collectively.
This is certainly a more efficient approach than putting a hefty price tag on a game and expecting users to make a one-time purchase to download the app, a risky strategy that might only have a shadow of a chance of succeeding when you’re creating a mobile port for a very famous PC or console game.
But in-app payment does come with its own requisites and pitfalls, and can cause annoyance for players when they’re asked to make an unfair payment at a critical moment, or if they get the general feeling they’re getting nickel-and-dimed by the publisher.
Here are three strategies that can provide a steady revenue for your app without causing the frustration generally attributed to IAP models.