Android App Monetization

Unless you are offering your application under the ‘paid’ category, you will have to devise ways to generate an income from free apps. Luckily for you, there are several Android app monetization options available. Some of which will be explained below.

In-app purchases

This is the most common method used when monetizing free applications. Notice how you are advised to make a purchase while using an app? These are in-app purchases which include items that will be required to make use of certain features in an application. For gaming apps, this category also includes consumables such as coins, jewels, and other items which can be consumed within the app.

Android App Monetization Guide


You can also offer upgrades to monetize your app. Whether your app is a game or utility, you can allow a “lite” version of it for free download and then encourage an upgrade later on. You may restrict usage of the app to certain functionalities only or up to a specific chapter (in games). Some apps may even recommend upgrades to avail of an ads-free usage.

Ads display

Like websites and blogs, you too can show ads throughout the application. You can display ads from Google Adsense, which is still the number one platform for advertisements over the web. However, you can also display ads from mobile ad networks like AirPush.

Regardless of the ad company, you will be affiliated with; most advertisement agencies provide three options for ads. These are the following:

  • CPC (cost per click). This is paid based on the number of users who click on the ad displayed within your app.
  • CPM (cost per mille). Herewith, you are paid per thousand impressions or whenever the ad had been displayed for every thousand.
  • CPA (cost per action). This is more subjective and may require the user to react on the ad and not just merely view or click it. The user may need to register or make a purchase depending on the action which the publisher intends to achieve.

ads display

Cross advertising

In this option, you earn through advertisements from other apps, hence, the name cross advertising. In the same manner, you can also come to an agreement with other developers and promote your app through theirs.

Brand promotion

There are apps developed by smaller studios through the financing of bigger companies. Temple Run from Imangi Studios for one had developed 2 following versions of their game for Disney Mobile; Temple Run Brave and Temple Run Oz. Both of which were sponsored to promote Disney movies. You too can tap into the possibility of finding financial support for your app by consulting potentially interested parties.

Brand promotion

Affiliate sales

Sales commission from affiliate marketing is not exclusive to websites and blogs. Your application can also offer products and services from third party vendors. In turn, you earn a percentage of each sale generated through their affiliate link.

Android apps monetization in free apps results to greater generated income as compared to paid ads so if you plan to offer your app on the market for free, make sure to take advantage of the methods mentioned above.


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