9 Effective Ways to Monetize Mobile Apps

There are many ways to make money from mobile apps; you just need to figure out which ones would work best for your business model. In this post, we will discuss 10 different ways to monetize your mobile app.

Developing a mobile app is only the first step. You now have to finish it, market it, promote it, and then you need an income stream… Do you know how to make money from your idea?

Luckily, there are many ways to monetize mobile apps, and we have collected the 10 most effective ones:

1. Advertising within the app

Advertising is one of the most common ways to monetize mobile apps, but it can be tricky. There are various ads, including interstitials, standard banners, and video ads. The ad revenue you receive increases with the number of users you have and the frequency they use your app. Some developers squeeze ads into every available space in their app, but this can make for a very frustrating user experience. Instead, try placing ads at natural breaks.


  • Easy to set up and scale
  • Targeting is effective
  • Can be very profitable


  • Can be intrusive and annoying to users
  • Low click-through rates

2. In-App Purchases

In-app purchases are micro-transactions within an application that let users buy virtual goods or content. These purchases generate revenue by getting users to pay money while using your app. They are especially effective when the virtual goods being purchased enhance the experience of using a particular feature or level of your app. The best IAPs aren’t cosmetic; they provide an additional feature or improve player performance somehow.

An excellent example of this would be Candy Crush Saga. Upon reaching a certain level, the player will be able to buy extra lives and other items to continue playing without waiting (especially if they have already lost too many lives at a particularly difficult level).


  • Provides opportunities for further monetization
  • Can make the user experience much better and more interesting (if done well)


3. Selling Physical Goods

Another effective way to monetize your app, which is often overlooked, would be to sell physical goods such as toys and merchandise. It encourages players to collect virtual items that can be used in the game and then, once they have amassed a decent collection, purchase the physical counterparts of these items.


  • Can be very lucrative


  • Requires extra effort to ship physical products
  • May not be suitable for all types of apps

4. Sponsorship

If your app is geared towards a specific demographic or audience, you may be able to find sponsors who are willing to pay you to feature their products or services within your app. This monetization strategy could be a good opportunity to expand your business if it is a startup or even add an additional revenue stream for established companies that may already have many apps.


  • Can add credibility to your app


  • May be difficult to find the right sponsors

5. Subscriptions

Allow users to subscribe to your mobile app for a fee that offers access to premium content for a specific duration of time (e.g. a week, a month, a year). This is a great way to make continuous income from your app. News, music, and video streaming apps like Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Spotify use this strategy to great effect.


  • Subscription fees can add up over time


  • Can be difficult to get users to subscribe in the first place

6. Freemium Model

Another strategy you may want to consider is the freemium model, which allows users to access a limited amount of features or content for free and then offers upgrades for a fee. This model is excellent for apps that rely on network effects where the user base itself becomes its greatest asset.


  • Can be very profitable
  • Attracts users who may not have been interested in your app otherwise


  • Can be difficult to get users to upgrade

7. Paid Version

You may also want to consider releasing a paid, premium version of your app where users have to pay to download and use it. It can be a great way to monetize your app if you already have a free, basic version. Examples of this would be popular apps such as Minecraft, which has a premium edition that can be purchased and downloaded.


  • Can be highly profitable
  • High loyalty and engagement rates


  • May be difficult to get users to pay for it

8. Commission-Based Model (Affiliate Marketing)

This model is where you partner with a third party to provide the services or products that your users need or want. You will then receive a percentage of the commissions each time one of these services is being used by your users, which can be a great way to monetize your app. A good example of this would be the Kayak app which allows users to search and book travel arrangements. 


  • Increases the value of your app


  • Can be difficult to find the right partners

9. White Labeling

Last but not least, you can also monetize your app through white labeling. It is where you partner with another business or individual who will re-brand your app with their logo, name, and design. They can then release it and use it as their own.


  • A quick way to monetize your app
  • The advantage of this is that you don’t have to do any of the work in terms of marketing or sales. All you need to do is provide them with the app, and they will do the rest. 


  • May not be as profitable as other methods
  • Can be difficult to find the right partner


So there you have it, 9 different ways to monetize your mobile app. Whichever method you decide to go with, remember to always test and measure the effects so that you can gauge whether or not it’s working. And most importantly, have fun with it.

In conclusion, there are several different ways to monetize your mobile app. It is important to consider the needs and wants of your users and the type of app that you have to find the best strategy for you. With the right approach, you can increase your revenues and help your app reach new heights.