How To Monetize Your App For Distribution

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App Monetization Methods

Make Money With Your App

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There are several ways you can make money with your mobile app, the most common approach being advertising and upsells in a free app. The free app model is known as a 'freemium app'; whereby you allow users to download it for free and you offer free content for them to view and use. Additionally, you add premium content for a onetime or subscription type fee. Many app developers simply offer a 'no ads' app for a small fee. This way they can make money from those users who upgrade to the no ads version, and they can still have the potential to make money with advertsing from users who do not want to upgrade. Other app developers offer additional content in the app for an upgrade fee. Many times this is a one time fee, but some apps charge monthly as well.

Making your app paid or free is the developers choice; however, free apps are much more successful than paid ones for getting downloads. In fact, most apps at Google Play and Amazon app store are free with upsells included for a fee.

Cross Platform Ad Networks

There are plenty of ad networks to choose from for mobile publishing. And, some offer cross platform publishing, meaning if you develop apps but also have a website, you can advertise on both from the same ad network. With mobile ads, you would use an 'sdk integration' as it is known, to add code to your apps' code. Usually it's just a couple of lines of code added to a couple of app pages.

Most ads are also mobile website and desktop website friendly; meaning they can be added to a mobile website, and they work just as well on a desktop website. For this the publisher must choose ad sizes that are compatible with both their properties. So, for example, a banner width of 300 would be more appropriate than a banner width of 728, that way, it would display good on both the mobile website and the desktop website. Push notification ads are also a good choice for both mobile and desktop.

Almost all mobile ad networks use the 'sdk integraton' method to add their advertising platform in apps. With a cross platform network, you would add javascript or html coding for your website, and the 'sdk integration' code for your mobile apps. Smartlinks are unique in that just a single html link can work both in your apps and on your website, without having to alter the code in any way. So smartlinks are the easiest method to implement.

Most networks now offer a sleuth of ad types you can choose from. And, 'Smartlinks' are gaining in popularity for their ease of use and cross platform capability. Mobile Ad Networks offer an excellent selection of advertising for publisher, from products to services; ranging from VPN, to Books, Cooking, Coupons, Health and Fitness, Food, Games, Casinos, Sports Betting, Dating, Movies, Music, Videos, Downloads. Some also allow for 'adult' content selection when you choose your ad types.
The most popular types in todays's affiliate networks are: game offers, casino offers, app offers, dating offers and nutra CPA and CPI are the most popular commission types.

User Actions

There are many mobile ad networks available to developers who want to add ads in their apps in order to make money from users performing actions: clicking on the advertisements, watching content, or downloading an offer, providing their email, taking a survery, or just buying something; including subscriptions.
There are a variety of models for getting paid from the advertisement. Common ones are paid per CPA(cost per action), CPI(cost per install), CPL(cost per lead). Cost per action is when the user does something, cost per install when they download and install something, and cost per lead examples; when they visit a website and give their email, or fill out a short survey or form.

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Serving Up The Ads

Nowadays, ads are served in a variety of methods, including interstitials, delayed ads, video ads, popup ads, popunder ads, push notification ads, auto ads, and smartlinks.

Interestitials basically are a page, that loads either before the page the user is getting to; or when they are leaving a page. Interestitials can be timed also. Videos are just videos that a user watches, with the end offer being the intent of the video; popular in game apps also. Popup ads just pop or appear as a user is browsing a page. Push notifications ads are smaller ads that appear at the top of the app usually, and just stay with the page as the user browses. Auto ads can be any combination of all ad loading types.

Smartlinks are good if you want to use your own text links or make your own images for the link. However, with smartlinks, you don't know which ad genre is going to load; so you have to keep your text and image wording very general; and use words that are non specific - Download, Watch, Play, Deals. Of course for your image you can make whatever you like; the idea is to make something that would entice the user to click on the banner.

Features of a 'Smartlink'

Smartlinks are a newer style of ad linking; and as their name suggests they are pretty smart. When someone clicks on a smartlink the smartlink is able to gather quite a bit of information about the users device, country, age, and the like. With this information, the ad network then displays to that user an ad that has been known to be effective at converting for that particular demographic. And, they can be used for every type of traffic.
Smartlinks are also known as directlinks. They also have the distinction of being very simple to implement. So, whether you want to use them on your website, your social media accounts, or in your android apps, you can. They are a simple single html link that can attach to creatives if you want to add one to the link.

If you have advertising in your mobile apps, you know it's a tad tedious to add the SDK integration code; however with smartlinks, it's just a link; simply add text to it or add a banner or graphic of whatever size and shape you want. You can add a simple text banner to the top of your mobile app screen display with the linking code attached so when a user clicks on it they are taken to the advert landing page to view whatever offer is displayed for them. If the user buys, watches, or subscribes to what is being offered, you make a commission. And, they are cross platform compatible, so you can use them in your mobile app, and on your website.

At the moment, I use Adcash Affiliate Program for Publishers, which offers publishers a variety of ad styles; banners, native, popups, interestitials, auto ads, and including smartlinks that you can display on your website, in your mobile apps or on social media. At Adcash; With the smartlink for apps, there is no sdk integration required, you simply add the html link in your app code. You can learn how to add a smartlink to your app code at the tutorial on this page.

Auto Ads

Usually, with the regular ad type, you place two or three per page on your website pages, and the sdk integration to add them to your mobile android app. So, with websites, mobile websites, you manually put the ad linking in your code where you want the ad to show. However, with 'auto ads', you simply use one linking code per page, and the ad network serves up the ads and ad styles it thinks will convert the best for your traffic. The auto ads are usually of mix of all the ad styles that your ad network offers. With this method, your users would likely see a lot more ads, howeever, you could get better conversions(make money) by using this method of showing your ads.


At Adcash, their selection of ad network banners and ad style links are easy to create and implement, with options for performance of the ads. They offer monthly payouts with a low minimum threshold. If you want to be paid weekly you can as well, for a small percentage fee. If you want to try out Adcash, MAKE MONEY WITH ADCASH CLICK HERE
All the other Affiliate Networks for Publishers listed on this page are well established also.

Publishers: How To Create A Text Banner and Add A Smartlink: Android App

If you want to learn how to add a text banner to your mobile app display, with a smartlink attached, goto our tutorial. We must first create a Button, then add a background color to the button. Then add whatever text you want to display in the banner. Lastly, we add the executable code, and the smartlink to the code; so when a user clicks on the banner, they goto the landing page of the advertised offer.

Our Smartlinks Tutorial Click here for the Tutorial:Create a Text Banner For a Smartlink in Your App

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Mobile Ad Networks - Monetize Your App

Some well known mobile ad networks include:

AdBuddiz Add mobile Games to your App or Game App, simple SDK integration, weekly payouts.

Admob(Google) Variety of ad types including video, rewarded, and game ads for game app developers. Admob is one of the largest mobile ad networks in the world.

Adcash Offers publisher ads for mobile apps and websites; interstitials, native ads, banners, timed ads, popup ads, push notification ads, and smartlinks you can ad to your website or mobile app easily.

Smaato Has ad formats for videos, rewarded, interstitials, native ads, and more. Features: Smaato allow for cross platform publishing,

inMobi Offers ad types for mobile apps - video, native, playable, interstitials, carousel, rich media.

Mobidea, Another well know Ad Networks that serves 'Smartlinks', banners, push notifications, popups, interestitials. Features: A good selection of verticals to choose from, timely and on demand payouts, and reporting for traffic stats.

Vungle, Popular for mobile game apps, Vungle offers rewarded video to playables, to publishers to offer in their mobile apps. Vungle has an SDK integration for adding the banners and other ad types to your app code. Features: self serve publisher platform and global ad network.

Fyber Advertiser, featuring ad unit types: banner, interstitials, mrec, rewarded video, and full screen video. SDK integration for the publisher ad network.

Unity Ad Network, At Unity you can add a variety of ad formats into gameplay; various ad types from rewarded video to interstitials. Monthly payouts.

Amazon Mobile Ads, ChartBoost, Facebook, SearchAds, , Yahoo Flurry Publisher, Nend Publisher, Mobvista Publisher, NativeX, appNess, Aarki, Cross Install, InfoLinks, Propeller Ads, ePom, SmartyAds, AppLovin, Fyber, Mobupps, Tapjoy, Tapica, Ad Colony, Startapp, and

To find out more about the top networks and their share of mobile app advdertising; View Rankings Mobile App Publisher Networks

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featured - Amplitude, Mixpanel, Kochava, Kumulos, Flurry;

'App Monetization', Informative quick start guide for app developers who want to add Mobile Ads to their app to make money.
featured- Flurry mobile ads, Smaato mobile ads, MobVista ads, and Fyber ad network;

'Publish Your App', App stores:
featured - Amazon, Aptoide, Appland, BeMobi, and Getjar.

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Click the APP icon, as shown here, to download our 'App Launch Metrics' apk file. Then double click the file to install it. On newer android devices installation is automatic.
Also, before installing; in your device settings, select - 'Allow Installs From Third Party Sources'.

Once the app has been installed; just look for the 'app icon', and click it to open the app.

AMAZON APP STORE: How To Implement Amazon Mobile Ads in Your APP

At Amazon you can submit your app to their Mobile Appstore, add in app advertising and in app purchases if you want to. For this tutorial article we will be discussing their in app advertising platform - mobile ads for your app.

Mobile Ads from Amazon can be added to Fire OS, Android OS, and iOS platforms; however, iOS apps cannot be submitted to the Amazon Appstore(as of this writing). Amazon Mobile Ads is compatible from Android 2.3 and later. And, you do not have to submit your app to their app store in order to use their Mobile Ads Network in your app. If you do, you can view your reports for both your Amazon Appstore app downloads and mobile ads in the same dashboard.

To signup for either, you need to create your Developer Account at the Amazon Appstore portal.

Developer Portal Amazon - Create Your Account
Then, once logged in, for Mobile Ads go to the App Services link, then scroll down page to Mobile Ads and click the link. Follow the step by step guide to integrate the required code into your app.

Mobile Ads Amazon - Get Started Guide

Features of Amazon Mobile Ads

Ad Types - Amazon Mobile Ads has a variety of ads to choose from, including static image banner ads, expandable rich media banners with videos, and interstitials. The static image banners are similar to those you see on web pages, and the interstitials are full page ads.

The ads can be customized to suit your needs and you can also choose ad sizes if you want to. You can also have the Mobile Ads SDK serve your ads automatically according to device screen size and layout parameters.

For the interstitial type ads you can choose a place in the app to show them or when an event occurs.

You can also choose which advertisers you do not want advertised in your app. Amazon uses its' own brand for ads and also third party brands so there is a variety you can choose from to better suit your app's niche and demographics.

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Integrating the Mobile Ads

To integrate the mobile ads API you need to add the code:

to your app's manifest,(permissions and an Ads Activity)

build gradle, (add the API for Amazon to dependencies one line of code)

at the onCreate method in your java page, (add the Application Key code)

add the mobile ads code, (to either the layout xml page or use java code).

Sample code is provided at the Get Started Guide page for coding the code required; you can copy and paste.


Amazon Mobile Ads is now at JCenter repository, making it accessible for those who build apps with JCenter. Android Studio and AIDE use JCenter so if your using them to develop your apps you can follow the JCenter integration guide.

You just need to make sure your Build Gradle top level has the JCenter repository code and at your Build Gradle App level you add the dependencies - just one line of code.
(Apps have 2 distinct build gradle pages; one has the repository name and the other has the dependencies required and also where you can add dependencies like the Amazon API)

Sample code is available to copy and paste from their website. Just click this link or click the JCenter at Menu choices.

Read Adding Code to Gradle Using JCenter

Application Key

You need to get a distinct Application key for each app you put Mobile Ads onto. To get this key you must first read and confirm that your App is not targeting anyone under the age of 13.

A key is then generated which you place in the onCreate method of your java code page. This key is 32 characters and is what identifies your app to the Amazon Mobile network to accurately track your ads for reporting and payment.

Just use the Quick Start Guide, and choose either Android, or iOS to get started with the integration. The simplest method is to use static banner ads and do not define any ad sizes in your code. That way, the Ad Network will send ads based on the device screen size and layout parameters.

If you want to customize your ads you can read the Ad Targeting Options Guide. Just follow the link from the Get Started Guide page.

Testing Your Mobile Ads

Once you have added the required code to your app, you can test the Mobile Ads in your app by following the Developer Launch Checklist at the Testing Your App link.

With this you basically put your mobile ads into Testing Mode while you check the performance of the ads on your device.

You need to add a line of code to your java page code. Once you complete testing you can remove the line of code.

The test will determine that your mobile ads is performing as it should both for displaying ads and device performance.

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Mobile Ad Payments and Stats

You must create an Amazon Developer Account to view the reporting and payments for your mobile ads. This is free. Clicking on Reporting tab in your Developer Dashboard will show your mobile ad payments.

Payments are paid monthly and rolled over to the next if you don't meet the threshold for payment. Threshold for payment depends on your country and type of payment you choose.

For example, USA residents, $10 is required for payment,(electronic bank payment) ,whereas Canada one hundred (100) is required for payment.

Tax information must be completed for non USA; it is the standard BEN form; read it and sign electronically. And, then add your preferred bank account info for depositing your money. Once you complete these two steps your payments can be made to you.

Good Practices

For proper display ads, code your layout as width MATCH_PARENT, and your height to WRAP_CONTENT.

Let Amazon Mobile Ads Network be the first choice for sending ads and then third party advertisers as the second choice when no Amazon ads are available. This usually results in better eCPW.

Target your ads appropriately and use type of ads where best suited. Example, interstitials are known to do better in certain apps like game apps. Place the ad at a point in the app like when a user completes one level of a game.

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