Publishing To App Stores

I ask this question with some trepidation as it’s one of those “How long is a piece of string?” questions or You Mileage May Vary…

But here goes - I publish to the Apple App Store only. Between 2013 and 2017 I had some dialogue with a few of my colleagues/competitors and the general consensus was that Google Play didn’t monetise any where near as profitably as the Apple App Store. Is that still the case? Do you publish to Amazon or other stores and has it been worthwhile?

I’m not asking for actual sums involved of course, just trying to get a sense of whether it’s worthwhile - whatever that means! :slight_smile:

Google Play has a lower ARPU but has a much larger user base. Don’t bother with any other stores.

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Thanks SGS. I did wonder about the Amazon store, but my feeling from reading around is that it’s not worth the bother. I also wondered about the Samsung store but that too seems not to be worthwhile.

Ah, Google Play - sigh. They terminated my account in 2015. At the time, they banned three of my apps and I got the banning emails all at the same time. As a result of banning three apps, they banned my account. I have no idea if I can open a Google Play account again, but my understanding is that a ban is for life. At least they let me keep my AdMob account!

Strange you didn’t lose admob as well.

To open a new Google Play account you’ll need a new IP, new PC and new bank. I know devs with more than 10 different accounts all run via VPNs using family bank accounts!

Well, that does make for interesting reading. Thanks for the information. I will investigate this! :slight_smile:

Best I don’t use AdMob if I do manage to get a Google Play account going…

A lot depends on the way you’re trying to monetize your apps. For us we are doing a subscription model and it breaks down like this for revenue:

Apple 80%
Google 15%
Amazon 5%

I find it surprising to write off Amazon completely. It’s not a huge source, but I’m sure many devs would like a 5% bump in revenue for not much extra work.

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Amazon is much harder to monetize from ads, since our three best performers (FAN*, AdMob and Unity) don’t support the Amazon Appstore, but in terms of IAP, when I look at our ARPDAU, Amazon monetizes just as well as iOS, with Android players being only just slightly behind.

Obviously, a lot of this will depend on your target audience, and my feeling is that Kindle misses the fat part of the bell curve, with its users tending towards small children and older folks. So, if your core user base is rad teens playing your game on their phones at the skate park, probably don’t bother with Amazon. On the other hand, if you envision players using your app on a tablet while drinking their morning coffee or at the end of a long day, give Amazon a try!

Like @kbradford said, it doesn’t take much extra work.

*FAN stopped working for us (and at least a few other Solar2D developers) a few weeks ago, but I’m hoping a plugin update will get it back.

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@kbradford Thanks for replying. Yup - that revenue split seems perfectly inline with my understanding of the main app stores. I appreciate of course that there will be some variation between developers.

@colinmorgan that’s disappointing to hear that three of the ‘big guns’ in the ad space are not supporting the Amazon store. I appreciate you telling me that.

If you envision players using your app on a tablet while drinking their morning coffee or at the end of a long day, give Amazon a try!

Now that certainly sounds like my target market. I will look to publish on the Amazon store. I will also try Google Play, and see if they let my app stand even though they terminated my account 5 years ago. Actually, scratch that - I may end up forfeiting my AdMob account and that would be painful.

I seem to recall Amazon (5 years or so ago) had a model where they paid developers according to the time users engages with apps. I don’t know if that’s still the case? I will look into it.

Just a small note. Currently for me Chartboost for Amazon has very good eCPM. I am getting about banner eCPM of .20, interstitial at around 5.50 and rewarded just slightly above 6.00. This is with a heavy tilt towards Mexico and India users. And don’t forget Amazon ads still have eCPM of $.90 for banners when they fill them. And as @colinmorgan mentioned people on Amazon are more likely to spend on something stupid that they want (especially if they are getting a discount with the Amazon coins).

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No. Amazon does not have Amazon Underground anymore. It was a flop. The money was not great either. I made more money with ads than with their payment scheme. Which looked good on paper:

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@agramonte I would love to be able to use Chartboost. Unfortunately, my Chartboost ads suffer from the Invisible Ad Syndrome. (I checked again three weeks ago, so the updated plugin didn’t fix it for me.) How are you getting around it?

My ironsource plugin. I have not noticed the blank ads. For Amazon I am currently using:
At the top:

  • Amazon Ads
  • Chartboost
    Then:
    Unity (shows ads eCPM fairly low).
    AdColony (shows ads eCPM fairly low).
    Admob (through Admob I show Simplisafe links). I get paid .26 cents per click.

You can get it here:

@agramonte - thanks for posting those eCPM figures. I’m certainly motivated to publish to Amazon now given that it’s not much extra work. Ah! Amazon Underground - that was it! Those numbers look paltry. I can see why it flopped.

Also, I wanted to add to this thread. If you are using Admob and are on a third-party app store please remember to enable the store in your settings for the app in Admob.

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@agramonte Wait a minute- you can use AdMob with apps in the Amazon Appstore?!?

Yes. Although I have only have used it through ironsource or appodeal as a plugin. Not sure if the current standalone admob plugin would work.

@agramonte I don’t see that “App stores” setting in AdMob. This is what my “App settings” screen looks like:

Interesting. I don’t know what to tell you. You are missing the package name setting also. All I can think of is that I have a beta of the UI. I am a beta tester for new features (and yes I get paid for my time) but I don’t believe this is one of them because they usually call me or send me an e-mail.

All my apps look like this:

I don’t use admob since the plugin broke and fwiw I have this option.

I wonder if it’s to with if you are using mediation or not. My dashboard looks like @perflubron’s and I don’t use mediation. I believe @agramonte does use mediation. What about you, @SGS?