Rewarded video most important in-app ad type for majority of mobile game developers

Anne Freier

In Mobile Advertising. December 20, 2018

Rewarded video is the most commonly used in-app ad type among game app developers (65%), according to new research by DeltaDNA. Other popular formats include interstitials and banner ads, however, the latter have been declining by 9% year-on-year.

Over half (56%) of respondents said they used multiple ad formats.

The most common ad strategy is to show just one ad per session for 33% of respondents. This represents a decrease from 41% in 2017. Overall, more respondents were showing over 5 ads per session and utilised ads during first sessions more often in 2018.

However, ad strategy also depends on game type, with casual games using more aggressive strategies compared to core games.

Many game developers still worry about player churn and user experience when considering ad strategies with casual game developers slightly more concerned given their more aggressive approaches.

Interestingly, 16% of casual game developers now rely entirely on ads for their revenue. Over half (56%), said they made less than 40% of their revenue from ads. Meanwhile, just 10% of casual games earned over 80% of their revenues from ads.

Within core games, 70% said they made 20% of their revenue from ads – an increase from 50% in 2017.

So which sources do game developers do for their monetisation needs? There appears to be a fairly even split between using a combination of ad networks, ad exchanges, individual ad networks and mediation partners.

Around 59% of respondents now use 2-5 networks.

The survey also revealed that ad sentiment has shifted significantly since 2016, when 39% considered in-app ads an important monetisation opportunity to 59% in 2018.