In their recent Performance Index report of ad networks, Appsflyer ranked the best monetisation networks for games and non-game apps on both Android and iOS platforms.
You can get the entire report here, but we’ve taken their best 30 ad networks for iOS games and written a brief description of each one, outlining its chief characteristics and advantages or area of focus.
The order is the same as that found within the Appsflyer report, where you can find plenty of more data including Android networks, performance for non-game apps and further insights into why some networks function better than others.
There are further details in our App Monetization Directory, where as well as networks you can find other resources to monetize your app. As presented by Appsflyer, here are the top iOS ad networks for games.
- Google Adwords
- Yahoo! Gemini
- Mail.ru Group
- Blind Ferret
Scale, retention, ubiquity… Facebook is the leader in mobile advertising across all platforms. It covers all media formats and should be a key part of any app marketing campaign.
Gaming-focused Chartboost provides highly targeted ads to loyal customers, for a retention rate 60% higher than the average of the other networks. Covers video, animated, GIF and interstitial ads.
Applovin has focused on data and programmatic in-app inventory and video ads, and this strategy has placed it among the top performers for gaming ad networks. Sophisticated user analytics coupled with real time data drive high ROI and effective campaigns.
AdColony’s main product is Instant-Play Technology, which the company claims allows HD video adverts to load and play regardless of device or connection quality. Coupled with triggered content and loyalty programs, AdColony is an excellent ad network for games.
Obviously the scale and reach of Google is, on its own, a good reason to use it as an ad network. It is also harnessing the “power of intent” – analysing a user’s behaviour to figure out their intentions before presenting the correct ad to them.
Another network with a specific focus on video ads, it boasts one of the lightest SDKs out there, aiming at increasing eCPMs and optimising user experience. Has offices in San Francisco, London, Berlin and Beijing and is used by 4000+ apps.
If you’re talking games, you can’t not mention the Unity engine. Having now moved beyond development and into ads, they know exactly how players behave and what they want, and they offer a wide knowledge base to support your campaigns and monetisation.
A marketing automation and monetization platform boasting more than one billion app installs. Partnered with MoPub, Fyber and AerServ, it offers two different payment plans, per install and per interaction.
With an average of 150 million unique users each month, this mediation platform connects devs with media companies with high quality ad formats (rewarded videos, offer walls and interstitials) and providing a strong selection of publisher tools.
One SDK, multiple ad formats including rich media interstitials, HD mobile videos and offerwalls. Its high profile clients include Dove, Odeon, Citroen and O2 and has an opt-in for HD videos with premium eCPMs. Has over 500 million unique users.
As the Appsflyer report states, while Twitter does not have scale on its side it does have extremely high user retention. It also only bills when people complete certain actions, giving you full control over when and how much you pay, as well as very accurate targeting thanks to its user data.
Recently acquired NativeX, quoted on the NEET index and celebrating its 3rd anniversary, Mobvista’s ad network is going from strength to strength, with truly global reach and (it claims), 10 billion daily impressions.
Lifestreet’s platform allows you to test hundreds of ad types in order to understand which leads to the best conversion rates and return on investment. Claims to reach 600 million app users per month.
Operating on a cost-per-install basis, AppDriver has access to some of the biggest Asian mobile markets including China, Japan, Korea and Taiwan. As you only pay for actual installs, AppDriver says, it is a risk-free model.
One of the premier ad networks and most kitted-out SDKs out there, collaborating with over 500 publishers including Zynga, Lyft and GoodGame Studios. Has a proprietary optimisation algorithm to increase ROI and works with 5000+ media partners.
Often ranked among the best monetization and user acquisition companies, nativeX makes games its primary focus and yields excellent performance. Founded in 2000, it also offers ASO services, white papers and research on app monetization in general.
Transparent, simple to use and mediating some the biggest ad networks (AdColony, AdMob, Facebook), HeyZap supports native, static interstitial, rewarded and non-rewarded video and banner ads and backs it up with powerful segmentation and analysis tools.
The Gemini project has the advantage of tapping into Yahoo!’s massive data set, tracking trillions of actions and “signals” to determine the best time to serve the right ads to the users most likely to convert. Claims to reach 1 billion users per month, of which 600 million on mobile.
Offers a vast range of services on top of app monetisation and adverts. Strong analytics and coverage of all ad formats makes this Russia-based at network a good choice for all app developers.
Has access to the Chinese market, and as such has huge potential for ROI simply in virtue of its scale and reach. Programmatic advertising and competitive payouts are simply the cherry on the cake of this huge ad network.
Boasts a proprietary dataset coupled with segmentation tools to boost ROI and plan marketing campaigns. Uses the “Personas” model to categorise users in 250+ types and target them with the right adverts. Covers 90% of all active mobile devices in the US.
Game-focused, as the name implies, and currently has 18+ mobile games in its roster, with 254 million active users. Offers three ad formats: full-screen interstitials, “More Games” charts and internal cross-promotions (which are free).
Part of the MarsMediaGroup, the online advertising giants, as well as offering developers premium ad deals it also has a number of tools to calculate life-time value and various pricing models such as CPI, CPA, CPM and CPC.
Offers the Ampiri ad mediation platform and gPerform, a user acquisition network. Their specific focus is launching worldwide marketing campaigns, and with an international team across six countries and speaking 24 languages, they can truly claim to have global reach.
Partnered with Tune, Kochava and Appsflyer to name a few, Motive’s platform uses site ID tracking and “Customary Second Action” tracking to optimise campaigns, but is also flexible in being open to third party metrics and tracking systems. Works on a CPA and CPI basis.
Aarki’s platform gives you the chance to both deliver and create mobile adverts, as well as multivariate testing and big-data analytics. Highly transparent, its main offering is “creative optimisation”, optimisation overseen by their in-house creative designers, to increase ROI.
One of the main native adverts networks, it has grown since foundation in 2009 to have 90+ million monthly activations and over 10,000 traffic sources. Can be integrated both with API or a lightweight SDK.
Programmatic buying, high value eCPMs campaigns and targeted user acquisition all come under the Mobupps umbrella. Simple integration, real-time data reporting and an analytics dashboard are all also part of their platform.
Ad platform with a specific focus on cross-screen campaigns and trying new technology. Ad Formats include various forms of banner, video, push and native with a particular attention to screen size and 24-hour access to real-time data.
Final Thoughts: The top 30 ad networks for iOS games are all strong ways to monetize your mobile apps, and given their varied characteristics, we think there’s (at least) one here for everyone – but don’t limit yourself to just the single one. If you’d like to see more ad networks, also check out our App Monetization Directory and the original Appsflyer report.