Utility Apps Monetization Strategies That Actually Work

Partner Post - Epom Apps Next generation app monetization platform

Posted: January 25, 2018


Utility applications are developed to provide additional performance to your mobile device. It has a limited capability and is designed to solve a specific task. Some of them may protect your device while others add functionality or customization. These programs make people’s everyday life easier. Relying on Statista data, Utility apps is the second most popular mobile app category in the United States (July, 2017). Due to the data of AppAnnie, there are more than 300,000 utility apps on Google Play and over 80% of them are free. That is not a surprise because users may find lots of alternatives and they are ready to pay only for exclusive content or problem solver. The installs of utilities are constantly growing among Android users.


Need some samples of utility applications? Anti-virus, archiver, backup software, file managers, keyboard, screensaver, calculator, translator, disk space analyzer etc. are related to utility apps.

Here is the list of the most popular utility applications on Google Play.


Due to the rising trend and popularity of utility applications, the new ones are released every day. Once you started developing an application you need to weigh your options and think over the scalable business model.

Unified monetization strategy will not fit all app categories, while different approaches will. A lot of utility app developers prefer freemium monetization model when their application is free to install with basic features available, however, some premium features have to be purchased.

Utility apps are developed to use your time in a more efficient way and they do not drive engagement. Even though, in-app advertising can be also appropriate revenue strategy to implement in utilities. It is probably the easiest and quickest to apply monetization model with lots of benefits and details to consider in order to gain maximum effectiveness. Revenue generation is a good thing, but you need to think about your users first.

  • Find the very right moment to show ads. A user came to your application to make its life easier and you need to define the moment when he will be ready to see the ads. Consider the fact that the most users of utility apps are short-term ones, so do not postpone showing ads. The best way to identify perfect timing is to split your traffic and run A/B tests. Furthermore, based on the analytics, choose the best matching.
  • Maximum nativity. Users come back to your application to complete a certain task and the very last thing they want to see there are annoying ads. Which is why that would be nice to start with native ads. You, as a publisher, will get a full control over this ad format. You will be able to customize the ad assets, make them fit to the look of the app, focus on user experience first and make the ads non-irritating. Think about the ads that will help users to accomplish their goals.
  • Test different ad formats. Native ads are great, however, another ad format may turn out to become more effective for your application. While utility apps do not provide linear user experience and the endpoint is not clear, there are some limitations in placing specific ad formats (i.e. full-screen interstitials). Consider implementing old but proven banners.
  • Focus on quality content. Develop own content strategy and make users stay longer in your application. It will also help you create multiple ad placements, attract brand advertisers and uplift conversion rates. The only thing you need to consider personalization. Analyze your audience and show them relevant messages.

If you do not have enough experience to overthink ad monetization strategy from a scratch, it’s better to contact the experts who will definitely give you valuable tips. For instance, the Epom Apps team helps every app developer and publisher with in-app ads monetization strategy. With the help of testing, analysis, and our previous experience, we’ll suggest the most-effective ad formats, placements, and create custom SDK for you with best-matching ad networks and direct advertisers.

Balance between several monetization models. While in-app advertising can be a good choice for one app developer, your audience may not perceive it well. Pick the strategy that will satisfy your expectations in the size of revenue you generate and does not irritate users.

The main identifier of the application value is the number of its users. You need to grow the user base because the more users you have the more revenue you will get.

Here are some tips to promote your application and establish downloads flow. We won’t stop here on the things like ASO, keywords optimization, and UI/UX that you need to consider while releasing your app on the Store, but we’ll share basic strategies you need to implement in order more people go to know your application.

  • Bundle your application. Group several applications and sell them in reduced price. It will definitely help you grow the audience.
  • Cross-promotion is a good choice as well in case you have several applications. Use ad placements to promote another application and run Install campaigns.
  • The power of backlinks. There lots of blogs and forums related to tech and mobile. Devote some time and make efforts to feature your app there and increase the number of links to your app on the store. The main thing you need to deliver to the readers is the pain that you app helps to reduce and why your app stands out from the competitor’s ones.
  • Catch the hype – use video. First off, video will help you to rank your app in Store, it will also give a clear understanding to potential users what your app is about and describe its look and feel.
  • Incentivize app downloads. Motivate users to install your application by offering them special discounts, rewards, additional services or other benefits applicable to your business.

The above mentioned strategies to monetize and promote your utility app are long-term one and the earlier you start to consider them the faster you will start earning. Note that once you start thinking from the perspective of your users (in terms of both app promotion and monetization), all you effort will be rewarded with success.

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