In the world of mobile app development, conventional wisdom maintains that Apple’s App Store is a developer’s best bet: it’s more popular than any other app store, developers prefer it, and iOS users are willing to spend more for their apps. A recent report from by Distimo, however, suggests that the numbers aren’t quite as clear-cut as they appear at first glance. Apple’s App Store might be the biggest, but Android’s are faster-growing, and the success of Amazon’s recently launched app store seem to suggest that Android users aren’t quite the cheapskates they were previously thought to be.
In any event, if you’re considering developing an Android app, Distimo’s report has a list of practical, helpful tips for maximizing sales and exposure:
1. Focus on a high number of users: This seems self-evident, but the question of how one goes about accruing a high number of users is somewhat less apparent. Since free apps outperform paid apps by at least ten to one across the board, you’re going to want to make your app available for free as well, and then decide how you want to monetize it. Second, make your app first available on Google Play, which has the highest user base for Android apps. And third, make sure your app is useable on older Android operating systems.
2. Focus on revenue: The in-app purchase model is, at least for the moment, the best way to monetize a free Android app. You’ll have to be careful, though; if an in-app purchase is required to unlock essential features, it’s likely to sour users on your mobile app and any you might hope to develop in the future.
3. Focus on a niche market: Games still rule the roost across the board when it comes to mobile apps, but breaking into that market is no mean feat. Consider carefully the ideal user for your own mobile app, and make sure you tailor both your app and your marketing strategies to ensure that the user downloads and enjoys your mobile app.