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What to Consider When You Price Your Mobile App

The business of apps is thriving. Around the close of 2015, Google Play contained around 1.8 million apps, while the Apple Store boasted 1.5 million apps in June 2015. Estimates peg consumer expenditure on mobile apps at $50 billion for 2016.

This makes the mobile app space both an opportunity and a challenge for new app developers and businesses. Entry barriers are high due to the competitive nature of the space. Consumers have seen all kinds of apps and may be experiencing an overload, which means you need to innovate in order to stand out. Brand recognition is difficult in the app arena.

Making your app available for free and marketing it well might give you an edge in terms of downloads, but this will obviously not generate revenue. On the other hand, a paid app does look like a guaranteed source of income if it takes off. The price tag, however, may discourage users from downloading the app.

The decision on whether or not to make an app free is not easy. Let’s look at what research and trends indicate.

Free Apps vs. Paid Apps

The pricing model should be dictated by the nature of the app and how likely your target audience is to pay for it. Paid gaming or selfie apps directed at teenagers, for example, are unlikely to elicit a huge number of downloads. Paid apps directed at business users, on the other hand, may receive a better response.

Your paid app is also unlikely to gain hundreds of thousands of downloads if there are a number of free alternatives to it.

Apps that offer niche or high-quality services, solve a tricky problem, or fulfill a need that few others do are likely to receive many downloads. If you…

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