The App Store’s 7-Day Cliff

Posted on August 29th, 2014 by

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Every time a new app is uploaded to and approved by the App Store, it appears in the ‘New Releases’ chart of its respective category. This placement is a great way for developers to gain some initial downloads, but developers are also receiving another boost from Apple that they may not expect.

 

For the first 7 days after an app launch, iOS apps are given a “keyword boost”. This keyword boost is another great way for devs to gain those crucial, initial downloads and is one of the few ways that Apple aids in app discovery.

 

But, after this boost, downloads and keyword rankings will decrease dramatically (the “7-Day Cliff”). The trick is to use this 7-day boost to your advantage before your keyword strength is reduced.

 

Not sold on the 7-Day Cliff? Check out these charts from SensorTower with data from an app launched on August 8 and an app launched on July 17:

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6 Popular Mobile Development Tools

Posted on August 26th, 2014 by

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As the app market matures, developers need to begin thinking about porting their apps across multiple platforms to increase their audience size as much as possible. But, developing an app for each different mobile platform is insanely time consuming and requires knowledge of a wide variety of different programming languages. Luckily, cross-platform development tools have emerged to help developers carry some of the burden. Check out 5 of the most popular cross-platform tools:

 

Xamarin 2.0

 

For the more advanced developers, Xamarin is a C#-based platform allowing for cross-platform development for iOS and Android. Code executes on a .NET framework before compiling, and returns the standard code for iOS and Android, making it easy to use for development teams working on large projects.

 

PhoneGap

 

Arguably the most popular cross-platform development tool, PhoneGap (otherwise known as Apache Cordova) allows developers with weaker server-side language knowledge leverage their front-end experience.

 

PhoneGap has been in the dev tools sphere for a while, so they have had time to mature and add the features that developers need. PhoneGap is free and open-source, opening up a whole library of plugins for developers to use. Hybrid applications always struggle compared to native apps, however, so developers should keep an eye on performance metrics.

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Guest Post: 5 Key Ideas Behind Making a Successful App

Posted on August 22nd, 2014 by

About the Author: Morna Collins is a professional writer as well as blogger. She writes about research and analyzes current market scenarios on different topics and loves to share this informative content to spread knowledge.

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Image via Flickr by Robert S. Donovan

 

Many different components have to come together for an app to take off. Timing, ideation, and execution must align perfectly, so much so that it seems as if most success stories are just extreme cases of blind luck.

 

The truth, however, is that luck doesn’t land an app on the front page of the App Store. There are a few key ideas to keep in mind when building and marketing a new app that can help ensure you find fame instead of a flop.

 

1. Foster Creativity

 

Every successful product starts with a great idea. We all know that. But the problem with the app market is that it’s flooded with many, many iterations of the same great idea. A developer sees the success of a popular app and thinks, “Hey, I can do better than that!”

 

The notion of improving upon something is nice, but here’s the crux of the issue: that first app is popular for a reason. The developers got it right on the first try (hence the 10 million downloads), so there’s little else to bring to the table. Instead, focus on something wholly unique and reflective of your own brand.

 

Copying trends stifles creativity and does great injustice to your team and its future. You want to show the world what you can do, and you want them to like it. When developing an app, forget about building on what’s hot. Set the temperature yourself.

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App Store Optimization: Keyword Tips for Google Play, App Store

Posted on August 19th, 2014 by

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App discovery may not be perfect on either of the major app stores, but app developers still need to put some thought into the keywords they incorporate into their app’s page. Below are some simple keyword tips to follow for both iOS developers and Android/Google Play developers:

 

Apple App Store:

 

- The title of your apps get cut off after 12 characters, keep it short but descriptive

 

- The app category will automatically be added to the keyword list, as will “free” if your app is free

 

- The keyword list allows for only 100 total characters, including spaces and commas.

 

- Avoid using articles like ‘the’ or ‘a’ in your keyword list to save space

 

- Use single words, not phrases. For example, write ‘Strategy,RPG’ instead of ‘Strategy RPG’

 

- Avoid repeating words used in your title

 

- Do your research on the keywords used by your competitors; unique keywords will help interested users find your app more quickly

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Google Advertising ID: FAQs

Posted on August 15th, 2014 by

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On August 1, Google began enforcing a new policy for Google Play Services concerning the Advertising ID. Meant to replace the Android ID, Google now requires any new apps to be compliant with the Advertiser ID, and they recommend that all current apps update to the latest version of Google Play Services to become compliant. Any non-compliant apps will still function and be available for download, but non-compliant developers run the risk of being contacted by Google for policy violations, which could lead to a ban on developer accounts.

 

What is the Ad ID?

 

The Advertising ID is a resettable, unique, user-specific identification number used specifically for advertising purposes. This anonymous identifier gives users greater control over advertising and ad targeting, and standardizes the monetization process for developers. iOS developers should recognize similarities between the Google Ad ID and the Apple ID, implemented earlier this year.

 

If a user doesn’t wish to receive targeted ads, they can simply opt-out of them through Google settings. Users are also able to reset their Ad ID at any time. These preferences are then communicated to ad-supported apps through the Advertiser ID through the Google Play Services API.

 

Ad IDs typically will resemble the following:

 

“29400000-7de0-12ce-e18b-30e56b40000d”

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6 Buzzwords That You Need to Know

Posted on August 12th, 2014 by

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Every industry is full of so-called “buzzwords”, and app development is no exception. Especially when it comes to app monetization, developers need to come armed with the knowledge of what each ad network or publisher is offering them. Below is a round-up of 6 popular app economy buzzwords (in their abbreviated form) and what they mean:

 

1) SDK

 

SDK is the abbreviation for “software development kit”. SDKs are a set of development tools which allow certain applications to be used with certain software packages or frameworks. Outside the realm of apps, SDKs can also be used in conjunction with hardware platforms, personal computers, and video game consoles.

 

The StartApp SDK allows our developers to integrate our advertisements into their apps without needing to change the structure of their application

 

2) IAP

 

IAP is the common abbreviation for “in-app purchase”. In-app purchasing is a common app monetization technique in which the developer allows the user to download the app for free, but asks the user to pay a small amount for extra features.

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IAP is a very popular technique in mobile games especially, with users paying money for new in-game tools or access to new game levels. While effective, in-app purchasing does not work well with every app type.

 

3) ARPU

 

ARPU stands for “average revenue per user”. Developers may encounter this term a lot across the web and on developer forums.

 

While the calculation of ARPU will vary depending on user location, operating system, app type, and monetization strategy, it is still a very important metric to have when you are evaluating the success of a particular campaign or ad strategy. The higher the ARPU, the more effective your strategy.

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4 Essential Skills for Today’s App Developers

Posted on August 8th, 2014 by

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Gone are the days when app developers could simply publish their app on an app store and expect a decent amount of downloads. In an increasingly crowded market, devs need to put in more work to ensure that their app gets recognition from fickle users. While there is no magic recipe for guaranteed app success, here are 4 skills that today’s app developer should have for a leg up over competition:

 

1) Cross-Platform Capabilities

 

As the mobile market grows, so does the fragmentation of mobile users across mobile operating systems. Developing an app for only one OS will cut off a huge user base, so modern devs need to have a cross-platform plan when they begin coding. Luckily, there are many cross-platform development engines popping up across the internet which are designed to assist mobile app developers with porting their apps across the major operating systems.

 

In addition to multiple mobile operating systems, users are starting to demand that their mobile phone experience translate onto other mediums like wearable tech and desktop computers. While both Google and Apple are trying to bridge the gap between smartphones and other platforms, cross-platform capabilities of this kind are still in their infancy stages. Enterprising developers have the opportunity to get in on the ground floor of this new movement in mobile tech. Honing these skills or coming up with a viable cross-platform solution for your app will put you way ahead of most other mobile developers stuck on mobile.

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Latest Version of iOS SDK Now Available!

Posted on August 5th, 2014 by

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Attention iOS devs!

 

The latest version of our iOS SDK, version 2.2, is now available for download on the developer portal!

 

What’s New:

 

The Splash Ad:

 

The Splash ad is designed to appear when a user launches an application. The Splash ad unit allows developers to set up a splash screen which is then followed by one of our Overlay ads. The splash screen is completely customizable, allowing you to choose the color and text or you can even use your own custom loading screen!

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Mobile Apps: It’s Just Business

Posted on August 1st, 2014 by

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Even if making apps is just a hobby for you, you are sure to want some kind of return on the amount of time, energy, money, and resources that went into developing your mobile app. In order to maximize the return you receive, you need to think about app development as if you were starting a business. This means developing a strong business strategy that will enable you to not only have enough resources to develop your app, but also enable you to allocate resources so you can continue to develop apps.

 

So, before you even begin coding, you should consider drafting the following:

 

A Market Analysis:

 

What it is:

 

A thorough review of the industry you are hoping to enter

 

What it means for you:

 

Take a close look at the mobile app market that you are hoping to enter. For example, if you are hoping to develop an iOS app for mainly Asian consumers, research the iOS app market in Asia! Get a good understanding of how the market is growing or shrinking, and take a look at what kinds of apps are in demand within your targeted market.

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Updates to the Referral Program

Posted on July 29th, 2014 by

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With our pay-per-download model coming to an end on August 1, we’ve had to make some big changes to our popular referral program as well.

 

Unfortunately, starting on August 1, our referral program will no longer count app downloads. This means that, from now on, any devs using the referral program will only receive bonuses from impressions.

 

Note: If you crossed a download tier before July 31st, you will still receive that bonus in the next payment cycle.

 

The Good News:

 

We know that a lot of our developers rely on the referral program for revenue, so we want to make this as smooth of a transition as possible!

 

So, also starting on August 1, you will now have the chance to earn up to $10,000 in bonuses through the referral program!

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