Today, we’ll take some time to expand upon the 5 Benefits of Multi-Store Distribution. The focus here is increasing accessibility to your app. There are widespread indications that most developers do not engage in marketing their app which translates to few developers actually making money on their app. Where 90% of apps are available for free download, being exclusively available on just one store, though it may be the largest, does not serve any developer’s interest.
It is understandable that most developers do not engage in marketing simply because they are first and foremost, developers. Most tech guys are not actively involved in the selling of products they create. Most businesses have people specifically for the marketing side of operations. That’s not the case for the small developer company or solo developer. Thus, either someone has to step up to the plate and voluntarily take on some components of marketing or consideration should be given to outsourcing its promotion. Again, in previous articles, we’ve discussed networking with other businesses to achieve this.
Getting a physical product on a physical store shelf is often a very involved process, especially for small companies and start-ups. Large established businesses with new products have an almost guaranteed place on physical store shelves, and usually the best shelf or display space, at that. Most small businesses with new products, however, must convince either a distributor or each retailer, one by one, to feature their products. That means setting up meetings and providing samples to secure a trial – to see if your product will move and how fast. It is a lot of effort. It is one reason why some companies instead of dealing direct with retailers simply work with distributors even though that significantly reduces profits owing to the distributor’s share of sales.
Online, with Opera Mobile Store, adding your app to the store is free and fast. You just need to register, upload your add, and be patient for one of Opera’s in-house content managers to authenticate it. Terms and conditions are there for premium apps, too — you take 70% and Opera takes 30% — a common standard across the industry for paid apps.
Spending just 1 hour a week finding and adding your app to new online venues or other promotional activities is an excellent step forward if you have not engaged marketing and distribution at all. Four hours per week would probably be optimal for a solo developer — get you out from behind the app on your screen to see what else is out there — and provide you a better opportunity to make your app icons and promotional materials more graphically distinctive when placed alongside your competition.
But let me take a little side step here and make a comparison between App Marketing and Distribution to playing an MMORPG. True, this is not something you are going to see every day. Most app developers are probably familiar with more than a few MMO’s — like character equipment. There’s the common gear, the uncommon greens, the rare blues, epic purples and so forth. Sometimes, the stats between a rare and epic item may seem trivial. Yet, players trying to optimize their character will spend hour after hour trying to pick up every +1 and +2 upgrade they can find. Now, that’s entertainment.
Some stores will generate more end users for you than others. They all add up. What is a 10% increase in users worth to you? In the world of contracting, many companies take on development projects for “cost +x%” — where x is often 3 – 5%. A 10% increase in users can easily be the difference between profit and loss.
So, within these comparisons, a little extra effort can go a long way to helping you meet and exceed the goals you have with your app. If you are a gamer, you know what you’re willing to do to get a 10% edge over other players. Applying just a little bit of that initiative to your work should be even more gratifying in the long-term… and that’s even before we start discussing “cascade effects” — which we will leave for later.
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If you are needing to bootstrap your mobile apps, the following articles can provide you additional tips and perspectives to help you maximize your efforts: