How much revenue can I get from iAd?

Discussion in 'App Store Business, Legal and Marketing' started by AveLeon, Sep 28, 2010.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Hi there,

    I am considering creating an app for the first time. Since it will represent a significant time investment, I am wondering if it will get a decent return ($) on my investment.

    I am thinking of making the app free and running it with iAd. Therefore, I've been trying to find statistics about how much money developers typically get, but I've had no luck. COULD SOMEONE RUNNING iAd POST THEIR TYPICAL REVENUE? Thanks.

    So far, I know that revenue will depend on the:
    - App's Popularity
    - App's Type/use
    - App's User demographics
    - Number of companies advertising on the iAd network
    - Developer/Apple earning ratio (now at 60/40)

    Also, these are the metrics I know (although I am not 100% sure):
    - Requests: Number of times an add starts loading
    - Impressions: Number of times an add completes loading
    - Fill Rate: Impressions/Requests
    - Click-through ratio (CTR): Clicks/Impressions
    - Effective cost per thousand ad impressions (ePCM): [earnings/ad impressions] * 1000

    Finally, here are some questions that I am hoping someone can answer:
    - What are the formulas for calculating revenue in iAd, AdMob, and AdSense?
    - Is it possible to get different revenue amounts with the same number of impressions and clicks (i.e. different ads being displayed)?

    Thank you all.
  2. macrumors newbie

    Ok, I have gotten no responses yet, but I've been able to find the following so far:

    SAMPLE 1
    Period length: 14 days
    Requests: 185,000
    Impressions: 73,000
    Fill rate: 40%
    CTR: unknown
    eCPM: $4.55
    Revenue: $331.94
    Projected monthly revenue: $711.30

    SAMPLE 2
    Period length: 14 days
    Requests: unknown
    Impressions: 23,500
    Fill rate: unknown
    CTR: unknown
    eCPM: $8.46
    Revenue: $200
    Projected monthly revenue: $428.57

    SAMPLE 3
    Period length: 1 day
    Requests: 26.651
    Impressions: 9,300
    Fill rate: 34.90%
    CTR: 11.80%
    eCPM: $147.55 (This value is real, but it is unusually high. Normal range is $1-$10)
    Revenue: $1,372.20
    Projected monthly revenue: $41,166 (only if such high performance was maintained)

    PLEASE, if you are a developer running iAd, post your statistics. Thanks!
  3. macrumors newbie

    It looks like the revenue is calculated simply by taking impressions and multiplying them by eCPM, i.e. Revenue = eCPM*Impressions/1000.

    Questions is how do they estimate their eCPM? For the last sample it might be due to a high CTR rate . . .
  4. macrumors 65816


    It all depends on how popular and useful the App is. Make a great App and you can expect a very healthy return, make a bad, not useful App and you will be lucky to get $100.
  5. tylerbell, Jan 16, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 16, 2011

    macrumors newbie

    I have an app named L.E.D. Torch on the App Store. It is free, and :apple: iAd supported.
    Customer base - 100,000
    Type - Utility app
    Demographics - 80% UK, 14% France, 3% Germany, 2% US
    Companies - Loads

    2 Week period:
    Jan 02 - Jan 15
    Revenue: USD 413.94
    Impressions: 6,006
    Requests: 756,714
    ePCM: USD 68.96
    Click-through Rate: 10.31%
    Fill-Rate: 0.79%

    Sales around 700 / day
    Countries returning :apple: iAd requests:
    UK - GB

    I heartily recommend iAds for revenue as they return staggering amounts of money per click, and they are less intrusive then AdSense. Its easy to get $71 from 65 clicks on a good day.
  6. Moderator


    Staff Member

    Hmm, that fill-rate looks abysmal (my AdMob fill rates are over 90%). Have you considered other options to try to get it much higher, not from within iAd itself but overall?
  7. macrumors newbie

    How do you get your fill rate so high? I average around 60% on AdMob.
  8. macrumors 6502a

    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8B117 Safari/6531.22.7)

    My fill rate is 0.6%

    My app has been out for 2 weeks and hasn't reached 1000 purchases world wide, so my revenue is pretty low. Though I will say that I'm happy with the revenue rates.
  9. Moderator


    Staff Member

    Nothing I'm doing, I'm pretty sure. It's all in AdMob's hands and I have no idea what algorithm they use to serve ads. I suspect the popularity of the app might play a factor (the more popular, the better chance of ads served).
  10. j-a-x, Jan 26, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2011

    macrumors 65816


    My fill rate is like 3% in the USA, 1% in the UK and 0 everywhere else. I think an add might have been displayed TWICE in the UK overall. I have maybe 2,500 downloads so far (in 4 days). I feel like the number of requests I'm getting is okay but the number of impressions is quite low. I hope that it improves. Maybe I'll use AdMob when iAd is not available but I still have to figure out how to do that.
  11. macrumors regular

    For my strategy I'm going to release a free and paid version. Questions:

    1. Would you recommend ads instead of limiting the free version?

    2. Are there rules to where the ads are placed? Some pages on my app are going to be almost magazine-like, and from a design perspective it makes sense to slot the ads into the existing layout. From the examples I've seen, most of the ads are banner-like or cannot be changed in size.

  12. j-a-x, Jan 26, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 26, 2011

    macrumors 65816


    As for 1, I was in the same situation as you. Since I went with iAd only and the ad only actually gets displayed for users in countries where iAd is available, I decided I had to put a limitation on the app as well as ads. My app is a webcam viewer, and the free version limits the number of webcams you can add, disables slideshow mode (one of my favorite features from the paid version) and disables import/export/saving images support. I made it clear in the app with a popup on launch that these features are available for $1. At first I thought maybe I don't even need to encourage them to upgrade because the iAd revenue from lots of users could be better than the one time $0.70 revenue if they buy my app. However, since I realized that the ads only get displayed 3% of the time in the US (the largest iAd market), I think I made the right choice. I think I've made $3 from iAd since the free app was accepted late Friday night (1/21) and much more on paid downloads, most likely some of which discovered the app from the free version.

    If I were you, I would put some limitations on the ad based version but make those limitations relatively minor so the user can still enjoy the free app, just give them a good incentive to upgrade as well.

    As far as where the ads can be displayed, I'm not sure. I put mine on the top of the screen, stretching the entire length of the screen but only on the main image view part of my app, not the settings view.


    Actually if you don't mind testing my free app, I'd be curious to know whether you see any ads and where you are located. I had a friend test it here in Houston and every time he launches it he sees the iAd banner, yet my iAd stats say only 3% of US users ever see the banner, so I think that is a bit strange.
  13. macrumors regular

    Thanks for the info, that was very helpful. I'll experiment with iAds a bit to see what format I can get it in. I did sign up with AdMob and they had some ads that were at least close to a size I could use.

    I just downloaded your app BTW and I got the ads on the top. I'm in Florida. Hope that helps.

  14. macrumors 65816


    Cool. I wonder why the number of impressions are so low if the ads seem to come up for most people who test it for me. I want to know who in the US isn't seeing ads and why.

    Which ads did you see by the way? I'm curious about how the payment scheme works and I haven't figured it out yet (nobody replied to my post on here about it).

    It seems that when somebody clicks an ad for a big company like Dove or Nissan, you get $1.20 (60% of $2.00), but if the ad that pops up is an add for an App download (like the Groupon app) you only get a few cents when it is clicked. At least that's how it seems to work. Is there any comprehensive data available about how much money I will make from each different type of ad click and which ads are running in each market?

    By the way, I got my first impression (but not a click) from Germany today out of 6 requests. 1 out of 6 isn't bad.

    Have you implemented the AdMob code into your app yet? I'm just wondering how complicated that is compared to implementing iAd. I'd like to give iAd priority but the idea of showing a different ad when iAd does not load seems like a good idea. There's a site called AdWhirl that will allow you to do this but I was thinking about a simpler implementation, as in making the iAd error delegate trigger the AdMob banner to load instead. I wonder how complicated that would be.
  15. macrumors regular

    I got some PennyTalk ads and that was it.

    I'll probably get around to testing Admob in the next few days. I'll let you know how difficult it was.
  16. macrumors 65816


    Thanks, I'll keep an eye on this thread.
  17. Moderator


    Staff Member

    AdMob is a bit more complicated than implementing iAd, but not much. You could be tempted to roll-your-own instead of trying AdWhirl but it does have some advantages, such as being able to configure the priorities of your ad networks, backfill priorities, and house ads all from their website, therefore no changes (read: updates) to the app itself needed! If you have questions about potential advantages with this, ask. I'll see if I can come up with a couple of explanatory examples.

    Currently, my ad-supported, universal app (a.k.a.) is serving iAds to iPhone / iPod touch users and AdMob ads to iPad users. I'm wanting to integrate AdWhirl across everything but have been having issues with iAd sizes on the iPad (Apple assumes full-screen and I need them to be constrained in size to the right-half of a split-view). And I can't configure AdWhirl to only serve AdMob ads on the iPad. I think my next course-of-action is to just stick with AdMob for the iPad side and implement AdWhirl (serving mostly iAds and backfilling with AdMob which, based on iAds fill-rates, will be quite often) on the iPhone / iPod touch side of things.
  18. macrumors regular

    @dejo - do you know if you are able to resize the Admob ads to different sizes than what they provide out of the box? I was looking at their most "square" size, which fits more with my UI design but it's still a little smaller than I prefer. My "ad spaces" are going to be 190x190.

  19. j-a-x, Jan 26, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2011

    macrumors 65816


    I found some sample code of integrating AdMob + iAd manually while giving priority to iAd. It's basically like I guessed, some code inside of the iAd failure delegate that calls AdMob and then removes AdMob if iAd ever successfully loads. I've implemented some sample code that successfully compiles, but how can I test it since my iAd test ad ALWAYS succeeds to load. How can I simulate didFailToReceiveAdWithError in an iAd based app being tested. As far as I know, you need to submit it to the app store before ads start getting served and ever have the chance to fail. As it is now, the test iAd ad always seems to load.

    I'll try to post that sample code or some of my own info later, right now I'm in my lab and should probably be working on research (I'm a grad student). :)

    EDIT: Here's the link to the tutorial
  20. Moderator


    Staff Member

    I don't think so. And even if you could, I'm pretty sure that would be a violation of their terms.
  21. macrumors 65816


    So I figured out how to test it, but it's really annoying. Every 5-10 launches of my app in the simulator generates an iAd fail. It's so tedious to test though because I have to launch it 10 times before I can get the iAd to fail and see if the AdMob ad shows up properly! :(
  22. macrumors 65816


    Okay, I think I got it working and I resubmitted my app with AdMob as an alternative when iAd fails. I hope Apple will approve it today (I hate the waiting period).

    So let me know if anybody has any questions about that.
  23. Moderator


    Staff Member

    What happens when AdMob fails to receive an ad? ;)
  24. j-a-x, Jan 27, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 27, 2011

    macrumors 65816


    I think if AdMob fails then the banner stays invisible until iAd tries again (every few minutes). At that point either the iAd succeeds and that takes over, or iAd fails and AdMob tries again. However, it seems that AdMob rarely fails to fulfill a request from my initial testing. At least way less often than iAd.


    Actually, no I just checked and AdMob has it's own refresh rate which you can either set programmatically or on the AdMob site. If iAd fails then AdMob fails AdMob will most likely try again before iAd does (my AdMob refresh rate is something like 90 seconds). So eventually you'll get another ad from either of the services.
  25. macrumors 65816


    Okay so another thing that makes AdMob cool is that when AdMob ads fail to load, you have the option of putting in place a "house ad" of your own choosing for free. This only happens when the regular AdMob ad fails. I chose to put an ad encouraging people to upgrade to the paid version with no banners.

    So far since yesterday at 4 pm I've had my "house ad" shown 125 times and it has generated 10 clicks to the app store page of the full version. Not bad huh?

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