As of this year’s second quarter, more than half of U.S. App Store spending comes from non-game subscription mobile apps, according to mobile tracking firm Sensor Tower.
The quarter was also notable in that it marked the first time the firm’s tracking has shown a decline in overall U.S. consumer spend on apps.
Spending on non-games in the U.S. App Store exceeded that for games for the first time in May. By June, 50.3% of spending came from non-games. That’s up from 23.8% in January 2014.
Five years ago, games accounted for more than two-thirds of total spending in the store. Spending on non-games has grown at more than twice the rate as games, with non-games achieving a compound annual growth rate of 40% since June 2014, compared to less than 20% for games.
The mobile market “has changed drastically from the early days when consumers were less willing to spend on subscriptions or other in-app purchases outside of gaming,” notes the report. “While overall mobile spend in the U.S. has started to slow, spending outside of games has continued to climb rapidly, greatly outpacing the spending growth in mobile games.”
The rise of the subscription model on the App Store and the shift in consumers’ willingness to make purchases on their phones have helped hundreds of apps find success in the U.S.
Four hundred different apps attracted at least $1 million in consumer spending in Q2 2022, with the vast majority relying on subscriptions as their primary in-app purchases. Further, 61 App Store apps had at least $10 million in U.S. consumer spending — more than the number that had $1 million as of Q2 2016. The number of apps achieving $50 million in a quarter has also risen seven times.
Still, after seeing strong growth at least since 2015, overall U.S. spending declined year-over-year for the first time in May 2022, “as the market corrected to the atypically high spend seen in the early months of the pandemic,” explains the report.
Spending spiked in April 2020 at the start of the pandemic. Year-over-year growth jumped from about 20% to 30% in 2019 to 35% to 55% for the next 12 months.
But following the huge spike in mobile spend in 2020, consumers have started to shift spending back to other activities, like travel and restaurant dining.
Nevertheless, U.S. mobile app spending in Q2 was still up 71% compared to pre-pandemic Q2 2019
Effective August 31, 2022 We’re updating health misinformation guidelines to state that we don’t allow apps containing misleading health claims that contradict existing medical consensus, or that can cause harm to users.We’re updating our Impersonation policy to clarify that the policy prohibits impersonation of other entities or organizations. We’ve also added some new examples regarding app titles and icons.
Effective September 30, 2022 We’re updating our Subscriptions policy to state that users must be able to easily cancel their subscriptions from within the app.
Effective November 1, 2022 We’re updating our Families Self-Certified Ads SDK Program to require that self-certified ads SDK providers must submit new policy-compliant, self-certified versions and a test app to remain in the Families Self-Certified Ads SDK Program. Learn more about Families Self-Certified Ads SDKs.We’re updating our existing stalkerware guidance with a monitoring apps flag “IsMonitoringTool” for all legitimate monitoring applications. All apps that use this tool must also disclose monitoring or tracking functionality in their Google Play store description.
New examples and clarifications Additionally, we’ve added new examples and clarifications to some of our existing policies. Because these policies aren’t new or updated, our enforcement standards and practices for these policies remain the same.
We’re clarifying our Child Endangerment policy to reinforce that we prohibit the use of apps to endanger children, including the facilitation of child trafficking, grooming, and sextortion.We’re clarifying our Families Data Practices policy to state that apps that solely target children must not transmit Android advertising identifier (AAID), SIM Serial, Build Serial, BSSID, MAC, SSID, IMEI, and/or IMSI. Apps that target both children and older audiences must not transmit AAID, SIM Serial, Build Serial, BSSID, MAC, SSID, IMEI, and/or IMSI from children or users of unknown age.
We’re consolidating health and medical-related policies into an easy-to-navigate page.We’re clarifying our Ads policy to emphasize that ads and their associated offers served in your app must be consistent with your app’s content rating.
We’re clarifying our Ads policy to state that the Ad ID may no longer be connected to a persistent identifier or personally-identifiable information for any purpose including analytics purposes.We’re clarifying the Made For Ads guidelines under our Spam policy to prevent apps from displaying interstitial ads repeatedly to distract users from engaging with an app and performing in-app tasks.
We’re moving country-specific guidelines from our Real-Money Gambling, Games, and Contests policy page to a link on our Gambling Application Form for easier reference.We’re clarifying our sensitive events definition and examples under the Inappropriate Content policy to state that we don’t allow apps that capitalize on or are insensitive toward a sensitive event with significant social, cultural, or political impact (for example, civil emergencies, natural disasters, public health emergencies, conflicts, deaths, or other tragic events).
Before releasing your app on the App Store for the first time, you can choose to offer it as a pre-order. Customers can see your product page and order your app before it’s released for download. Once your app is released, customers will be notified and your app will automatically download to their device. For paid apps, customers will be charged before download.
Free or paid apps on all Apple platforms are eligible to use this feature. In-app purchases cannot be set up for pre-order, but you can set up your in-app purchases, including promotional metadata, in App Store Connect prior to and during the pre-order period so that everything is ready once your app is released for download. Promoted in-app purchases will not display on your App Store product page until your app is released for download.
To make your app available for pre-order, select the appropriate setting and submit your app, build, and metadata to App Review. After your app is approved, you can publish it as a pre-order on the App Store. Your pre-order will be available in all territories where your app is available.
While your app is available for pre-order, you can update your app by creating and submitting a new version. The new version must be approved before it can be published as a pre-order on the App Store, so be sure to follow the App Review Guidelines. If you submit a version update during the pre-order period, customers will receive the latest version published to the App Store once your app is released for download.
You may also adjust the price of your app during the pre-order period, but keep in mind that if you change pricing, customers will be charged the price that is lower — the price they accepted for pre-order or the price on the day of release.
The app will automatically download to the device on which a customer made the pre-order, and will download to all of a customer’s other devices if the customer has turned on automatic downloads.
Keep in mind that app bundles cannot be made available for pre-order and cannot include apps that are available for pre-order. Apps that are offered for pre-order will not be made available in new app bundles.
Take advantage of marketing guidance, tools, promotional offers, and more to help drive discovery of your app, in-app purchases, and subscriptions. Learn about opportunities to get your app featured on the App Store and across Apple marketing channels.
App Store Marketing tools
Generate short links or embeddable code that lead to your App Store product page and display your app icon, a QR code, or an App Store badge. You can also create custom marketing assets — such as banners and images — and add preset messages in multiple languages to promote your apps in your advertising efforts.
Make it easy for users to download or open your app from your website. With Safari Smart App Banners, you can display a banner that provides a direct link to your app on the App Store or opens the app if it’s already installed.
Use Apple Search Ads to promote your app in more places on the App Store. Be seen before customers search with ads on the Search tab and engage with customers at the moment they search with ads at the top of search results. Available in 61 regions. Try it for free with a 100 USD credit.
App Clip Codes are the best way for your users to discover your App Clip and app. These codes are visually beautiful and distinct, so when someone sees one, they’ll know there’s an App Clip waiting for them. Each code encodes the URL for an App Clip into its design and can incorporate an NFC tag, allowing users to launch your App Clip by holding their iPhone near the App Clip Code or by scanning it through the camera.
Give press and influencers early access to your app or your app’s in-app purchases with promo codes configured in App Store Connect. You can give away up to 100 promo codes per version of your app, per platform — and up to 100 promo codes per in-app purchase.
Acquire, retain, and win back subscribers by letting them experience your subscription at a discount or for free for a limited time. Provide these codes digitally or offline at physical events, alongside products, and more.
Every element of your App Store product page has the power to drive downloads of your app. Help customers discover your app through thoughtfully crafted metadata, such as app previews, screenshots, promotional text, and more.
Build excitement for your new app by making it available for pre-order. Your product page will be published on the App Store and customers can order your app before it’s released for download. When you opt in, you’ll choose a download release date that’s two to 180 days in the future.
App bundles make it easy for customers to buy up to 10 of your apps or games in a single purchase. You can create app bundles for paid apps or free apps that offer an auto-renewable subscription to access all apps in the bundle. Learn how to set up app bundles and effectively market them on your product page.
Users can browse in-app purchases directly on the App Store and start a purchase even before downloading your app, helping your app’s content gain exposure. You can promote up to 20 in-app purchases, including subscriptions, on your app’s product page.
The App Store has a global marketing team whose sole purpose is to drive discovery and engagement. Campaigns and programs are created to help, inform, and inspire users while also helping you drive downloads and redownloads of your apps and games. And our worldwide team of editors tailors the App Store to the various devices used to shop for apps, so your app gets in front of the right users, in the right places, at the right times.
Call to code #WWDC2022 – Join developers worldwide from June 6 to 10 for an inspiring week of technology and community. Get a first look at Apple’s latest platforms and technologies in sessions, explore the newest tools and tips, and connect with Apple experts in labs and digital lounges
An App Clip is a small part of your app that’s discoverable at the moment it’s needed and lets people complete a quick task from your app — even before installing your full app. Whether ordering take-out from a restaurant, renting a scooter, or setting up a new connected appliance for the first time, people can launch the App Clip to easily start and finish the task. And once the task is done, you can offer the opportunity to download your full app from the App Store.
Part of an app
Because an App Clip is a small part of your app, you’ll create it in the same Xcode project as your full app using the iOS SDK. Each App Clip is lightweight and quick to open, even if it’s not already on the device. When you’re ready to submit for review, you’ll manage your App Clip as part of your full app in App Store Connect.
Download the full app
App Clips are an opportunity to quickly demonstrate the value of your app. To make downloading your full app easier, you can present an option for download at an appropriate time in your App Clip. You can even persist any information the user provided and seamlessly transition it to the full app.
App Clips focus on finishing one task quickly. An ideal experience allows people to open and complete a task in seconds. You can further streamline the experience in the following ways:
Works with Apple Pay
Instead of asking for credit card information, you can take payments using Apple Pay.
Works with Sign in with Apple
To help provide tailored experiences, App Clips can use Sign in with Apple to sign in to your app’s services without requiring people to fill out forms or set up new accounts.
Discoverable when they’re needed
A key part of App Clips is how they’re discovered and launched:
App Clip Codes
The best way for people to discover your App Clip. It’s visually beautiful and distinct, so when someone sees one, they’ll know there’s an App Clip waiting for them. Each App Clip Code can optionally incorporate an NFC tag, allowing people to tap it in addition to scanning it with the Camera app or the Code Scanner in Control Center.
People can tap their iPhone on NFC tags that you place at specific locations to launch your App Clip, even from the lock screen.
Place QR codes at specific locations to let people launch your App Clip by scanning the code with the Camera app or the Code Scanner in Control Center.
Links in Messages
Configure your App Clip so that people can share it with others, enabling recipients to open the App Clip right from the Messages app.
When you add a Smart App Banner to your website, configure it so that visitors can tap to open your App Clip right away. On iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 or later, you can choose to display the full App Clip card over the webpage. And apps using SafariViewController to render web content can show the card as part of the app’s UI, allowing the App Clip to launch directly from the app.
Recently used App Clips
App Clips don’t clutter the Home Screen, but people can find and launch recently used App Clips from the Recents category of the App Library.
Place cards in Maps
When your App Clip is associated with a specific location, you can register your App Clip to appear on a place card in Maps so people can open it from there. It can also appear as a Siri suggestion and in Spotlight Search as needed.
App Clips can send notifications for up to eight hours after each launch to relay information that’s essential to their functionality. If your App Clip needs to send notifications beyond eight hours, you can request permission to send notifications for as long as the App Clip is on the device.
A location verification API just for App Clips lets you do a one-time check to see if an App Clip Code, NFC tag, or QR code that someone scanned is where it’s expected, helping avoid accidental payment or orders from a code associated with a different location.
Create a local experience on your device to complete end-to-end testing using an App Clip Code, QR code, NFC tag, Safari Smart App Banner, or link in Messages. This means you can test without associating your App Clip with your website or uploading a build to TestFlight.
Multiple App Clip experiences
You can create many App Clip experiences to support situations when different tasks from your app might be helpful. Each experience includes metadata for the App Clip card, an invocation URL, and invocation methods.
Full app experience
If someone has your app installed on their device, App Clip Codes and links to your App Clip open the app instead of the App Clip. Your app should handle the link and offer the same functionality as your App Clip.
Today, the mobile app industry has become a vast market for developers to try out their hands at new development approaches. There are a staggering 4.14 million apps in the world today for the Google Play Store and iOS App Store combined. With the increasing number of apps and innovations, the competition to stay on top too has gone dramatically up in the last few years.
This, then eventually, has driven the need for mobile app marketing a lot more. There are thousands of app marketing agencies around the world that claim to offer innovative and ground-breaking campaigns for their clients. However, very few of them come out on top.
The App Store is a safe and trusted place for customers to discover apps, and a great opportunity for developers to deliver apps and services across iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple TV,and Apple Watch in 175 regions. Find articles, guidelines, and other resources to help you design incredible apps, reach more users, and grow your business.
Create additional versions of your App Store product page, each of which highlights a feature or specific content, then share a page’s unique URL in your corresponding marketing efforts.
You can create additional versions of your App Store product page on iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 or later to showcase different features or content within your app — such as a particular sport, character, show, or gameplay feature — and share them with different audiences through unique URLs. You can also use these pages to showcase seasonal or culturally relevant content. Each custom product page can include screenshots, promotional text, and app previews that are different from those on your default product page.
Configuring in App Store Connect
When creating a custom product page in App Store Connect, you can choose to start with a copy of your default product page or a blank page. You can then customize screenshots, promotional text, and app previews for any of your page’s localizations. Any metadata you provide must be submitted for review, which you can do independent of an app update. You can have up to 35 custom product pages per app published on the App Store at a time. For a smooth review experience, make sure your screenshots and app previews follow the specifications and that all metadata follows the App Store Review Guidelines.
Once you’ve created a custom product page, you can use its unique URL to share it through your marketing efforts, such as social media advertising or promotional communications. For example, you can promote a sports team in an email campaign and link to the custom product page that highlights that team. The unique URL adds a new product page ID parameter to the default product page URL. For example: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/mountain-climber/id12345678?ppid=45812c9b-c296-43d3-c6a0-c5a02f74bf6e
Early next year, you’ll be able to use custom product pages to create ad variations with Apple Search Ads. Custom product pages will be available to select right from your Apple Search Ads account, letting you create more relevant ads for different audiences.
Custom product pages don’t appear when someone searches for your app or game on the App Store, but may appear in editorially curated selections on the Today, Games, and Apps tabs.
Once your custom product pages are live, you can measure their performance in App Analytics in App Store Connect. Under the Acquisition tab, you’ll see product page impressions, downloads, redownloads, and conversion rates to understand how effective each page is at encouraging app downloads. You can also view retention data and average proceeds per paying user for each custom product page. Additionally, you can compare the performance of your custom product pages against your default product page, and see whether people who downloaded your app from a custom product page stay engaged longer or spend more on in-app purchases.