Things are always changing in the digital marketing world. Despite the continued dominance of standard website ads, several new advertising platforms have emerged in recent years that threaten to upend the status quo.
As a small business owner, you can’t afford to ignore any effective marketing channel, particularly one as promising as in-app advertising. Here’s everything you need to know about in-app ads and why you should definitely look into investing in them for your business.
What are In-App Ads?
In-app ads are advertisements that appear within mobile apps. They come in many different forms, but the most common are interstitials—full-screen ads that pop up between app content—and banners, which are smaller ads that appear along the top or bottom of the screen.
In-app ads are usually served by ad networks. These are third-party companies that connect advertisers with app publishers. Some of the largest in-app ad networks today are Google Ads (formerly known as AdMob), Facebook Ads, AdColony, and Apple Search Ads.
What Makes In-App Ads So Effective?
Despite its relatively short history, in-app advertising has already proven to be an incredibly effective marketing channel. Here are a few key reasons why:
1. Most mobile users spend the majority of their time in apps
Here’s a striking statistic: of the four hours a day adult mobile users spend on their devices, 88% of that time is spent inside apps. That leaves just a sliver of time—12%—for everything else, including mobile web browsing.
This stat should come as no surprise when you think about your own habits. Do you spend more time on your phone using Chrome or Firefox, or do you use apps like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat?
We all know the answer to this question!
As a small business owner, this stat should be music to your ears. Your target audience is already using apps for the majority of their mobile time—which means they’re more likely to see your in-app ad.
2. The behemoth of mobile gaming
We didn’t even talk about mobile gaming in the previous section, but it’s worth mentioning because it’s such a huge part of the in-app ecosystem.
Gaming market trends in the last decade have left the mobile gaming scene booming. With the continued popularity of the freemium business model along with money-making mobile games, in-app advertising has become the primary way mobile gaming developers generate revenue.
3. In-app ads are extremely well targeted.
Ad networks serve in-app ads using data collected from users’ devices—including information about their location, age, gender, interests, and even the apps they use most frequently.
This allows advertisers to target their ads with pinpoint accuracy, ensuring that they reach the right people at the right time. No more wasted impressions!
4. In-app ads are interactive and engaging.
In-app ads are also more interactive and engaging than most other types of digital advertising. banner ads, for example, are easy to ignore—but it’s much harder to tune out a full-screen interstitial ad.
And when the in-app ad ties in with the app’s content—say, if it’s a game ad that appears while the user is playing a game—it can be even more difficult to ignore.
This high level of engagement results in better click-through rates (CTRs) and conversion rates for in-app advertisers.
What Can In-App Ads Do for You?
Sure, this is all riveting stuff—but what does it mean for you as a small business owner?
It can mean everything!
Whether you’re selling products or services or want to tout a new feature of your business—like a loyalty and rewards program—in-app advertising functions like a laser-guided missile, hitting your target audience right where they live: on their mobile devices.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the specific benefits in-app advertising can offer small business owners:
1. In-app ads are cost-effective
The laser-guided targeting we talked about earlier doesn’t just result in higher engagement rates—it also leads to lower costs per conversion. That’s because you’re only paying for impressions that are served to people who are interested in what you’re selling.
2. In-app ads are highly customizable
Want to show your ad only to people who live in a certain city? No problem. Only want your ad to appear during certain hours of the day? That can be arranged, too.
Small business owners have a lot of control over who sees their in-app ads and when—a level of customization that simply isn’t possible with most other types of digital advertising.
3. In-app ads can be monitored and tweaked in real-time
Another great thing about in-app advertising is that it’s very easy to monitor and adjust your campaigns in real-time.
If you’re not happy with the results you’re seeing, you can make changes on the fly and see how they affect your metrics almost immediately. This level of flexibility is invaluable for small businesses that are constantly trying to optimize their marketing campaigns.
4. Easily measure your in-app advertising ROI
Last but not least, it’s important to note that in-app advertising is very easy to measure.
You can track things like impressions, CTRs, and conversion rates with ease, which means you’ll always know exactly how your campaigns are performing. This level of transparency is essential for small businesses that need to make every marketing dollar count.
In-app ads are rapidly making their way to the top of the digital marketing heap. Far from being just a fad, in-app advertising is here to stay. And small business owners would be wise to take advantage of this powerful marketing tool.
With its laser-guided targeting, cost-effective pricing, and real-time monitoring capabilities, in-app advertising offers small businesses a level of control and flexibility that’s simply unmatched by other types of digital marketing!