Fostering Gamers To In-App Purchases: Stop Chasing Whales!

We discussed about mobile games and we shared with you A Beginner’s Guide To In – App Purchases. Let’s combine them into another helpful article. And no, this is not due to a lack of topics. Sadly, the reason is a recent report published by BI Intelligence which shows that only 2 % of app installs lead to purchases. You need to discover innovative ways to combat that situation especially for games because they have a lot of potential when it comes to increase your revenue. Read further for useful guidelines in this direction.

Getting Started

Let’s see how to create an effective strategy for converting gamers into loyal customers.

A Qualified User Acquisition Is Necessary

Obviously, you have to start by gathering players and persuading people to try your game. But remember not to stop there. You know our goal: Building A Sustainable Mobile Growth With User Acquisition And Retention.

Building A Healthy Community Around Your Game

Keeping in touch with all your players and sharing ideas about the game will increase their engagement and the time spent inside the game. This way they will be more convinced about the value of your app. If you want more information on how to do that, you have one of our articles.

Customer Support, Engagement, Retention Are Key Metrics

In order to get players to make in – app purchases, you need to offer them a great experience overall. In other words, before receiving you have to give.

Building Your Own “Gaming Whale” Community

We will provide you a five steps plan for encouraging gamers to make in – app purchases.

Monitor In – App Behaviors Closely

As you probably suspect, we will start with users. Keep your eyes on their actions to understand how they perceive the entire game.

Define User Specific Needs

Defining your buyer persona is a good place to start. Segment your users in different groups according to their preferences. This way you will know how to act in every occasion.

Personalize Your Efforts

While you discover common characteristics to some of your gamers, you have to develop specific strategies to reach your goal. Show them that you are not a stranger and you have something that they will appreciate. Check our 9 Proven Ways To Personalize Your App.

Create And Optimize Bundle Prices

A solution for setting your in – app purchases is to determine a price for your currency. In this case it is crucial to know your audience. A survey made by AppAnnie for Monetization Trends shows that 2% – 5% of monthly active users are willing to make in – app purchases. The analyst firm also provides a chart with the prices for each segment of your audience. You can understand that minnows are the most numerous users, but they don’t spend too much inside your app. With the right approach they can be converted into dolphins which are those players ready to buy more expensive goods if they consider them worthy. The biggest amount spent on in – app purchases comes from whales which are just a few but very loyal gamers.

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Newcomers And Short – Term Gamers

Starting with minnows, there are some solutions to transform them into dolphins. A SOOMLA report shows that 33.5% of gamers play only one session before signing out and just 6% of users will go back to a game more than 20 times. Even if players don’t allocate a lot of time to your game, it is recommended not to overlook the opportunity provided by their experience.

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Make Registration Easy

First of all, allow them to enjoy your game. If you hold them back with heavy login forms or you ask them too much personal information you can be sure that they will uninstall your app without second thoughts.

Need A Nudge To Make Their First Purchase

Discover a pattern of those who are about to buy something inside your app but for some reason they stop before the final step. Maybe an advantageous offer or some discounts will convince them to finish their purchases within your game. Keep in mind that it is very important to discover what to offer.

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Converting Teen Gamers

With teenagers is another story. If your game targets adolescents then you need to change your strategy.

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Parents May Turn Off In App Purchases

It is a sure fact that both Apple and Google provide tools for parents to keep their kids under control, which is great for all parts involved. But if you are a developer looking to increase your revenue from in – app purchases then you need to admit that all the power is in teens’ hands because they are the ones who will convince their parents to buy more features for them.

Offering Paid Model Is An Option 

Instead of hoping that kids will persuade their parents to allow them to make in – app payments, you can provide a paid version of your game. This way, they will pay only one time and they will enjoy the app without worrying that the game will stop if they don’t make any purchases.

Handling Gaming Whales

It is important to discover a way to attract the spenders and to continue to make a great impression because these players are the ones that sustain your business. If you take a look at the stats about in – app purchases gathered by AppBoy you will see why it is so important to concentrate your efforts on the ones who are willing to spend money inside your app

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Make Them Refer
The ones that already made in – app purchases are the most reliable players which will spread the word about your game. Encourage them to do that and you will gain more than money. Converting them into ambassadors will bring you potential gamers which will follow their friends’ example.

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Hear Their Feedbacks

Because they spend a lot of time with your game, loyal players can give you new ideas to improve it or to fix some possible issues. Listen to them every time they want to offer their opinion. And why not, you have to consider asking for their feedback.

Keep Them Satisfied

If a player bought in – game goods many times before, it doesn’t mean that he will continue if you don’t provide more reasons to do that. You have to avoid by any means to make a huge mistake and to lose such a valuable gamer.


Bottom line is to take care of all your users because each one can become a whale. Stop chasing them and you will see that treating every gamer as a special guest will offer you more chances to convert them into spenders. Following the tips listed above will provide you the opportunity to increase your revenue and to gain the trust of your players.

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