Making money from your app is a great feeling and we’re glad AdMob can help! But maybe you find yourself hopping out of AdMob to perform other activities like analyzing app analytics or refining your app code. We hear you. All this back and forth can be time-consuming. Discover how Firebase can be your single Android, iOS, and mobile web development platform for a unified experience.
Save time by linking your AdMob app to a Firebase project
If you already have an AdMob account, it’s easy to link your app to a Firebase project. Learn how to do this for both Android and iOS apps. Once linked, you can take advantage of other critical app services within Firebase including real-time storage, crash reporting, and authentication without spending time searching for and accessing these services elsewhere. It’s all right there for you to use!
Monetize smarter with Firebase Analytics
You could be earning more with more engaged and active users on your app. Firebase offers powerful analytics capabilities to help you make more intelligent monetization decisions. With Firebase insights on active users, demographics, and in-app purchase revenue, smarter monetization decisions can be made to show the right segment of users the most relevant ads. Use the “Audiences” feature in Firebase to define groups of users with common attributes and analyze in-app activity. By segmenting users, you can identify where you want to position and test specific ad formats for better revenue performance.
Help grow your users with Firebase
Firebase not only helps you build and monetize your app, but it also enables you to grow your audience with in-product notifications, dynamic links that behave across all device types, app indexing so that your app makes it to top search results, and more. It’s a complete solution with services across your app’s lifecycle.
Ready to start exploring Firebase?
Sign up for a Firebase account and link your AdMob app.
Posted by Ameeti Mishra, App Partnerships Specialist, AdMob.
At AdMob, we know how important user experience is to creating a great app. Consistent patterns, refreshing simplicity and polished, thoughtful design make for happy users and potentially higher ad engagement rates. Native advertising is the next step in meeting user’s UX expectations. Native ads are less jarring than traditional ads and fit in with app content more naturally, providing a better user experience. Now, that’s smart business.
Here are four ways you can make UX a priority both within your app and ad experience.
Sometimes it’s good to be predictable. By sticking to consistent UX patterns in your app, you can help users focus less on navigating and more on your app’s content and value. Don’t surprise your user with new elements – stick to a steady user flow like swiping left on a news app to exit an article or navigate the headline feed. Use consistent design elements like dedicated font sizes, colors, buttons, and screen sizes.
Same goes for your users’ ad experience. With reliable UX patterns, you’ll form clear breaks in your apps where users are expecting to see engaging ads. In the example of the news app, you might also want to use that swipe left feature to allow users to seamlessly dismiss ads. This also applies to ad styling. For example, if you use 14px, Lato, bold, dark grey for prominent text, then use that font for your ad’s headline, as well. The result? Users will expect that styling is dedicated to important text.
Nobody likes clutter. Simplicity in your app says you’re not wasting your user’s time by throwing every possible option at them, without thinking about what they really need. Simplify your app by uncluttering your screen, writing concise copy, keeping design legible and well-spaced and providing single call-to-action buttons where possible. Likewise, clean, beautiful, single call-to-action ads will communicate that you understand your users and help gain their trust.
3. No tricks
Let’s be clear, a native ad is still an ad. Don’t try to distort or overlap ad components (there’s no quicker way to offend a user!). At Google, we care about building trust in the app advertising ecosystem. For instance, we have extended our accidental click protections to native ad formats (including fast clicks and edge clicks) in order to prevent users from a slip of the finger and deliver greater value to advertisers.
4. Thoughtful design
Thoughtful details in your app are important to let your users know you care. That means sharp imagery, curated fonts, specced margins and quick loading times. It’s important to use the same level of care and polish for small details in your native ads design. Simple, intuitive and well-designed native ads can help you say; ‘thanks’ to your valuable user base.
Until next time, be sure to stay connected on all things AdMob by following our Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ pages.
Posted by Chris Jones, Social Team, AdMob.
AdMob’s native ads express is a quick and simple way to set up and monetize your native ads effectively. Three developers share their success stories of switching to native and growing both their revenue and business.
1. Word Search by Pink Pointer
Word nerds all over the globe can’t get enough of Word Search (also known as Word Find, Word Seek or Word Sleuth), a Latin American word search puzzle game with more than 22,000 puzzles, distributed in 37 languages.
How they use native ads:
Native ads work well in content feeds, so Pink Pointer uses them in their feed of entertaining word search puzzles. When users log in to play, they see a list of all available puzzles. The native ad is embedded within this list, making it attractive, easy to spot, but never obtrusive.
By replacing banners at the top of the page, Thiago Lopes Rosa of Pink Pointer saw an increase of 50% in CTR and 90% in RPM - helping to maximize revenue, without compromising user experience.
Tip from developer Thiago Lopes Rosa:
“I recommend creating different ad units for each placement of native ads. This way you can analyze the performance for each one individually and take appropriate actions and gain insight on how to improve.”
2. Battery Doctor (also called Battery Saver) by Cheetah Mobile
330 million users have booked a consult with Battery Doctor, an app which measures the worst offenders in mobile phone battery usage and offers an optimization feature that stops power-guzzling apps with a single tap. The popular tool is the brainchild of one of the world's leading developers, Cheetah Mobile, who boasts over 600 million active monthly users.
Battery Doctor measures app usage and gives users a prediction of remaining power in a list of informational cards. Within this list, a native ad is seamlessly shown as its own card.
Using native ads gave a powerful charge to Cheetah’s revenue. According to Charles Fan of Cheetah Mobile, “our Battery Doctor monetization revenue went up 400% and those are pretty amazing results.”
Tip from developer Charles Fan:
“Look for areas where you can integrate native ads without disrupting app workflow or user flow.”
3. Chinese Calendar by Linghit Limited
Those needing a glimpse into the future turn to Linghit’s Chinese Calendar app, a divination guidance and calendar, based on traditional Chinese beliefs and lunar calendar. The app highlights optimal times and days to hold important events like weddings and also to plan holidays, renovations or relocations.
The app features facts about each day’s festivals, holidays, and lucky “five elements”, according to Chinese tradition. This daily rundown is presented as a card and provides the perfect spot for Linghit to display a native ad.
Native ads held all the luck for Jinnee Lee of Linghit Limited. “After implementing native ads, our ad impressions increased by 114% and ad income increased by 100%.”
Tip from developer Jinnee Lee:
“Native ads are more intuitive, so display them in more prominent positions within apps. We were able to view the effects on user click-through rates in real time based on the information in the ad backend. We could make quick adjustments to the native ad to maximize the effect of the ad.”
New to native ads? Check out our help center.
Have you started using AdMob native ads, but feel like you could be getting more out of it? We know it can be hard to get it right the first time, so we recommend A/B testing when implementing native ads in your app. Why? Because native ads give you so much more flexibility and even the smallest tweaks can make a huge difference in your app revenue or give you peace of mind that you’re improving your user experience. With that in mind, here are four steps to help you run an effective A/B test.
1. Start with a defined goal and a hypothesis
Step back and decide on a single hypothesis that has the most potential to improve your business and start there. So where should you start testing? One good place to look at is design elements on your ad template and how it can impact greater user ad engagement. For example, a simple variation like changing font sizes (10px to 13px) would lead you to hypothesize that a larger font size will increase user engagement with the ad and make the call to action more clear. Meanwhile, key metrics to look for would be click through rate, ad revenue, and app exit rates.
Example variables that you could test are:
2. Remember to test only one variation at a time for it to be a true A/B test
Go ahead and slip on your white lab coat. The testing stage will require two variations of your app screen – the original, current version and your new, re-designed version. When creating these variations, using an A/B testing platform will make it easy to design, run and monitor your tests.
3. Run the experiment
Time to test your results. Set up your app to randomly show your original set-up to half of your users (i.e., the “control group”) and the second variation to the other 50% (i.e., the “experimental group”). By using a control group, you’re collecting baseline data to compare against your results. Without it, you can’t tell the difference between the response to your new designs or other variables, like seasonal chance.
4. Make a decision
Once the experiment is done, it’s time to crunch the data, revisit your initial goal and hypothesis, and make that all-important final call on whether the new variation is worth changing in the long run. Don’t be too hasty to lock in a new look. If the changes are significant, it’s smart to run the experiment over several time periods to ensure the results aren’t due to seasonality, or other variables.
As you continue to run more tests, remember that even with helpful tools, testing takes time and resources. Don’t waste time testing elements that won’t significantly impact your goal. Use app analytics data (https://firebase.google.com/docs/analytics/) to help uncover spots in your app with a lot of opportunity and potential (think: screens with high traffic, high engagement, or large user drop off, for example). A good idea might be to have a devoted team member spend 25% of their time on monitoring analytics, identifying ad optimization ideas, and testing them.
Every day in India, millions of people jump on a train to get to where they want to go. SmartApps India created a must-have local app to make this journey easier. This fast, convenient app - Indian Railway IRCTC Train PNR - allows users to check the live status of their train, browse rail schedules, book seats and even order snacks and meals for their journey. Super handy.
Looking for an ad solution to closely match the look and feel of their app, SmartApps chose to monetize with AdMob native ads. After implementing just one AdMob native ad, SmartApps grew their ad revenue by 55%.
When scanning through train schedules and available seats, app users are shown a list of information cards. This feed presented SmartApps with a golden opportunity to show non-obtrusive, yet visible, native ads to users.
“We made good use of the various template customization options available on the native ad express dashboard,” says SmartApps India’s co-founder, Sagar Mutha. “With native, it’s a good idea to try to place the native ads where there is a natural fit, and keep iterating and A/B testing until you get the desired results and CTRs. If you’re trying native, make sure the ads are unobtrusive and deliver a good user experience.”
AdMob native ads provided SmartApps with plenty of UX benefits. “User experience has been the biggest win after implementing native ads,” says Mutha. “We've received positive feedback from users and CTRs have gone up in comparison to regular banners.”
With such significant results, SmartApps plans on showing more native ads in the future as commuters scroll through their useful travel content.