People worldwide are playing video games more than ever, especially during this time of pandemic, so it’s no wonder that mobile games revenue hit $ 19.3 billion in Q2 2020. This is truly an opportunity for game developers and mobile game ousorcing companies to successfully monetize their mobile game apps.

When choosing to monetize your mobile game, it is good not to put all your eggs in one basket, but to follow the game monetization trends and use several ways to increase your revenue. So why diversify? By diversifying your game ads strategy, you are actually decreasing the risk you have in games. But more than that, you have more options to increase your income.

1. In-Game Ads

In-game ads will be one of the strongest game monetization trends in 2021. In 2020, in-game ads had amazing results, which is why more and more developers saw this opportunity for their game monetization. But in order to apply this strategy to your mobile monetization, you need to understand what the players actually want. In 2021, mobile video ads must be focused on the wishes of users and must be created with this idea in mind. Because every user wants a fun experience when playing a mobile game, your ads do not have to be annoying or interrupt the player game experience.

Some of the most popular game mobile ads trends in 2021 will be:

  • Rewarded Video Ads
  • Playable Ads
  • Instream Pre-Roll Video Ads
  • Interstitial Video Ads
  • Banner Ads
rewarded video ad banner

Example of Rewarded Video Ads

When choosing the right types of in-game ads for your game monetization, you have to remember to consider the type of game you want to promote, as well as your goal.

2. Rewarded Ads & Playable Ads: Rethinking Ads Strategy

Rewarded ads  are an important category of in-game ads, so we chose to talk about it separately and detail it more. Rewarded ads are not a new mobile game monetization model. Due to the positive results that rewarded ads brought in 2020, more and more publishers will use this model of game monetization in 2021. First of all, you can monetize your non-paying users with rewarded ads: you give your users the option to choose the currency they would like to pay with, time or money. It also can increase your engagement in the game of both payers and non-payers. Users are getting back more frequently into the game and also play long sessions. A key reason of using rewarded ads for game monetization is that it can predict IAP conversion in games. It was observed that new users who watch an ad in the first ever session they’re having in the game are actually more likely to make an in-app purchase. An uptick of between 250% -500% in the conversion rate was also observed, which is really amazing. When thinking about the rewarded video ads strategy, remember that you need to focus on the placement of the ads, user targeting, cadence, and measurement.

Playable ads can be the key element in your mobile game monetization strategy because these types of videos are highly engaging for users. They can play a demo of your mobile game with just a few taps and swipes. The advantage of playable ads is that your gaming app will be downloaded by “quality” users. If you want to capture users’ attention and boost your traffic, playable ads are one of the mobile app ad trends in 2021 that you can use to your advantage.

Example of HTML5 Playable Ads

Example of HTML5 Playable Ads. Image source:

3. Mobile Ad Mediation

When you start working with multiple ad networks, it is difficult to manage them all, so the ad mediation platform allows you to work with multiple ad networks, and also maximize your mobile game advertising revenue. How does it work? When the ads mediation platform gets ad requests from your app, it passes it on the multiple ad networks. That makes the ads networks compete for the ad slot and the highest bidder will win. And the great part is that the whole process happens automatically and only takes a few milliseconds. Some of the most important benefits of using such platforms are better control of your mobile game app monetization, higher eCPM rate, and maximizing ad revenue.

4. New Momentum in Consumption

Subscription is not a foreign concept in the game monetization. We see more and more developers who are using this strategy on top of IAP (in-app purchase) they have in their game in order to create the premium experience for users. In Google Play, we see a growing momentum with more than 70% year and year growth in subscribers and games. Subscriptions can boost retention and revenue, so another reason to use subscriptions is that it can actually help you diffuse the feeling of regrets in game. So, what happens sometimes is that user binge on IAP, and then they feel regret doing so. But if you use subscriptions, you can actually change that.

Image Source:

Image Source:

How to design subscription experience for a better game monetization?

That is something that requires a mindset shift. You can use your IAP SKUs, repackage them, and offer them as subscription bundles. But, actually, you can do more than that. While API is more about ownership of things, users are paying to own and keep something in the game, subscription is more about the access to a premium experience. To increase your game monetization, you have two main use cases for subscription in games. The first one is to convert new buyers often looking for really good deals, and second use case for a subscription is to create a loyalty program for your most valuable users (these players are often looking for a premium experience, rewards for the commitment they have to game, and also a prestige feeling).

Collaboration is the key to mobile game advertising revenue.

It is wise to follow mobile game monetization trends, but a smart move is to collaborate with someone who already has experience in the field and who can guide you to increase your revenue from mobile gaming.

With over a decade of experience in the video game industry, in which we tested and measured, we already know what works, so we can help you with your game monetization through Mobile Video Ads and HTML5 Playable Ads.

Starloop Studios is proud to be part of the Magic Media group, an international group specialising in entertainment and gaming industry services. Our wide range of offerings includes VFX, blockchain gaming, game art services, and more. Reach out today to avail of our expertise and A-Z services for your projects.


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