Discover localization strategies to penetrate the economics of applications and games in the United States
The United States is one of the top countries in terms of application revenue. In February 2019, 96% of the population were mobile phone users and 81% of these people had a smartphone (Pew Research Center). Although 5G networks are very widespread, most subscribers use 4G in pre or post-payment (monthly billing).
In this article, we present some tips to penetrate the vast market of applications and games in the United States.
Mobile gaming is a multi-billion dollar market in the United States. With 200 million players, it is the second largest market in terms of consumer spending (App Annie).
In the United States, the best genres of games cover a wide range of players, from casual to hardcore (App Annie):
- Casino and cards like card battles, slot machines and poker
- Strategy and simulation such as player against player (PvP) and battle royale
- Occasional such as match-3, bubble shooters and slow-motion rattling
- Action adventure like shooter, fighting and MOBA
A number of different gaming trends can be seen in the United States, each showing the level of diversity and innovation in this market:
- A growing appetite for playing and broadcasting e-sports
- Diversification of the set-up with developers expressing combinations of announcements, IAP and subscriptions
- Innovation of pure genre, combining genres in a new type of hybrid game
The best performing application categories in the United States include communication and social media, web browser, utilities and tools, entertainment and shopping. In 2018, the average American user spent almost 3 hours a day on mobile applications (statistica).
While the United States sees a constantly high number of installations per year, the market is mature and growth has slowed (App Annie). In this environment, Google Play Instant Apps can be an efficient means of generating facilities, conversion rate, engagement and reach – and are proven to be effective in many categories, including travel / local, e-commerce and the media.
Paid titles in the Google Play Store can cost between $ 0.99 and $ 400.00 (Play Console Help), but are generally available between $ 0.99 and $ 4.99. To make the prices of paid games and in-app purchases (IAP) more attractive to consumers, prices are often set .x9 cents rather than a round number (for example $ 2.99 instead of $ 3.00). In the example below, $ 1.00 is fine, but $ 1.49 and $ 1.99 are more attractive to users:
Many apps and games in the U.S. are free to download and play, but offer in-app purchases for users to unlock premium content or features.
Subscriptions are becoming a popular way for apps and games to supplement IAP revenue and keep readers engaged. Consider a weekly, monthly or yearly subscription renewal for your title. Keep in mind that free trials and promotional pricing can encourage users to explore your subscription offerings and find what works for them.
The United States has a wide range of demographics and income levels, so always take this into account when pricing your IAP or subscription. If you only consider revenue in large cities or use the national average, you will likely charge many potential users.
Forms of payment
The credit card is the preferred payment method for American users, with debit cards, gift cards, carrier billing and promotional codes also available (WorldPay Payments Report 2018).
The United States is the third largest smartphone market in the world (Mashable) with a wide range of high-end low-end devices. Many low-end devices have 1 GB or less of RAM, so try reducing your APK size: for every 6 MB increase in APK size, developers see a 1% decrease in conversion from 'installation. Large secondary downloads, such as extension files, can also result in early unsubscribing of players, especially in the casual game genres.
Developers can monitor the heart of their vital Android apps – crash rate, app nonresponse rate (ANR), excessive wake-ups and locked wake-up locks – in the Google Play console. Monitoring these vital elements across different levels of devices can help you identify performance issues that may arise so that you can resolve them in a timely manner. Poor Android performance affects the overall quality of the application, which can lead to users being misjudged on the Google Play Store and, ultimately, to a decrease in discoverability.
Many American operators offer unlimited data plans with a data limitation a certain threshold of data consumption. However, you should always try to minimize the use of data as much as possible.
American consumers accept formal and casual tones quite well, as long as they suit the application or the game. That said, avoid using old or unusual English words when translating. Be careful with the translation of slang or familiar sentences, as the meaning will often be lost.
Also make sure that you use spelling, punctuation, prices, date formats, measures, terminology, etc. When working on applications or games to be used in both markets, use the appropriate version of English for each or use American English. For word-based puzzle games, such as crosswords or word searches, you must use the correct version of English.
When translating your app title and Google Play store listing into American English, do not use direct machine translations. Although they can give potential users a broad context, their use can also signal that the rest of your application or game has not been translated well. If the name of your application does not make sense during translation or if you do not want to translate, add a subtitle to explain what it offers.
For example, the developers of Dil Mil, which means Hearts Meet in Hindi, chose to add a subtitle to explain the purpose of their application.
The multicultural make-up and prolific use of the Internet in the United States means that people relatively accept content from other countries, such as Japanese role-playing games, foreign films and animation, and South K-pop music. horn.
Although English is the primary language in the United States, support for localization of Spanish in addition to American English could offer significant opportunities, as the United States now has the second largest population. Spanish speaker of the world (The week).
Inclusion and cultural diversity are also important marketing considerations. Diversity in the United States means that Oktoberfest, Lunar New Year, Diwali, Pride Parade, Women's March, and Islamic New Year are all important cultural festivals and events in the United States. Make your title more attractive by incorporating these seasonal events into your market mix.
As shown below, Best Fiends used imagery to celebrate the Lunar New Year.
Many application and game developers have also added promotions to the great seasonal vacation in the United States. For example, Black Friday – the day after Thanksgiving – is the busiest shopping day of the year, followed by Cyber Monday. Consumers expect to see sales around Labor Day and Memorial Day, so making offers at these times might be a good option.
Google Play Store: If your title hasn't been launched, consider publishing it in an open beta version and applying for the Early Access Program in the Play Store. This program facilitates the acquisition of beta testers and the reception of useful comments before launch.
Apply for the pre-registration program and get help marketing your titles and getting users excited before the release. Providing the benefits of pre-registration can be a good way to boost awareness and facilities.
Online: Google Play Instant helps you provide an interactive demo of the titles wherever you want to share the link – on social media, the Google Play Store and Google search.
Influencers on social media and video streaming services are often branded by brands to promote their products or services – and could help you do the same.
Since TV ads are often too expensive for most application developers, you should consider using mobile ads. These now account for around 40% of digital ad spend and will soon exceed computer ad spend (eMarketer).
The diversity of the American population makes this market open to a wide variety of applications and games, offering opportunities for titles that might otherwise be niche outside their domestic market. However, translating apps and game content, titles, and Google Play lists must be done carefully to project a quality image and secure download.
The United States is the world's second largest market for mid-range smartphones. This means that many techniques for approaching emerging markets are just as relevant in the United States: reducing the size of the APK, minimizing the use of data, etc. Likewise, with regard to prices, do not assume that your target audience will necessarily tolerate higher prices than elsewhere in the world.
Perhaps the biggest challenge in the US market is its maturity, making it more difficult for any new title to find users. Using techniques such as delivering an app or instant game, providing users with an immediate experience of your title, can help generate downloads. Digital advertising can also be beneficial, as can the use of social media influencers.
Although it can be difficult to enter, the American market is one that can offer significant rewards. Above all, the quality of apps and games is essential to success, as consumers will quickly drop poor quality offers.