Best Practices for Monetizing Mobile Applications

Ready to give your revenue a boost? Follow these best practices as you monetize your mobile apps and refer back to them often as you optimize your inventory and improve earnings.

These best practices apply to apps on any platform - whether you are looking for the best way to integrate ads in AndroidiPhoneiPadWindows Phone or Blackberry applications.


Provide Descriptive and Detailed Profile Information for Your Application 

What this Means

When you sign-up your application with ONE by AOL: Mobile Self Serve, you’ll need to provide some information about your app. This includes:

  • Name of your application
  • A URL for your app
  • A screenshot of your app (not a logo)
  • A description of your app

Why You Should Complete the Profile

Think of your application’s profile as your online storefront with us. Our sales team, analysts and brand advertisers need to understand the content of your application to determine the best placement for mobile app ads. The more information you provide about your application’s content, the more interest you’ll create and more campaigns will come your way. Here are some tips for each piece of information we ask you to provide:

  • Provide a name for your application that is descriptive and easily recognizable (i.e., “Flight of the Pigeon Target Game”, not “e.12.silly”).
  • A clickable URL is required so that we can QA the content of your application. The URL should direct to either a landing page for your application (your website) or an app store page.
  • A screenshot showing the content of your application. We must have a screenshot for your application to be included in site lists for our advertisers.
  • Provide a detailed description. Tell us what your application is all about so we can find the most effective campaigns for your inventory based on the content of your application. We recommend using a modified version of the content description you submit to app stores.

How to Complete Your Application’s Profile

Log-in to your account and select the application you want to edit. Update or provide the information outlined above for your application.


Integrate the Latest SDKs 

What this Means

SDKs (Software Development Kits) are available for major mobile operating systems. They allow you to easily integrate ads into your applications and deliver the rich and engaging mobile experiences requested by our top brand advertisers.

Why Integrate the Latest SDKs?

By integrating the latest SDK in your application, you will have access to new improvements and features that can boost your fill rates and eCPMs. This provides you with access to the best mobile advertising campaigns running on our platform.

How to Download SDKs

Learn more and download SDKs for the following mobile operating systems: 

APIs are available for BlackBerryBrewJavaPSPSymbianwebOS and mobile websites.


Placement Matters - Incorporate Advertising in Applications with Your Users in Mind 

What this Means

You want to make sure the ads in your application are visible, but not intrusive to your users. We refer to this as ad placement. The ideal – and most effective - placement varies by application, but we recommend incorporating advertising before your content loads or during natural transitions in your application experience (i.e., between game levels or the transition from your homepage to a second level content page).

Why Ad Placement Matters

Aside from providing the best possible experience for your users, proper ad placement helps avoid false clicks. It’s important for us to know that the clicks from your application are trustworthy. When your CTR (click through rate) is strong and accurate, your application will be eligible for more campaigns and you can earn higher eCPMs. 

How to Determine Proper Ad Placement

Follow these tips to ensure you provide the best user experience and make the most of your revenue opportunity through advertising:

  • Ads are not intrusive, but clearly visible at the top/bottom of your app.
  • Ads are properly sized.
  • Ads use the appropriate transition or open space within your app.
  • Only one ad is on the screen at any given time.
  • Ads are not placed near action/interaction buttons. This can interfere with user experience and result in accidental, "fat finger" clicks.


Allow All Ad Types, Including Video

On our ad platform, the developers who see the best monetization results use a combination of ad types in their applications. We offer five standard creative ad units that you can enable using the latest ONE by AOL: Mobile Self Serve SDKs for AndroidiOS (iPhone and iPad) and Windows Phone





  • A full-screen ad that appears to users before your application loads or at natural transition points in your application, such as between game levels or between the homepage and a unique content page.
  • Can be either static images or video.
  • Utilized heavily by premium brand advertisers.
  • Ads typically deliver much higher eCPMs, particularly for video.

Banner Ads

  • A small ad that appears at the top or bottom of the page – above, below or within your application’s content.
  • Can be static, animated or expandable (a static or animated banner ad that expands to a full page ad when clicked).
  • Utilized by both performance and brand advertisers.
  • Ads typically provide higher fill rates.


  • A full-screen 300 x 250 ad that overlays your application’s content.
  • Static image; Expandable feature available on iPad only.
  • Users can close ad at any time.
  • Utilized by both performance and brand advertisers.
  • Ads typically provide higher fill rates.


Include Available Metadata

What this Means

Premium brand advertisers utilize our platform's targeting capabilities to reach their desired audience. Metadata includes, but is not limited to gender, age, zip code, latitude/longitude, and income bracket - data that your users have agreed to share with your application, and given you permission to share with us. 

Why Pass Metadata

Your application will be eligible for more campaigns if you pass available metadata with each ad call. This data will be used to connect users of your application with advertising that is relevant to them based on the data they choose to share with you. The more relevant the advertisement, the higher the eCPM - and that means more money for you. 

How to Implement

ONE by AOL: Mobile Self Serve is only able to monetize metadata formatted to our requirements. To find out how to properly format and pass metadata, please click here or review the documentation.


Make Your Mobile Applications Available Across All Platforms

What this Means

With new mobile and connected devices entering the market each day, there is more advertiser demand for quality applications. At ONE by AOL: Mobile Self Serve, we support AndroidiOSWindows Phone and more. If you have an Android application, why not develop a version for iOS?

Why You Should Develop Across Platforms

It’s pretty simple – reach more users, take advantage of the demand and earn more money. We offer our advertisers advanced targeting solutions that allow them to reach a specific audience across operating systems, content channels, demographic segments, countries, etc. When you develop across platform, you are increasing your mobile ad revenue opportunity - while tapping into a new set of users.

How to Get Started

If you are in the process of developing an application for a new operating system, plan your mobile app advertising strategy early. This gives you plenty of time to test and be prepared to include ads when your application launches. If you already have an application and are not monetizing your inventory with us, simply Sign In, add the application and integrate our SDK!

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