Playtime Europe – Make money on Google Play

said, thank you. My name is Brahim, a
Lead Product Manager for monetization, search, and
discovery on the Play Store. So I had a lot of talks, also,
about your questions earlier in the morning, so maybe we’ll
get to talk about them later. But yeah, so today, I’m going to
talk to you about making money on Google Play. Monetization on Google
Play is something that’s obviously top
of mind for developers and that I have been personally
working on for the past three years of my life. And so it’s a very
exciting topic for me. All right, so what we’re
going to try to do today is give you some insights,
data driven insights. So we’ll share some
numbers that will hopefully help you make decisions as you
run your businesses, as you build your apps, as you grow
your businesses– globally, hopefully, as you will see
the theme of the presentation. We’ll hopefully
give you some data that can help you
make decisions. So that’s the point
of the presentation. So I just have to
reiterate this point. I know Michael presented
it, and a few other people referred to it. But having been
here for three years and seeing how far we’ve
come in monetization, it’s incredibly exciting for
me and the rest of the team. The fact that we’ve
paid out $5 billion to developers over the
last 12 months is amazing. And the more amazing
thing is that we all feel like we’re just getting
started, that the ceiling is actually much higher, if at all. And so we’re super
excited about this. We could not have done it
without all of your work. And we’re super, super
excited about what’s going to happen next and
the announcement we’ll make next year at
Playtime London, hopefully, if we get good
feedback on this one. The after lunch crowd is
always difficult, so I get it. I’m just– but
this is what I got. OK, so the way we think
about monetization is there are different roles. And in a way, whatever happens
within your app, whatever happens in terms of your
pricing is really up to you. And there’s one point
where a user decides to up their experience with you. They want to go into a
premium state of interaction with your app, and they
press that Buy button. Or maybe it’ll say the price,
whatever the way you build it. And so as a user
presses that Buy button, that interaction
jumps over to Play. And our goal and what
we do on a daily basis is to make sure that we
convert as many of those clicks as we can– wherever the user
is, no matter what the amount they’re trying to buy, no
matter what app they came from. So we’re trying to
build tools for you to convert those users, right? And I know– my wife
has a small business. And on weekends, I go to try
and help her sell pillows. She designs and builds pillows. And it is so hard to get someone
to hand over their cash to you. To actually pull out their
wallet and give you their money is incredibly hard. And so when someone presses
the button in your app to actually make a
purchase, it’s a huge step. And so we want to make sure we
convert as many of those users as possible. So the rest of the presentation
will keep this in mind– things that we’re doing, and
things that you can do. This is how we’ll get
through the rest of the talk. Stepping back a bit
and talking about how does a developer, or
as an entrepreneur, more generally build a
business, you generally have an insight that’s driven
based on your experience. It’s what you know best,
the language you speak, the market and need that you’re
particularly familiar with. And so you start a business. It’s based probably
somewhere– in your case, maybe in Europe, or the Middle
Eastern and North Africa. And then from
there, you’re going to look for another market. You look for a market
that’s somewhat similar. Maybe another Western country. Maybe a market that has
similar user patterns. And then from
there, you’re going to go to another
market that maybe is even more
different than yours. And all of sudden, the amazing
thing is, all of a sudden, you are a global developer. You’re running a
global business. And in the, past this used
to be a monumental event. This used to be
like when GM started getting most of their
sales from outside the US. It was like management
changes, and the way the company does
things just change. And today, it happens so
quickly that a lot of developers actually don’t
change their mindset as they become
global developers. And so what I want to
talk to you about next is how do you actually
change your mindset, what are things you can do as
you transition from being a primarily local market
developer to becoming a global developer. And so we’ll share some
data to hopefully help you, again, make those decisions. But this shift in
mindset is important. And actually in digital,
it’s happening, obviously, much faster. It’s a lot more seamless because
you have these platforms, inside Google Play,
that immediately have buyers in 130 markets. And so because it’s so
seamless, a lot of times, you actually don’t shift the way
you think about your business because it just happens
without you knowing. And all of a sudden, you
have buyers in 50 markets, or you have even users
in even more markets. And so just something that
I would love to highlight and I’ll talk about more next. So obviously, we
believe that Google Play is an incredibly
good platform for you to expand your
businesses globally. And what’s exciting to
us is when we look at you as developers that earn most
of their income from abroad, those developers are earning
2.5x what their equivalents who aren’t are, right? So if you’re taking
that jump– and this is the majority of your sales. This isn’t about I have 1% or
2% or 10% or 20% of my income coming from other markets. This is the majority of your
sales are coming from abroad. When that happens, when you can
jump over that virtual fence, you’re earning
actually a lot more. And the point here,
as you can imagine, is that you should all try that. You should all do it,
because it’s profitable. And what’s cool is that
over the past year, we’ve seen 38%
growth in developers who are doing just that. They are taking advantage
of the global audience. They’re taking
advantage of buyers that we have in 130 markets. And the data that
we’ll go to next will hopefully show
you, one, is how, and what are we doing to
make sure you’re successful. But this point about
developers that are earning most of
their income from abroad are earning significantly more. And we’d love for you,
hopefully with the help of some of the data we’ll share,
to actually intentionally focus on that. So what have we been up to? So obviously, you may know this. But free apps are distributed
in a 190 plus countries. We have buyers in
130 plus markets. And in 65 markets
now, you can custom tailor your pricing, which
we will talk about later is actually an
important aspect of you being present in that market. Tailoring your pricing to a
local market is important. So that’s step one. We’re a global platform. I think everybody
understands that. Next is interestingly
something that we’ve learned over the
past few years, is that as you go out there and
try to build a global payments platform, you actually
have to think very locally. There is no silver bullet. There’s no payment method
that works everywhere. There’s no easy way to do this. You just have to go
into each market. You have to understand
that market– the behavior, the
purchase experience, what people are most familiar with. And then you have to build
a product that works there. And so in the US,
as you’d imagine, credit cards are very popular. That is the primary way
that people want to buy. In Japan, carrier billing
is extremely popular. And so these are two incredibly
important markets for us that behave in
completely different ways when it comes to payments. And so again, we had
to go in and start thinking very locally. And this replicates to
every other market almost. Every other country,
actually, is this way. There’s a distinction
in behavior. So what do we do? So one of things we’ve done
over the past couple of years– so two years ago, we launched
Google Play gift card in the US only. Today, it is in 18 markets. And I think as of
maybe this morning, it’s in its 19th market. So we’ve been very
aggressively rolling out the Google Play gift card. It’s been very successful
for us, because one, it unlocks new segment of users
that just don’t– they just don’t have access to credit
cards or other kinds of more fluid forms of payment. And two, it gets
the brand out there, and it gets users– this
is in the physical world. This is in retailers. This is in tens of
thousands of locations that we now have the
Google Play brand known. And your users, while they
are in their usual day-to-day habits, they’re seeing
the Google Play gift card. The other one is
direct carrier billing, which has been very
successful for us. And it is now in 25 markets,
as Michael [INAUDIBLE] earlier. And finally, PayPal, which
we launched more recently– it’s been very successful
for us as well. It’s now in 12 markets and
rolling out to more shortly. So again, these
are current stats. They’re changing constantly. But the objective
is as a user comes in from any of your
countries, any users that you have in any
markets, as they come in, the objective is
that they’ll find an option on their
purchase experience that is familiar to them
that they want to use. We want to reduce that hurdle. So this is a major
part of what I do and what the entire team
at Google Play does. And I’ll give you a
bit of a case study about the launch of the Google
Play gift card in Germany. And this will give
you some insight about our overall
strategy for payments. OK, so as we launched the
Google Play gift card, over the past year, we had
70% increase in buyers. This is tremendous. This is like step
change type stuff. And if you look at– a lot of
you are potentially developers already selling in Germany, you
would have seen that impact. And so the launch
of a form of payment that is convenient
to a market, that is familiar to
users in a market, has a significant impact. So the interesting
thing is what did this do to the rest of the
purchase flow conversion rate? Actualy, it increased our
purchase flow conversion rate by 25%. So more of those clicks that
are coming from your apps are converted– to
be clear, 25% more. And that’s huge. That is incredibly significant
for all of you who are actually closing more of those sales
and completing those sales. And finally, what
this does overall– because at the
end of the day, we care about overall
sales in the country. And that actually had
a 3x impact on sales. So over the last year, sales
in Germany have grown by 3x. And while this is tied to a
number of things– including growth in Android,
including the availability of preferred methods, and the
increase in the conversion rate– this is a
trend that we want to see more and more markets in. We activate the buyers, we
launch good forms of payment, and then we see an increase
in revenue like this. This is a success
story that we want to replicate in many,
many more countries. For example, we launched
carrier billing and gift cards in Hong Kong. And in that country, we had
an 80% growth in buyers. In Russia, we launched
carrier billing, and we had 100% growth
in number of buyers. So again, we’re
hoping that this will be replicated in every market. And we’re working very hard
to make sure that we do. Shifting a bit to the
purchase experience is not only about the forms
of payment available, but also where they are available. And this was– I always
thought of this as a gap where on tablets, carrier
billing was not available. And just maybe I’ll step
back and say carrier billing is when you’re able to
buy something and put it on your operator bill,
your monthly operator bill. And it was not
available in tablets because you could imagine
the setup experience requires you to be on the
phone that you’re going to bill the stuff to. But we’ve built new technology
over the past couple of years that allowed
us to actually now run carrier billing
from Wi-Fi tablets. And so if you’re a user that
primarily uses carrier billing, and you’re on your phone, when
you went to the tablet before, you actually couldn’t
make a purchase. You didn’t have an
available form of payment. Today they can, and that’s
had a significant impact on monetization on
that device segment. So that’s been really exciting. Another thing that
we have learned is that locally developed
content is extremely important. It kind of triggers
the entire ecosystem. And we’ve worked really
hard over the past year to enable developers in
more and more countries to be able to sell
on Google Play. And this may not impact all of
you, because if you’re here, you’re probably already
a successful developer. Maybe a dozen– I’ve talked
to someone from Bulgaria. But essentially, we’ve
launched 22 new markets. We’re at 54 markets today. And our objective–
this is something that we really care about
at the mission level. We want to make sure
that anyone that can build an awesome
Android application, no matter where they are,
they can earn a living on Google Play. It’s that simple. Anyone anywhere
should be able to earn a living on Google Play. And so we’re at 54 countries. We’re going to
continue to launch more and more of these markets
over the next few months. All right, so what can
you do to make sure that you’re taking advantage
of this global platform? This is hopefully the
actionable part for you. First of all is
localizing your listings. This is incredibly important. Now, of course, you can’t
localize to every language. But if you are intentionally
selling in a market, if you’re intentionally
acquiring users through ads in a
market, if you want to grow your
business in a market, you have to actually speak
that country’s language. It is an absolute,
just basic thing that many developers don’t
actually do, unfortunately. And the Developer Console
offers all sorts of tools to make this really
accessible for developers. So whether you’re using
professional translation tools or you’re actually using the
Developer Console one, which gets routed to professionals,
that is really important. And the data we’re seeing is
that apps that are localized, that have localized listings,
are earning 6x more than those that aren’t. So it’s very actionable. Of course, you can’t
translate to every country, every language. But if you are
intentionally in a market, you have to speak
their language. The other part is
localizing your pricing. And this is, again– it’s one
of those simple things that the local developers do
that the foreign ones don’t. And this is one of those things
that end up impacting sales. And then you launch in a market. You’re like, I don’t know. I can’t crack this
market for some reason. But it’s because
of little things like this, where we have
this incredibly convenient auto-convert function
that a lot developers go in, they set their default
price, auto-convert. And then actually, you don’t
go through all the prices, and make sure they
are just rounded off. They are whatever that
$0.99 equivalent is. We all know the
$0.99 price in the US has been for decades
a price point that we know is like, OK, below
which, it’s a trivial purchase, or it’s a significant
purchase– whatever it is you’re targeting. But there are equivalents of
those prices in each market. So again, 101 Yen
is not one of those. It’s 100 Yen. And as you come through
that purchase flow– and you’ve all probably
optimized your flows– every little detail impacts
your conversion rate. And what we’ve seen here is that
apps and SKUs with prices that are local precise local pricing
actually convert and have 2x the sales of those that aren’t. So this is, again, a
very actionable thing. Just go through your
pricing, and literally make sure it’s rounded off. But in some cases, you actually
have to change it significantly because spending patterns
in different markets are different, obviously. So this is another small thing. The other thing is localizing
your business model. It is actually important that
based on your category of app as well as what market
you’re targeting, the intersection
of those two things might mean you have
a different business model in different countries. There are countries where ads
is the primary way of market monetizing. There are others where
in-app is the way to go. For some app categories,
it is subscriptions. Others obviously are
paid apps or in-app. So again– and this
is one of those you have to take care
of at the beginning, as you build your app, as
you build your feature set. If it’s a
subscription, there has to be ongoing
value for the user. There has to be recurring value. If you are doing
an in-app, then you have to have some
incremental discrete steps that a user can purchase. So again, as you
think through, think about localizing your
business models as well. So I’m going to talk a little
bit more about subscriptions. We’ve been investing in
subscriptions quite a bit. We’ve seen it be very
successful for apps in a number of categories. And growth, since launch,
has been tremendous. And so we’ve actually been
investing quite a bit in it. As of a couple days ago,
we launched a number of new features
for subscriptions, including seasonal
subscriptions; goodwill credits, where
basically, if somebody’s really not happy, you an give them
an extra month for free via an API; and
also an API for you to refund or revoke
subscription access. The last upgrades/downgrades
are going to launch in the next few weeks. So what we’re trying
to do is build a full-fledged
subscriptions platform that is accessible via
APIs that offers you– we take care of all the billing. We take care of all the
details of auto-renewing. And if it is something
that works for your app, if you think that you have
recurring value for users over time, then it’s
something to consider. And we have seen
apps that have been successful in all
sorts of categories, from education to gaming to
the traditional like music and Evernote type of
apps use subscriptions and be very
successfully monetizing. And so again, think
of subscriptions. It is a fast-growing
segment for us. This was brought
up earlier as well, which is this focus on quality. And I wanted to reiterate the
point about those multipliers are incredible, right? I mean, if you are moving one
star up from the three star range to the four
star range, you’re actually multiplying
your sales by four. And so as you think
about investing in QA, investing in replying to
reviews, investing in building the right product,
this stuff matters and has a direct
impact on your sales. So you’re business owners. You need to do the
math and figure out if it adds up for you or not. But this is hopefully
a metric that can help you make that decision. Is it worth it for you? And I think the
point we’re trying to make is that it
very much is worth it. OK, so this is, again,
along the lines of quality, but it’s about other
form factors, right? And then Android, over
the last of couple months, we’ve launched a
number of new form factors, a number
of new ecosystems. And the point here
is that if you’re going to distribute in a
particular form factor, whether it’s atuo or wear or
tablets or TV, you have to, again, be intentional about it. You have to actually
build an experience that fits that form factor. As part of that, we’re
seeing that apps that are tablet-optimized are actually
monetizing 10 times better than those that aren’t. This stuff, again, matters. And you’re business owners. You’re looking to spend
your resources wisely. So again, if you’re
going to spin off a team to build a
tablet-optimized app, this is the multiplier
you need to think of as you look at
your increasing costs versus the potential
increase in reward and sales. And I think as these new
ecosystems proliferate and as new form factors emerge,
be intentional about it. And that will help with your
sales, as you can see here. OK, so in closing
and in summary, three points to
really take away. One is think beyond
your familiar markets. Really just do that. I know many of you do. But there is this
mental shift that used to happen in physical
world corporations where they go global. And I think now,
it happens so fast and it’s so seamless that
a lot of app developers don’t actually think
about it and actually shift their behavior
accordingly. So whether it is localizing
your listings, localizing your pricing, et cetera, be
intentional about these things. And that’s the second
point I just covered. And finally, focus on quality
and other form factors. Make sure that if
you are actually going to submit your
app for tablets, make sure it is a
great experience. Make sure you build
something tailored for it. And users will react well, and
users will increase their spend in your app because of that. That’s all I have for you. Thank you very much.


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