Key Points

  • In-app advertising looks entirely different for mobile apps and desktop apps.
  • While desktop apps struggle to find demand sources that work with them, mobile apps have to deal with clunky SDK integrations and technical headaches.
  • An ad revenue partner like Playwire can apply focused experience and in-depth understanding to your mobile or desktop app monetization strategy in order to maximize revenue.

The publishers of the world have worked for years to make sure there's an app for virtually anything you could need or want on mobile and desktop. Unfortunately, the digital advertising ecosystem has not been so accommodating to app owners and developers.

Publishers of both mobile apps and desktop apps face distinct difficulties as they try to craft in-app advertising strategies that will make all their hard work worth the effort. To successfully navigate these challenges, it's important to understand the unique needs of desktop and mobile app publishers. That's something Playwire has worked hard to do over the past 15-plus years, and we're going to share some of our knowledge and insights with you in the article below.

It's not just you. Building a desktop or mobile advertising strategy for your app that really works is hard for publishers all over the industry. Fortunately, Playwire can help. Reach out to our team to learn more about our solutions built for desktop and mobile app publishers.

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The Complete Guide to App Advertising

The Complete Guide to App Advertising

The Basics of In-App Advertising

Let's begin with the basics. What does in-app advertising look like for mobile apps vs. desktop apps?

Mobile Apps

In-app advertising for mobile apps is mostly programmatic and done through the integration of software development kits (SDKs) for different demand sources. Once integrated, these supply-side platforms (SSPs), mediation partners, mobile ad networks, and ad exchanges connect bidders with the publisher's app inventory.

A programmatic auction is held for each impression, and the winning bidder gets their app advertisements served within the destination app.

Desktop Apps

In-app advertising for desktop apps, by contrast, works in much the same way as it does for websites when they can get access to demand. The entire ecosystem is somewhat less defined for desktop apps, as demand sources have traditionally avoided working with desktop apps for a variety of reasons. Additionally, technology solutions for traditionally web-based demand sources rely on having a domain name and using cookies, both of which require technical workarounds on desktop apps.

Challenges of In-App Advertising

In-app advertising is both an opportunity and a challenge. It's an opportunity to secure a slice of the massive global budget for in-app advertising. And it's a challenge because of technical complications for mobile apps and a lack of functional solutions for desktop apps.

Mobile Apps

While in-app advertising for mobile apps has made enormous strides in recent years, publishers in this space have faced and still face enormous challenges. 

Perhaps the most common and frustrating challenge is that of the complex SDK integrations that have to happen in order to build even a reasonably diversified demand portfolio. Each source of demand asks for its own SDK to be integrated, and publishers have to make sure each new integration works well with all existing SDKs.

Meanwhile, many ad tech vendors have become notorious for shrouding their revenue models in mystery so publishers have no idea how much of each advertising dollar spent is actually reaching their bank accounts. 

Finally, the ad tech surrounding digital advertising for websites has remained far ahead of the tech available for mobile app publishers. That leaves app publishers with clunky, outdated, and less-than-functional tech as their only tool to drive real revenue.

Desktop Apps

Publishers of desktop apps face an entirely different set of challenges. While it's true that revenue models are somewhat mysterious by design in this space, the problem isn't exactly an inability to see where all the money is going - it's finding a provider who is actually willing to work with a desktop app.

In fact, most of the major demand sources and platforms have shied away from desktop apps for years, leaving publishers with few options to generate demand for their ad inventory. 

The few solutions that have been built for desktop apps are problematic. Many of them rely on cookies or other technologies that are present in a web environment but not in a software application, and they route much of the work through a domain name associated with the app rather than the software application itself.

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App Advertising Resource Center

The Complete App Advertising Resource Center

Monetization Opportunities for Mobile Apps and Desktop Apps

The ad tech industry loves a good challenge, and challenges have been a dime a dozen for both mobile app and desktop app publishers. Some ad tech players like Playwire have stepped up to create real solutions for app publishers.

Mobile Apps

Playwire has built an in-app advertising solution for mobile apps that is designed to solve all of the problems app publishers face:

  • To prevent clunky SDK integrations, we built a lightweight and powerful SDK of SDKs that combines demand and functionality into a single integration.
  • To shine more light on the flow of revenue, we have adopted a revenue share model that places as much importance on transparency as it does profit.
  • To bridge the tech gap between mobile app advertising and web advertising, we have built a proprietary revenue amplification platform that utilizes the latest ad tech tools.

Desktop Apps

The desktop app advertising industry was in desperate need of some innovation, so the Playwire team took the opportunity to step up. We did that by not just building an ad platform that brings the latest technology to the desktop app advertising space, but by leaning on our existing relationships to create more and better demand.

By working directly with SSPs and other demand sources to convince them to bid on desktop app ad inventory, we have helped our desktop app publishers bring in unbelievably strong revenue streams where they previously had none.

The Best of Mobile and Desktop In-App Advertising

Any in-app ad revenue partner who wants to lump desktop and mobile app solutions into the same category is a partner you probably want to run away from fast. That's because mobile apps and desktop apps could not be more different - their revenue strategies need to be different, too.

Whether you're a mobile app publisher or a desktop app publisher, you need and deserve the best in-app advertising strategies, tools, and platforms. And that's what Playwire will give to you.

We've worked for more than 15 years to build the very best solutions for app publishers. When the industry was letting desktop app publishers down by isolating them from demand, we built a solution. When advertisers were getting all the favor as mobile app publishers struggled with clunky SDKs, we engineered a sleek and powerful SDK to beat them all.

In other words, we're here for you - to help you bring in the ad revenue you need and beyond. Ready to get started? Contact Playwire today.

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