Software monetization isn’t scary, it’s actually fun. And once you learn the rules, it’s pretty straightforward.

The major players in software monetization are developers, software publishers, advertisers, and customers. There are a few simple rules, everyone can be a winner, and there are no losers – only people who aren’t playing yet.

Don’t worry if you haven’t played software monetization before, you’ll get the hang of it in no time.

The Objective

The object of software monetization is simple: make money from your software.

As mentioned, there are no losers and everybody can win, but some players are better than others. CodeFuel’s top dog at software monetization, so let’s take a look at the CodeFuel product line-up to see how they help monetize software:

InstallFuel is a smart installer that uses advertising during the installation process to generate revenue. Customizable branding and real-time analytics are just a couple of the features that make this monetization tool so powerful.

MobileFuel is a search feed for mobile apps. It can be easily integrated into any existing app, offering high-value, relevant information to app users.

SearchFuel is a search feed for software or sites. Like MobileFuel, it integrates advertising and search to provide users with contextual, targeted information.

DisplayFuel also provides users with highly relevant, targeted advertisements that monetize a website or software while offering users authentic value.

Control Center is a robust analytics platform that gives immediate access to statistics for every Codeduel product. Real-time reporting and advanced editing tools enable people to edit their funnels and optimize them for conversions.

What do these CodeFuel tools have in common?

They’re all cutting edge monetization platforms that use advertising to deliver real value. The most advanced monetization platforms use similar tactics.

Now that you’ve seen how CodeFuel plays the software monetization game, let’s go over the rules.

The Rules of the Software Monetization Game

1. Create an app that solves a problem or fills a need – When you look at the marketplace or the world, do you see a gap that needs to be filled? There are plenty of problems to be solved, even if that problem is finding a good game to play on a mobile device.

2. Profile your target audience – Learn as much as you can about your target audience. Find out what they like, what they dislike, and where they hang out online. Grab some marketing and demographic ideas from Google, such as age group, gender, geographic areas, common interests, and so forth. The better you know your customers, the easier it will be to play the software monetization game.

3. Choose a monetization strategy – Based on your app, your own business needs, and your target audience, what strategy will you choose? Affiliate marketing, in-app advertising, pay-per-download sites, pay-per-install programs, and paid purchases are a few common choices. See below for more info.

4. Pick the right monetization platform – Scour the net for the right fit for your monetization strategy. If you choose “affiliate network,” search for ones that have good reputations and offer relevant deals to your niche. If you choose “turn-key monetization platform,” then go with CodeFuel.

5. Engage – Make it so, Scotty: sign up for your monetization program of choice, integrate any code or tools as necessary, and let her roll. Use your chosen platform’s analytics to track the effectiveness of your campaign, and optimize to increase your conversion rate. Rinse and repeat.

Common Software Monetization Strategies

Most monetization involves making money by promoting other people’s products and software through your own products and software. By turning your digital vehicle into a sales machine, you can generate revenue as long as you have a loyal user base.


Advertising is one of the most popular and efficient methods of software monetization. Anywhere there’s screen real estate there’s an opportunity to advertise. You can advertise during the installation of your software program, post-download, pre-download, in-app, on-site, and on-screen.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate sales generate commission every time users make a purchase through your link. Apps and software that use affiliate monetization methods often generate lots of revenue, but these apps are often designed specifically around those affiliate offers. If you can come up with creative ways to integrate affiliate marketing into your monetization strategy, you can probably come up with lots of ways to spend your newfound cash.


Freemium models, which offer free programs that offer in-app purchases, have been very popular since the advent of the mobile, but haven’t proven as lucrative or stable as advertising. The main reason is that although many users may download and use an app, only a minority actually make purchases.

Paid Software

Finally, we have the paid software monetization strategy. This is the oldest and also one of the hardest ways to monetize software, since the market is overflowing with free, freemium, freeware, shareware, open-source, and ad-powered software programs. If you’ve got the resources and marketing clout to pull it off, though, paid purchases can also be very lucrative.