Wikipedia will tell you that SDK means many things, including Super Donkey Kong, the Sandakan Airport, and the Serbian Volunteer Corps. If you're reading this, you probably know that it also refers to software development kits. Developers use these to build and test new apps. Since this blog is concerned with monetization and apps, we're going to focus on why you should use an SDK to test out advertising and monetization technology.
If you’re a publisher, you know that you can find an SDK for many platforms, including Windows, Android, iOS, and even specific advertising platforms, such as the Microsoft Advertising SDK for Windows 8.1. Regardless of which platforms you publish on, you can find an appropriate SDK to test out new monetization strategies in your apps.
If you’re new to app development but want to try your hand at making money, don’t worry. The Android SDK, a testing environment for one of the world’s most popular and important platforms, is a straightforward emulator that even an inexperienced developer can get up and running with a little tweaking. It's a great way to build and test apps in the development phase, and can also be a great place to play with your monetization methods.
Developers should already know how to use the SDK, so we're going to focus on monetization methods you can test.
Testing with the SDK
Elsewhere on this blog, we've gone over the basics of monetizing your apps through in-app advertising, affiliate marketing, PPI, PPD, and so forth. Not all of these are relevant to an SDK testing environment. Monetization methods such as affiliate marketing, PPD, and PPI aren't as relevant to an SDK or testing environment.
Testing environments do, however, provide an excellent place to test out new advertising and monetization technology. The Android emulator, for instance, can quickly and easily demonstrate how well your app works with ads, such as Google Mobile Ads, or integrated monetization platforms, such as MobileFuel.
Testing in an SDK gives you the opportunity to see how your monetization solution will integrate with your end product. Does the advertising platform perform the way you expect? Does it fit well with your user interface design? Will it improve the user experience?
New Advertising Technology
Jumping headlong into new technology — even if it will generate revenue — can be scary. That’s one of the major benefits to using an SDK. Some may be concerned that new technologies will scare away existing customers. Others may be concerned that the new technology won't work. And some of these are valid concerns, which is why SDK is the perfect playground for much of this monetization technology.
Once you get over your fear of new advertising technologies, you’ll quickly see that the greatest use of an SDK is as a laboratory. Testing environments are the perfect place to experiment with various monetization methods. Here, you can see which ones will create the best experiences for your users.
These are some technologies to try out with an SDK:
Popular mobile ads can include ad platforms from major companies such as Google or Microsoft. These major companies offer trusted, reliable advertising solutions, such as Google Mobile Ads SDK, that integrate directly into apps.
These types of in-app ads are hot right now, and for good reason. They are contextual, targeted, and can blend seamlessly with the app experience. This increases conversion and creates a better user experience.
Search feeds, such as MobileFuel, offer app developers and advertisers search monetization solutions. Integrating MobileFuel is simply a matter of embedding the feed into your existing app. Experimenting with monetized search feeds in a testing environment is risk-free and easy.
Display ads, when they are relevant, can enhance the usefulness of your app. DisplayFuel, for instance, offers users real recommendations based on their immediate needs.
Smart installers are software installers that decrease download times and generate revenue through advertising. They can be customized to fit your brand and tweaked to meet your users' needs.
Don't Wait Too Long
If you're an app developer, software publisher, or advertiser who has never used this type of technology before, it's certainly wise to test before you buy. After all, you don't want to make any major changes that will disrupt your current software design or alienate users.
Using an SDK to test out the latest advertising technology can be a great way to get your feet wet with the possibilities, but don't wait too long to implement a monetization solution. Technology is always changing, and so is the marketing industry. In order to compete, you'll have to keep up with the curve, and that means constant innovation and adaptation.