GameRefinery, a renowned social gaming data analytics organization, and LiftOff, a mobile app optimization and marketing outfit, revealed their results on how social gaming performed amid the health crisis this week.
The survey discovered that iOS users in the United States spent approximately $1 billion on free-to-play social casino applications from August 1, 2020, to July 31, 2021. While this may appear to be a contradiction, free apps earn cash through a variety of sources.
People are usually assaulted with adverts, which app producers use to recuperate their costs. In-app purchases may also be made by players to progress their gameplay or status in the game.
During the aforementioned 12-month period, app income from social games reached a new high of $990 million.
The International Social Games Association defines social games as those that are played online or on mobile devices and contain a social component.
People typically play with or directly against their friends, or they engage in leader boards, chat rooms, or discuss and compare progress through a social network. They improve gaming experiences by allowing players to play with or against others, either simultaneously or intermittently.
During the time period and the 239 social gaming apps studied, users were subjected to more than 83 billion ad impressions, according to GameRefinery. In order to get more information, users clicked on nearly 1.1 billion adverts.
Joel Julkunen, GameRefinery's head of game analytics, said that it's no surprise that mobile casino apps are seeing a boost in popularity worldwide given the effects the global pandemic has had on gaming.
He also said that since they are seeing an increased movement in this specific market, it's crucial for mobile developers and marketers in this certain vertical to analyze these new insights to implement long-term strategies.
The investigation discovered that, even when vaccination rates climbed and the United States returned to some kind of normalcy in early 2021, social gaming continued to trend positively. According to GameRefinery, the industry's earnings in the second quarter of 2021 were over $260 million.
Perhaps more worrisome for marketers is the fact that the average social gaming user is older than the average user of any other game genre. According to Refinery, while the user population is split 50/50 between men and women, over half of the social gaming players are over the age of 45.
While the research framed it in a favorable light, claiming that it demonstrates that the social "gaming category has broad appeal," the most wanted demographic in the advertising business has long been the 18- to 34-year-old group.
During the pandemic, social apps spent a lot of money on user acquisition. With apps competing for a flood of new users, the average cost per install (CPI) was $11.09. Triwin co-founder Wayne Qin justified this, stating that high-quality users will usually mean a higher CPI.
Apple's recent modifications to its IDFA protocol are a key concern for the iOS social gaming business (Identifier for Advertisers). Apple included a "Limit Ad Tracking" feature in iOS 10 for customers that do not want to be monitored by advertisements.
In late 2020, Apple announced that around 20% of its users have activated the option, which stops some social gaming adverts from reaching those individuals. As a result, the Refinery research predicts that in the future, "Android will be pushing out iOS as the platform of choice for casino apps."