App marketing for the German market – what works?
China has become the biggest smartphone market a couple of days back which will reflect soon in app downloads as well. This means the United States is not the only market to focus on and has lost some ground in terms of its distribution importance for global developers. Hence it’s about time to look at other countries or markets and the corresponding app marketing specifics. After all developing and marketing apps is also about monetising them all over the world. Today we talk about the German market.
Market Size Germany
Germany is after the UK the most important app market in the EU with 19 Million iOS and Android devices and is ranked worldwide as number six. The penetration rate growth for smartphones is like everywhere rather high, so it can be expected that of Germany’s 82 Million people soon 30 Million of them will be potential downloaders and buyers of apps. Germany is also the third biggest non-English speaking market (after Japan and China) for monetising apps (measured in revenue of #1 top grossing app) because its ranked number 6 for revenue generated of top grossing IOS app. For free apps Germany ranks in the Google Play Store even number three worldwide.
Graphic: Revenue of #1 top grossing app per country (source AppAnnie)
Top of the charts and number of downloads
The figures above show that the German market is certainly an interesting option for app developers – but how competitive is it after all? A good indicator is the difficulty to get into the charts where users can easily find and download your app:
- Germany – Top 10: 12,000 downloads; Top 25: 5,000; Top 50: 3,000
- Japan – Top 10: 20,000; Top 25: 9,000; Top 50: 6,000
- South Korea – Top 10: 20,000; Top 25: 9,000; Top 50: 5,000
- United Kingdom – Top 10: 18,000; Top 25: 8,000; Top 50: 5,000
(Distimo data from Dec 2011, category games).
Compared to other countries Germany is ranking according to its market size but still much less competitive than Japan, South Korea or the UK.
The general principles of app markets are low barriers to entry, and friction-free digital distribution. This is globally true but is somewhat limited by the language of the markets. Interestingly there is a new report by Distimo analysing the impact of app localisations on downloads and revenue. The major findings are:
- English is still the language of choice but the introduction of the native language to an app boosts its download volumes and revenue. This effect is larger, however, for iPhone applications than for iPad applications.
- Publishing your app in the main languages of the market has a greater impact on revenue than on free downloads. In Germany the main app languages are English but also to a high degree of course German. Now the report found out that together with Chinese consumers, German consumers are the most eager to pay for content in their own native language. This means for developers providing free apps for the German market should not make a too big difference for the downloads – however when it comes to paid apps you’ll probably need a localised version of the app to drive downloads. The reports quotes that the impact of adding a language increases in average the downloads by 128% and the revenue by 26%.
Localized App Marketing
It goes without saying that keywords, app description AND content should be available in German language when you publish to the German app store. For app success one also needs to bear in mind the German user have different information sources and sites when it comes to finding new apps.
The Road to Success
After all the German market is not so different at all and we believe when you have developed a good app and stick with the mentioned recommendations you will get your share of the German app market.
Guest blog post by: Richard Buettner, Director of Weever Media