The mobile games industry has become something of a behemoth as SuperData forecasted this years mobile worldwide revenues to be at an astounding $21 billion.
Unsurprisingly, mobile games equate for over one third of total monthly spending within the gaming industry in the US. This is largely due to the fact that almost everyone has a smartphone capable of playing user-generated game applications and will compulsively spend a couple dollars here and there within the game they enjoy playing. This is highly different to the previous model adopted by handheld gaming platforms such as the Gameboy where consumers would have to choose which game cartridge they were interested in purchasing and that was that.
Micro-transactions and the evolution of convenience has transformed the way consumers behave, react, and spend in their everyday lives. Companies such as King, Supercell, and Zynga are highly recognizable names and truly dominate the mobile games scene because of their popular casual games and payment model which encourages minimal yet frequent spending.
Although the market is large and competition is fierce, large companies such as those listed maintain their status as the top performers quarter after quarter. In a sense, the top games today are “frozen” in place with only a couple developers being able to reap in the majority share of profits within the mobile games industry. In order to stay relevant, you must be able to attract new customers as well as retain current users.
When considering entering the mobile games industry, there are a couple factors that you definitely must be aware of. This infographic representation, taken from SuperData Research, shows exactly the reasons why gamers will make a micro-transaction within your game on the mobile. Consumers pay in order to increase their level of enjoyment which can vary from person to person. Someone may be willing to pay for some new content and extended gameplay but will never spend any money on faster progression. On the contrary, another consumer may spend money exclusively to progress as fast as possible in order to have that sense of achievement and pride or to be able to contend with the best of the best in the game. Whatever the reason is, developers must consider all possible routes a consumer may face and have that option available for them to take.
A Final Word
The mobile games industry has seen some explosive growth in recent history but now is entering into a stage of maturation and stabilization. Increasing development costs, high volume of developers, and dominant figures are the key barriers to success within the mobile industry. It is not enough to have an aesthetically compelling game anymore as the payment model and system adopted within the game will have as much to do with the success as any other factor. It will be interesting to see how the mobile games industry develops and if it will continue the trend of growth projected by SuperData Research.
Information, statistics, and infographic image taken from SuperData Research.