Chrome users and developers know the Chrome Web Store is not exactly the most profitable app store out there. Most apps and extensions are free, and not many of us tend to purchase paid ones. Monetization for the Chrome Web Store revolves around ads and services, but Google’s latest updates aim to change this.
It’s important to have a good monetization system for developers. Without developers, we can’t have good apps and extensions. And developers usually won’t make these unless it will pay off. So what is Google doing to keep developers happy?
Google is making it easier for apps and extensions to offer free trials. Most users don’t like to purchase products or services without trying them first. It’s the reason why stores like Best Buy are still around. We may be able to find a product for cheaper online, but I would much rather try it first and pay a bit more for it (or just try it and go purchase it online, anyways).
This feature was only available for hosted apps in the past. Now you can also try packaged apps and extensions (assuming the developer allows it).
Improved in-app purchases
Sometimes the best way to monetize your app or extension is through in-app purchases. This has been a bit complicated until now. Developers had to embed or dynamically generate and serve a payment token for each sale.
With the latest update, developers can manage their in-app purchases straight from the developer dashboard. From there, developers can easily enable/disable products, set descriptions and edit prices for different regions. Google would then handle all the licensing.
Power to the developers!
These look like great tools and a great step at making the Chrome Web Store a successful app store for developers. Chrome is a very powerful platform, but the Web Store can’t go further without a good business strategy. We need more apps and extensions. Do you think Google is headed in the right direction? I believe so.