Making money on mobile apps has always been a bit of a challenge, generally speaking, for developers, but Amazon
has unveiled a new way for them to generate a revenue stream with its new Amazon Mobile Associates API
Essentially, devs can integrate an API in their apps that will allow them to sell actual items on Amazon from within the app, including physical products and digital ones alike. Users can see a product ad pop up and buy an item with Amazon’s 1-Click purchasing. The kicker is that the developer can take home up to 6% of the purchase in ad fees.
Amazon gives the following examples:
Sell a single item from Amazon in your app or game: The boss at the end of a stage in your game is a giant three-headed wolf, sell the popular “Three Wolf Moon” t-shirt from Amazon
Showcase a category of goods from Amazon in your app or game: Your app is based on improving nutrition over time, offer health-related products like vitamins, supplements, etc. or the Kindle edition of The 4-Hour Body by Tim Ferriss from within your app
Bundle a purchase of a physical product from Amazon with digital content within your app: Sell a toy version of one of the characters in your game, then automatically enable them to play as that same character
To be sure, slapping people in the face with ads for products while they’re in the middle of something else creates a less than ideal user experience in most cases, but it may be a saving grace for developers who are struggling to pull in much money with their apps. And of course, it’s yet another vector for Amazon to rake in more cash, itself.