It was in October 2016 when Apple launched Search Ads in their app store, and since then, they’e received praise from developers as a high-converting, high-value discovery tool.
On April 19th, the company announced that Search Ads will become available in Australia, the UK, and New Zealand. Ad serving will begin on April 25, and the booking UI was opened on the day of the announcement. Any developer that is currently running campaigns in the US can clone their ads for the new markets.
An assessment by AppsFlyer about Search Ads’ performance in a report issued earlier this year:
[Apple had] the best retention in iOS North America, while proving their ability to scale with the third highest number of installs of non-gaming apps. With the strongest debut index performance we have seen to date, Apple came in #3 in the Power Ranking in question.
Aside from their strong retention metrics, Apple said that, on average, its Search Ads are seeing conversion rates of over 50 percent. This means that half the time when a user clicks on an ad, there’s an install. According to Apple, the average user acquisition costs $1 or less. When you compare it to competitors’ metrics, this is very favorable, even though the cots-per-install do vary widely by geography and app category.
There are some third-party estimates that say that the average CPI on Facebook is in excess of $3.
Apple says that one of the reasons their Search Ads are successful is the focus on ad relevance, which is given priority over bid price. Because of this, it’s hard to beat this with less relevant app-install ads.
The company is hopeful to keep the playing field more level for smaller developers. Since Apple isn’t relying on advertising to generate significant revenue, it can afford to heavily prioritize relevance over spend.
The app-install market, which is a substantial component of mobile advertising revenue today, is north of 5 billion dollars.