While selling is not a decision you should make quickly, there are plenty of reasons to sell your mobile app, aside from making a profit. As of 2022, there are approximately 2.2 million apps available for download on the App Store. The app landscape is extremely saturated and competitive, making it increasingly harder to succeed as an owner or founder.
All too often, app owners overlook the amount of time and energy it takes to actively pursue the users browsing the App Store every day, vying for their attention among the millions of other existing apps. For most owners, this isn’t the kind of work that they signed up for when they founded or purchased their app.
It’s at this point that selling begins to sound like a viable alternative to the ongoing daily challenges of making an app succeed. Here are the four most common reasons that app owners decide to sell.
You’ve worked hard at developing your app and improving its performance metrics but, unless you’re an expert in marketing, there’s only so much you can achieve on your own. Even if you have an understanding of marketing, the majority of your time is likely dedicated to improving your app and implementing updates.
Some apps are performing excellently, but nowhere near as well as they could. What’s holding them back from fulfilling their potential and moving from good to great? Usually, the problem comes down to marketing which includes having adequate budget, building awareness and generating interest. Once apps like this are in the hands of expert marketers, their full potential can be realised.
Many founders launch applications with the hope of making a difference and achieving a financial breakthrough. More often than not, when that doesn’t happen, they move on to their next big idea.
That doesn’t mean that the app was a bad idea, or lacked potential. And it also doesn’t mean that people who sell are taking an easy way out. As much work might go into creating and launching an app, it might not be as popular or successful as you initially assumed.
Selling an app is a great way to gather enough capital to devote to your next project. Selling isn’t selling out; it’s a stepping-stone to a potentially bigger and more profitable business idea.
As a general rule of thumb, most developers sell their apps for anywhere between 1 - 5 times their current net revenue. Selling your app to make more money and cash in while it’s still in demand is one of the better reasons to sell your app.
If your app is performing well, it can be easy to get caught up in the high of its initial success. Perhaps its gaining popularity among initial downloads, daily active users (DAU) are climbing and it’s generating steadily increasing revenue. This traction could come from press coverage, paid traffic, or even a feature on the App Store itself.
However, a common oversight that app owners make is not realising that sustaining these gains, whether they’re in users, growth or revenue requires even greater levels of time, money and experience. It’s a consistent investment which requires increasing input to sustain its output and it can become overwhelming to keep up with the demands that come with success.
You’ve designed and executed a brilliant app, with an attractive, intuitive interface and a well-thought-out user journey. After months of testing, reviewing and making changes, you eventually uploaded it to the App Store and it’s steadily growing in all the right areas.
You’ve achieved what every app owner hopes to achieve.
But slowly, you started to lose that excitement. Your interest in all these numbers started to wane, precisely because you had finally achieved your actual goal. Why hold on to something that requires continuous investments of your time and resources when you’ve done what you set out to do in the first place? In this situation, selling an app is just the natural culmination of the process.
Burnout could also be a very real reason for wanting to sell your app. All those pre-launch hours of planning and developing as well as the current demands of managing your app’s performance can quickly turn a passion project into an unwanted obligation. If you’ve lost your drive and motivation to keep your app going, selling and moving on might be the best decision.
We know deciding whether or not to sell is a big decision - one you shouldn’t make without careful thought and consideration. At Appic, we specialise in taking on and growing high-potential mobile apps.
We offer a commitment-free assessment of your app to help you get an idea of where it’s at in terms of development and potential. If it meets our criteria, we’ll offer to take it over, on a timeframe that works for you: immediate, or deferred. If you’re ready to sell or want to learn a little more about what we do, contact us.