Rewarded Video Ads: Monetize your App

Rewarded video ads offer users a clear value exchange — users watch an in app video ad and receive rewards (like in-app currency, premium content, etc) in return. They are an excellent mobile video advertising strategy for apps looking to increase revenue and improve user experience.

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Monetizing mobile video ads: How it works

What is rewarded video?

Rewarded video is an ad unit which offers users a clear value exchange – users opt-in to watch a video ad and receive in-app rewards in return. They’re a win-win-win for users, developers, and advertisers. Users enjoy receiving free in-app content. Developers benefit from the industry’s highest eCPM rates. And advertisers get increased viewability and high click through rates.

What are the benefits of rewarded video ads?

1. Generate more ad revenue

How much do rewarded video ads pay? Rewarded video ads can increase your app revenue by 20% to 40%. Out of all the mobile video ads, rewarded video ads eCPM is the highest for app developers – the average rewarded video eCPM varies between $10 to $50.

2. Increase in-app purchases

Rewarded video ads nudge non-paying users towards making in-app purchases by giving them a taste of the premium features they’re missing out on. Users who watch rewarded video ads are 6x more likely to make IAPs.

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3. Improve user experience

Rewarded video ads are opt-in, meaning users get to choose whether or not they want to watch the ad. Unlike other ad formats which may disrupt the user, rewarded video contributes to a positive user experience.

4. Increase user engagement and retention

Users prefer to watch a rewarded video ad rather than pay out of pocket for a premium feature. This allows them to continue playing your game for longer, increasing retention, in-app engagement, and lifetime value.

Developing your rewarded video monetization strategy

Extend gameplay and add lives

Give users the opportunity to continue playing your game, even after they’ve failed. For example, ask users if they’d like to watch a video ad in exchange for extra lives, after they fail a level in your game. This lets them progress to the next level, which keeps them in your app and increases user retention.

Provide game aid

If users are stuck on a difficult level and can’t figure out how to proceed, offer them the option to watch a video ad in exchange for a hint. Just place a small video icon on the side of your game at all times, and let users know that they can tap it for help.

Segment your users

Segment your users into two categories: loyal users who play often, and users who open your app once in a while. Give the latter segment big value rewards to tease them into coming back, and give your most loyal user lower value rewards. They’re already engaged and probably making IAPs.

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Boost in-app purchases

Offer users a reward that’s similar to one of your best-selling in-app purchases. Users will end up purchasing that IAP since they’ll have gotten used to getting that premium content for free. Giving users a taste of premium content convinces them that your IAPs are worth the purchase.

Give random rewards

Spice things up, and don’t tell users what reward they’re getting. Set up a “Wheel of Fortune” or “Mystery Chest” and let users spin or unlock to collect random rewards. The mystery helps maintain suspense and keeps the thrill of the game lasting longer.

Mix up your ad units

It’s best to have a healthy mix of ad units, so be sure to also show users non-rewarded ads like interstitial ads, native display ads, interactive video ads, and more. If you offer users rewarded video ads at every turn, you lower the value of the video reward – which can actually negatively impact user experience.

Rewarded video examples: How top developers are monetizing with rewarded video ads



“Users were very happy with the rewarded videos from ironSource. We did a test where we took them out, but actually got a lot of negative reviews.”

Chris Calderon
VP of Marketing and Revenue,

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Big Fish

“After implementing rewarded video with ironSource, we saw no interruption in user experience and a double digit increase in revenue.”

Jon Grande
Senior Director of Product Management,
Big Fish Games


Mighty Games

“As Shooty Skies’ monetization loop depends heavily on rewarded videos, we couldn’t be happier with ironSource as a monetization partner.”

Ben Britten
Technical Director,
Mighty Games

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