Tag Archives: Revenue

Making Money From Your App Isn’t Just About Advertising

CityGrid is one of the few API providers out there that provide revenue sharing opportunities for their developers. CityGrid wants to make sure developers are successful with their web and mobile applications, and being able to generate revenue and be sustainable is key to this success.

However, one common misconception I encounter talking with CityGrid publishers is the perception that monetization of your app automatically means showing advertising on your site or in your application. I think this is a common perception in an industry dominated by advertising, with many startups using this as their primary business model.

Local mobile or web advertising is one way you can make money using CityGrid, however you can get paid for just displaying places, and connecting your users with these merchants. Using CityGrid Places that Pays, developers can implement a tracker on the places details pages, passing several values, recording the fact that a particular place was displayed.

Each tracking call has what is called an “action_target”, with the most common value being “listing_profile”, which gives you credit for showing the profile of a business listing. However there a total of 12 action targets you can implement that are “billable”:

  • listing_profile – Embed on the profile page of both advertisers and non advertisers
  • click_to_call – Embed where user clicks to call provided phone number
  • listing_website – Click to External Listing Website
  • listing_review – Embed anywhere reviews are shown
  • listing_map – Embed where a map is shown with advertiser’s location
  • listing_driving_direction – Embed on page where directions are provided to merchant location
  • listing_map_print – Embed on confirmation page of user printing map of merchant location
  • send_listing_email – Embed on confirmation page of user sending merchant information via email
  • send_listing_phone – Embed on confirmation page of user sending merchant information via SMS
  • offer – Embed on page where advertiser offer is displayed
  • partner_menu – Trigger when a non-CityGrid menu is shown
  • partner_reservation – Trigger when a non-CityGrid reservation window is shown

The listing profile is most common, but you can get paid for just showing reviews, offers and a map to the business location. Then in addition you can show advertising to further increase your revenue, but advertising is not required.

There are a total of 26 actions you can record with places data, only 12 of them are billable, but you can see where CityGrid is going– rewarding developers for quality usage of places, offers and reviews data is just the start. CityGrid is working hard to understand the value of this content and actions around it, so that developers can be paid to build high quality web and mobile apps that use CityGrid content.

So if your looking to make money with your web or mobile app, definitely consider advertising, but it is a good time to start looking beyond advertising and understand how you can make money implementing “Places that Pay”!

Do You Have the Next UrbanSpoon App?

I was just reading the latest blog post from UrbanSpoon, where they reflect back on the 2011 year–where they saw 80% growth in overall traffic to their restaurant information and recommendation service.

UrbanSpoon began as a publisher within the CityGrid API ecosystem and after successfully attracting a significant local audience, IAC, CityGrid’s parent company offered to invest in the startup. Two years later, they are still growing and proving to be a force to reckon with in the restaurant mobile space.

UrbanSpoon is the poster child of what any developer can do with the CityGrid places, offers, reviews APIs and advertising. You don’t have to limit yourself within the restaurant space, there are plenty of other areas that haven’t been tapped–from doctors and dentists to hair dressers and beauty salons.

All it takes is realizing your idea, signing up for a CityGrid publisher account, then build your web or mobile application. Once your app is ready for launch, submit it to our partner account management team for review, and they’ll approve you for advertising revenue share.

I recommend launching your app in the cities and markets you know best, then once you get more traction, grow into other markets as your resources allow. Don’t spread yourself too thin, bring in revenue and grow your startup in a healty way.

Who knows, your idea could be the next UrbanSpoon, and catch the eye of the IAC / CityGrid incubation team as one of the next must have investments.

Switch From SimpleGeo Places, Let CityGrid Pay You to Use Ours

With Urban AirShip shutting down SimpleGeo there are many developers left with the decision of where to go next, to get their places data, as well as context, storage and geocoding services.

CityGrid does not provide context, storage and geocoding services, but we can provide rich places data that developers can use in their web and mobile applications.

Developers can make up to as many as 10 million queries a month for FREE, all you need is to register for a publisher code, and tell us a little about your application.

In addition to FREE access to over 15 million places, CityGrid provides millions of pieces of enhanced local content, including user reviews, deals and offers, photos and videos, social media details, menus, reservations and more.

Next CityGrid provides something you could not get with SimpleGeo places data–the ability to generate revenue from your mobile and web apps.  CityGrid provides web, mobile and custom ads, developers can use to monetize their apps.  In addition to advertising you can be paid to just display certain places with CityGrid Places that Pay.

All you need to get started with CityGrid is a publisher code.  CityGrid APIs are RESTful and you can search for places using a geographic search or by longitude and latitude, an get search or places detail responses in either XML or JSON.

When looking for a replacement to your SimpleGeo places data, take a look at the CityGrid API, and rather than paying for your places data, let CityGrid pay you for using ours.