Driving discovery and conversion of new mobile gamers remains highly challenging – yet increasingly critical as the space becomes more saturated. But what if publishers could offer instant limited-time access to showcase titles and engage prospective users, without the hassle of downloads or installs?
This post explores the potential of on-demand time-limited game demos to enhance discovery, reduce friction, and better convert mobile consumers.
The Importance of Mobile Game Discovery
Let’s start by acknowledging an underlying reality – with over 1 million apps vying for attention on the dominant mobile stores, standing out has never been harder.
Gaming remains the most popular and profitable mobile app category, with an estimated 3 billion mobile gamers worldwide . But the pathways for organic discovery are narrowing. A few jackpot titles soak up a disproportionate share of traffic and revenue.
Yet paid user acquisition costs keep rising across channels like Facebook and Google. Cost per install (CPI) has steadily increased over 40% in the last 2 years across key genres . Scaling profitably has become an immense challenge.
For publishers struggling for visibility, creating more opportunities to engage and convert prospective gamers before they install is critical. This where instant on-demand game demos come into play.
What Are Time-Limited Demos?
Game demos provide free, time-boxed access to experience a full title or certain levels before committing to download. They mimic test drives in automotive sales – take the product for a spin first.
On desktop platforms, timed demos have been employed successfully by leading distributors like Steam and Epic Games. Users can download and play for 1-2 hours to evaluate titles.
However, mobile introduces severe new constraints around app sizes, required storage, downloads, and friction across devices. So gaming on mobile has never offered time-limited instant previews – until now.
The Power of Instant Limited-Time Access
Cloud gaming solutions like Nothing2install’s 3DPipe technology can now enable on-demand time-limited game demos on mobile instantly, without any installs.
By streaming gameplay from the cloud rather than downloading local app binaries, mobile users can start playing full-fidelity game experiences in seconds from any device.
And by incorporating time limitations like 1-2 hours of access, publishers can create powerful opportunities to engage prospective gamers:
- Promote instant demos across social channels to engage existing fans
- Drive viral sharing by fans hosting gameplay sessions
- Offer demos to new users via ads to demonstrate titles hassle-free
- Significantly reduce friction and barriers to trial for new gamers
- Capture engaged users who end up converting after limited gameplay
- Gather data on behaviors even for users who don’t convert
- Funnel users who don’t convert into new demo loops later
- Engage lapsed users already familiar with titles through instant access
The conversion funnel evolves from install-to-trial into instant trial-to-install. Publishers can qualify and engage users pre-install with much lower acquisition costs.
And by incorporating demo access into ad units, the power of instant playables meets time-limited access for a true “try before you download” experience.
Try our demo of the recent best seller indie game BROTATO
The Future of Instant Time-Limited Access
As cloud delivery platforms continue maturing, timed instant demo access will open up profound new models for mobile discovery and conversion:
- Social channels will better showcase titles through shared limited gameplay
- Ad creatives will evolve to include demo access instead of static assets
- Limited-time access can allow easier re-engagement of lapsed users
- Demo durations and content can be dynamically optimized for conversion
- Paywalls can be introduced after initial time-boxed trials
When friction disappear through cloud delivery, preparing titles for global instant access on demand becomes key. Limited-time demos accessible anywhere are powerful tools in that future.