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3 Essential Steps for Monetizing Your Online Game [Part 1 of 3]

By: Jeremy Coker
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In this first installment of our three-part series about online game monetization, we’ll address the importance of starting with a strong foundation from which to build your game.

Start with a rock-solid infrastructure

Not the most interesting of topics, but infrastructure is vital to your monetization success. No matter which business model you chose for your game, a key element of your success depends on how you handle online payment processing, fraud management and other back-office complexities.

There’s an enormous amount of complexity involved in building a rock-solid ecommerce infrastructure , so let’s dissect some key elements.

Payment Processing

When selling to a worldwide audience, it’s important to offer the right payment options to the right people in the right part of the world—and in the right currency. Payment preferences and expectations vary in different corners of the globe, so it’s critical to offer a localized shopping experience for your fans, wherever they are. More than 67% of online shoppers abandon their purchase if their preferred payment method is not available.1 Having the right payment methods in place will help you avoid lost revenue. It’s also important to offer these payment methods within a custom payment flow that maintains the consistency of your brand without taking the customer out of the game to make a purchase.

When competing with other AAA games, you’ll want a best-in-class ecommerce platform with proven uptime and the ability to handle high-volume flash sales without any hiccups. Your launch is the single biggest opportunity for you to earn revenue, so make sure you have a backend that can support a surge in demand. Managing the complexities of global payment processing can be a monumental undertaking when you consider things like foreign exchange, taxes and regional compliance. But with an established platform like Digital River Global Commerceâ„¢, you can leave those complexities to the experts. Fortify your financial fortress with a flexible billing system that supports web-store sales, in-game transactions, real-world currency and virtual currency, and includes a robust tool to manage a variety of price points and offers.

Risk Management

The nature of the gaming industry is ripe with cyber evildoers, so you’ll want to defend your game with a superior fraud protection system. The right way to fight fraud is to combine the power of technology with human interaction. Do your due diligence and find an ecommerce solution that is advanced fraud detection technology and a dedicated fraud management team. With the right systems in place, you can keep your business secure and protect your players’ private information. You need tried-and-true tools to defend your game from intruders. Digital River processes billions of dollars in digital transactions annually, giving us a strong data set to ensure your game gets into the right hands.

Compliance & Taxes

Tackling legal compliance on your own can be a daunting and costly process. If you were to maintain PCI compliance, IT systems and personnel, and manage third-party audits on your own, it could cost an estimated $375,000 each year just to start. The right ecommerce partner with established banking relationships and local legal entities can simplify global taxes and keep your business compliant with ever-changing laws—and even screen against government blocks and denied party lists.

In the next installment, we’ll dive into some proven monetization capabilities you can build into your storefront. And finally in the third installment, we’ll wrap up this monetization series by discussing the importance of getting to know your audience and when to engage them financially.