Many online resources suggest you display ads when the app is launched, or when an important action is called (ex. image is being saved), but is it really efficient or rather off-putting?

The reason I am raising this question, is due to massive concurrence on Google Play and Apple App Store. Users have a lot of choice and if your ads are too annoying, but the functions you are offering are the same as someone else, why stay with you?

I would like to hear your thoughts on this.

  • Assume if you show an add these hates you and recommends use someone else or another app so only give an app if the user has no choice
    – mmmmmm
    Sep 20, 2016 at 21:33
  • Say, we have two text editors. One - has all expected functions in it. Another one - same functions and a few extra useful functions that the first one hasn't got. The second app, however is showing video ads before you can apply those functions. Is this considered "bullying" into watching ads? Sep 20, 2016 at 23:40
  • 2
    The best time is "never" the next best is as less as possible. As long as the ad placement goes, try to display ads when you are loading something, I believe that that's the only time - It's an empty state, users are going to wait anyways for action completion. Sep 21, 2016 at 5:33
  • @HimanshuVaishnav great suggestion! I never thought of that - literally show an ad while user's file is converting or the plugin is downloading. Thumbs up to that! Sep 21, 2016 at 5:47
  • What does your app do? Sep 21, 2016 at 8:08

2 Answers 2


Speaking from the user experience point of view - Ads are bad experience

I mean how often you see a pop-up ad and feel... well joyful? No, that's not how it works!

However, ads make a large chunk of app revenue models from a long time now & can't be just neglected. [I belong to school of people who believe that UX people should know business]

So, now we've got a chunk of information (usually flashy with a lot of colours, gifs and probably a blunt call to action - that's how ads are) which we need to push in our experience.

Banner ads & pop-up ads are the two most common way of doing it. The first one to bring a change in this approach was mobile games (I'm pretty sure but don't have a link to give), they attached watching ads to the revenue system of the game. Like you get something in return to watch an ad. Now, this worked out a little bit but, is not doable for most of the other use cases.

For mainstream applications which perform some sort of processing on the device (as I suggested in a comment), I think the best ad placement would be the time while users would have to wait anyways. Since loading is a state which almost empty - it can be used for various purposes.

I recently wrote an article here about various states and how to utilise them as well.

In the sense of business - There are not many options when starting off, so you can't be selective & you have to display what the ad-network has to offer. But once you grow and acquire a good amount of users, You should focus on doing a bit of niche advertisement. This gives a little bit control over how you display & Structure the adverts. Yes, it's tough then simply implementing a pre-existing library and start making money. But, once you crack the right person/company/domain to advertise to your client, there are at least these advantages -

  1. With right ads/offers, you can add some value to you users (even with ads)
  2. You get better rates for each view
  3. you can go beyond just views and get interaction, conversion etc...
  4. By doing all this you are innovating in the ad-tech industry which has already crossed a billion dollars market a while back.

I guess I went a little overboard with the surrounding stuff, but I guess that's what someone mentioned here as well, right?

The community shall benefit, so here are my thoughts, lemme know your :)



Get users to stay with you by creating a great UX, and differentiate your app by not annoying users.

  • 6
    Never might be a user preference but it is not an acceptable answer. Ads aren't an optional UI element, they are a part of the creator's monetization strategy. Most of the sites people happily use are monetized this way, including this one. Sep 21, 2016 at 8:06
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    @AndreDickson However, the Stack Exchange group of sites use high-quality, curated advertisements – not terrible ads, always uncurated, often with sexual connotations, and very often are awfully irrelevant, flashing with fluorescent colours and weird pictures. These ads are incredibly annoying, especially when they contain malware and pop-ups – even more so when they keep switching around the close button for full-screen ads.
    – Toothbrush
    Sep 21, 2016 at 9:23
  • @Toothbrush indeed. Sep 21, 2016 at 9:34
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    @AndreDickson Ad groups like Carbon are usually high-quality, though.
    – Toothbrush
    Sep 21, 2016 at 9:46
  • I've used apps that throw up an advert with a delayed animation, so as you go to smack the X button to get them to go away, the animation kicks in, expands the ad and with it, moves the close button so you accidentally hit the ad, earning them more money.
    – Logan
    Sep 21, 2016 at 10:29

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