How to Sell an App Idea


Having a brilliant idea doesn’t always mean having time, money, or other resources to implement it. In such cases, some of us store the concept in mind, as they say, for better times. Others are concerned exclusively with finding a way to make profit off of the idea as fast as possible. Let’s talk about how to sell an app idea. In particular, we’ll share tips on making sure your concept finds recognition among potential investors and even gains the dedicated target audience. We’ll tell you everything we know so that you can start making profit without creating anything personally.

5 steps to selling your app idea

By taking the five following steps, you’ll subsequently learn how to sell your idea for an app to an interested team or company to implement, and make profit without actually doing it yourself.

sell app idea

Formulate a distinct business concept

"So, I need to sell my app idea ASAP!" Not so fast. First, put all your abstract thoughts on paper. Formulate all the info logically; make it structured and readable. Define the primary audience of your app (i.e. try to create the customer portrait). Next, describe the things your software is capable of and what issues it can help potential users solve.

Here’s an example: Suppose your idea is to create a mobile app based on artificial intelligence, which would ‘keep in mind’ user’s personal preferences for clothes, pricing policies, as well as stature features and general body composition, and offer the matching outfits. Who will be interested in your solution? Basically everyone who wishes to look nice and fashionable without having to waste loads of time choosing what to buy. What issue does it solve? As has already been mentioned, it saves time – nowadays not many people are ready to sacrifice precious time to personally go through the assortments of dozens of online stores. What does an app user get as a result? A mobile online stylist that searches and finds things according both to their taste and current fashion trends.

Analyze pros and cons of competitors’ solutions

Try to find out whether there is already an application identical to your concept. You’ll very probably find some similar solutions with similar functionality. A full-scale search through Google Play and App Store should be performed – look through categories corresponding to your project idea. It’s important to take into account those with the biggest number of downloads.

Pay attention to their ratings and user reviews, as well as the release dates of the latest version updates – they can become out of date technically, visually, or in some other aspect (that way you’ll be able to offer something more progressive and in line with current technological trends).

Define your app’s advantages compared to others

Your business idea has to provide something that makes it stand out from all the other competitors’ solutions. Try answering the following question: ‘Why would I download this application exactly, instead of a competitor’s solution?’

Our previously mentioned stylist-app example can help find the best offers (special offers and discounts for various outfits) and select the perfect color scheme (e.g. according to the body types and the personal style system Kibbe).

Define the way you’re going to monetize your solution

How will the future owner of your concept get profit out of it? Think through all the possible ways of monetization. Right now, we’d recommend clarifying the answering questions to start considering your monetization options:

  • Will your app be paid or free?
  • Are you planning to include advertisement in your solution?
  • Are you going to implement in-app purchases?
  • Is your target audience financially reliable?
  • What ways of TA interaction are you considering (in other words, how are you planning to introduce your solution to the TA)?

Find out how to promote your future app further

Coming from the last question of the previous point, it’s very important to understand how your solution is going to be delivered to the TA at the idea conception stage.

Services of SEO and SMM experts, marketers working with media, as well as of web marketers that will take responsibility of deploying ad campaigns via Facebook and Google Ads will be required. (Perhaps once you do some serious research in this aspect, you’ll realize that your concept isn’t really that viable.) ;

Look for investors and those interested in purchasing your concept

Have you successfully followed all the previous steps? Excellent! Now your top priority is to properly present your business idea so it is bought or invested in as soon as possible. For this, we suggest visualizing all the info gathered and structured during the previous steps. Particularly, you can create a template for your future application and represent its target audience in the form of diagrams.

Generally speaking, you must be a good marketer to properly explain the gist of your project to potential buyers. ‘Where exactly do I find these buyers to sell my idea for an app?’, you may ask. You don’t have to go far nowadays (especially if you are confident in the viability of your concept). Here’s our top 6 places to look for people to sponsor or purchase your intellectual property:

  • Startup platforms. The fastest way to start if you want to make money selling apps is to register on a special service like or But it’s only reasonable if you are ready to lead your concept towards the implementation personally.
  • Business angels networks. These are places where people wishing to sell ideas for apps can register as well. These networks allow establishing contacts with people that can personally manage each step in launching a project. Moreover, the community tends to share contacts and may introduce you to their separate business circles. You can look for these ‘angels’ on platforms such as, Angel Capital Association, and Angel Investment Network.
  • Crowdfunding websites. These platforms comprise whole communities of users that either simply wish to support interesting projects or are looking to purchase a concept for a reasonable price. The most popular crowdfunding resources are Kickstarter, Pererbackers, Indiegogo, RocketHub, and OurCrowd.
  • Business incubators and accelerators. These are organizations that can help turn your concept into a full-blown, profitable business project by contributing the experience and investments of the participants. As a rule, they provide help locally, so be ready to look for investors right where you live. Try your luck at resources such as 500Startups, TechStars, and Ycombinator.
  • LinkedIn, Xing, Plaxo, and other professional social networks. The more contacts your professional social network account has, the better. By making posts about your business concept regularly, you’re surely to get an inflow of interested buyers/investors.
  • Private equity markets. Last but not least, try contacting a company that specializes in business project investments or purchasing business ideas as a whole (with full copyright transfer). Your success in this case will fully depend on how you position your concept and how fruitful an investor/buyer considers it to be. The more submissions you make to various companies, the more chances you get to successfully sell your concept.

How much for your idea?

How much is an app idea worth? It’s difficult to state the exact price until the idea is fully implemented. That’s why we strongly recommend establishing the collective copyright (you’ll need a patent to achieve this) and making a deal based on the percentage from the profit gained.

Read also: How to Reduce App Development Cost

How to sell an app idea: conclusion

Summing it all up, a good concept of an app is a tiny bit of the finished product, and some work must be completed to make it worthy in the eyes of potential investors and buyers. So be prepared that, in order to sell an idea for an app, you’ll have to put a lot of effort into composing a business plan and presenting it to those ready to put money into its implementation.

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