Small developers are crushing it on Apple's App Store with 71% growth in two years

Small developers can access a number of tools and resources from Apple. Here's how those tools are helping developers to become successful.
Written by Jada Jones, Associate Editor

New research suggests Apple is helping small developers to make big returns as it attempts to support small and medium businesses (SMBs) with technological resources. 

The tech giant recently launched a webpage dedicated to collaborating with businesses. Apple also offers many resources to small developers interested in placing their apps on its App Store. These resources include informational seminars, accelerator programs, free tools, software development kits, and app-building support. 

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Now, an independent study suggests those efforts are paying off. The research, conducted by Analysis Group economists, found that small developers on the App Store grew revenue by 71% between 2020 and 2022. For US developers, that number was even higher with an 87% increase in earnings.

The study defines small developers as those with less than one million downloads and less than one million dollars in annual earnings. 

Analysis Group found that small developers' revenue growth on the App Store since 2020 has outperformed that of larger developers. This growth is observed across all app categories, with the fastest-growing categories being lifestyle, health and fitness, and sports apps.

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The report's authors say the App Store helps small developers reach an audience globally, as 40% of downloads for small developers came from devices outside the developer's home country. Leveraging the App Store also helps small developers to scale their teams and further their international reach, according to the economists from the Analysis Group. 

Historically, US-based apps have dominated the global app market. Still, developers worldwide are encroaching on America's stronghold, such as popular apps like TikTok, BeReal, and Spotify. 

Apple is open to small developers worldwide who are interested in making the App Store their new home for their software. Analysis Group reports that developers from Europe (25%), China (23%), Japan (4%), and other regions, including South Korea, Brazil, and India (35%,) joined the App Store in 2022.

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Apple says there will be more announcements aimed at small developers during its annual Worldwide Developers Conference, which begins on June 5 and concludes on June 9.

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