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What Are DIY Apps and What Publishers Can Learn from Them Plus Inspirational Examples.


Many people like to make things with their own hands and in the time of need, fixing them rather than replacing. They would even take advantage of some great tips on doing things more beautifully, like decorating their houses. There are plenty of Do-it-Yourself (DIY) apps for almost every mobile platform where users can benefit from a variety of tips and information. These can be simple fixes, home decorations or specialized and complicated projects. These apps can literally take you from the first idea and planning phase to the finished task. These range from brainstorming your next great endeavor to purchasing products through the apps.

DIY Consumers

DIY consumers are acute, modern and knowledgeable shoppers who prefer a custom-fit shopping experience. They are considered a large demographic who wish to buy high-quality and unique products rather than low-quality ones. The biggest misconception about DIY users is that they are just thinking about saving money, although this is true to some extent but a survey has shown that only a small percentage of the users have motives to save. It is essential for everyone especially the publishers to know that DIYers are constantly looking for inspiration and a more personalized touch. With that in mind, it is important to offer consumers opportunities to interact with your brand by being able to post their opinion on your social media pages as people love to share with others the great ideas and experiences they have gone through.

Putting together an accurate DIY Consumer profile can be tricky because they include buyers from multiple generations, incomes and geographical regions. Having facts, figures, interviews or anything that provides precise information are tools that can help the publishers getting inside their minds


One popular topic among publishers is the app monetization. The most common yet useful methods are advertising, subscriptions and In-app purchase. But which way is the most convenient one? The answer is, it extremely depends on the app features. If the app has a simple but important and worthy features, advertising is probably the best method. If the app doesn’t have a significant feature and functionality, it can be a hard sell even in free version. Raising the downloads through ‘marketing’ and ‘word of mouth’ are the best tactics to sell the app. When it comes to subscription, publishers should make sure their app is highly full-featured, as this method might be uneasy to apply. In-app purchase tactic gives both advantages by offering a free app and then monetizing it through adding services, products and enhancements once the consumers became familiar with the app.

I have put together some DIY apps below to provide a more understanding and entertaining content.


wiki-how-app  wiki-how-app-screenshot

 Like Wikipedia for the DIY set, WikiHow -the world’s leading ‘how-to’ guide- provides you with over 150,000 suggestions varying from food recipes, tech and life hacks, quick repairs and DIY projects. Not only you are able to find imaginable topics with videos and illustrations but also can search categories, check out featured articles, as well as bookmark topics for later offline readings. These features convey the message for the publishers that merging different books into one app can result a greater variety of content.

In the time of emergency, you can use all the Survival Kit articles that are accessible offline. According to users’ opinions, having categorized content and pictures in every topic makes this app worthy. However, one popular problem about the WikiHow app is the language barrier, which is due to the fact that it is only available in English. The app is free and 95% of its revenue is monetized by Google Adsense and is available for both iOS and Android users.

Better Homes and Gardens Magazines

better-homes-app  better-home-app-screenshot

Do you want to be able to turn your house into a delightful and comfy place? Then this is the exact app you’ll need. Founded by Edwin Thomas Meredith in 1902, Better Homes and Gardens has become one of the most trusted magazines in America. It has made an online version of its magazine as an app, which has not only all the features existing in the paper version but also some exclusive features such as videos, bonus photos and color pallet to play around for your room. The app inspires creativity by having amazing full-color, exclusive content and interactive tools, and surprises you with novel ideas. Beauty and fashion tips, health and fitness techniques, family advice and recipes are usual content of this magazine.

Awesome attractive colors and pictures, helpful hints and advises, unique content and affordability for low to average income people were the features most users agreed on. On the other hand, The subscription is $14,99 annually for the whole content and the app is available on iOS and Android devices.

How to Cook Everything

how-to-cook-everything-app-screenshot  how-to-cook-everything-app

Coming from the bestselling cookbook, ‘How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman’ New York Times columnist, its app has around 2000 recipes and 400 photos. Among many of its features, adding own recipe notes through a note tab, bookmarking particular recipes, well-organized shopping list and timer are the features that cannot be done by the print version.

According to users’ reviews, the ability to search the most popular recipes and also advantage from the kitchen techniques and the hundreds of essentials and fast vegetarian recipes were the hike of the app. Users can also add a particular recipe to their favorites or share it via Twitter, Facebook or e-mail. Missing from the extensive features is any kind of art. Lack of colors and real pictures leave everything to the user’s imagination as how a ready dish should look like. The price of the app is $9,99 and it is available on both iOS and Android.

Pictures and videos are the heart of DIY projects. Especially because apps are in competition with blogs and platforms like Pinterest. Another great feature for a cooking app would be the integration of a food e-commerce site, that allows you to order the ingredients you need in “Uber style”.

SAS Survival Guide

sas-survival-guide  sas-survival-guide-screenshot

For the first time, the million-copy bestselling book written by former SAS soldier and instructor, John “Lofty” Wiseman, has been designed as an app for mobile phones. The SAS Survival Guide has conducted definitive surviving guide for any situation, anywhere in the whole world. This application takes you from the peaks of Kilimanjaro to the deserts of Kandahar….

SAS Survival Guide has been featured as “what’s hot” and “new & noteworthy” in most countries and ranked as the #1 Lifestyle App in nearly every geographic location. Having more than 100 question quizzes and also search tool for scanning by subject have respectively added to its entertainment and efficiency. Additionally, there is no need for active internet connection while using normally.

‘Easily understandable’ and ‘very informative’ are two key features that have been ranked as great by the users. The app costs $5.99 and is available on Android and iOS.

To sum up, there are great deals of benefits in having applications. Apps enable publishers to have a great digital user experience and with that bind them, share content conveniently among mobile users and therefore have new followers and also make money. As mentioned, getting into consumers’ mind is the most essential factor in the app success as the future of an app is depended hugely on consumers.


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