It’s no secret that the CPA offer you choose will directly affect the performance of your campaign. If you want to have an easier path to success, you need to carefully plan out your offer selection process, starting with the industry you’re working with. Take utilities, which is currently one of the hottest verticals in the world of affiliate marketing.

While they may be delivering stellar results for some affiliates, you need to take the time and understand how Utilities CPA offers work to make the best decisions. We’ve reached out to Anastasia Loseva, Head of Sales at Zeydoo, to get insider topics and help you make the most out of your utilities campaigns.

Without further ado, let’s jump in!

Utilities – what’s that?

In the affiliate context, “utilities” is an umbrella term that covers all software tools that allow you to protect, speed up, organize files and remove threats from digital devices,” says Loseva.

Since the beginning of 2020, consumers have put major emphasis on protecting their smartphones and other devices – but this trend has been growing for a while. Also, the time users spend with their mobiles has significantly increased.

propellerads - average time on mobile

“Utilities and antiviruses have become extremely popular over the last few years and for good reason. Digital fraud, and insecurity, while you are surfing the web, and other forms of cybercrime generate billions of dollars in losses for consumers and private organizations.”

From individuals who want to protect their financial assets and personal information to companies that want to safeguard their employees and internal secrets, utilities have become a necessity in today’s digitalized world. And, affiliates can help create a more secure ecosystem while generating significant revenue in return.

Types of Utilities Offers

According to Loseva, “there are different types of utility offers and these vary depending on what the piece of software actually does.” In general terms, most offers fall under the category of:

  • Classic antiviruses
  • Cleaners
  • Boosters
  • Ad blockers
  • File managers
  • VPN (for privacy)
  • Battery saver
  • and etc.

iOS vs. Android Utilities Offers

For starters, they offer different conversion types including, but not limited to:

  • CPI (cost per install and open)
  • Subscriptions
  • Free trials
  • CPE (cost per event, for example, the first virus scan)
  • CPS

Loseva also points out that “mobile offer providers like whitehat approach, but the creatives can vary tremendously depending on the type of device and flexibility of the app developer.”

Android User Behavior

When creating ads for Android users, keep in mind that:

  • You may include somewhat more scary creatives, as long as they follow the network policy, because Android users report abuse less often than iOS
  • Android users like free apps, so consumers are monetized through ads rather than subscriptions
  • Lower payouts compared to iOS apps which are compensated with a higher CR
  • Android allows WebView – full-page ads 

iOS User behavior

If you’re building creatives for iOS, remember to:

  • Be careful with the creatives (although scary stuff works even here) because iOS users are more likely to report your ads, which can lead to the advertiser’s app getting banned and having any financial assets frozen
  • Plan for bigger payouts as iOS users are more likely to pay for apps
  • Avoid talking about credit card details or anything financial as this data is already stored in the Apple Store

Tips for Running Utilities 

Developing, launching, and monitoring a utility campaign is not easy for beginners, especially if it’s your first campaign in this vertical. To increase your chances of success, you need to focus on the ad formats, targeting, and creatives you use.

Ad Formats

“One of the best ad formats for utility campaigns are push notifications, specifically in-page push. Users don’t have to subscribe to get in-page push notifications, it looks native and intuitively inclines to click on, plus this format allows a high degree of customization,” says Loseva.

Popunders are also a good option here if you want to deliver in massive volume, just work hard on pre-lander first to make those users convert into actions OR just pick offer from Zeydoo with already added pre-lander.”

Finally, social traffic is a very good alternative where you can lower the cost of the leads and increase your ROI using look-alike technology, but not all app developers allow it to be used.


We hinted at it already, but you should definitely use a pre-lander that warms up users before sending them to the landing page.

Some affiliates use aggressive tactics like showing a red screen, fake warnings, notifications that mimic system messages, and so on, but these aren’t always compliant with our network policy even delivering higher CR.


When it comes to utilities, targeting is paramount. If offers targeting Android can run almost worldwide,  in case with iOS, it’s more sophisticated. Android’s optimization can be performed at later stages, while with iOS, you have to start optimizing as soon as you launch a campaign – traffic is quite expensive.

Also, it’s rare to find an iOS offer targeting more than 28-30 countries. Make sure to ask your account manager which GEOs are on the top right now and wanting by the app developer.

The general rule of thumb here: don’t mix Tier-1 with Tier-3 in one campaign (for example, USA and Philippines) as the user behavior is different.

If your offer has multiple GEOs, you can take 3 to compare (for example, from Tier-1, Tier-2, and Tier-3). Payouts in tier-3 might be lower, but you can easily compensate it with the bigger numbers of leads and cheaper cost of the traffic. 

Adhering to Our Network Policies

Utilities offers lend themselves to alarming language, but all ads and campaigns on our network need to adhere to our usage policies.

There is a relatively fine line between statements that urge users to take action and scare tactics, so you need to understand what you’re allowed to do to get the right results.

You’re allowed to use wording like “malware may damage…” or “you may have virus…” plus you can also use suggestive language by implementing words like possibly and potentially.

policy - Scary_4_NO

That said, you’re not allowed to use brand logos on push notifications, landing pages, or icons. This includes brands like Google, Yandex, Safari, Apple, Adobe, Microsoft, and so on. You also need to avoid definitive statements about junk files, device problems, and viruses.

For example, if you mention any number of viruses, the statement will be considered too aggressive and will be rejected.

To learn more about the limitations you need to adhere to, check out our push notification policies.

Zeydoo Offers to try out

OfferIDGEOOSConversion TypePayout
AdsBlock for Safari Trial Prelander894??
iOSCPI + CPE$8.40
Mega Phone Cleaner929??
Mega Phone Cleaner Prelander1039??
Faster VPN1142??
Highlight IOS US Prelander1169??
Zero VPN Prelander1187??
Zero VPN Direct1188??

[Case Study] Push Campaign with Antivirus ads (82% ROI)

Disclaimer: Please note that this case was provided by one of our clients, and the views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of PropellerAds.

Traffic: Push Notifications
Affiliate Network: Adstart Media
Offer: KE App Lock *Exclusive*
Campaign period: 26/05/2020 – 05/06/2020
GEO: Kenya
Spent: $154
Revenue: $281
Net Profit: $127
ROI: 82%


It’s been over a year since I last wrote a case study for PropellerAds and have worked on campaigns. However, I came back two months ago and tested an offer that was doing well in other affiliate networks. In those networks it had already run out of steam: it was giving almost no conversion. I had to fiddle around with ad creatives but didn’t have time for that.  

As for me, traffic at PropellerAds is really good: it works with everything, from Nutra to Dating. I’ve written many case studies on them.

There are many rumors that push notifications aren’t in their prime anymore, but I don’t agree. I think push will still give good conversion for a very long time. But approaches and products that will work effectively can change. So, this method is still alive. The case study below is also a beginner’s guide.


I was doing a campaign with Adstart Media affiliate network, GEO – Kenya, mobile subscriptions, mobile operator – Safaricom only. The bid was 72 cents per lead (thanks to my manager).

The ad creative

I was looking for an ad creative among push parsers and made my own out of two existing creatives. Moderation took some time because of corrections. I think the moderation at PropellerAds is a bit too strict, but after I had corrected the mistakes the ad creative was given the go-ahead.


I took it easy with a pre-lander. After finding it on the internet, I changed a bit (removed the text that was inappropriate according to PropellerAds rules) and launched it.


I got conversions immediately. I tested it without blacklists and without collecting any data, there was nonstop traffic. Cost per click – 1 cent. I had to add analytics, work with blacklists, and upscale volumes, but I got distracted and moved in another direction. Someone else will find it useful though, this really works!

Stats from PropellerAds


Stats from the affiliate network


So I’m giving away a fresh case study for you! There is definitely some money in it – just test it out! I wish you all luck and profit with this case!

Need to know how other affiliates are working with utilities? Join our Telegram chat!


While working as a writer and marketing consultant for the past 9 years, Tom has also developed a passion for the world of affiliate marketing. With first-hand experience and a solid background in online marketing, he has a deep understanding of the different ad formats, offers, and other elements that affect the performance of an affiliate campaign. Tom also loves backpacking around tropical countries, listening to the boom-bap sound of old school hip-hop, and playing amateur rugby with his local team.