While its ad-based monetization strategy continues solidify, Sensor Tower Store Intelligence data shows that ByteDance has managed to gross an estimated $75 million directly from TikTok users through the sale of virtual currency.
TikTok users spend real money in the app to purchase coins. These can be exchanged for gifts that users can bestow on others during their live streams. Coins are available in bundles from 100 to 10,000 that range in price from 99 cents to $99.99. Sensor Tower data shows that the 100 coin bundle is the most popular among users, followed by the 500 coin bundle priced at $4.99.
The app's users spent approximately $5.5 million globally on these coins last month, an increase of about 243 percent from the $1.6 million worth we estimate they purchased in February 2018. This increase is more impressive when you consider that ByteDance has thus far done little to promote that these coins can be purchased, or explain how they are intended to be spent by users.
As we reported last month, TikTok has been installed by more than one billion users worldwide to date. The app added approximately 58 million new users last month, up 61 percent from February 2018.