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Chrome Extension Business Model – How Do Chrome Extensions Make Money?

There are millions of extensions available for the Chrome web browser. Thousands have no particular purpose, but many are valuable to users. They make the browser quicker and more efficient.

People have established a successful Chrome Extension business model following several steps. Let me tell you what the steps are in the following sections.

The Basics of the Chrome Extension Business Model

Using a Chrome Extension as the basis for your business model can take a lot of work. It requires plenty of market research, planning, development knowledge, and proper execution. That is why you must understand these four stages in depth.

Making a steady and constant income from browser extensions takes time and effort. That is because most people expect them to be a free resource. Hence, asking them to pay for what they think is free can have a negative impact. However, that is not always the case.

4 Steps to Establish a Chrome Extension Business Model

To establish a successful extension business model, you must master four skills:

  • Doing in-depth market research – will help you learn what kind of Chrome Extensions people need.
  • Having a plan – establishing a plan is essential to know how your business model will move forward.
  • Developing the extension – you create it yourself (it requires extensive programming knowledge). You can also hire someone to do it for you.
  • Execution – the stage where you prepare to execute the Chrome Extension. You also start monetizing your extension at this stage.

After you cover these four steps, it is time to learn how to charge for Chrome Extension.

How to Monetize Chrome Extension

Monetizing a Chrome Extension is a separate step. It is present in the business model’s planning, development, and execution phases. There are several monetization options you can use with your Chrome extension, including the following:

1. Ads

I emphasize ads as the first monetization method. Ads are the simplest way to monetize any online product, including Chrome Extensions.

Think of ads as selling space on your Chrome Extension. They can be static or dynamic, depending on your preference.

When users interact with the extension, ads pop up on their screens, and you gain revenue if they click it.

A single click can earn you anywhere between $0.10 to $1. Higher-paying and more popular advertisers might earn you $5 to $7 per click.

Implementing ads is straightforward, but you shouldn’t overdo it. Displaying too many ads will compel your users to stop using your Chrome Extension.

2. Charge through subscriptions

A subscription-based monetization is a great way to make money from Chrome Extension. This option is useful in the planning and development stages of the extension.

Nevertheless, it depends on the type of extension you choose. If subscription monetization is suitable, then go for it. A subscription means you will offer your extension at a monthly or yearly fee.

You can also include a free trial of your extension, as well as include all the features so that users may get to see how it works and benefits them. Grammarly is a great example of this. Then, if they want to continue using it, you can start charging them a subscription fee.

3. Offer and sell premium features.

Implementing premium features into your Chrome Extension is one of the best ways to make serious money.

You can make the premium features a part of your Chrome Extension subscription. However, if you don’t offer a subscription, then providing your users with some premium features is a must.

Premium features are often connected to in-app payments as well. They are many times considered as one service.

Premium features and services are how you can make the most income from a Chrome Extension. 

They are tricky to use if you’re a beginner and need careful planning. Nevertheless, once you set the premium features, they will give great rewards. Your Chrome Extension will boost popularity and confidence with users. 

4. Include a one-time charge for the extension

If implementing separate premium features may sound like too much work, you can charge a one-time fee for your Chrome Extension.

A one-time fee is more straightforward, and the price would need to be lower for the extension to sell. That is because most people expect Chrome Extensions to be free.

An excellent way to start your Chrome Extension business model this way is to pair it with a free trial option. 

Only some people are ready to pay $5, for example, for an extension they know very little about. 

Giving users a test period is a great way to hook them into paying that price. This is especially true if your extension offers unique value.

5. Affiliate marketing

Using affiliate marketing is another way of making serious money from Chrome Extensions.

Affiliate marketing means making a deal with third-party companies. With that deal, you sell their products through your Chrome Extension services.

Users who download and install your extension will be given affiliate links to third-party products. If any of those users decide to purchase a product, you get a commission fee of a substantial amount.

Affiliate marketing is closely connected to advertising. The difference is that it provides a substantially higher income. For example, a beginner affiliate marketer can earn from $10 to $1,000 monthly.

6. Ask for donations

Do you want to appeal to people and help them? All without requesting an obligatory subscription or one-time payment? If you do, you can ask for donations and place a donate button on the extension.

Donations are not guaranteed revenue. You’re allowing people to pay for your Chrome Extension if they want to.

However, donations can be quite large, especially if your extension brings incredible value to the users. They might even overpay for the extension as a sign of appreciation and happiness.


I hope you now know how to establish a successful Chrome Extension business model by following the steps mentioned in this article.

If you have any comments or questions, do not hesitate to contact us. We will get back to you as soon as possible.