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Help me with this dilemma!

08-01-2011, 12:52 PM
Joined: Mar 2011
Location: In a car
Posts: 324
Help me with this dilemma!

Hi guys,

We launched a game a month ago, normally, by now the sales started to shrink, so we decided to give the game for free on the 30th, and 31th(July)!
We managed to get 16.200 downloads in just two days!My questions are:
1.Is this a lot, in free apps world?
2.What should our next move be?Today the app has gone to the regular price(0.99c), and yeah, once again we have fallen of the mighty appstore mountain.Should we make it free and add ads, or iAPs?
Thanks a lot!

My Twitter:@Tudor
08-01-2011, 01:49 PM
Joined: May 2011
Location: Edmonton, Canada
Posts: 245
A lot of sales I find are word of mouth and as soon as you go FREE, I think it's difficult to start charging again unless it's free right at the beginning and one time only. If 16k have downloaded it for FREE, their friends would probably be unlikely to pay for something the others are enjoying for nothing.

The good thing is, you've proved their's still a lot of interest in your game, but people will only download under the right circumstances. You've therefore, in my opinion found your ideal/target market. So how do you make the most of it. iAP as you say could be a good idea if the pull is strong enough. Ad revenue again is worth a try. What you could do is test the waters and try Ads first, whilst you're developing your iAP strategy.

Along with this, I'd be thinking about updates and planning ahead. It keeps people playing the game especially if you're going down the iAP or iAds route.

Overall I'd be looking at how much the game is bringing in now through sales and how much giving it a new lease of life would bring in, in comparison. Which ever you think will bring in the most money usually wins out.

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08-01-2011, 02:27 PM
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Hollywood, CA
Posts: 1,869
sadly, 16k isn't enough to even register as a blip on the charts anymore (a year ago this was different). Also it's not enough to generate any word of mouth, although if you followed up your price-drop with some decent PR then you might have been lucky to get a small mention on some website or other (and you never know what kind of spark that could provide, given whatever is going on at the time).

It's usually very hard to say if it's even worth bothering with IAP at all (do you have any measureable way to see how many people are playing your game consistently, after the novelty wears off - flurry, OF, etc?) If these numbers are quite low, the IAP/updates/etc might mean that further development of any type for this project might yield weak results, and you might be better off spending your time working on something completely different.

Many devs (myself included) always want to feel that "we spent all this time in development, so it's worth doing some follow-through" but the numbers are the most important. If you are getting single-digit daily sales, then that speaks for itself.
08-01-2011, 02:40 PM
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 454
I noticed alot of developers putting thier game out for free becuase some developers swear you gain word of mouth and sales. All this free nonsense has caused people to just put games on the appshopper wishlist of games to go free. At this point its best for you to go IAP or ADs with updates to keep interest up in your game.
08-01-2011, 06:22 PM
Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 463
Our first game was originally @ .99 for a few weeks with little to no sales. We decided to give it away free (since it was our first project anyway) and hit a little over 20k downloads a day. I noticed it went up the charts in several countries including China, Europe regions, etc hitting the top25 best free games as #6 or #11 in some cases. In US, it hit top 50 as #30 something...can't remember.

Few weeks later, we made it paid again just to see what would happen and the sales went back to few a day. Now its back to free

Twitter: @PeterBabiy
Site: www.strappedtoameteor.com
Games: Go Go Giraffe | DEO | Mr. Dreamer
08-01-2011, 06:40 PM
Joined: Mar 2011
Location: In a car
Posts: 324
Yeah, china was big for us too, we had 10.000 only there, we reached top 100 overall!ah well this was our first game also, we will keep it at 99c as we already started with the secon one, we aknowledged our mistakes, and a fresh start sounds better than trying to bring back to life this one!anyway it's nice to know that your game ended on 16k devices!

My Twitter:@Tudor
08-02-2011, 11:01 AM
Joined: Jun 2011
Location: Cherkasy, Ukraine
Posts: 75
16k is a lot! During a free week for Caribbean Treasures I've managet to get only 2000 downloads. But no related websites announced that (although I've sent them announcement).

Now, let's say, you have 16k players who can potentially be converted into the customers. You can make a level pack as the ingame purchase. Or add some features to unlock with the ingame purchase as well. It is a potential market, and it is quite a lot!

Currently playing: Fruit Ninja, Plants vs. Zombies, Caribbean Treasures, Samurai, Solitaire
08-02-2011, 11:31 AM
Joined: Feb 2011
Location: Isle of Wight, UK
Posts: 1,538
We put Great Little War Game out free for a couple of days and got 50,000 downloads per day. We did it again a month later with the assistance of FAAD and got 120,000 downloads a day.

It did make us some money via iap and it did kickstart "real" sales when it came off free the second time. Neither was epic though - certainly a very small fraction of the total downloaders spent actual money.

Last edited by Rubicon; 08-02-2011 at 11:34 AM.
08-02-2011, 01:16 PM
Is it true you get $0.01 with every free download? Might just be an urban myth but I could have sworn I heard it somewhere?

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08-02-2011, 02:15 PM
Joined: Sep 2009
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 977
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Originally Posted by Attollos Technologies View Post
Is it true you get $0.01 with every free download? Might just be an urban myth but I could have sworn I heard it somewhere?
No, unfortunately that is not true. I've never heard that before either.