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Has going free then back to paid equal more sales in 2012?

09-20-2012, 07:50 PM
#1
Joined: Jun 2012
Location: Devon, UK
Posts: 121
As far as I could tell from participating in #INDIEpendenceDay, if you had around 10K downloads then it would make a worthwhile difference - as in some momentum would follow. However, I didn't stay free for long enough as downloads where estimated to be only 2k...so I settled for 1k and went back to paid.

Random: I wonder what will happen to this reply when your post probably gets moved to your epic thread PP

Web: www.zenout.co.uk
Follow: @zenoutJez
Developer: BubbleSand Tetroms (Attic Eyes...Soon!)
AppStore search string: "Jez Hammond"
09-20-2012, 10:47 PM
#2
Joined: Nov 2009
Location: Wellington
Posts: 873
For us this has tended to be way less effective than in previous years.

In 2010 and 2011, we tended to get a sustained uplift of 200%. This year, it tends to be closer to 50% and the dropoff back to the "equilibrium" is faster.

So, it is still "worth it" depending on your goals, but you need to keep your expectations in check.
09-23-2012, 04:15 AM
#3
Joined: Jun 2012
Location: Devon, UK
Posts: 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by PixelPower View Post
So how much was sales increase after the free promotion?
When I do the math on this, there's a divide by zero error lol

Web: www.zenout.co.uk
Follow: @zenoutJez
Developer: BubbleSand Tetroms (Attic Eyes...Soon!)
AppStore search string: "Jez Hammond"
09-23-2012, 12:04 PM
#4
Joined: May 2011
Location: Edmonton, Canada
Posts: 245
I've wondered about this as well. I've recently set my games to FREE and seen a big up lift in downloads. However, the question is, do you leave it and go for brand awareness or try going back to paid and hope that people like your game enough to want to pay.

Their's so much psychology here. Do end users wait till it inevitably goes free? If their friend has the game for free, how likely would they be to pay?

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09-23-2012, 04:02 PM
#5
Joined: Feb 2011
Location: Isle of Wight, UK
Posts: 1,509
Quote:
Originally Posted by PixelPower View Post
Thanks for the info PikPok , does any other developer have info on this subject to share?
Same here. We've tried this a few times now with ever diminishing returns.

The big money is in games that are free all the time, as we've finally had to admit to ourselves for future business.
09-23-2012, 06:53 PM
#6
Joined: Nov 2009
Location: Wellington
Posts: 873
Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueSpiral View Post
I've wondered about this as well. I've recently set my games to FREE and seen a big up lift in downloads. However, the question is, do you leave it and go for brand awareness or try going back to paid and hope that people like your game enough to want to pay.
Depends on your goals. We are advocates of building your user base, even if that is at the expense of revenue in the short term. A large number of users is an asset you can leverage long term.

If you have switched a game to free and it is doing a large number of downloads daily, I'd be tempted to continue to leave that free until the downloads settled down again. Difficult to say what that threshold is given it will be different for every developer and game (at PikPok, we kind of "feel" when it is the right time to switch back).