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$0.99 is Not Always the Way to Make More $$

09-10-2009, 02:24 PM
#1
Administrator [Original Poster]
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,438
$0.99 is Not Always the Way to Make More $$

So, with the top grossing apps list now available.... it's interesting because it busts a common myth held by some forum members that $0.99 is always better than > $0.99 in terms of revenue/sales.

I think the most interesting example is from Firemint:

Top Grossing Apps:
#44 - Real Racing $6.99
#91 - Flight Control $0.99

vs.

Top 100 Paid Apps:
#30 - Flight Control $0.99
#Unranked - Real Racing $6.99

Despite Real Racing not even being in the top 100 paid apps, it's making more than Flight Control which remains in #30.

arn
09-10-2009, 02:25 PM
#2
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 1,512
Hey arn, what time period is this calculated over, would you happen to know?

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09-10-2009, 02:27 PM
#3
Administrator [Original Poster]
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,438
Quote:
Originally Posted by pharmx View Post
Hey arn, what time period is this calculated over, would you happen to know?
I'm guessing they are both over the same time period (top paid and top grossing). It's something like over 24-72 hours as best can be estimated.

arn
09-10-2009, 02:33 PM
#4
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 1,512
Quote:
Originally Posted by arn View Post
I'm guessing they are both over the same time period (top paid and top grossing). It's something like over 24-72 hours as best can be estimated.

arn
The reason why I ask, is because the last time I checked there were some extremely expensive apps in the top grossing list ( $50+) and I was just curious how many sales they were getting at that price to be in the top grossing list. Definitely interesting to see the differences between the two lists. The balance between exposure and revenue, with exposure due to a top list in particular, is fascinating to me.

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09-10-2009, 02:35 PM
#5
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 686
But a drop to .99 boosts visibility which boosts sales. One day, one weekend can lift an app to a place where it makes more and the price can slide up again?
09-10-2009, 02:43 PM
#6
Quote:
Originally Posted by arn View Post
So, with the top grossing apps list now available.... it's interesting because it busts a common myth held by some forum members that $0.99 is always better than > $0.99 in terms of revenue/sales.

I think the most interesting example is from Firemint:

Top Grossing Apps:
#44 - Real Racing $6.99
#91 - Flight Control $0.99

vs.

Top 100 Paid Apps:
#30 - Flight Control $0.99
#Unranked - Real Racing $6.99

Despite Real Racing not even being in the top 100 paid apps, it's making more than Flight Control which remains in #30.

arn
I just had an exchange in a different thread about exactly the same thing. Note the difference between Brothers in Arms ($4.99), Hero of Sparta ($1.99), and Castle of Magic ($.99) -- all by Gameloft, all well-reviewed and high-profile apps. Brother in Arms is the only one still in the top grossing apps (#171). That says something...
09-10-2009, 02:55 PM
#7
Joined: May 2009
Posts: 258
Arn is right. I went to check the app list and there are only two top-grossing apps in the top 20 that are 0.99, and neither of them are games. Geared and BATTLE BEARS make number 23 and 25 respectively at a buck, but the vast majority of the games on this list are big names and big (for the appstore) prices - Madden 10 and Modern Combat: Sandstorm are the two games in the top 5.


People hear about those games, and they'll pay the big prices for the quality. The combination results in the high gross values they get.

So the real question is, does a less recognized indie developer do better when they price their game high or low?
09-10-2009, 03:18 PM
#8
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 1,151
Quote:
Originally Posted by Comassion View Post
So the real question is, does a less recognized indie developer do better when they price their game high or low?
That's the thing. Looking at that list, pretty much the only indie games on the top-grossing list are priced at 99c. Spider is a notable exception, but it's gotten featured by Apple quite a bit. So sure, people will pay $7.99 for Madden, but in general, they won't pay a lot for an indie game they've never heard of.

I still think that unless you're riding on a name or some other publicity source, the best way for an indie dev to maximize their exposure (and therefore revenue) is to start at 99c.
09-10-2009, 03:19 PM
#9
Joined: Feb 1983
Location: Barcelona
Posts: 1,268,692
I'm not really sure if you'd count Spider as an indie game either. From Tiger Style's roster of all-star game development veterans, they're closer to an ngmoco than an Imangi Studios. Still, no one knew that until after Spider got big.
09-10-2009, 04:03 PM
#10
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 1,151
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hodapp View Post
I'm not really sure if you'd count Spider as an indie game either. From Tiger Style's roster of all-star game development veterans, they're closer to an ngmoco than an Imangi Studios. Still, no one knew that until after Spider got big.
Yeah, that's what I mean - we happen to know Spider's venerable genealogy, but the average user does not. Whereas the average user HAS heard of Madden. And Imangi Studios, obviously. It's a household name. In my household.