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Paid Sales Increase from Making app Free for 1 Day?

09-30-2009, 03:00 PM
#1
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 342
Paid Sales Increase from Making app Free for 1 Day?

Okay, I have a simple question. If you put your PAID app for free for 1 day as a promotion, will you get more paid sales after that? Obviously for the 1 day when its free you will get many more downloads, but will it also benefit PAID sales once your app is back up to regular price?

I know Shark's Treasure did this yesterday, and the developer got something like 12,000 sales in 1 day! Please provide any insight/stats you have! Thanks!

All of this is for lets say a $0.99 app.

I make games at PixelCUBE Studios! Follow me @naveen_pcs
09-30-2009, 03:06 PM
#2
Joined: Aug 2009
Location: #317
Posts: 1,216
Send a message via Yahoo to swishinj
yeah because it will be in the top 10

09-30-2009, 03:20 PM
#3
Quote:
Originally Posted by swishinj View Post
yeah because it will be in the top 10
That was true a long time ago, but Apple has long since changed it so that your chart position gets reset when you go from paid->free or back.

--Eric

Realmaze3D on the App Store
Realmaze3Free: 3 free mazes (a taste of Realmaze3D)
09-30-2009, 03:47 PM
#4
Damn. :\ That's insightful. ^

Count Crunch's Candy Curse
Kreature Krunch
Arcade Jumper

www.blackhivemedia.com
Austin, Tx.
09-30-2009, 03:59 PM
#5
Joined: Jan 2009
Location: Christchurch, New Zealand
Posts: 515
My game GumDrops went to #1 free game in Japan (over severa days) while it was free.

Now that it costs money it is back down to 0 or 1 downloads a day.

Adding open feint also did nothing for sales.

Dropping down to free just seems to get all the freeloaders who watch the feeds for games that drop to free.

It will also earn your game a bunch of 1 star reviews from people who download it any play it for 10 seconds.
09-30-2009, 04:12 PM
#6
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 342
Quote:
Originally Posted by shen View Post
My game GumDrops went to #1 free game in Japan (over severa days) while it was free.

Now that it costs money it is back down to 0 or 1 downloads a day.

Adding open feint also did nothing for sales.

Dropping down to free just seems to get all the freeloaders who watch the feeds for games that drop to free.

It will also earn your game a bunch of 1 star reviews from people who download it any play it for 10 seconds.
Thanks for the insight. Good information to know Your game sounds cool, I will check it out

I make games at PixelCUBE Studios! Follow me @naveen_pcs
09-30-2009, 04:16 PM
#7
Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 10,505
Ok. I'm no dev and can't answer your question. Why I'm posting here is coz I have some thoughts about devs making their games free for a limited time. I fail to understand the benefit of making the game free like this(except that there'll be a lot people trying it out as it's free). Anyone who's even slightly interested in your app will download it while it's free and those who miss out won't shell out for your app hoping it'll go free again sometime. Now unless your game is something really unique and great, I doubt I'll be able to convince myself to buy it coz everyone else got it for free, so why should I pay for it. With thousands of great games available in AppStore and 100s already in my iPhone, I won't be in a hurry to get your game.

It might still help boost your paid sales by word of mouth but I seriously doubt that considering the sheer number of games available here. What would be a better option IMO is that devs make a free, ad-supported full version of the game. You can keep it in the AppStore for as long as you wish. You can keep it forever or you can just make it available for a few days and after that just remove it from the AppStore. That way you'd make atleast a little bit of money thanx to the ads. And those who really like your game will be buying the paid version as that's the one which will be getting regular updates. You can also add a small browser page to your website which notifies them once the paid version is updated tempting them to buy the full version if they want to try out the updated version. Also you'd be safe from all those ignorant people who just get a free game, play it a couple of times and then delete it leaving a low rating for it for whatever reason. Who'd be willing to pick up a game with 100s of 1 or 2 star rating?

Now again, I'm not a dev and have zero experience here. Also now that I've typed it out, it doesn't sound as good as it did in my mind earlier. Just wanted to let you know how felt about games which go free for limited time.

Edit: I was typing this all out then left out for a few minutes before finishing it off and now I see Shen's post above. Looks like I was pretty much right about such limited time free games.
09-30-2009, 04:17 PM
#8
Quote:
Originally Posted by simplymuzik3 View Post
Thanks for the insight. Good information to know Your game sounds cool, I will check it out
Yeah, that's some good info.

Count Crunch's Candy Curse
Kreature Krunch
Arcade Jumper

www.blackhivemedia.com
Austin, Tx.
09-30-2009, 04:22 PM
#9
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 342
Quote:
Originally Posted by ImNoSuperMan View Post
Ok. I'm no dev and can't answer your question. Why I'm posting here is coz I have some thoughts about devs making their games free for a limited time. I fail to understand the benefit of making the game free like this(except that there'll be a lot people trying it out as it's free). Anyone who's even slightly interested in your app will download it while it's free and those who miss out won't shell out for your app hoping it'll go free again sometime. Now unless your game is something really unique and great, I doubt I'll be able to convince myself to buy it coz everyone else got it for free, so why should I pay for it. With thousands of great games available in AppStore and 100s already in my iPhone, I won't be in a hurry to get your game.

It might still help boost your paid sales by word of mouth but I seriously doubt that considering the sheer number of games available here. What would be a better option IMO is that devs make a free, ad-supported full version of the game. You can keep it in the AppStore for as long as you wish. You can keep it forever or you can just make it available for a few days and after that just remove it from the AppStore. That way you'd make atleast a little bit of money thanx to the ads. And those who really like your game will be buying the paid version as that's the one which will be getting regular updates. You can also add a small browser page to your website which notifies them once the paid version is updated tempting them to buy the full version if they want to try out the updated version. Also you'd be safe from all those ignorant people who just get a free game, play it a couple of times and then delete it leaving a low rating for it for whatever reason. Who'd be willing to pick up a game with 100s of 1 or 2 star rating?

Now again, I'm not a dev and have zero experience here. Also now that I've typed it out, it doesn't sound as good as it did in my mind earlier. Just wanted to let you know how felt about games which go free for limited time.

Edit: I was typing this all out then left out for a few minutes before finishing it off and now I see Shen's post above. Looks like I was pretty much right about such limited time free games.

Thanks for your thoughts! Im starting to think that you are right about not making it free, but instead making a "lite" version with ads. Thanks for the suggestion.

I make games at PixelCUBE Studios! Follow me @naveen_pcs
09-30-2009, 04:57 PM
#10
Hey guys,

I'm working on my 4th app now. I'll chime in on the whole "Lite" version idea...

http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=324616043&mt=8

I produced a Lite version for my game Prairie Chute and launched it about 4 weeks after the release of the full version. Maybe I made a mistake by not releasing both at the same time to take advantage of release momentum... but the Lite is actually getting less downloads per day than the paid right now! Maybe that is a good problem to have (even though the paid volumes are low), but it really doesn't justify the time/cost for developing the lite version or the potential for a customer to be satisfied with lite and not buy full. The purpose of lite is to be a driver for full... and it suffers from the exact same problem as full... visability.

Its a big risk to take IMO to have people make false judgements about the limited gameplay or features as being common to the full version. Which makes me think that Superman's idea is somewhere along the right track.

6 months ago, I think there were good arguments to be made for lite... and I have seen them make a significant impact on my other games. I think there are several factors at play here (genre, brand, cross-promotion) that may up the cause for a lite. I'm speaking purely from a independent perspective who developed a casual "pick up and play" game.

I think the right model for independents is what Pocket God has done, 1 or 2 incremental features every week while building a loyal consumer base and giving you something "new" to talk about all the time from a marketing perspective.

Anyways... just my 2c

Matt