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Could you explain some Free For a Day details?

08-19-2010, 10:55 AM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 155
Could you explain some Free For a Day details?

I'm considering a "free for a day" kind of approach for my two-player iPad game Ogs. Could some of you here please help explain some of the processes involved here?

1. Is there such a thing for the iPad too?
2. How does it work, you release a free update of your app via iTunes Connect and then a day later release another non-free update? Probably, that's completely not how it works!
3. I guess multiple sites/ services offer this type of program... should one go with multiple sites, or just one, and if so which one? Which are the best ones?
4. What are your experiences with the free app a day approach in terms of getting the word out (and later switching back to paid and still selling)?

Anything else I forgot to ask? Thanks so much!!
08-19-2010, 12:00 PM
1. I think so, but can't remember the site.

2. You just go into iTunes Connect and set your game to free. No need for updates or anything like that.

3. If you go through a site you will have to do a revenue share (usually -- with Freeappaday.com at least, which is the largest one)... so this is definitely not something you'd want to do with multiple sites, unless you want to just give everyone all the money your game makes We have gone through freeappaday.com, and the process is that you share part of your revenue for 30 days after you go back to paid. It was worth it for the long term for our game N.Y.Zombies (you can check out our stats and how the free campaign affected our ranking at AppAnnie.com (make sure to set the starting date back a bit) -- http://www.appannie.com/n-y-zombies/...441&view=ranks), however its hard to tell whether we could have achieved the same or similar success had we just gone free on our own (I would suggest going free on your own first and seeing what kind of mass appeal your game has by itself... if that fails, sign up with a free app website which will likely drive you much higher up the charts if your game failed on its own).

4. As for getting the word out, the beauty is when you go free you don't really have to do much. Your game will appear in so many price drop and free twitter feeds and on websites like appshopper.com that you will get most of your publicity right there. You can also post a thread here and email websites hoping they might mention it with some other games going free. Ultimately you just put it free and pray that it will shoot up the charts. As for making money going back to paid, same thing, nothing you can really do in my experience. However, you should understand that you are not likely to see much, if any results when going back to paid unless you had great success on the free charts (500k - 1,000,000 downloads while free, or a top 5 slot for several days). It seems the exposure and word of mouth is what drives your paid sales after wards, and of course you won't have either of those unless you hit it big while free.

Please note that's just our experience with going free, and some rough estimations/opinions on the subject

08-19-2010, 08:50 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 155
Excellent info, thanks so much!
08-20-2010, 03:37 AM
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 1,068
Free App A Day.com has their own iPad section (the tabs at the top).

www.oneclickmac.com - News, Reviews and Discussion on Mac App Store Gaming.

Latest Reviews:
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08-20-2010, 07:31 AM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 155
Thanks again. I contacted FreeAppaDay.com and will see how that goes.
08-20-2010, 09:02 PM
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Hollywood, CA
Posts: 1,869
I submitted 180 to freeAppCalendar.com. You have to be approved, and then get voted to get their sponsorship (that's up to you to promote!) They don't charge you, which is pretty generous of them..

After we got word we'd be free, I sent a press release out to a ton of outlets myself, and also to prmac.com (they distributed to a fair amount of places as well). Big sites like slidetoplay, 148apps, and toucharcade ignored us but we did get a mention on destructoid which was cool

In the end I was expected something like 2,000 downloads. We got WAY WAY WAY more than that

We had it free for 2 days, then went back to $1.99 on a Friday. Our sales completely returned to where they were pre-Free (single digits), but it felt good knowing that some people were playing our game that we'd worked so hard to make! Making it high up on the free chart (I think we got to #34 in Free Games, maybe #80 in All Free) was also a rush!

MY ADVICE: have some kind of in-app-purchase in there, and also leave it free for several days (at least 5?) Do your homework and spam the info out as far and wide as humanly possible. Good luck!
08-21-2010, 07:28 AM
From my experience, make sure you have some kind of in-app purchases in your game, and also have Ads. I didn't realize what a HUGE difference it made in revenue, by just putting Ads in. If you game can manage to hit the top 100, then I'd keep it free for a while longer and cash in on the IAP and Ad revenue. If you can sustain a steady amount of free downloads, then why not consider leaving it free all the time? It worked for me

I make games at PixelCUBE Studios! Follow me @naveen_pcs
08-21-2010, 10:41 AM
Joined: Jan 2009
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 230
Just be careful about adding ads in a game some people have already paid for... probably not the best 'form'.