iconwrite Sharing some sales stats

March 23, 2009, 20:23

After a few months writing iPhone apps as a hobby, I can see some interesting results in the sales stats. Of course I didn't win the app store lottery as some people call it, but for a hobby it still brings in some revenue (between 400 and 800$ per month so far) and well, it's fun!

march As some other developers pointed out the U.S. seems to be the biggest market by far. However it is still possible to make some revenues in other countries. For example my Time To Live app (originally named "You are so dead" but Apple wouldn't let it go) just didn't make it in the U.S. The comments on the U.S. app store are extremely negative. Not sure if this is due to the religious nature of the country or the general positivism of the culture over there. On the other hand that kind of dark humor seems to have found more public in Italy, which has more sales than the U.S., despite the relative small size of the market.

Also releasing a free version of my Convert Any app seemed to boost the sales a little. I am still waiting for the free CuteClock to be accepted to see it has a similar effect but I guess the free version was reviewed by a more picky person and I still couldn't get what the problem was (the mail has standard text saying it simulates failure or has non-standard compliant interface) compared to the paid version which is basically the same with an alarm functionality.

An alternative technique was to set my Fearless Brain game to free for a week. Before that it was getting a dismal 0-2 sales a day. After a free week at about 1000-1500 downloads per day, I restored the original price to 0.99$ and I am now getting like 15-20 sales a day. The free period brought in a lot of new players (including some with amazing skills) and some attention in blogs and alike, but nothing major.

I guess having a free version in addition to the paid one would help sustain sales, but the game is pretty simple so it's rather hard to think what one could remove to make a free version of it :-)

Other than that I noticed the usual: Every update brings in some additional visibility (if you update the availability date), but not enormous spikes. Also sales tend to go down over time. Convert any was free for a few weeks and got something like 4000 free downloads a day, and up to 8000 around christmas. Then I set it to 0.99$ and I got 50-70 sales a days for a few days but now after a month it's back to 8-20 sales a day. Of course there are lots of other converter apps out there, including very good ones and free ones.

So here we are, some graphics and hard numbers: Graph for the last 40 days Total sales per country

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