Introductory Shareware Discounts

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Post: #1
Has anyone here ever offered an introductory discount on any of their games? I was thinking like something like 10-20% for the first week of release.

If you have done something like this previous do you feel it helped profit overall? Did you run into any problems with people complaining after the prices went to normal?

Do you think the sale would work better running for 24 hours to "pressure" people to register sooner, or do you feel people need a couple of days to settle into new software and decide if they want to unlock it?

Thanks Guys, I look forward to your input.
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Post: #2
I've never done that, but I imagine that 24 hours would be far too short. It can take a few days for apps to show up on the Apple downloads page for example, so you'd really want to get a bit more milage. A week feels about right to me.

The main reason I would ever offer a discounted period would be if I was not sure on what price to set it at. Then I could get a feel at a certain price point, but have the ability to easily raise the price at a later date. Better to take away a discount than arbitrarily raise the price if you know what I mean.

And in that situation, I would say 'For a limited time only' and set it to the full price when the time feels right.

Whatever you do, you'll probably get more sales in your first week than you will in the following couple of months, so it would be really hard to judge the success of such a promotion.

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⌘-R in Chief
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Post: #3
I'm not a discount fan. 10-20% on a "shareware" game is what.... between 1 and 5 dollars? $5 off... okay. But anything less than that? Woopee. If your game is already cheap, making it cheaper ain't gonna increase sales enough to warrant the price drop and "bargain bin" label.

That's my opinion.
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Post: #4
It won't make much difference. What matters most is how many people download your demo.

Some people don't write the price of their program in the program itself so they can experiment with different prices on their store, it might be a good idea if you're not pushing with a low price. That way you can keep trying different price-discount combinations Wink

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Post: #5
I suggest just pricing your game fairly from the beginning. I really like what reubert had to say in general though, and I agree with his points. If you are going to do the discount, follow his advice.

If not (which I recommend after reading the other replies), I suggest no more than $10. $9.99 if you want to follow the standard Wink

I think a shareware game over $10 should offer some really solid features.
- Multiplayer
- Solid AI
- Smooth Graphics

But that is just me. I find it hard (even though I'm one) to dishout more than that for a shareware/indie game. In fact, I think I'd buy many more indie games if they weren't priced at $15. I know, $5 isn't much more, but there is just something about $9.99 ($10) for a nice indie game. I don't feel like I have to skip lunch the next day! Grin

I know this is a bit off topic, but I just want to mention, updates are good. As a consumer, I always like to see a product being updated. It makes me feel like the project/product isn't dead, and people are working on it and improving it. I really feel like I'm getting my moneys worth.

Well since everyone else is doing it:
Twilight Coders
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Whatever
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Post: #6
Volte Wrote:But that is just me. I find it hard (even though I'm one) to dishout more than that for a shareware/indie game. In fact, I think I'd buy many more indie games if they weren't priced at $15. I know, $5 isn't much more, but there is just something about $9.99 ($10) for a nice indie game. I don't feel like I have to skip lunch the next day! Grin

Not that I want to continue this off topic but I have noticed a minimal decline in sustained sales when I jumped one of my titles from $10 to $15 at the suggestion of Brain Greenstone from Pangea (Hope I spelled the name and company right).

The logic behind the jump was the primary problem with shareware is getting someone to make a purchase over the net. Once you get that devotion to want to purchase something for the extra features (or whatever) then price isn't as big of a factor. If someone is willing to go through the issue of dealing with making a paypal account (just an example) then the difference between $10 and $15 isn't as noticeable. My own sales tracking has supported this theory but it remains just a theory.
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⌘-R in Chief
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Post: #7
Exactly. Cool
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Post: #8
I have also read that selling software for $5, $10, or $15 nets about the same number of sales. Past $15, the sales rates begin to drop off.
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Post: #9
AndyKorth Wrote:I have also read that selling software for $5, $10, or $15 nets about the same number of sales. Past $15, the sales rates begin to drop off.

Glad someone else has heard that, after my post I thought I might just be kind of crazy.
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Post: #10
Freeverse offered our Big Bang Reaction for free for a short period as a promotion for the complete suite of six games. You might put that on your radar.

Cheers,
-Jon
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Post: #11
AndyKorth Wrote:I have also read that selling software for $5, $10, or $15 nets about the same number of sales. Past $15, the sales rates begin to drop off.

Yeah, same thing I've heard too, in multiple places over the last few years. I prefer $10 stuff on XBLA, but I totally understand the $5 premium for buying on Mac and don't see $15 as unreasonable at all. If you can't make a game that's worth $15, then it seems to me that you should question whether it should be charged for at all. People don't like passing their credit card number around for everything. I expect software to be at least a little cheaper on closed and/or managed systems like Xbox and iPhone (more like $5 on iPhone because of the limited experience and ease and security of their established micropayment system).

And as far as solid AI or multiplayer ... couldn't care less. If it's entertaining, then that's all I want. I expect at least a few hours of entertainment for $15. Movies aren't cheap these days. Golf is way more than that for a few hours of entertainment. If you can't afford fifteen bucks for an evening or two of entertainment then you are most likely a kid without a jobby-job and are probably as willing to pilfer a pirated copy as pay five bucks.

I think a 48 to 72 hour free promotional giveaway period is a great idea. I think that'd also help reward a large group of beta testers if you didn't require them to email or register with you, since they'd be in the know about when to get a free copy up front.
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