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Thread: My micropricing experient

  1. #1
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    Default My micropricing experient

    Well... with the advent of Chuzzle, I decided that Hamsterball wasn't as important as an income stream, so I wanted to see if I could reach more people by micropricing it at $5.49.

    So far, the experiment has been a resounding success. I'm making almost twice the money daily that I was making with it priced at $14.99-- and on the weekends, it's even more. But more importantly, I'm reaching a lot of people-- which I hope pays off a few years down the line.

    So, I think some of you might try this, if you have an older game that's falling off the charts!

    That is all.

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    Very interesting! So $19.95 is not the end of wisdom.
    Karl Hofer
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    Thank you for trying this, John! I've got an experiment that will be released soon, and will be trying all sorts of "things you shouldn't do," like this. Great to hear it's working well!

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    Very interessting. I've read a lot of articles on that subject and all said that lowering the price couldn't generate more income (in our price segment).

    I also find it interessting that portals like Big Fish and RealArcade sell their games for 19.99 EUR in Germany - that is around 24 US $. That's really a lot for casual games I think.

    When we lowered the price of Psychoballs from 20$ to 15$ we sold a few more than the months before, but in the end the income of it was nearly the same.

    Hasn't Cas from Puppygames sold some games for a very low price in the past? Would be interessting what his experiences were (only if he want to share of course).

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    I think that if you change from $19.95 to $14.95 you're only going to lose money. A dramatic price drop like that indeed can change really the sales, expecially if is a very good game like hamsterball.
    The important thing as always is having a good game - then you can decide if you want more sales at less price (then go under $10 price) or less sales at higher price ($24.95).
    Heh it seems almost that $19.95 is the WORST price after all!

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    Despite the constant recommendation to sell Dope Farmer for more than $8, I think that it the sweet spot for it
    Alex Ahlund, President
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    Default Bah...

    Your game just sells because all your customers are doped out of their mind. They probably think it comes with free hash.

    (Im kidding).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Raptisoft
    So, I think some of you might try this, if you have an older game that's falling off the charts!
    Well, that's interesting. I am just worried about one thing : "old" customers that bought the game $15 may ask for a partial refund (or otherwise be quite angry). Did you get contacted by those customers yet?

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    Quote Originally Posted by terin
    They probably think it comes with free hash.
    Who says it doesn't?

    Btw, at $5, I for one am definately going to buy Hamster Ball...
    Alex Ahlund, President
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  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sirrus
    Despite the constant recommendation to sell Dope Farmer for more than $8, I think that it the sweet spot for it
    Duuuude...you should totally drop the price to $4.20.
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    Nice to hear your experiment is working. I was one of the ones who got "pulled in" at the $5.49 price point, as well. I hope the "steam" from this lasts for some time.

    There's a "sweetspot price" for every game (some games higher, others lower) but finding it is tricky. I also imagine that that "sweetspot" will fall some over time as well; that's asumming that the game has gotten good exposure. If exposure hasn't been good that "sweetspot" could stay high, and just increasing the exposure would bring in more sales.

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    I think lowering the price to 5$ (from 15$) is worth the try, only after a few months when the sales start to drop, it should be a good move (as your experience seems to demonstrate).
    You say you now earn daily almost twice the money than when it was at the old price, does that mean you are selling 5 times more units daily?
    And how long have you been doing this experiment?

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    Just wanted to respond: No, haven't heard anything from customers who bought at a higher price. Why would I? Do you go back to sites that you've bought a game from and check up on the price every now and then? I only have three games-- people come in, buy one or two, and then if they come back, it's only to play the ActiveX versions-- which don't have the price on them.

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    When you lowered the price did you send out a press release or actively market the new price outside of your site? If so you earning extra money may largely be down the the extra attention you've drawn from doing this. My guess is a month or two later you won't be earning much more than you were before, or infact maybe less. But obviously a customer is more valuable than the price of a single game, so even at a loss this kind of tactic seems like it could work well.
    Last edited by Nexic; 10-24-2005 at 12:40 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nexic
    When you lowered the price did you send out a press release or actively market the new price outside of your site? If so you earning extraymoney may largely be down the the extra attention you've drawn from doing this. My guess is a month or two later you won't be earning much more than you were before, or infact maybe less. But obviously a customer is more valuable than the price of a single game, so even at a loss this kind of tactic seems like it could work well.
    Then at that point, you call it a promotion, and change the price back
    Alex Ahlund, President
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    Well, I changed the price about a month and a half ago. The only promo I did was to resubmit to download.com. The sales have been stunningly stable-- whereas with the higher price it was feast or famine.

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    +1 for cheapass games.
    Ultratron sells fairly consistently after all this time. I wonder if it'd sell even more at $4.95 than $9.95.

    Cas

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    Did you notice new sales from non-US,non-EU countries?

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    It sounds good, but I'm cautious. Why? because I don't know if you meant direct sales of non chuzzle associated sales. We know that chuzzle was big. That raptisoft logo was in the game, that it must have drawn popularity and hits to your site.. therefore I am interested in knowing if the sales increase of hamsterball was not just because of the chuzzle success or can you rule this out for us due to tangible factors such as the customers only coming in via the price drop (and associated advertising). I.e had you for instance many more newsletter sign ups from chuzzle or did they all go to pop cap anyway?

    Just a few points (simliar to nexic) that are not made 100% clear and bear in mind it probably wouldn't serve well for those companies without sucessful games like Chuzzle to keep their heads above water (or indeed buy them a nice new car) .
    Last edited by Sharpfish; 10-24-2005 at 02:53 PM.

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    Well, I didn't see any Hamsterball sales spikes from Chuzzle's release. The sales stayed low stable at $14.99 all summer-- they only picked up after the price change.

    Part of the reason I micropriced it is because I felt guilty about there only being 15 levels. By all rights, the game should have 40 levels and an editor (Hamsterball 2 will). So...


    Edit: Oh, and the significant chunk of sales seems to be coming from the cheapo Europeans.

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    I assume when you say you're making almost twice what you used to, you're still getting the same amount of traffic? In other words, your conversion rate has dramatically increased?

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    Wow, interesting results. The few people here who previously tried micropricing, failed miserably. Then again, they were selling fairly generic puzzle games. You on the other hand, I have a high quality game that's been well-reviewed.

    In fact, I think I'm going to go pickup a copy now.

    Quote Originally Posted by Raptisoft
    Well, I changed the price about a month and a half ago. The only promo I did was to resubmit to download.com. The sales have been stunningly stable-- whereas with the higher price it was feast or famine.
    As far as you can tell, are the majority of the increased sales coming from Download.com or is it a mixed bag?
    Outside the Box Software
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    I assume when you say you're making almost twice what you used to, you're still getting the same amount of traffic? In other words, your conversion rate has dramatically increased?
    My hits have gone up a small amount. I actually had the download.com "surge" right in the beginning, selling and astonisihing amount (for Hamsterball off of Raptisoft) for a couple days.

    My traffic is a little higher, but not significantly. I figure my CR is about 1.5-2% right now, maybe a little higher, where it was around .25-.5% before.

    As far as you can tell, are the majority of the increased sales coming from Download.com or is it a mixed bag?
    Mixed. When I was getting the dl.com sales surge, it was huge-- amost 6x what it is daily now. That's backed off now, though, and while I still get a lot of traffic from dl.com, it's not the majority.

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    Hamster Ball crashes on a widescreen at load..

    MODULE: C:\WINDOWS\system32\ntdll.dll
    CRASH_ADDRESS: 0001:0001788F
    PRODUCT: Hamsterball
    VERSION: V3.00
    RUNTIME: 00:00:07
    FULLSCREEN: true
    DXDISPLAY: D3DFMT_R5G6B5
    RESOLUTION: 640 x 480 : 16
    SAFEMODE: false
    OS: Windows NT 5.1 Service Pack 2 - Build 2600
    DDRAW: 5.03.2600.2180
    D3D8: 5.03.2600.2180
    D3D9: 5.03.2600.2180
    DSOUND: 5.3.2600.2180
    CURRENTOBJECT: LoadingScreen Gadget
    CURRENTOPERATION: Update
    EXTENDED_INFO: safecircle.png
    Alex Ahlund, President
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    I've personally never had any luck pricing down in the past, but I've never dropped prices below 9.95 -- 9.95 on A Snake's Life got me about 1.5x the units that I sell at 20$ -- not enough to cover the difference. I guess it depends a little on the game itself.
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    Perhaps large increase caused by huge # of Miniclip, Yahoo, etc users searching for hampsterball and buying from you instead because of the far lower price. Wonder what kind of impact other games w/o that level of exposure would see?

    Also from the portal perspective wouldn't be very happy if ran a game with the developer far undercutting the established price, of course some portals deserve it with their wild discounting schemes that I'm not too happy about either but whatever. To me discounting will lead to the decline of this industry as a whole.
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    How many forms do you need to fill out to see the available payment options? (Hint: the answer should be zero)

    Interesting experiment/results anyways

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    Quote Originally Posted by arcadetown
    To me discounting will lead to the decline of this industry as a whole.
    I dunno, the only reason I've bought as few indie games as I have is because on my income I'm hesitant to spend $20 (even on mainstream titles). So, I don't find it hard to believe that lower prices would necessarily hurt that much. But, perhaps I'm just naive...
    Nick Sabalausky

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    I’m interested in seeing the long term effects of this on your newer games. I'm wondering if people will now hesitate to buy your new games and simply wait for you to drop the price.

    But in the end I suppose there are simply two segments that buy your games, but I think the two groups will dip into each other. I assume there will be a greater number in the regular $19.95 buyer who will now opt out and wait for a cheaper Chuzzle price?

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    Quote Originally Posted by z3lda
    But in the end I suppose there are simply two segments that buy your games, but I think the two groups will dip into each other. I assume there will be a greater number in the regular $19.95 buyer who will now opt out and wait for a cheaper Chuzzle price?
    I doubt it. That's like saying that there's a big group of people that won't go see a movie in the theaters because they'd rather wait 2 years for it to be on TV.

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