It’s always easier to make decisions when you’re armed with data.
This morning we pulled down some stats from Apple’s reporting site to pore over the numbers.
(We don’t currently publish to Google Play, though that will come soon)
To Charge or Not to Charge
It’s easy to assume that this is an indication that the game would be successful if we charged for it.
So we did and opted for the lowest tier of pricing – 99p.
7 days later and we’ve had an additional 12 installs.
Less Apple’s cut that comes in at $8.06 (£6.40)
Our assumption was wrong.
There’s work to be done before we can consider charging for the game.
There are other ways to monetise the game.
In-app Purchasing and advertising being the obvious choices. But we reject these as they aren’t true to our ‘promise’ to the customer.
We’re doing this to ‘relive the thrills of the video game arcade’.
It’s our ‘Why?’, if you like.
So we gave it about 4 seconds worth of thought and switched it back to free of charge.
Overnight the installs are back into double figures.
I guess it’s far better to have the game installed on numerous iPhones and iPads than sat there on the app store gathering dust.
A number of things happen when the game is installed:
- It gets played
- Our brand is all over the game’s splash screen
- It (potentially) gets talked about and shared
But there was something else that occurred to us; the Japanese market was up for these games.
When we uploaded the game to the store we selected to have it available in every territory but we have no control over the exposure in each territory. So that came as a pleasant surprise.
Localisation and Culture
The screenshots that we provided for the game’s entry on the app store contain text. English text (above).
Words such as ‘RETRO ACTION’ and ‘ARCADE THRILLS’.
I’d guess that these ‘calls to action’ are wasted on the Japanese audience. They are probably far more interested in the screenshots than any blurb we wrap around it.
iTunes Connect (the developer’s gateway to the app store) offers the ability to provide localised content. We could go to the trouble of translating any words into multiple languages. But is it worth it? Would those words significantly influence the viewer to become a buyer?
I doubt it.
Far better to offer something more culturally relevant.
In the west we appear to use the screenshot as the key persuader in the buying process for an unknown title.
It’s a lot like picking up an X-Box game in the store and immediately flipping it over to see a screenshot of the game on the back cover.
But in Japan consumers warm to specific imagery. Anime style imagery. It’s relevant to them and makes the game feel less ‘alien’. The Japanese are proud of their culture and appear to warm to any attempts to embrace it.
Here’s a useful link that forms part of our on-going research into marketing on the app stores: https://moz.com/blog/app-store-rankings-formula-deconstructed-in-5-mad-science-experiments