It’s been about a week since I started the whole free app experiment. Following that, I got 3 paid downloads the next day, 1 paid download the next after that, and none since then. So that’s a total of 4 paid downloads resulting from 2,534 free downloads, or a conversion rate of 0.158%.
I make about $1.39 per paid copy of Boom Dice (that’s 70% of $1.99). So assuming that the ratio of paid to free stays the same, how many free apps would have to be downloaded in order to make a $3500 ad campaign worth it? Let’s do a little math to find out… (Welcome to the educational portion of this blog, brought to you by the letter “B” for Boom Dice.)
$3,500 / (4 units * $1.99 * 70%) * 2,534 units = 1,591,709 units
Holy Hecuba, I’d have to give away nearly 1.6 million copies of my app in order to break even on an ad campaign like that?! That seems exceedingly unlikely.
Of course, this is based on a conversion rate of 0.158%, which I think is pretty low. As proud as I am of Boom Dice and I have friends who tell me it’s fun (and my baby absolutely loves it), I know that it’s not as cool as, say, geoDefense Swarm, which my entire coding group got sidetracked playing on Thursday. I’m sure they have a much better conversion rate.
So I think the lesson here is that if you’ve got what you know could be a huge crowd-pleaser of a game, doing a Free App A Day type ad campaign may be worth it. But if you’re making smaller, more niche type apps like me, then stick with word of mouth. Or maybe a blog.