The question as to how best to turn a solid profit with a mobile app has been nagging the industry since its inception. According to last month’s Distimo report, however, there are at least two ways developers can boost their app sales considerably: by putting them on sale, and by appearing on the app stores’ much-coveted “featured” list.
Naturally, improving revenue by putting an app on sale requires the app to have a price tag to begin with, so Distimo’s data don’t apply to those apps using in-app advertising or in-app purchases to turn a profit. For one-time purchase models, however, the advantages to putting an app on sale are significant. Although the numbers vary from platform to platform when it comes to the initial bump, both iPhone and Android apps see an overall revenue increase of 22% and 29% respectively from price reductions. (Interestingly, iPad apps enjoy an initial increase of 52%, but settle down to 19% overall.) That said, just lowering the price isn’t enough: according to the report, the reduction needs to be at least half of the total price to translate into a significant revenue increase.
It’s no surprise that appearing on a “featured” list will boost the download volumes, but what’s surprising is the size of the boost. We’ll cover strategies for getting apps on the featured list at a later date, but the numbers are quite eye-opening: the initial boost from the “featured” status leads to a rank increase of 252% for iPad apps, 137% for the iPhone, and 172% for Android. Even better, the “featured” status is the gift that keeps on giving. The overall gains continue, even after the apps are removed from the list, and in the case of Android apps those gains can total up to an 828% increase in the app rankings.
Of course, all of the above is predicated on the assumption that the mobile app you’re trying to monetize is of high quality to begin with. There’s no substitute for a solid product, and if you’re looking to develop one, we can help with that!