Pricing Your Newly Released Mobile App for the Major Markets
Several years ago, I started to toy with the notion of building mobile apps. Designing a mobile app seemed an insurmountable goal. How in the world am I going to use these SDKs? They are all different. I was clueless. So I took the novice approach and decided to use a simple 3rd party app builder to get a better understanding of the concept of development.
Two years later and our web development company (or what we have labeled an “IT Arsenal”), is building web servers, mail servers, and yes – fully licensed mobile applications for the Android, Apple, and Blackberry RIM Markets, as well as Amazon.com.
With the majority of our experience being the background of marketing and search engine optimization, we were in luck with the basic understanding of how to price a commercial application for these markets. This is so very critical to “get right”, or adjust quickly based on sales or projected sales. Here is the battle:
– Making your client understand. This is perhaps the hardest part. At first and even second glance, the majority of mobile applications can be had for free or as little as .99 cents. The reason for this sort of pricing is virtually endless. But for the purpose of this post, we’ll say that most mobile apps that are “complimentary” are designed to help their customers (i.e. a free app provided by your bank for banking by mobile device).
– These too are complimentary apps that are designed to keep not only an online presence for their company, but to a smartphone or tablet presence as well…always there in the public eye.
– Again, here is the very fine line you must walk with your client. You built the app, so you know what it is capable of. Are there big companies or brands out there giving away what you’re selling? If so, what are you offering that is so different? What makes your app more valuable? How do you convince an audience that simply needs to use the app, but has little knowledge of the fact that the technology behind it is more advanced?
These are all very basic questions you must answer before even the design and build aspect of the mobile application. The answers will place you in a category. Free? .99 cents? or $4.99? Mess this up and you may build a great app and a bad reputation. Your client may be attached to the description, but your mobile app division has a reputation on the line too.
Be smart. Guide your client. Test the waters. Use trends and similar apps to get the right course of “marketing” action.
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