Writing for VentureBeat, Paul Boutin lists a few interesting tidbits he picked up from speakers at the DiscoveryBeat 2009 conference, an event focused “on the secret recipe for application discovery.”
The majority of app developers don’t pay for market research before they design and build their apps. Yet this kind of research is inexpensive and vastly improves the likeliness of creating hits rather than misses.
Apple App Store downloads are growing 20 times faster than iTunes music/video downloads. Even paid apps outrun iTunes growth by a factor of seven.
Social network apps, compared to other types, have shown a relatively low frequency of usage and a low retention rate after 90 days. Games are where it’s at.
You need $0.00 to promote an app company now. For example, Sibblingz will distribute your game to Facebook, the iPhone, and the Web without charging you anything upfront. They’ll take a cut of revenue as it comes in.
Reach and revenue are nice to have, but retention — getting users to keep launching your app — is the key to success.
90% of social game leader Zynga’s revenue comes from virtual goods sold within games and on social networks, not from advertising.
It costs $3 to acquire an Apple app customer through advertising. That’s more than the customer will spend buying the game. (Notably, no one in the audience disputed this stat.)
Most app discovery comes from viral word of mouth among customers, not from people searching app stores for something to download.