Category Archives: Develop an App for Free

How To Make A Profitable First App

More than likely your first app is not going to be profitable.  Actually, more than likely all of your apps are not going to be profitable.  The developer fees alone make this goal unobtainable.  So what’s a rookie developer gotta do?

First of all, you must spend absolutely nothing during the development stage.  Anything you spend here will not be recovered.  This means all the tools you work with need to be free.  This mean you need to do everything by yourself (or know people willing to work for free).  This means you already need to own a computer (or have excellent ninja skills to stealthily hide in your local public library beyond closing hours for late-night coding sessions).

Best Spots to Hide in Public Library

I hope you can wall crawl…

 Now that you’ve wisely concluded to develop your first game at no (monetary) cost to yourself, you must decide which app store you’re going to publish your app to.  This is absolutely critical.  This choice alone will likely determine whether or not your game is profitable.  Here are your best three options:

#3.  The Apple App Store

Signing up for a developer account here will set you back a hundred dollars as well as whatever tax they charge.  So let’s just say the total cost to you is:  $110.  On top of that, Apple will take 30% of whatever you sell.  To put this into perspective, if you are selling your app for $0.99, you are going to need to sell 160 copies of your game just to break even.  Or if you sell your game for $1.99, you’ll need to sell 80 copies of your game.  That’s doable, right?  Hahahahahaha!  Sorry, I used to think like you.  But unless you have a hundred friends and an incredibly large family, this isn’t going to happen.

#2.  The Google Play Store

Signing up for a developer account here will set you back twenty-five dollars as well as (so I assume; I haven’t actually done this) whatever tax they charge.  So let’s just say the total cost to you is:  $27.50.  On top of that, Google will take 30% of whatever you sell.  To put this into perspective, if you are selling your app for $0.99, you are going to need to sell 40 copies of your game just to break even.  Or if you sell your game for $1.99, you’ll need to sell 20 copies of your game.  That’s much more doable, right?  Hahahahahaha!  Sorry, I used to think like you.  But unless you have a hundred friends and an incredibly large family, this isn’t going to happen.

#1.  The Amazon Appstore

Signing up for a developer account here will set you back… nothing!  No taxes, no fees, no cost!  Woo hoo!  Now, keep in mind that Amazon will still take 30% of whatever you sell.  But to put this into perspective, if you are selling your app for $0.99, you need to sell only one copy of your game to come away with a profit of $0.69!!!  Finally, something that’s doable!

Thus, the only way to make a profitable first app is to:
-spend no money on its development
-release it on the Amazon Appstore
-find one person in the universe to buy it

Best of luck!

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Filed under Develop an App for Free, Failed App Marketing Strategies, Game Development, New App Marketing Strategies

Your App, Drowned in a Sea of Apps

Your App Lost in a Sea of Trash

[Original “King of the Trash Hill” (via)]

Yes, that is your app. Yes, way, way in the back. No, you wish it was that one sticking out on top. Yours is stuck somewhere a mile deep, next to the carcasses of flippy, flappy, fluppy, floppy birds (Yuck…) and buried under Kate Upton’s breasts (Mmmmmm…) and a FORTY MILLION DOLLAR ad campaign (Um… what?).

It’s not an uplifting picture, but it’s the reality you face when releasing an app. And it’s something you need to be aware of from the very start of app development, particularly if your goal is to make any money. Just how exactly are you going to stand out in that ever-growing mound of apps?

The answer is:

You need to be best friends with a supermodel and have 40 million dollars to burn. But if you have supermodel friends and 40 million dollars to burn, why are you making apps? Seriously, go be Batman.

So, uh, what about those of us without those kinds of resources?

The answer is:

It’s already too late. In the time it’s taken you to read this post, another truckload of apps has already been dumped into the App Store. Even if you’ve poured your heart and soul into making your app sparkle, it will never be noticed by anyone. It has already died.

This is because you have an even bigger problem:

– No one knows you exist.
– No one cares you exist.

If people don’t know you, they’re not searching for you. If they’re not searching for you, then it really doesn’t matter how good your app is or how much time you’ve spent making it the best it can possibly be. It will never be found.

So how do you get people to notice you? How do you get people searching for you? How do you get your app included on some “Best App Ever” or “Top Apps of All-Time” list? Just what is needed for your app to rise from the depths of the trash heap, plant its flag at the peak, and boldly declare, “I am the King of All Apps”?

Super Sevens King of All Apps

Super Sevens, the “King of All Apps” – See how it sparkles?

Beats me. I can’t help you there. No, really, I have no idea. All I can do is share with you my failings so that you can save time and effort by not doing the things I did since clearly none of have them worked.

Consider this an introduction to: How to Develop an App for Free (Because You’re Not Going to Make Any Money Anyway).

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Filed under Develop an App for Free, Game Development