App Disappointments

After releasing my new app QUMBO last month I was hoping for an improvement in results for the month of December. I thought that the keywords I had chosen were going to get me better ASO placement than they did and that keywords alone would be enough to boost total downloads.

As I am learning more about App Store Optimization (ASO) I decided to put into practice some of the tips and tricks I’ve been learning. But it didn’t pan out as I had hoped.

Unfortunately, QUMBO has not performed well at all. Grand total for the month of December was $24.25 in advertising income. Not really anywhere near what I was hoping for.

It’s a little frustrating especially since I had high hopes for this game. It’s really hard to see a game that you built, and that you really enjoy playing, just fail to take off.

I’m still experimenting with keywords, so at the end of December I released an update with some modified keywords. We’ll see if that helps at all for January.

Thankful for The App Store Holiday Boost

Thankfully the Christmas holiday 2014 did help boost app store downloads and income! (Though I have to admit, it wasn’t as much of a boost as it has been in past years.)

Let’s get right into it. Here is December 2014 overall app download chart. It’s almost a carbon copy of November’s results graph.

App Downloads (December 2014)

app-downloads-201412

As you can see there’s the uptick for the Christmas holiday (just like there was in November for the Thanksgiving Holiday.)

App Income by Ad Network (December 2014)

advertising-income-201412

And here’s overall ad network revenue for the month of December 2014. The grand total was $559.15

That is a $20 uptick over November.

As you can see about halfway through the month I switched priority networks from Playhaven which was not performing very well to Revmob and saw a nice boost in revenue! It makes me wish I had switched sooner! But hindsight is always 20/20.

Looking at individual ad networks:

Vungle eCPM was $6.07, which was pretty nice. Still, underperforming where they were several months ago (in the $18 range). But certainly the best of all networks I’m using this month.

Revmob eCPM was $1.45 average (to be clear I use both banners and interstitials with them). A pretty decent overall average for the month. I’m pleased.

Playhaven eCPM was $1.43. Which is about a third of where I like to see eCMPs from Playhaven.

Adbuddiz eCPM was good at $5.16. I decided to put them in the rotation for a week in early December. Even though the eCPMs are good, overall income was bad, which tells me either their fill rate is poor or something else is wonky. I’ll continue to throw them in on occasion but keep a close eye on them.

TOTAL App Income (December 2014)

total-app-income-201412

Total app income from both advertising and paid downloads for December 2014: $685.45

An improvement over last month! Improvements are good!

An Experiment (or was it an Accident?)

I should mention, I ran a really interesting experiment over the Christmas Holiday for my app, Bacon Farts. For years I’ve been selling it at $0.99 in Apple’s App Store. I’ve tried $1.99, and possibly even $2.99 (I don’t remember for sure) but those had little effect on sales.

However, there was this strange curiosity in me that wondered what would happen if I made the price something that I thought was too high. I considered going borderline ridiculous just to see if it would garner media attention (Bacon Farts has been featured on a couple of TV shows and even the outtakes of a famous movie) and therefore drive up downloads of the FREE version.

I couldn’t quite bite the bullet and go crazy, so I settled in at $4.99. Yep. For a fart app. Now, mind you, I think this is one of the better ones out there if I do say so myself. But still, FIVE BUCKS? I know. Crazy.

But guess what?

Downloads stayed almost exactly the same.

Which means my paid downloads revenue went up nearly 5x!

I’m gonna keep it there for a while and see what happens.

I’m also considering additional improvements to the paid version to make it even more valuable. We’ll see how that helps.

Looking Forward

So as I round out the year I’m looking at monthly averages that are OK, but not where I’d like them to be. My first goal for 2015 is to see monthly averages in the $2000 range. So stay tuned to see not only if it happens, but how I plan to make it happen. Once I get there, I’ll be setting the bar even higher, but one goal at a time.

What about YOU? How did your year go? Are you generating the revenue your shooting for? Do you have any tips for the readers to help them generate more revenue? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!

As always, I appreciate your taking the time to join me here on my little adventure. And I sincerely hope your app development journey is going well!

Cheers! On to 2015…