How to price your apps, sell them, and earn a living

Former developer tools evangelist at Apple, Michael Jurewitz has been going flat out on the writing circuit this past week, topped off by a an insane final lap consisting of a 5-part series on understanding App Store pricing.

Pricing your app is probably one of the most difficult things you will ever do. It often feels like a shot in the dark at best and a wild-guessing game at worst. It's important to remember that there are a few things you can do ahead of time, and some very interesting things you can do later, to understand how successfully you may have priced your application.

Here's the breakdown, and the links to each part:

Part 1 looks at the phenomena of falling prices, or "racing to the bottom", and graphs the differences between top and median selling and grossing apps.

Part2 looks at the difference between top selling and top grossing apps, and which types of apps actually make money.

Part 3 looks at elasticities, demand curves, revenue maximizations, and the realizations that App Store business really is a business.

Part 4 looks at how all of the above should be factored into determining what price can be charged for any given app.

Part 5 is where Jury puts his own apps where his mouth is, showing how all this thinking was applied to Black Pixel's Kaleidoscope 2, and what the results have been to date.

Read 'em all, and thanks to Jury for sharing his insights, and driving all this across the line. Very nearly at Mach 1.

Source: Jury

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

  • This is a very interesting article. The app business is definitely a business. Great article!
  • I think many people could benefit from reading this because people tend to overprice their apps way more than they should which hurts sales. Time spent doesn't always justify a high price, quality does. The problem is the iTunes Store. The new design is hurting developers from being seen. I don't know when it changed to the current mess it is, possibly iOS 6; however, I know it was normal in iOS 4-5. Bring it back!
  • I'm not a fan of the new iTunes Store either. I still don't understand why they took something that worked well and made it work less well.
  • i'm not sure it worked well but i totally agree that they just made it worse.
  • Yeah searching and seeing 1 app at a time in the card view kind of sucks for discovering new apps.
  • totally agree. I don't look for new apps now because of that.
  • i agree about the new design. i dislike it
  • Whoa, these are totally awesome reads
  • This is one of the better reads in a long time. Thank you for the information.
  • Just stumbled on this article. Very useful information about how to price your apps, sell them, and earn a living. We've just released our own service for app developers and marketers too, it's, maybe you could do a blog about us and spread the word?