On August 30th, I released Terminology Ph, the iPhone followup to my successful iPad reference app. I have previously published sales figures for the first two weeks of the iPad version, and in the spirit of openness and information sharing I am doing the same for the iPhone version. Hope this information is of use to other developers making plans for their Apps.
The success of the iPad version of Terminology made it a lot easier to get coverage of the iPhone release, and this helped it get noticed quickly in the App Store. Before the release, I approached several blogs that had reviewed the iPad version and offered them previews. This allowed for some quick press coverage to go along with the press release I sent out on launch day. A particular thanks to MacStories.net and Just Another iPhone Blog for running reviews, giveaways and news items about the app over the course of the last couple weeks.
I priced the iPhone version at $1.99. One dollar less than the iPad version, and put both versions on sale to celebrate the release. $0.99 for the iPhone version, $1.99 for the iPad version.
I distributed the press release to a list of direct emails I had accumulated for iPhone/iPad/Mac news sites and blogs, and also used the PRMac service.
The rank chart for the first two weeks looks like this:
NOTE: The charts used here were generated by the great app stats service, AppFigures. If you are an iOS developer, you should check them out!
Some rank and marketing highlights:
Release day coverage on Monday 8/30 from the press release, including a news mention on MacWorld, helped the app chart almost immediately getting Terminology to #3 on the Reference charts.
After an initial lag, Terminology was listed in a very favorable position on the App Store’s “New & Noteworthy” list in the US store late in the afternoon on Thursday, 9/2. This allowed the app to push into the Top 100, reaching a peak of #72 on the Top Paid iPhone App Charts.
Terminology never reached #1 in the Reference category. Another competing App was listed in “Staff Favorites” that week, and kept out in the lead.
When the “New & Noteworthy” list cycled again on Thursday, 9/9, Terminology was included for a second week, but in the very last position on the list. Sales dropped off dramatically because you don’t see this much of the list on the iPhone’s App Store, and you have to scroll the list to see it in iTunes. Clearly, visibility is huge.
Over the course of that two week period, I was lucky enough to get very favorable reviews on a number of sites, including MacWorld, AppModo, Appolicious, etc., which continued to help push traffic to the App.
I experimented with advertising, but didn’t have great success with it. I would not say my Google Ads for “iphone dictionary” and similar terms resulted in enough sales to justify the cost. OMMV.
The unit sales charts for the same period look like this:
Some unit sales observations:
Peak single day sales of 932 units was reached Friday, 9/3, the first full day of being listed on the “New & Noteworthy” list.
Though not covered in these numbers, the launch of the iPhone version of Terminology significantly increased interest in the iPad version, which sold many more units during this period than it had in the previous month.
Obviously, I’m totally thrilled with Terminology’s performance. I really appreciate all the people who have help spread the word through blogs, Twitter, Facebook, etc., and for all the great reviews. I’m already working on incorporating the feedback I’ve received into future updates to Terminology.