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Analysis: One Month of Downloads on Windows Phone Marketplace

North Pole Photo Booth Download Graph

What you see is a graph of the downloads of the North Pole Photo Booth for its first month on the Windows Phone Marketplace (actual download numbers have been removed as they are not relevant to the discussion). Since this app was intended as a Christmas holiday themed app, this graph is perfect as it shows the effective lifespan of an app from launch to the main event — Christmas.

We Three Peaks

There are three primary peaks that jump out at us. The first is the launch peak, a very common and expected shape. I also purchased advertising on the windowsphonegeek.com App Wall for one month, but am unable to assess its impact given that the campaign started on the same day as launch. It got caught up in the launch peak. This was a good day for the app and got it off to a good start.
 
 The second peak is the downloads after the app was featured on wmpoweruser.com. This was the first time I’ve had an app written up there and, while the bump was expected, the magnitude of the bump was not. The peak is higher than the launch peak! Very impressed. Note to self, make sure all future apps are showcased on wmpoweruser.com. I also submitted stories for review on other sites (wpcentral.com, wp7applist.com) but it did not get picked up on any other site, so there are no more peaks to look at until the main event. I can say that the ad revenue generated for the app was highest on this day, so the people attracted by the site were high quality to advertisers compared to the other peaks.
 
 The 3rd and final peak is Christmas day. Ah Christmas. This peak is bigger than the other two and I assume are new phone users. That peak begs so many questions. This app was a holiday themed app and so was applicable to the day. Do all apps exhibit a similar peak? It was also a free app, so what does a paid app look like on Christmas? I hope people had fun using the app with their friends and family and that it put a smile on some faces.
 
 

O Holy Marketplace

One other thing to notice is the relatively flat download count in the weeks leading up to Christmas. This is only interesting because of what’s missing. No spikes. I say this because the Windows Phone Marketplace was featuring a couple Christmas themed apps every day for weeks. But North Pole Photo Booth never got chosen. A competitor got chosen twice. In fact many of the apps that were featured did so twice. Also, despite what the guidelines say, most of the featured Christmas apps were paid apps. I’m not sure anyone can say for sure why something gets chosen or doesn’t, but I assume that there would be some decent spikes had it been picked up.
 

Silent Night

The downloads for this app fell off sharply after Christmas day. Ad revenue went way down. This is not unexpected as it’s a Christmas app and Christmas is over. We’ll take a look next year to see how it ramps up again. Overall, I’m pleased with the app and it beat my expectations and so I’ll call it a success. It made it into the top 2% of all apps and was positioned nicely among photo apps. However, I’m not quitting my day job anytime soon.

Questions or comments? Let me know. Don’t forget to follow me on twitter (@kenstone) for more bits and pieces of my awesomeness. Also, follow my new blog, Trash My Stuff, where I’ll cronicle the sale and disposal of many of my unnecessary possessions.

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Discussion

3 thoughts on “Analysis: One Month of Downloads on Windows Phone Marketplace

  1. Thanks a million for writing this up. Any chance you’d be willing to share some details around how long the app took to build, as well as if your ad revenue was enough to cover your own advertising costs?

    Posted by Barranger Ridler (@4MKMobile) | January 6, 2012, 6:34 am

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Pingback: The effect on downloads of getting your app posted on WMPoweruser.com ? Its a bit like Christmas | WMPoweruser - January 4, 2012

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I'm Ken Stone. I'm an indie developer with a focus on .NET and Windows Phone development. I have a day job, but everything I say is mine alone.

TechEd 2012July 11th, 2012
Let the learning begin.
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