The title of this post is a direct, word-for-word, quote from a review written by one of the users of my US Golf Courses app for the iPhone. In case the name of the app isn’t clear, here’s what it does in a nutshell:
The US Golf Courses app gives you quick and easy access to information for over 13,500 golf courses in the United States. Each listing comes with detailed information about course conditions and contact information. You can get driving directions or call the clubhouse with the push of a button.
I thought now, hot on the heels of that eloquent review, would be a good time to recap the last year of the app’s existence. Since I released US Golf Courses on March 8, 2011 I have published one update and released a free version of the app that is supported by ads. The free version of US Golf Courses was cleverly entitled US Golf Courses Lite.
I’m going to now assault you with stats, graphs and information about my experience.
Here’s a table showing the average review scores for each version of the app:
|App||Price||Version||Ratings||5 Stars||1 Star||Average|
|US Golf Courses||$0.99||All||12||2||5||2.5 Stars|
|US Golf Courses||$0.99||1.1||7||2||1||3.5 Stars|
|US Golf Courses Lite||Free||1.1||19||5||3||3.5 Stars|
- The 1.0 Version of Lite was never reviewed and was replaced with the 1.1 update shortly after its initial release.
- The reviewers of the paid 1.0 release were harsh and many complained of a crashing bug I was never able to replicate but still did my best to fix in 1.1. The amount of 1 Star reviews has dropped since 1.1 but that might also be related to the drop in downloads (more on that later).
- In general, Lite has reviewed much better than the paid version. It’s surprising to me how much more vitriol comes out of people when they have one of their hard-earned dollars on the line.
I’m not going to share specific numbers with you because I’m gutless but just know that the y-axis on this chart is relative so the lines aren’t skewed in any way.
There is probably no big surprise there. Lite crushes the paid version in downloads. Again, I’m not going to tell you by how much but know that the number of downloads of Lite can be measured in the thousands.
The Dollar, Dollar Bills
Ok, this is the good part you’ve all been waiting for. How many Happy Meals is the Lite version buying me? With those kind of lopsided download numbers you would think the revenue chart would surely be similar, right? Wrong!
I can tell you US Golf Courses Lite, with thousands and thousands of downloads, has not even earned what I bill for one hour of my time. Lite is a total financial disaster.
There are two courses of action. The obvious is to just kill the Lite version from the store right now. Strike it from the record and act as if it never even existed to try and stop it from cannibalizing any more sales of the paid version.
Another option, which I’m trying to investigate more when I can, is to stop using the current ad service running in the Lite version and replace it with ads I sell myself. There’s a chance that the ads currently being served are just plain garbage most of the time and not worth clicking on. If I can find more appealing options that target golfers better I can probably make a few more quarters every year from Lite.
If I make a move one way or the other I will make mention of it here in a future post. Thanks for reading.