In one of today's main Gamasutra features, game producer and owner of Polycount Productions Juuso Hietalahti has written this guide, aimed at indie game developers, on how to create a comprehensive marketing plan to better affect your game sales.
In the following extract, he explains how to factor in conversion rates to your plan for downloadable PC indie games:
"In an indie marketing plan, you can start by choosing the goal for the desired income. Then, you continue by adding the goals for sales, downloads, conversion rate, and the price for your product. Let's assume your goal is to make $50.000. The pricing of a game may depend on several variables. You might look at what others are using and settle for $19.95. Or you might try a bargain price and go with $9.95. Some people have used $29.95.
Depending on your game, the company's profile, and target market, you might price your game differently. It's worth noting that you might want to adjust the price later. Maybe you realize that $9.95 is too low and go with $15.95 and still get the same number of sales...
The eCommerce provider gets about 10% of each sale [if selling directly from your own website], so the actual profit for you per game would be about $18. To make $50.000 you would need about 2800 sales. If you assume that one out of hundred players purchase your game, then game's conversion rate would be 1.0%. The rule of thumb could be that very targeted games receive higher conversion rates, up to 2%, 3% or even 5% while more generic games, or games with severe competition may receive a .1% - .5% conversion rate.
That means about 1-5 sales per 1000 downloads. Let's assume you try to get your game's quality to such a level that you receive a 1.0% conversion rate. Now as you do some math you can see that to reach 2800 sales you would need 280,000 downloads for your game."
You can now read the full Gamasutra feature on the subject
, including nine things to think about when formulating a marketing plan (no registration required, please feel free to link to this article from external websites).