Amazon: F2P success down to play count not play length

Keep them coming back says Daniel Winner

Amazon: F2P success down to play count not play length

What makes the top grossing free-to-play apps stand out against the rest of the freemium market?

Based on cohort data amassed and analysed by Amazon, delivering a successful free-to-play game isn't about making gamers play for long sessions. Rather, it's about giving players reasons to come back time and again for short little nuggets.

That was the message delivered by Amazon's head of content acquisition for mobile in Europe Daniel Winner at the F2P Summit in London, with the need to keep players coming back time and again the focus of his summary.

"44 percent of repeat purchases happen within one hour of a previous purchase," noted Winner, based on Amazon's research of player data from its Appstore for Android.

"But it's not about increasing the stickiness of the game – it's the number of sessions that the customer visits the game that determines how much they spend."

Top of the pops

Indeed, comparing the top 50 grossing apps on Amazon's store to the rest of the freemium market highlighted that, as time passes, the more successful apps generate more play sessions per user.

As a result, those users not only purchase more items than in other games, they're also happy to spend more on each of those items.

Daniel Winner

Winner's talk touched on similar points he'd previously highlighted back at Develop in July, where he stressed the importance of engaging users early in the game.

Also of note: It's not simply pricing their in-app purchases at a higher rate than their rivals that makes the top free-to-play games monetise at a higher rate, Winner said, but rather their ability to make players feel content to part with that cash, all through repeated play.

It's a trend that's further highlighted by Amazon's revelation that, the longer player stay on board with a game, the more they end up spending per session.


With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.


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