Pricing strategies for your store

Setting the right price for the products you sell is a vitally important skill to master.

Running a store for your server or PC game, you’ll need to start by choosing the right currency. The next step is to decide how much items in your store will sell for. That’s critically important because it affects every aspect of your business from how attractive each item is to players, to how much money you make from each sale.

Although it’s not a straightforward process, there are a number of things you can do to make it simpler, and one of those is to look at your competition. When you’re looking around their stores, see how much they charge for items that are the same as or similar to yours, and also what their highest and lowest ticket items are. You can’t see their sales figures of course, but you can get an impression for what players are likely to go for.

Since you’re selling virtual goods you don’t need to worry about recommended retail prices or margin, but it can still be a tricky topic to navigate. We’ve compiled some tips to help you get pricing just right for your products, and even more importantly, your players. 

1. Loss Leaders

In bricks and mortar stores, loss leaders are everyday essentials that a large number of shoppers want, designed to get people through the doors so they can then make impulse purchases while they’re getting what they originally came for. Things don’t quite work like that online, but it’s worth noting that if you have a particular item that seems to have wide scale popularity, running a small discount on it and letting players know about it should help drive extra traffic to your store.

Once people arrive to buy their lightly discounted widget, make sure there are some other tempting add-ons nearby on the page to help them find other things they might like. With a bit of experimentation, it’s a neat way of adding extra sales from existing customers.

2. Charm pricing 

This one’s really easy. Prices that end in a 9 rather than a 0 are perceived as more attractive by shoppers, so charging $3.99 instead of $4 will instantly make that item seem better value and more desirable. And that works with no other changes whatsoever. If that sounds too good to be true, we urge you to give it a try and find out for yourself.

3. Bundles

You’ve probably seen other online retailers doing this, but putting products together in discounted packages is a great way of enhancing value and increasing basket size. It’s also a good way of selling less popular items by packaging them up with a bestseller. There is a downside in that players may be less inclined to buy the same items at full price when the bundle offer ends, but that’s true of any sale pricing.

4. Discount for early adopters

Reducing the price of something in your store will almost always result in higher sales, unless the item itself is gravely unpopular. But early discounting can also be a way of breaking in new products and getting as many of your players as possible to try them out. Launching with a message that the cost of an item will rise after a set period, is a useful way of generating early demand and increasing sampling.

5. Anchor pricing

We talked about this in our guide to 10 tricks to help your store sell more, but it bears repeating. It turns out that a single high value product can help players interpret your other prices as being significantly better value. It does that by ‘anchoring’ their perception of price to the higher value, which makes other items appear much cheaper by comparison. Humans are extremely good at determining relative values, but much less adept at making judgments on absolutes, so a single big ticket item can change the apparent value of the rest of the store.