Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Sales Discussion & Controversy

So there has been some discussion especially among the 3rd Party Publishers of Pathfinder books on the top sales. It all started with some posts by Louis Porter Jr on his blog. Here is the latest posting he made: http://lpjd.blogspot.com/2013/09/transparency-agenda-33-examining-top.html

Then Ben McFarland questioned Louis on being more indepth. Louis suggested Ben could do it and post on his blog and so he did. You can click on the link below to see all the data. I've reposted the compiled results here. 

After you take a look feel free to tell me what you think. Why do you think certain 3PP do better - is it because they truly have a better product, is it price, is it the inside hand, inquiring minds want to know.

Compiled Results:
1 Setting
7 Paper Minis
29 Supplemental Rules
23 Player Material (Mythic Core Spells might be Player or Supplemental, I've listed it as Player Material)
Themes: (products may qualify for mor than one theme)
Aug 17: monks (2), faeries (2), kingmaker-supplemental (2)
Aug 24: alternate classes (2), wuxia (2), kingmaker-supplemental (3)
Sep 02: cavaliers (2), kingmaker-supplemental (3), monsters (3)
Sep 07: cavaliers (2), AP-supplemental (4), kingmaker-supplemental (4), monsters (4)
Sep 14: mythic (2), kingmaker-supplemental (2), monsters (4)
Sep 21: alternate classes (2), kingmaker-supplemental (2),undead (2), monsters (4)
Consistent Themes:
6weeks Kingmaker-Supplemental
* AP-Supplemental
5weeks Class Materials
* monks (1 week)
* cavaliers (2 weeks)
* alt classes (2 weeks)
4weeks Monsters
* faeries
* undead
Compiled Month Costs
Average: $6.27 (# below Ave: 40 out of 60)
Median: $4.99 (# below Med: 27 out of 60)
High: $14.15 (Distribution: 3 above/3 below; Range 9.99-19.99)
Low: $2.15 (Distribution: 1 above/5 below; Range 1.99-2.99)
Compiled Company Distribution
Dreamscarred 1
Frog God Games 1
TPK Games 1
PF Minis 7
Rite Publishing 2
Minotaur Games 6
Kobold Press 10
Super Genius 11
Legendary Games 21
What Does This Show?
Some interesting things, I think...although I'm pretty sure this isn't a substantialenough data set to consider this very definitive.
First, it seems that 4.99 is a good price point where customers are willing buy aproduct. Second, while the wisdom suggests that players are a wider customer base, the larger number of sales seem to be for GM-oriented materials, like supplemental, rules, monsters, and AP supplemental materials. High-priced pdfs seem to be muchlarger files, or part of print bundles. The lower priced pdfs seem to mostly below the median, but there are over half of the pdfs above the median, so the price point isn't overwhelming deciding factor. Nothing exceeds 19.99 on the pdfs, even Frog God's large ToH4, and none of them seem to have Hero Lab files listed, which doesn't seem to have made an impact. 
Legendary Games really shows a larger footprint; they have a catalog of 32 products but have claimed 21 of the 60 slots. Minotaur Games has been consistently in the top 10 with only 10 products, and I think this is directly attributable to the author's position beyond Minotaur. Pathfinder Paper Minis are the only real regular paper mini product in the list-- likely because they're complementing existing modules, which Legendary Games has shown to be a good option. Legendary is banking on the fact that their freelancers are Paizo's freelancers, and so there's an implied state of their work being "Unofficially Official." Kobold Press and Super Genius appear to ramping up a weekly release schedule. None of the other publishers have enough presence to merit commentary.
Unsurprisingly, the 1st ranked product usually has a 5-star rating. However, lacking a rating doesn't seem to prevent a product from showing up, and there is a 3-star product on for several weeks.
I haven't taken advertising into consideration. I really can't tell that based on
the reports and I'm not surfing the web enough to know if they've been posted some where specific.