App Sales and Hourly Earnings Calculated

Interested in some data about app sales?

I wrote a Ruby script which parsed my worklog files for timestamps, calculate the difference, add it up and then return in a human-readable form the amount of time it took to develop Calendar Paste.

4 days and 18 hours (114h 59min 0s)

So I logged about 115 hours of active development time, planning, tinkering with the website and whatnot—and I definitely spent more hours on this project before I began logging my progress.

  • Hourly rate: The first, very successful two weeks of sale having passed, this adds up to a whopping $1.03 hourly rate! I sold the app 181 times and calculate my revenue in EUR: according to Apple, the $0.79 I get for each sale only amount to EUR 0.54. Were I to earn USD only, my hourly rate would rise to $1.20; with so many currencies in so many App Stores worldwide, I can only guess how much I’ll get in the end.
  • Calculated Increase to 40 USD/h: Income from app sales being passive by nature, my calculated hourly earnings will eventually rise. To say developing this app would have paid off financially at about $40 per hour, I’d have to sell the app about 9000 times, or about fifty times as much compared to last month’s sales.

    Until all iPhone users realize this event template builder is just what they ever wanted, it’s fairly unlikely that more than 200 sales per month take place. In other words it will take three and a half years and an average of 200 monthly sales to reach 9000.

  • Blogging pays off. When Brett and Eddie featured me on their blogs, I sold 40 and 30 apps per day, respectively. These peaks wore off very fast, though.

Maybe around Christmas wasn’t the best time to release a productivity app in the first place. I’m curious how January will turn out when everyone’s businesses return to normal.