I Don’t Buy Games That Cost 99¢ But I could Buy One For 0.99 Dollars

Just some somebody selling game for “99¢”. To me it looked expensive. Maybe it’s just my Finnish location and unfamiliar symbol, but 99 cents looks more expensive than 0.99 dollars (even though the cost is the same).

Maybe it’s just me.

But in case that odd thing happens and there’s other people like me… then maybe it’s a good idea to sell games for 0.99 dollars instead of 99 cents.

Is it?

Who knows.

Juuso Hietalahti


  1. @Jake: yeh, stole the color from some other site. I’m one happy thief.

  2. It may work, it probably does work, and I am even following the trend now, but to be honest I priced one game $15 and all the others $xx.99 and the $15 seemed and still seems to sell just as well as the others.

  3. When I first started selling my games and wanted to sell my first one for $15, everyone told me to drop it to $14.99. When I asked them why, the response was “It just works.” So… I did. And it seems to be working.

  4. Absolutely. Completely a marketing tool that companies use. Studies have actually shown that we’re favorable to odd numbers (ie 4.99 as a opposed to 5) because we actually believe we’re saving money. I know, it’s really only a penny, but people seem favor these types of prices; hence why companies continue to use them.

  5. My problem is that everything online is invariably not in my currency, and so I think “oh, it’s only $20” before I think “oh, it’s $20 US which is ~$40 in my currency” Usually I remember to think at least :)

  6. Plus the fact that 1000 points costs MORE than $10, so when you see 1200 points you almost think “oh only $12” but that’s not correct because it’s more like $16 after tax in Canada.

  7. I think the point(pun?) of microsoft points, is that you want a game, but you buy more points than you need to buy this game. So you have extra points, then you say “What the heck? I will use them for another game”. But then the points and the cost of the XBOX live games are in a way that you will never have a 0 balance of your points.
    Also, I would think that pshycologicaly, spending points seems a lot less painful than spending money. Its almost like a game, instead of a real spending.
    At least, that is my conspiracy theory. ;)

  8. How about inventing a game currency unit where 0.01 is equivalent to $20 (bit like microsoft Xbox points, but cheaper ;-)). So you could say: my game is only 0.01 game dollars, get it now!

  9. I wonder if we should put prices in some really inflated currency. Like… this game costs only 7.2 billion [insert currency here]

    (or like 7 200 000 000.00 [currency units])

    some humor-game should do this. :)

  10. I agree. Also the fact that we don’t see too many $20.00 games probably means that there’s a good chance that $20.00 cannot compete with $19.99 for some reason.

  11. 19.99 instead of 20 is simply for the reason that 20 looks more expensive.

    at least that’s what the marketing books try tell us.

    but… since every game portal and every shop in town is using this same psychology… I’m willing to accept the fact that perhaps they’ve tested it. ;)

  12. I think it i better to just have everything in one unit, as some might think at a glance that the 99 refers to dollars like the 2 above it.

    As for the reason it was started, there are two reasons. First was to make it harder for the people borrowing from tills to keep track of the totals, which makes no sense as they would just need to keep track of their debt. The other is indeed to make it seem like less. The average person might read 1.99 as “a dollar something” vs 2 being “two dollars”. Both cases are a reflection of the general public, because it either worked, or was kept anyways.

  13. I think 1$ is a lot more nice number than 0.99$.
    Also, I don’t get where all those 19.99$ come from? Are people trying to confuse the customer? Are they trying to fool him? Is this some kind of pshycology of the masses?
    Maybe they saw that if they give a price of 19.99$ instead of 20$ it increase sales by 2.865765765% or something like this.

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