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Hamumu Journal
Running a Biz03:42 PM -- Fri May 19, 2006

While we're on the topic of how I do things, here's a post I made on the forum, which I am hereby upgrading to Journal status:

Why aren't my games (mostly) in stores? Because I'm an indie. Here's how I sell games:

ME -> CUSTOMER
(90% of money paid by customer goes in my pocket - the other 10% is the cost of the credit card transaction. So $26.96 on a Supreme sale)

Here's how you get games into a store:

ME -> PUBLISHER -> MANUFACTURER* -> DISTRIBUTOR -> STORE -> CUSTOMER
(money paid by customer goes to store. Store keeps 50%. Distributer keeps 20%(?) of what's left. Manufacturer keeps 10% of what's left. Publisher keeps 95% of what's left. I get the rest. Math: I get 1.8% of the paid price, if I did that right... that'd be $0.54 on a sale of Supreme)

Of course, those numbers are approximate and invented, but they're the general idea. So why does anyone sell in stores? Exposure. When I sell myself, I only get a few sales, because nobody knows I exist. When a store sells something, they put it in a huge national chain that maybe a hundred thousand people a day enter altogether. They'll sell a thousand times more than I will.

In the end, I'd probably make more from the store sales. But it's not worth it. The main issue is that I have to make what a publisher wants, and then tweak it endlessly to meet their desires. That's not independent, and it's not why I'm in business for myself. And it doesn't last. Stuff is in stores for a couple months, then it's in the bargain bin, then it's gone. It's on my website for decades!

*Manufacturer isn't really a part of this chain. What I mean by them is the company that is paid by the publisher to manufacture the physical CD. It's an expense they have, that I selling downloads do not (though of course I do have that expense on the CDs I sell)
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