Pay Per Play

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This might take some work to implement, but in a conversation I was having with a friend, we stumbled on the idea of pay per play. This option might be effective for people that wish to try out a board before buying it.

A user could pay some predetermined, nominal fee, such as 25 cents, and be allowed to play 1 game using the board. If they wanted to play a rematch, or another game, they could pay again, or buy the board. This option could also be extended to allow the previous amount to be discounted from the board if they end up choosing to buy it (ie. if a user pays 50 cents to try out a $2.50 board, they would only need to pay $2.00 to buy it later). I would probably limit the discount to one discount (ie. only 50 cents can be discounted if they played 2 or more times with the previous example). Doing so would eliminate the notion of pay per playing 5 times at 50 cents and getting a $2.50 board for free. Let's discourage that practice.

[edit] Steps

  • Game designer sets the "Pay per Play" option with some amount of money less than the price of the board.
  • User may purchase board outright or choose pay per play
  • If the user chooses pay per play, the user pays the fee
  • The user is allowed one play of the board
  • Afterwards, the user may purchase the board at a discount of the pay per play price, or choose pay per play again.

[edit] Discussion

I see this as a way for non-plus members (or even plus members) to test out a board that they would like to try, but don't want to spend full price on a hit-or-miss. Think of it as renting a game or downloading a CD to test it out before purchase. Of course, it is also a potential way for game designers to make a little extra money (as well as Steven, for his cut). Not only will there be money income from the pay per play sales (I wonder how much paypal cuts out of 25 cents?) but it might also increase full sales because users got to try out the board and enjoyed it enough to buy.

Yeah, I thought of a similar idea as well when I was setting up the "buy a board" system which is why in the game board directory it says $3/unlimited even though the are all "unlimited".. since initially there was the thought that some of them might read $1/3plays. Yeah using Paypal would be difficult since I believe they have some minimum charges. There are probably some micropayments systems out there that might work for that, I think Amazon has one. It is true... people probably won't think as hard if it was only $0.25 cents... so that would be a huge advantage. I do like that model for sure since it seems easier to ask people for $0.25 than it does to ask them for $2.00 (or even $5.00 as some designers are able to get). Seems like you'd make up the difference in volume of sales --Steven 17:52, 26 March 2008 (UTC)
Right, I was thinking of it more in the sense that it would benefit users that don't want to pay full price on some of those more expensive boards. I'm not really in need of money or that selfish, so the benefit to me is only a side effect, although if sales go up, I might need to start worrying about how to file my tax return correctly, haha. --FadeToOne 20:51, 26 March 2008 (UTC)
Here is a new epiphany I just had. You could do something like let users paypal a larger amount to an "account" that the site stores, say $10, or maybe even some amount the user wants to pay. Then they use that account money to make micro-transactions. I believe this is similar to how the Playstation Network handles things. So instead of multiple paypal fees, the user pays a bulk amount to stick in an account, and then the site handles the micro-transactions without having more paypal fees. --FadeToOne 19:34, 28 March 2008 (UTC)

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