Witch, $9.99 pricing, and the future

As we’ve now reached the point where the Witch $9.99 sale is scheduled to end, we thought we’d take some time to talk about how the two-day sale has gone, and what that means regarding Witch’s future price.

Before the sale began, Witch was doing a decent volume in the App Store, and fluctuating between the 20s and 60s on the Top Paid and Top Grossing charts for the Utilities category. So what impact did the sale have?

Unit volume increased twenty-fold, and Witch moved to (as of this writing) number two in Top Paid and number three in Top Grossing in the Utilities category—and it’s hovering around the top 20 in those charts for All Categories as well. Simply put, we’ve been floored…and obviously, the volume numbers got us thinking about pricing over the last two days.

It’s clear from these results that many people felt Witch was a utility they wanted, but one that was simply too expensive at $16.99 (the App Store’s no-preview-images price) and $19 (for the fully-featured version on our site). So we’ve decided to do two things:

  • The current $9.99 sale has been extended through the weekend; it will now end at 11:59pm (PST) on Sunday, January 30th.
  • The new standard price of Witch will be $14 ($13.99 App Store), a reduction of over 25% from the previous level. After talking with some users, and seeing what other utilities are priced at, we feel this is a fair and affordable price for an excellent window-switching tool.

It’s our objective to get our programs into as many users’ hands as possible, and yet do so at a level that will allow us to sustain the company and add support and development resources in the future.

We think Witch’s new pricing strikes the perfect balance between those two objectives—it’s more affordable for everyone now, and yet not so inexpensive that we’re mortgaging the company’s future to achieve unit growth today. After all, what good is the best window switching utility out there if there’s nobody around to support it any more?

7 Responses to “Witch, $9.99 pricing, and the future”

  1. Ray says:

    Just purchased via MAS. I saw that it was no longer a system preference. I ran it after installation and there seems to be no way to minimize the settings window other than selecting hide. Is this the way it operates or am I missing something?

  2. Rob Griffiths says:

    You’re missing something :). Press Command-Q and a dialog will explain the process. (We put up a new screenshot at MAS that shows this, but few people look past the first, it seems.)

    We’re changing the layout a bit in a future update to make this more clear.


  3. edward says:

    Great app, thanks! I was just thinking about needing an app like this then I saw you on the app store and it was on sale so I bought now instead of later.

    Thanks for being open and re-evaluating the price.

    It takes a really focused, disciplined and excellent company to deliver high value at a reasonable/low price. If a company becomes bloated with lavish expenses, waste or poor management they usually have to sell products at a high price to cover the excess overhead.

  4. Michael Bach says:

    The sale now has convinced me to acquire Witch and I do like it. Nice work! Still I’d like to voice the following request, namely the option of an “OS 9 window mode” — selecting any window to bring all windows of that app to the front, the selected one frontmost of course. Please find the time to add this!

    Another thing I found curious: buying Witch updated my old preference pane (set to inactive) to version 3.5.8, while the app has version 6. Just wondering…

    Best regards, Michael.

  5. Peter Maurer says:

    Michael, so you’re saying that buying Witch from the App Store actually upgraded the prefpane bundle in your disabled PreferencePanes folder as well? That’s the first time I’ve heard of an interference like that.

    If that’s the case, we’ve just learned something about how the App Store app (or more precisely, its installer helper process) handles updates. It obviously updates all instances of a given bundle (as defined by its bundle ID) when installing an app. It seems like overkill, though, that it even does that for bundles that are inside the app you bought, which is how App Store Witch is structured internally: It’s a very thin container app that hosts a prefpane that’s very similar to the one you can get from our site. And both prefpane variants share a bundle ID.

    So we could probably stop this from happening by changing the App Store prefpane’s bundle ID. There are some drawbacks to that, so we’ll have to ponder it for a while. Thanks for the heads-up!

  6. Michael Bach says:

    Dear Peter:

    My bad: I tracked back via Time Machine and found that I already had 3.5.8 before buying vs. 3.6 via the app store; ‘t was manually installed some time ago.
    I apologize for my error, so: heads back down!

    Does this mean that my request for the OS9 style will now be binned? ;-)

    Best, Michael

  7. Peter Maurer says:

    Ha, no. It’s too good a suggestion and too easy to implement. ;)