By limiting payment options, you are restricting your potential consumer pool. A business that only accepts cash is constraining itself to only consumers with money in their pockets – the same thing applies to the social gaming industry. As a developer, it is important to understand who your gamers are and what type of payment options are available to them.
According to Reuters, Zynga generates 90% of its revenue through the consumption of virtual goods, which typically range anywhere from $1 to $20. Zynga understands that a gaming development company can create as many virtual goods as they’d like, but if their consumers do not have the ability to purchase them, their sales would not be too high. To help us better understand this concept, let’s take a look at Zynga’s approach to India.
India, with a population of 1 billion people, has been a target for social gaming developers – Zynga in particular. With over 81 million internet subscribers and 13.2 million Facebook users, India’s emerging market is vulnerable to the addiction of purchasing virtual goods for social games. Common forms of payment elsewhere for virtual goods are typically the standards: PayPal and credit cards.
However, in India, pre-paid recharge cards have been most successful. Recognizing this, Zynga has taken the lead in international efforts to take advantage of foreign markets with regards to virtual goods. By offering further forms of payment: pre-paid recharge cards, internet banking options and SMS payment via cellphone, Zynga shows their ability to apply successful payment options to other parts of the world.