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12% of Americans have bought virtual goods in the last 12 months

By on July 30, 2009

A recent survey by commissioned by PlaySpan and reported by GigaOm says that 12% of Americans have spent real-world money on virtual goods in the last 12 months.

There are some interesting takeaways:

  • The biggest categories of spender, where over 15% of respondents had bought virtual goods were:
    • Males aged 12-17 and 18-24
    • Females aged 12-17, 25-34 and 35-44.
  • Woman aged 18-24 and older men were the least likely to have spent money
  • Console gamers were the least likely to have bought virtual goods (although to be fair, this may be due to lack of opportunity)
  • The average transaction value was $30, while 15% of respondents said that they spent more than $100

Those figures are reassuring to all of those companies trying to make headway in the new world of “freemium” gaming.

About Nicholas Lovell

Nicholas is the founder of Gamesbrief, a blog dedicated to the business of games. It aims to be informative, authoritative and above all helpful to developers grappling with business strategy. He is the author of a growing list of books about making money in the games industry and other digital media, including How to Publish a Game and Design Rules for Free-to-Play Games, and Penguin-published title The Curve: