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Ricki80

Steam takes 30% ?

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Does Steam really take 30% cut from the price?

 

1) I know this number heavily flows around the net (but i saw also 40%) and it has  been probably answered here many times (but i didnt find any topic using the search button). So im asking just to be really sure, does steam really take 30% or does it vary?

 

2) If it doesnt vary, that means, that the company behind each game sees only around 56% of the sell price, is that correct (since VAT is 20% and is applied before steam cut) and (1,0*0,8)*0,7= 56%.

 

Am i correct on both issues? Thanks

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Like all contracts, a deal with Valve to publish using Steam is whatever you negotiate.  

 

The revenue split in almost every contract is a trade secret. For some contracts, revealing an exact number can have serious negative consequences.

 

30% is a common number for many online distributors for low-volume, low-effort transactions. If that describes your product, expect that to be approximately your value.

 
 

When you are the little guy you are not negotiating from a position of power. You have a position of weakness. If they provide additional services, like the greenlight program or agree to provide heavy advertising, that can also affect your negotiations.

 

 

And if you have enough power, sometimes various organizations will pay you for the opportunity. Frank Gibeau of EA stated in a presentation that Apple gave them a truckload of money to release PvZ2 on iOS first. They started from a position of very strong power -- they had a product that was already very popular and would guarantee a bunch of sales.  If the guy behind FlappyBirds contacts a publisher and said he wants to publish through them on a non-standard contract, he could likely negotiate an amazing deal because it is high volume and guaranteed to attract a lot of sources.  

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Like all contracts, a deal with Valve to publish using Steam is whatever you negotiate.  

 

The revenue split in almost every contract is a trade secret. For some contracts, revealing an exact number can have serious negative consequences.

 

30% is a common number for many online distributors for low-volume, low-effort transactions. If that describes your product, expect that to be approximately your value.

 
 

When you are the little guy you are not negotiating from a position of power. You have a position of weakness. If they provide additional services, like the greenlight program or agree to provide heavy advertising, that can also affect your negotiations.

 

 

And if you have enough power, sometimes various organizations will pay you for the opportunity. Frank Gibeau of EA stated in a presentation that Apple gave them a truckload of money to release PvZ2 on iOS first. They started from a position of very strong power -- they had a product that was already very popular and would guarantee a bunch of sales.  If the guy behind FlappyBirds contacts a publisher and said he wants to publish through them on a non-standard contract, he could likely negotiate an amazing deal because it is high volume and guaranteed to attract a lot of sources.  

 

 

Well... yeah... and blood is red... nothing really new there ;-).

 

If we are speaking about a normal/smaller or even an indie game (but nothing really ugly or with pixelate graphic) do you think the number is correct? I saw floating it around the net several times and i think this is the normal steam cut...?

Edited by Ricki80

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As frob said, unless there is something unusual about you or your product you can probably expect that to be approximately correct.

It's also very similar to many other popular distributors.

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Does Steam really take 30% cut from the price?

 

1) I know this number heavily flows around the net (but i saw also 40%) and it has  been probably answered here many times (but i didnt find any topic using the search button). So im asking just to be really sure, does steam really take 30% or does it vary?

 

2) If it doesnt vary, that means, that the company behind each game sees only around 56% of the sell price, is that correct (since VAT is 20% and is applied before steam cut) and (1,0*0,8)*0,7= 56%.

 

Am i correct on both issues? Thanks

 

iOS, Amazon, Android, and others take 30%, leaving 70% for the developers and publishers to split (if you have a publisher that's marketing and funding your game). Steam's cut is unspecified, but based on statements made in the past, it is "around" the same 30% amount, but has occasionally varied for specific unspecified developers.

 

30%, all things considered, is a really good deal, considering that up until digital distribution became common, developers had to go through publishers for marketing, manufacturing, and distribution to the retailers, meaning the developers would end up with only about 10-15%.

 

6a00d8341c630a53ef0120a8b7438c970b_600wi

 

And that's before taxes.

 

70% (or even 60%) is not at all bad, compared to 10-15%. Plus, you can also sell the game through your own website and take the full 95% (minus ~5% credit card fees and merchant costs - fees that iOS and Steam handle for you out of their cut).

 

Note that the 30-70 cut, or whatever the cut, applies not only to your game's original sale, but also to DLC, microtransactions, and subscription fees.

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The standard rate used by all the digital distributors is 30%. It would be a big surprise if steam asked for a different cut.

When I worked on AAA console games ("boxed product"), the best cut we got from retail sales was 0.006%.
(or if you include the fact that the publisher paid development costs upfront, that figure rises to 2%)
No joke.

70% is a pretty good deal in comparison ;)

One great thing steam does as well, is they allow you to sell the steam version of your game via your own website, with you keeping 100% (minus tax).

As for VAT, it varies greatly by region. You'll also pay taxes on that income too. Maybe twice depending on what country you're in.

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Thanks guys, a lot of the things i knew, some didnt, and some i had confirmed here, great advice :-)!

 

the other thing you mentioned and i had thought about also asking is the steam cut if i sell my game on my own website.

 

No if i sell a standalone copy of my game, which doesnt run on steam on my website i know i can have the full price for myself (minus the fees for paypal or other payement provider of course), but i was interested also in how much i get when i sell a STEAM copy of my game, THROUGH MY website, i know that i should be able to get more then the 70%, but wasnt really sure how much, i think its called Affiliate .How much do i get there, hodgman said 100% (-vat), but i dont belive that, i belive steam takes even some percentage from these sales, albeit smaller one, my estimate would be something around 5-15%, Is that correct??

 

(thanks for all your advice so far)

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How much do i get there, hodgman said 100% (-vat), but i dont belive that, i belive steam takes even some percentage from these sales, albeit smaller one, my estimate would be something around 5-15%, Is that correct??


I'm pretty sure you get 100%, though you have to handle credit card fees (3-5%) and such like that yourself on your website. Steam seems to let people generate and give out (for free or for money) as many Steam Keys as the developers want - I can't confirm this first-hand though, not having any games released myself. The benefit of this to Steam, is that it catches more consumers in their net, hooking them into Steam's ecosystem.

 

[Edit:] Steam Greenlight FAQ

"Q: If my game is accepted through Steam Greenlight, can I give my previous customers keys for the Steam version?
A: Once your game is accepted for distribution on Steam, we will give you as many keys for your game as you want at no cost."

 

"Q: What is your revenue split?

A: We don't discuss our revenue split publicly. Once your game goes through Steam Greenlight, we'll get to those details."

Edited by Servant of the Lord

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Servant of the Lord: Wow another usefull info, thanks, i was going to ask about that also (how many steam keys can i get free from steam (for game review sites for example)). Great info, thanks.

 

By the way, im not sure if the:

 

""Q: If my game is accepted through Steam Greenlight, can I give my previous customers keys for the Steam version?
A: Once your game is accepted for distribution on Steam, we will give you as many keys for your game as you want at no cost.""

 

 

Applies even for sales of your game on your own website... I simply have hard time believing that since i didnt come across this in any other industry so far, i always thought that they take something as well, but maybe only 10% (instead of 30%), because its still a game and traffic on their server and thus their cost, lets say (theoretically) that you sell 1 000 000 copies from your own website, but none or only few thousands on steam, so steam has only small revenue (if he lets you with 100% from your own site), but still has to enable 1 000 000 copies to be downloaded and played etc. even though he get 1 milion "new" steam owners who might buy other game from steam...

Also do not forget that there are a lot of studios (at least i think so, i so some of them) that doesnt allow you to buy their game through their website (they dont have even any "shop section", instead they will refer you to steam. I dont really see a reason for this in 2014, because i belive to code such thing onto your website isnt that expensive these day, but still they do not do that...

For example http://pinkertonroad.com/games/

 

And i belive there are other such studios...

 

So simply put, can additional people confirm that steam enables you to take the full revenue (100%) from your (steam) game sale THROUGH your OWN WEBSITE? The more people that could confirm that, the more reliable that information becomes.

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Steam know they're going to sell a tonne more games through their website than you will through yours.
Yes, they let you generate as many redeemable steam keys as you like and then do with them what you like.

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