Farmville, Candy Crush, Words With Friends; now household names but only nine years ago they were not even in existence. Facebook games are a billion dollar industry and there's no end in sight. One in four Facebook users plays these games and collectively 927,000,000 hours are spent each month playing them. The biggest name by far behind the games we know and love is Zynga, who are the makers of Words With Friends and Farmville. Zynga's sales make up 12 percent of Facebook's revenue. Ninety percent of these sales came from selling virtual goods such as cherry trees or chickens.
Facebook's earnings are pretty incredible, considering only 10 percent of people who play these games pay real money, but the average player will pay $55 when making an in game purchase. In Q1 of 2013 alone, Facebook reported $213 million in revenue, mostly from social games. Candy Crush alone takes in $850,000 per day in revenue -enough for a small country! If Candy Crush were a country they would rank 218th on the list according to GDP. More recently the Freemium pricing structure has come into vogue. Players play the game for free but will make in-app purchases to help them get ahead.
To learn more about America's new favorite pastime, check out this infographic from BestAccountingDegrees.net.