Author Topic: Pricing Self-published eBooks  (Read 17424 times)

Offline JohnPansini

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Pricing Self-published eBooks
« on: September 16, 2015, 12:05:55 PM »
I've been selling my ebook for $9.95 since 2011. It is now in revision, but it's still for sale. And it's still a quality product. I'm thinking of dropping its current price to $1.99, and then when the revised edition is ready, and that could take almost a year, it will go back to $9.95.

Any thoughts will be greatly appreciated,
JP



 

Offline slightlysmall

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2015, 12:49:45 PM »
I won't pay $9.95 for my favorite ebook from the best publisher in the world.

The max I would pay for an ebook is $5, and that's if I know it will be amazing and worth it. Usually for non-fiction that I know I'll read over and over and want with me. For self-pub, I'll pay up to $5 for an author whose previous work I've already loved, but won't take a chance on a new author for more than $1.99 unless they've been recommended to me by a friend.

Offline JohnPansini

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2015, 02:07:22 PM »
Thanks for you input, Small. Really appreciated. :up:

If I drop my price, it will be interesting to see if it affects sales.

JP

Offline Sarah Ahiers (Falen)

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2015, 02:27:27 PM »
Yeah pretty much everything SS said.
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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2015, 02:54:59 PM »
I won't even pay $9.95 for a favourite author from a Big 5. I'd stick it in the wishlist and wait for a sale to come through Bookbub.

That price is hugely out of step with the indie market, not to mention you're in the 35% royalty band at Amazon, so you are earning far less per sale than you would at a lower price where you would receive 70% per sale.

Personally I price from free to $3.99 depending on length (novella vs novel) and its place in a series (first vs later instalments).

Offline JohnPansini

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2015, 03:05:33 PM »
Thanks, Farseer. Pricing is the most difficult thing any SPer has to wrestle with.


Offline TerryRodgers

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2015, 04:03:34 PM »
What everyone else said. Is this the novel you plan to query to agents?

Offline Pandean

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2015, 04:08:57 PM »
I agree with everyone else.
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Offline JohnPansini

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2015, 04:53:42 PM »
X: thanks for the input.

Terry: No, it's the first book I wrote, the one that three agents tried to sell. They couldn't so I self-published it.

JP 

Offline Tabris

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2015, 06:02:39 PM »
$1.99 is considered ebook no-man's-land. It's not cheap enough to be bargain-basement and it's not high enough that people think you take your writing seriously. I'd suggest putting it to $2.99.

Offline JohnPansini

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2015, 07:34:32 PM »
Good point, Tabris. Thank you so much. :clap:

JP

Offline Tabris

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2015, 07:32:45 AM »
The other thing to remember is that at 2.99, you'll get 70% royalties from Kindle, whereas at 1.99 you only get 30%. Most people willing to spend $2 on a book also are willing to spend $3. Also, at a $3 price point, you have room to mark down for the occasional $.99 special, meaning you can advertise every so often with ENT and others to get a little sales bump.

HOWEVER -- I'm not a mega-successful indie publisher; I'm just repeating what I've heard from those who seem to be successful.

Offline Doggy Teng

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #12 on: September 17, 2015, 11:48:25 AM »
I know John's question was specifically about pricing for self-pubbed books, but I find it rather scary to see people saying they won't pay more than five dollars for an eBook, even from a big publisher and well-known author. :eek:

When I priced both the print and eBook versions of the first book published by our small press last year, I looked at plenty of comparable books in the same category on Amazon, as well as taking into consideration the royalty calculations on CreateSpace and KDP.  Then I selected the low end of the typical range (or a little below, since it's not a particularly long book). 

Many of the comparable eBooks were priced at $9.99 on Amazon, with few going below $7.99.  And there are plenty that are $11.99 or even higher -- the Kindle price for one of Aldo Leopold's books of essays (same genre as our book) is $19.24!  So it seemed reasonable to set the eBook price at 6.99, which also kept the net royalty close to what we get from the POD books, since I didn't want there to be a big difference in that amount.

When you're standing in a publisher's shoes and you're concerned with giving your authors decent royalties and still having a wee bit to put toward expenses, you can only go so low, or else you're practically giving away free books. :sad:  Giving some eBooks away as part of a promotion may work well for a self-pubbed author of romance serials, for instance -- since they typically have a relatively high sales volume, and getting readers 'hooked' in the series can certainly make that kind of promotion worthwhile -- but I don't think it would be a feasible tactic for a small press.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2015, 11:51:31 AM by Doggy Teng »

Offline JohnPansini

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2015, 11:59:26 AM »
Thanks for adding to this thread, Doggy.

Personally, as a SPer, I only give my ebook away to established reviewers. BTW: the two blurbs I was able to get were positive. As for giveaways to readers, I remember reading somewhere that there is no guarantee a person getting a free-be will 1) bother to read the book or 2) bother to give a review. (I might be able to source this if someone is truly interested.)

JP 

Offline Sarah Ahiers (Falen)

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Re: Pricing Self-published eBooks
« Reply #14 on: September 17, 2015, 12:56:17 PM »
Many of the comparable eBooks were priced at $9.99 on Amazon, with few going below $7.99.  And there are plenty that are $11.99 or even higher -- the Kindle price for one of Aldo Leopold's books of essays (same genre as our book) is $19.24!  So it seemed reasonable to set the eBook price at 6.99, which also kept the net royalty close to what we get from the POD books, since I didn't want there to be a big difference in that amount.

For that cost, I'd rather just buy the paper version of the book
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