Who Does 99¢ Pricing Hurt?

photo http://www.sxc.hu/photo/570269 by Andy Reid http://www.sxc.hu/profile/RockinDadIf first books were universally priced at 99¢, the only folks who’d lose are authors who won’t write or can’t sell a second book. I say, let’s set that expectation!

99¢ is a good price for a single “taster” book so folks can be sure if they like your books. If so, they’ll pay full boat for the others. If not, you don’t have a frustrated reader who feels ripped off, you just have someone who quietly goes away. Folks who pay $12 for a book they hated are far more vocal than folks who only paid 99¢.

Be clear with your readers that’s exactly what you’re doing. “This book is the taster sample. If you like it, here are 6 more!”

Everyone in traditional publishing mourns the loss of the gatekeepers. This is built-in thresholding. Don’t set the bar artificially from the outside, set the bar at “Do you want to write a book badly enough that you’re willing to sell it for 99¢ because you know you’ll be writing more?”

What if I Want to Raise the Price Later?

photo http://www.sxc.hu/photo/875056 by Andrew Steinle http://www.sxc.hu/profile/andrewcsThe common perception is that a low price is hard to raise. It’s just not true.

It’s hard to resell the same thing to the same buyer at a higher price, sure. That’s why we whine about the price of gas, like that’s gonna do any good.

But if I sell my book to you for 99¢, and in a year when I’ve finished 5 of them and am famous for being Chandler reborn, do you really believe I can’t set the price of that selfsame book anywhere I like, and sell copies all day long to new readers?

In fact, would those early readers not tell everyone they know “I knew him when he was 99¢, and he’s worth every penny of ten bucks, go buy the book” ?

Who Says a $10 Book is Better Than a 99¢ Book?

photo http://www.sxc.hu/photo/641396 by jweston http://www.sxc.hu/profile/jwestonSeems I started this last week, talking about digital book pricing. Since digital books have essentially no cost involved in delivery, the price is almost an abstract concept.

It’s often argued that a book priced at 99¢ looks like the author doesn’t value their own work (usually by authors who don’t want to sell their books for 99¢.)

In what context do “price” and “value” relate to each other? That’s the question I’ll be exploring in a bit of detail this week.
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Amazon: Price-Matching

Cheryl Campbell

Cheryl Campbell

Continuing our conversation with author Cheryl Campbell

On Jul 29, 2013, at 7:48 AM, Cheryl Campbell <ccampbell.me@gmail.comwrote:Morning!

When reading the terms of service or whatever it’s called for Amazon, for you to get the 70% of sales profits, your Amazon book has to be priced at least 20% less than other distributors, like Smashwords, or they will cut you back to 35% instead of 70%.

That seems a bit unfair, but I guess I can’t really go up against Amazon on that. However I was thinking that if I marketed on fb a coupon for Smashwords that if used would get the price down to the same as Amazon, that might help level the playing field. Does Amazon troll for that kind of thing?… posting of coupons for other sites to get the prices the same as Amazon?

Do Smashwords coupons only work if purchased off Smashwords?* Or do they also distribute to iBook, Nook, etc? I’m thinking they’re probably only good for Smashwords purchases.

Have a great one! I’m off to Pittsburgh for work.

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