Thursday, February 2, 2012

Ebook pricing experiment continues for Tornado Siren

I'm still trying to figure out the ideal price point for the Tornado Siren ebook.  One of the nice things about ebooks is that it's super easy to change the pricing.  At the end of December and all through January, I lowered the price from $2.99 to $0.99.  I was curious to see if it would dramatically increase sales.  I did also have a little bit of PR bringing in some readers, because it was a featured read with a group on Goodreads.

Lowering the price definitely seemed to help.  Over the fall, sales had declined quite a bit--over the summer I'd been selling a dozen or so a month.  In September and October I sold about 9/ month.  In November, it was down to 3.  In December, after the price boost, sales went up to 15, and then I sold 32 in January.  (These are all numbers just for the Kindle.  The other platforms have fairly minimal sales.)

But based on my reading, a lower price isn't always a huge selling point.  So for February (and perhaps March), I'm going to try pricing it at $4.99.  I'm curious to see if that drops sales down to the bottom of the well.

Obviously, with selling so few copies, sales numbers don't greatly affect my income.  However, the difference in royalties at the various prices do add up.  Especially because below $2.99, the royalty on Kindle sales drops to 30% from 70%.  So at $2.99 I was making about $2/book.  At the $0.99 price, only 33 cents or so.  All those sales in January brought in about $13.  At $4.99, I'd only have to sell about 4 copies to make that same amount.  In my case, I'm more interested in gaining readers, but I do have expenses to pay.

Here's hoping that sales continue strong.  It's still a lot cheaper than when it was out in paperback (at $14.99).  But I'm not sure people will be as willing to experiment on an unknown title and author for $4.99.

We'll see how it goes.


Claudia said...

I will admit that I am a sucker for .99 cent book - there's so little risk and so much to gain!

Patrick Gabridge said...

I'm with you, Claudia. But it seems worth experimenting for a little while (based on what I've read about other people's experiences).