My previous post on pricing a first self-published book at $0.99 generated quite a discussion! Once again it shows just how many opinions are out there – some support my strategy, other authors are unhappy with having to give the work away practically for free. My personal view is “this is just what it is” – a free market, where prices are set by the laws of supply and demand. I do think my 2.5 years of hard work are worth more than $0.99, but I will just concentrate on promoting it so hard that before you know, it will be a series and a movie, and I will buy a pair of Manolos, just to see what all the fuss is about. My goal is to get the book into hands of as many readers as possible, with the hope that one of them knows Coen brothers. Seriously, does anyone here know even one of those guys?
Back to the argument of $0.99 vs $X.99. My limited research of two or so months shows that you will get not only better sales, but also better royalties with the $0.99 pricing. How can I prove it? With the power of screenshots and basic math.
Here is the snapshot of my sales and pages read for the last month:
For simplicity, let’s concentrate on sales alone (it looks like “pages read” was pretty even over time). During the first half of the month, my price was at $2.99, and it was $0.99 in the second half. I sold 1 copy at $2.99 and 27 copies at $0.99. The royalties were $2.04 and $0.35, respectively. The math, ladies and gentlemen!
1 x $2.04 = $2.04
27 x $0.35 = 9.45
During the second half of the month I did run a disappointing BargainBooksy promo, which resulted in 10 sales. Let’s take them out of equation:
17 x $0.35 = $5.95
I’m depressed now, because the numbers are so dismally small, but that’s besides the point. The point is that I had 17-27 times more sales and about 3-5 times more royalties when I’d dropped the price. The hope is that some of those people will talk about it to their friends. The goal is to get a snowball rolling, so that I (eventually) get a million of these tiny sales.
I guess the time will show if this is overall a winning strategy. The only concern is the inability to advertise with some of the websites that require the book to be discounted by at least 50%, but I hope that by zig-zagging the price, I will comply with that requirement.
Oh, and I have a very exciting update about Bargain Booksy! I’ve emailed them, asking if 10 copies is what I should expect from a promo, and they responded! Not only that, they apologized, said it was too low for the quality of my novel, and offered a $25 credit towards another promo! I was speechless and promptly scheduled a promo for 5 December with a different audience, this time with Chick lit/Romance readers, at a cost of $70. I’ve updated my post on The Most Super-Duper, Exhaustive, Comprehensive, and Current Listing of Free and Paid Book Advertising Websites and Ideas accordingly.
Once again, only time will tell if that was a good decision 🙂