Pricing for Ebook vs. Print Book Version

by DaNae

Shelley,
I am a fellow SBI'er and trying to be a published author on CreateSpace. I have been following your advice on several steps of the way. Thank you for the great information.

Now, I'm at the crossroads of setting a price for my book. I would like to provide a hard copy of the book on Amazon and a digital copy in the form of an ebook on my site. So people can purchase one or the other or both.

On Amazon, actual books go for $9-$14 each. That isn't all profit for the authors. Many ebooks overall go for $20 plus. And most of that is profit. Many times if an ebook is priced too low people think that it is low quality.

Is there a way to offer the hard copy on my site with the option to "upgrade" with the ebook version? Just an idea... Charge $15 for the hard copy with a $5 option to get the ebook version immediately. Or charge $12 for just the ebook version. I am currently using e-junkie. Is this idea even possible?

Or should I just send people to Amazon.com for a $15 hard copy and separately sell the ebook on my site. Perhaps I should just sell it as an ebook and not worry about a hard copy. But I would be just tickled pink to see something that I actually did write in print.

Anyways, I would greatly appreciate your input on this.

Thanks!
DaNae

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A few options for pricing ebooks vs. print books
by: Shelley Hitz

DaNae,
So glad you've connected from SBI! :) I love SBI and now use it for all my websites. I checked out your site and am impressed with what you've done so far - great job!

Great question and one I think a lot of authors deal with in some way.

There are several options to offer both the ebook and print book.

1) Sell them completely separate. You can either set up separate sales pages or just sell the ebook on your website and have the print version on Amazon for credibility and people searching for you online.

2) Put them on the same salespage. For my book for teen girls, this is what I did. I give them the option of buying the print book for $10 or the ebook for $6.95. Since I knew my target market (teen girls and those who work with teen girls) would probably not buy a higher priced ebook, I priced it cheaper since I make more profit with digital sales.

3) Offer them both on your website and price the ebook higher than the print book. However, offer more bonuses and upgrades for the ebook. So, you could create a few simple videos about creating smoothies or demonstrating recipes that those who purchase your ebook also get. And then you could place a link in your print book to offer an upgrade to the digital version at a discount to get the extra bonuses.

Option 3 is what I plan to do for products I sell on Self-Publishing-Coach.com website. I plan to offer certain products as a Kindle ebook, however want to price it lower than my digital products I sell. But, I don't want those who buy from my website to feel "cheated." Therefore, I plan to offer only the text version on Kindle and offer an upgrade to all the bonuses at a discount that those who sign up on my website will receive. Does that make sense?

I hope that helps!

Thanks,
Shelley

My ebook Pricing Battle
by: Amanda Taylor

Ebook pricing is pretty tricky indeed so this is a good question. I have heard most people say that a fair range is from $.99 to $9.99.

There are a lot of people trying to get more sales by pricing their books at .99, but then they are cheating themselves in so many ways like Shelley mentions. There are so many things they forget to consider such as bookseller trade discounts and the bookseller also has to make a piece. They only make the whole thing if they sell it off their website. People who have priced quality books cheaply have spoiled the market a tad. People are saying if someone sells their book for $3.99 to $5.99, which are fair, are telling authors to lower their price to like 2.99 or less. Authors are giving in. People don't know the ins and outs of selling on a 3rd party retailer. A .99 ebook would be for something very small and simple

Don't be too greedy either. I wouldn't go over 9.99 for an ebook. Print books have a print cost and ebooks don't so most of the time the ebooks are cheaper than the print books unless you have a low retail price. Some people are trying to sell ebooks at a hardcover cost. That won't work at all.

I had a pricing battle myself and this is how I handled it. I was hovering around a retail price between 3.99 to 4.99 since my book is pretty long at 101K words. I also have illustrations in it so then I decided to price it at 5.99 in the middle of the range and to compensate for the illustration content that most ebooks may not have those. I used this also to gauge my future books as it is in the mid range of my other ms. Shorter ones will be lower and longer ones will be higher.

Pricing fiction vs. nonfiction books
by: Shelley Hitz

Amanda,
Thanks for your comments! You make some good points. I think we always need to check our motives as authors to make sure we aren't getting "greedy" with our prices and yet also being paid a fair price.

Personally, I knew that DaNae was asking about pricing a nonfiction book. And in certain cases, when you have specialized knowledge, nonfiction ebooks can be priced higher. Especially when combined with audio and video training.

So, I think it's important to do some research and see what your market is willing to buy. If all the other fiction books in your genre are selling for $0.99-$2.99, then it may be best to price low. However, if you've written a non-fiction book with specialized knowledge and other similar books are selling for $6.99-9.99, then pricing higher makes sense.

However, in the end, it is still a learning curve. Trial and error. I'd love to hear any other opinions on pricing ebooks and how it has worked for other authors (nonfiction and fiction).

~Shelley~

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