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message 1: by Alex (new)

Alex Carver | 770 comments Hi everyone

I'm starting to get ready to release my debut novel (hooray) and I have been looking at the top 100 paid boards for and to try and get an idea of how I should be pricing my novel.
I would like to price it at what I believe it is worth, around $4.99 which would make it around £3.49 in the UK but while I can see that approx 75% of the titles in the US kindle top 20 sell for $4.99 or better, in the UK most of the top 20 are £0.99, which is a huge difference.

By my maths I need between 500-750 sales @ $4.99 or 4000-6000 sales @ £0.99. The first is achievable off 1 title, the second I'm not sure about.

My dilemma, and the reason for this post, is, should I price differently in the US and the UK to suit the markets or have a comparable price for every amazon site?

Thanks for all advice

message 2: by Aislinn (new)

Aislinn | 150 comments Hi Alex,

For my opinion, I think one of the joys of self-publishing is that you can choose your prices to suit the market. When I was researching prices, I did read that people in the UK almost always only buy £0.99 books. Some will buy £1.99, but after that price point there are almost no sales.

So, I have priced my books as $2.99 in the US, and £1.99 in the UK. That seems to be going OK for me so far. The UK isn't my biggest market, but it never will be. So I'm not going to spend too much time stressing about how many units I have to sell there.

That was a long winded way of me saying that I think you should price your books however you want to price them, in any market.

message 3: by Aislinn (new)

Aislinn | 150 comments Oh, and congrats on getting your debut novel off the ground! That's awesome. :)

message 4: by Alex (new)

Alex Carver | 770 comments Thanks Aislinn, I think you're right, being self-published does allow me the freedom to do as I wish.

I'm leaning towards either $3.99 or $4.99 in the US and £1.99 in the UK, which will enable me to get the 70% royalty rate and provide an opportunity for discounts.
From my past experience (unfortunately too far out of date to be much use) sales in the US are significantly higher than in the UK so I'm probably going to follow your example and try not to worry too much about that market and instead focus on the US.

message 5: by Aislinn (new)

Aislinn | 150 comments Makes sense. To my eternal surprise, my second biggest market after the US is actually Germany. So you never know! But, yeah, the US is definitely the market to focus on, I think. It might be a bit different for you, writing a crime book, because I know those are extremely popular in the UK. But I think £1.99 is a fair price.

message 6: by Alex (new)

Alex Carver | 770 comments I've heard that Germany can be a big market if you're lucky, I'll have to keep my fingers crossed they like British set crime novels

message 7: by Morris (new)

Morris Graham (morris_g) I think $2.99 or $3.99 US is right, though I sell mine in a countdown sale for $0.99.

message 8: by Anna (new)

Anna Faversham (annafaversham) | 544 comments £1.99 for the UK is maximum for a new writer, I think.

I think you are right to concentrate on the US - that's my biggest market too, despite my books all being set in southern England. It was a huge surprise to see my first book take off in the US (2012) as I had not even advertised it.

The beauty of being an Indie is that you can change your mind if something isn't working.

message 9: by Alex (new)

Alex Carver | 770 comments Thank you Anna, and you Morris, I'm taking all of this on board and will make a final decision when I'm ready to hit the publish button - still got some editing to do.

message 10: by Anna (last edited Oct 25, 2016 07:50AM) (new)

Anna Faversham (annafaversham) | 544 comments Germany? How did that happen, Aislinn? I am all agog - how clever!

For a new writer, Alex, I would certainly recommend Amazon's kdp Select. It encourages a reasonable price and also encourages and assists with periodic sales which are amazingly helpful for visibility.

message 11: by Alex (new)

Alex Carver | 770 comments Cheers Anna, I had already decided on going with select, though if I'm honest my decision was based in part on the aggravation of getting a US tax id, which I'll have to do at some point, and past experience when I was previously published.

message 12: by Aislinn (new)

Aislinn | 150 comments Anna Faversham wrote: "Germany? How did that happen, Aislinn? I am all agog - how clever!

Anna, I wish I knew! It started slow, but it has now surpassed every market except the US. I just need to make sure I keep doing what I'm doing and hope it continues. :)

message 13: by Rosie (new)

Rosie (RoseandBurn) | 5 comments Someone once told me to price within in reason...but never price less than you are worth. I don't begrudge authors who sell low, but depending on the type of work and length of it I think $5 is a reasonable price in the U.S. and a pound 99 isn't terrible if that isn't your central market. I applaud you for thinking this way...and you've encouraged me to do the same!

message 14: by Annie (new)

Annie Arcane (anniearcane) | 629 comments Anna Faversham wrote: "£1.99 for the UK is maximum for a new writer, I think."

Whoa. I had no idea hahaha!!

I've always had my novel for $3.99 US and set all the other prices automatically based on the US price. Recently, I got curious and bumped it up another dollar to see if it'd still sell...

*crazy laugh*

US: $4.99
DE: €4.55
UK: £4.09

Selling slightly fewer copies on average, but still my top three Amazon markets. Given, US is waaay better than the other two but it always has been even at a buck cheaper, eh?

Interesting discussion! Thanks, guys!!


message 15: by Annabelle (new)

Annabelle Costa | 62 comments I buy a lot of kindle books, and I have to say, I don't think I would buy a self published book that was more than three dollars. And I know for fact that a lot of other people feel the same way.

Alex, what do you mean when you say you "need" a certain number of sales?

message 16: by A.S. (new)

A.S. Arnett (aaronsarnett) | 7 comments I agree, if you know the market and have a good feeling for what your book is worth, price accordingly.

That being said, never count out a market, you may be surprised from where your sales come.

Now, I don't want to be a spoiler, but keep in mind that when you are first starting out, a cheap price can be the best way to get readers in the door. And based on my own habits, I know I would be unlikely to spend more than $2.99 for an unknown author, but that's just me.

Good luck!

message 17: by Alex (new)

Alex Carver | 770 comments Annabelle, I 'need' a certain number of sales in order to make enough money to pay my bills and give me money to live on.

message 18: by Annabelle (new)

Annabelle Costa | 62 comments Gotcha, Alex :) so your goal is ultimately to live off your writing?

message 19: by Alex (new)

Alex Carver | 770 comments Definitely, it's something I've been planning for a while now. I have about 12 books and a couple of shorts on paper that I'm sorting out for release and enough money in the bank to keep me going for about 2 years, so I've got that long to start making a living.

Fingers, and everything else, are crossed.

message 20: by Aislinn (new)

Aislinn | 150 comments Man, that's definitely my goal. One day!

message 21: by Melonie (new)

Melonie Purcell | 43 comments I've read quite a few articles on this topic. I bumped my book up before the KS sale, per the recommendation of the articles. That made it look like a better deal to buyers. But, what I noticed while waiting for the sale is that I sold more copies at $4.99 USD than I did at $3.99USD. I've never had my book at $2.99, so that would be the test, but I'm holding at the $4.99 mark until my term with KS is over. After that, I'm gonna play a bit. I'll let everyone know how it goes.

message 22: by Annie (new)

Annie Arcane (anniearcane) | 629 comments Yay, Miss Melonie! So happy to see you trying $4.99 as well!! Seems to be working alright for me too so here's hoping I didn't just jinx us XP


@Alex: I'm digging your gameplan! Bestest of luck!!!

message 23: by Anna (last edited Oct 27, 2016 01:17AM) (new)

Anna Faversham (annafaversham) | 544 comments Melonie - useful info. Thank you very much!

message 24: by Alex (last edited Oct 27, 2016 01:25AM) (new)

Alex Carver | 770 comments Congrats on selling at 4.99 Melonie, it's nice royalties at that price, you really start earning there

I think my biggest concern is that people are unwilling to pay too much for an unknown author (unless they're with a publishing house) and that forces us to consider selling our books for less than they're worth.

I remember a meme from years back about people being willing to spend 4x as much on a coffee that's gone in minutes compared to a book that gives enjoyment for hours.

message 25: by Annabelle (new)

Annabelle Costa | 62 comments I have to respectfully say that I personally have found huge benefits from having a 99 cent book.

When my book was 99 cents, I was selling dozens of copies each day. When I raised the price to 2.99, sales immediately dropped. This probably would have happened with time anyway, but now I'm lucky to sell two copies per day. But not only that, when the price was lower, I would have thousands of kindle pages read per day. That dropped off too.

I'm not sorry I raised the price, because I had other reasons for doing that. But my Amazon theory is that sales beget sales. The more sales you get, the more Amazon will recommend your book.

Obviously though, some of you guys have had a huge amount of luck selling books, so maybe some of my theories are incorrect. Melonie, if you are getting dozens more daily sales by raising your price, maybe I need to rethink things! :)

message 26: by Owen (new)

Owen O'Neill (owen_r_oneill) | 1509 comments Aislinn wrote: "Makes sense. To my eternal surprise, my second biggest market after the US is actually Germany. So you never know! But, yeah, the US is definitely the market to focus on, I think. It might be a bit..."

We have also found that Germany is our second biggest market (after it's bigger for us than all other non-US markets combined.

Interesting comment about prices in the UK. We always relied on Amazon setting the price automatically there, but I think we'll give £1.99 a shot. Thanks for the insight!

message 27: by Annie (new)

Annie Arcane (anniearcane) | 629 comments Owen wrote: "We have also found that Germany is our second biggest market (after it's bigger for us than all other non-US markets combined."

Same here, good sir!

*fist bumps*

I would've guessed UK would be 2nd (for most of us) but hey, what the heck do I know, eh? XP Very interesting to see all the different pricing results too! Just goes to show there ain't a universal answer...

[insert pondering face]

Group hugs,

message 28: by C.B., Beach Body Moderator (new)

C.B. Archer | 1090 comments Mod

Just a reminder that there are a lot of threads about pricing books that are still active. If you want to find more opinions on this matter please do a search and you will find all sorts of good ones that you might be useful!


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