Thursday, August 21, 2014

Survey of the price of the top 100 selling ebooks in August.

I recently read an article in The Age that said the sales of ebooks were increasing, but the value of ebook sales had not increased. This suggests either the prices of ebooks are dropping or the price customers are buying ebooks for is decreasing. So I thought it was once more time to have a look at the prices of the top 100 Kindle ebooks.

On August 22, at approximately 3pm Australian time, the graph above shows the prices of the top 100 Kindle ebooks. The best selling prices were obviously 0.99 cents, $1.99 and $4.99 with about half as many priced at $2.99 and $3.99.


The number of ebooks priced at 99cents decreased to 16, continuing a downward trend that began at the end of 2013.


The number of ebooks in the top 100 at $1.99 continues to increase, reaching its highest number in all the surveys. 


Only seven were $2.99. After making a comeback over recent surveys, the number priced at $2.99 has dropped to its lowest on record. The gurus who say $2.99 is the price to sell self-published ebooks won't be happy.

It seems the very cheap ebook might be on the wain after peaking in the previous survey.


The number of ebooks priced at $3.99 appears to have bottomed out at eight.


The number priced at $4.99 is very much on the rise. Fifteen of the $4.99 ebooks were in the top 50. 


The rise in the number of ebooks in the top 100 priced $7 or more, combined with the fall in the number of ebooks priced $2.99 or less, suggests consumers are willing to pay more for their ebooks. But this might be an aberration. On its face value, my survey data would appear to contradict The Age article's suggestion that ebook prices are decreaing.   


Anthony J. Langford said...

Ah youve tickled my Kindle once again. I think I'm going to go ahead and buy one. Kindle is the best then? Do you Amazon to purchase most of your ebooks?
I'm travelling soon so perhaps it's time to let go of the paperback, at least, temporarily.

Graham Clements said...

Anthony, I have an ipad and Kindle, and I think the Kindle is the best for reading, mine is not back lit - its epaper looks like a book page, so it's easy on the eyes. But I think Kindle might have bowed to ignorant pressure and the latest version might be back lit. I have recently decided to purchase ebooks from author's sites so Amazon does not get any money. Hate the way that Amazon don't pay tax. The Kindle itself I think is a loss leader for them, I don't think they make much money out of selling them, it at all - they make the money from the actual ebooks. But self-publishing authors get a lot better deal from Amazon then they do from going with a traditional publisher. Witness Hugh Howey. When the publishers came running after he has sold millions of self-published science fiction ebooks - and they are very good as I have read two of them - he didn't sell the ebook rights to them.

graywave said...

Always fascinating.

Curiously, over the past few months I have shifted the prices of all my novels to $4.99. There are two main reasons for this:

1. in the lower price range (say $0.99 to $4.99) I have failed to notice any price sensitivity for any of my books. So, as a grasping capitalist, I would rather my books were at that top of that range than at the bottom.

2. Since I'm a grasping capitalist with a conscience, I cannot bring myself to charge more than that. If my books sell well at that price, I'll make enough money to be happy and won't feel I've ripped anybody off. I think $5 for a book is about what they are worth - what all novels are worth, no matter what technology they're published with.