What Price Should You List your Book At?


Pricing your book doesn’t have to be a difficult choice to make if you take some time to plan ahead for pricing and stick with your plan.

Our guest today is Patrick King, who has tested different price points with his audience and looked at how even just raising his book prices by a dollar didn’t decrease the volume sold, but made more money for him in the long-run.

He went from pricing his books at $2.99 to $3.99. Even though many books in his genre may have a $2.99 price, just that extra dollar (along with amazing book covers and book descriptions) helped his books stick out as providing a better value.

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Setting a Book Price

There are five major things to consider when setting a book price:

  • Competition analysis — Look at other books in your genre and either price accordingly or analyze if the reader would be getting more value from your book and, therefore, would be willing to pay more.
  • Analysis of Kindle Unlimited and Kindle Select — Not choosing either means the shopper can get similar books free from your competitors, which means they may not choose your book.
  • Look at your target demographic — Is your book catering to those looking for a book on saving money or a student? Take these into consideration when pricing your book.
  • Are there future sales from that book? — If your book is the first book in a series, you may want to price it lower than the books that follow. Of, if your book is part of an email opt-in, course or other paid products, pricing it lower may mean and easier way to get leads for your business.
  • Time of launch — a general formula that’s quite popular for self-publishers is pricing books at $.99 when the book first launches or just for their email list subscribers to help push up the Amazon numbers and give the book more visibility. This also motivates them to leave reviews since they were given the cheaper deals. Following the initial launch, the price can be raised once momentum has occurred.

Bio of the Author in the Case Study:

episode 30 - Patrick King price your book

Patrick King is a Social Interaction Specialist and Conversation Coach who helps his clients improve their social and business skills. He’s been featured in GQ Magazine, TedX, Forbes, and more.

He also participates in 10k races, fronts an ‘80s cover band, and lives in San Francisco, California.

Resources Referred to in this Episode:

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2 thoughts on “What Price Should You List your Book At?

  1. John Francis

    Hey Dave, very useful, thank you.

    I’m a very experienced writer in other spheres, but new to books. I have quite a few that are in gestation, but right now I’m playing around with erotic short stories, under a pen name.

    I’m using Kindle Select and Kindle Unlimited.

    My erotica single short story books are around 9,000 words, so about 40 pages. I’m targeting the more intelligent and mature end of the market, both because that’s where I feel comfortable, but also as a point of difference from so many competitors.

    I’ve just launched my first two titles, with two more to be added weekly. I chose $2.99, so that yes, I did stand out as having ‘value’, in terms of writing quality. However my take-out from this podcast is that I should drop down to 99 cents, then consider increasing. As a totally unknown author, I figure everything I can do to encourage reviews will be very valuable at this stage.

    I’ll be bundling my short stories in due course, and of course that will be an opportunity to increase the price.

    By the way, I bought Publisher Rocket yesterday. Just started using it. It will be of immense value!

    Cheers, JOHN

    1. Dave Chesson

      Hey John. Awesome about Rocket and enjoy. As for the pricing, when it comes to a short story, be careful with a 2.99 price. If I paid 2.99 for a book (which is what I’d expect a normal book is), I’d be a bit miffed if I found out I only got 9k words – like I was cheated. This could cause poor reviews. HOWEVER, if you are finding that a MASS majority of your purchases are KU downloads, then the 2.99 price would work out to your advantage since KU readers will think they get more value in your short story than the other which is 0.99. Ultimately, this is a good case to test to see what works for you and your target market.

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