Wednesday, August 10, 2011

My 99 cents experience

My numbers aren't very large, but I'd like to report my experiment with a 99 cent sale in case it helps anyone who is considering doing one.

I put the ebook version of my novel, CHOKE, on sale for 99 cents for a couple weeks in July. Before that it had sold for 5.99. After the sale I dropped it down to 4.99. When/if the sequel comes out, I'll probably drop it to 2.99.

For Kindle, the ebook first went on sale for 5.99 in May and it sold steady in May and June. During the sale, the numbers increased 66 percent and I went on to sell just slightly less at full price after that.  I didn't increase income for the sale, but I got several more books out, so I'm pretty happy with that.

On Barnes and Noble, my sales were much less in May and June. The sale numbers were about double my total. I haven't noticed an increase since the sale. In fact, there are very few there.

On Smashwords I didn't sell any at 99 cents. I am, however, selling there steadily at full price, both in the US and in the UK.

When I have more books out and my numbers are larger, I'll try this again to increase readership.

Here are some links to real numbers for several authors. These aren't about 99 cent sales, but about sales in general.


  1. Hi Kaye,
    Thanks for sharing your details. Was Amazon quickly responsive with price changes and did they let you announce the price was for a limited time only?

  2. I changed the price at Amazon, rather than go through the rigamarole of having them match the price elsewhere. I didn't know how long it would take to put the price back up after doing that. So I was paid 35 percent for the sale instead of 70.

    If I had larger numbers, it might be worth it to do it the other way.

    Thanks for dropping by!

  3. Oh, and I don't know how I'd announce anything on Amazon about the price, so no, I didn't do that.

  4. Interesting experience, Kaye! I shared the link with several friends considering e pubbing--and having to deal with price. Thanks!

  5. Thanks, Jenny. For me, it didn't hurt anything, might have helped.

  6. I'm trying the price drop to 99 cents this week and am tweeting with this: Kindle cozy mystery 99 cents this week only Murder at Blue Falls by Maggie Bishop, DailyCheapReads.
    Since Sunday, I've only sold 40 copies. Hope sales pick up soon since the sale ends on late Sunday. Any advice on promoting?

  7. Thanks for sharing this, Kaye. Interesting stuff.


  8. Maggie, are you using the #99cents hash tag? Are you grouped with any writers who agree to retweet you? If not, you might beg someone to do it and offer to RT them.

    You're welcome, Edith. I hope to be much better at this the next time I do it.

  9. Kaye: thanks for the well broken down and useful numbers. They seem to reflect my experience with price changes. Lower doesn't always help you that much -- but they are a nice "sale" tool.