Facts About Selling Your Book too Cheap

13 Jun

Melissa Forster

Melissa Forster, bestseller author wrote in a terrific blog:

“There is value in listing your book for free, at least for right now there is value. Readers will download your book in droves. Your rankings will soar. Immediately after your free days, at 99 cents you will sell many books, probably about 1000 in three days, equating to $350.

However, you would probably reap at least 1/3 equivalent sales at $2.99, increasing your revenue to 70% while also engaging readers who will think before downloading, which equates to readers who will more likely read your book–you have just added worth to your hard work.”

“Here’s a great fact — not all free and 99 cent books are read. Yet, most $2.99 books and above are read.”

“The difference? The books are not impulse buys, but they’re reasonable enough that readers who are interested in really reading the books will read them. More importantly, you are putting a value on your book, your writing, and your time.  You only need to sell 125 books to earn the same $350 at $2.99.”

Read her eye-opening article:

See also an interview with her:



Hyper Smash


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3 responses to “Facts About Selling Your Book too Cheap

  1. WordNerdGuy

    July 27, 2012 at 10:28 am

    Thanks for running the numbers. Makes sense.

  2. Nina Bell

    January 24, 2013 at 3:28 pm

    A fellow author told me that when her book was sold cheaply (20 pence on the UK site), then loads of people bought it who wouldn’t normally have bought her books. And, not being her usual kind of readers, a disproportionate number didn’t enjoy it, so she got a much higher percentage of low stars and negative reviews. It hasn’t happened to me yet, but I think it’s another ‘down side’ of selling your book too cheaply.

  3. Brooklyn Hudson

    January 24, 2013 at 3:32 pm

    I’ve been planning to blog about this for some time. I feel putting books up FREE is an insult and mockery to our craft. It degrades what we do and screams…we’re not worthy. I have not, and will not, offer my books free. I receive emails asking when my book will be free, often. This scares me. It tells me we have trained readers to hold out…not buy a book (even when they are obviously interested in reading it, even to the point of contacting the author) as they wait for the book to be free. I don’t work for free. What I do (my writing) is good and time consuming, and worth a fair price. I don’t care about rank. After all, what good is being #1 in FREE? It’s a pathetic grasp at nothing. Out of thousands of downloads we get a small peppering of reviews…what makes anyone think giving a book away free will encourage readers to spread the word. They paid NOTHING for that book…why would they bother. The free promos might have counted for something when KDP first began…now, they just make self-published authors appear worthless.

    Thank you again for a great post, Melissa.


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