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Blog: How Higher Prices Are Affecting E-book Sales | Strategic Pricing Solutions

Last week an article in the Wall Street Journal, E-Book Sales Fall After New Amazon Contracts, reported that major publishing houses were experiencing declining e-book revenue.  The article also pointed out that publishers had raised prices, and it implied the prices were the likely cause of declining sales.  After all, price up, unit volume down means the increases caused the problem, right?  It is possible that is correct, but the publishers need to be more rigorous in their analysis before concluding they should change their pricing strategies.

One potential explanation for lower e-book sales is the titles just are not as good, and readers are not interested in marginal books.   Publishing houses could measure the change in volume of physical book sales compared to e-books.  If physical book sales (seasonally adjusted) are declining as fast or faster than e-books, then perhaps the price of e-books is not the culprit.

Another area worth pursuing is the results by price point.  Have e-book sales declined primarily in the high-priced category?  If high prices are causing a problem, I would expect to see a shift in sales toward low-priced e-books or at least steady volumes at the lower price points.  Conversely if the unit sales declines are at similar rates across all price points, other non-price issues are probably a bigger factor.

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How Higher Prices Are Affecting E-book Sales.

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