The Declining Value Of Ebooks

The value of ebooks can only decrease in the future.

There is no doubt that since the popular advent of the ebook in 2009, prices have steadily fallen since then. Much of this has been due to market pressure applied by Amazon, but also by the sheer number of ebooks that are available on the market.

Up until the last twelve months or so, ebooks remained a stand-alone product, and as such were targeted directly towards ebook buyers. This meant that variations in price points, free ebook promotion and online marketing and promotion were the tried and true means to gain book sales.

However, ebook sales strategies have now been tipped on their head with the introduction of subscription services such as Kindle Unlimited, Oyster and Scribd. In this article, Is Kindle Unlimited Devaluing Books?, written by Mark Coker from Smashwords, he looks at the effect these new services are having on the value of ebooks in the market. While his views are naturally inclined towards his own company’s services and are against Amazon exclusivity, it is very interesting to read the large number of comments that the article attracted.

In my reading of these comments from many self-published authors, it is clear that there is no standard view on the subjects of subscription services and Amazon exclusivity. Where some have succeeded, others have failed.

In any event, ebook subscription services are going to be the new reality for self-published ebook authors from now on, and they are going to present difficult new challenges in book marketing and promotion, as well as in how to offset declining prices per unit sale – or is it partial read rental?

As I said at the beginning of this article, ebooks prices have steadily fallen since 2009, but it looks like the value of ebooks is about to fall even further.

This page was last updated on September 6th, 2017

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