Chance to Improve a Kindle Pricing Issue


When you run a Kindle Countdown Deal, if you have a paperback edition linked to the Kindle edition, the paperback product page shows the regular list price of the Kindle edition, and not the sale price.

Why not? Wouldn’t showing the sale price improve the chances of getting a sale?

Is Amazon trying to push paperback sales? Does Amazon figure that customers who have a Kindle will check out the Kindle page anyway, then when they see the even lower price, this will help stimulate a sale? Is Amazon hoping the customer will buy both editions, taking advantage of MatchBook? Or did Amazon simply overlook this pricing issue?

Would you rather have the paperback product page show the sale price of the Kindle edition?

If you’d like to see a change, the best way to proceed is to voice your opinion. Be clear and concise, and avoid triggering KDP’s auto-responses (e.g. if you mention that your paperback edition is published with CreateSpace, KDP might send you a message that you need to contact CreateSpace).

I contacted KDP to point out this issue and suggest changing it to show the sale price of the Kindle edition on the paperback page. Their response stated that the paperback product page shows the regular Kindle price because the CountDown Deal is not presently available for paperbacks. (What does that have to do with the price of tea in China?) KDP did say that they understand the issue and will forward my suggestion to their business team, who can make such decisions.

I’ve submitted dozens of suggestions to Amazon, CreateSpace, Kindle, and AuthorCentral over several years. A few of them have actually been implemented. To be clear, they didn’t implement my suggestion. Several other customers made a similar suggestion. That’s the key. One voice is likely to be lost in the wind. When changes have occurred, I’ve heard from many other customers who had submitted similar suggestions. So if you want to improve the chances of a change occurring, you must voice your own opinion.

Do you have other suggestions? If you keep them to yourself, they probably won’t make a difference. (Don’t make all of your suggestions at once. Spread them out here and there.) Here are a few other things that you might consider:

  • A total at the bottom of the KDP month-to-date sales report.
  • Consolidating KDP sales reports for other countries into a single report.
  • Showing the subtitle in the cart at CreateSpace so you can see exactly what you’re buying (if you have multiple books with similar titles and only the ending is different, you can’t tell which it is when checking out).
  • Give us the option of 35% or 70% on CountDown Deals without having to republish a couple of days in advance (if you have a large file size, you might actually draw a larger royalty from a CountDown Deal at the 35% rate).
  • Show us what the royalty will be while we’re scheduling a CountDown Deal (you’d hate to find out later that you only made one penny per sale, for example). (I love math, so this doesn’t bother me, but I’m thinking this would be convenient for some.)
  • Allow UK authors to order proofs from CreateSpace printed from the UK instead of the US (Amazon UK orders are fulfilled that way, so why not proofs?). (Again, this doesn’t affect me as I live in the US.)
  • Any other issues you come across and would like to see improvement. Tell others about the issue and encourage them to send in suggestions if they feel the same way.

Don’t flood Amazon with tons of suggestions all at once. Please don’t tell them that I sent you. 🙂 I didn’t. You have a mind of your own. Do what you feel is best.

Love books? Check out Read Tuesday, a Black Friday event just for books (all authors can sign up for free) on Tuesday, December 10: website, Facebook page, Twitter

Chris McMullen, author of A Detailed Guide to Self-Publishing with Amazon and Other Online Booksellers, Volume 1 (formatting/publishing) and Volume 2 (packaging/marketing), Facebook page, Twitter

Volumes 1 and 2 will be on sale on December 9 thru 11 as part of Read Tuesday on December 10. These books haven’t been on sale all year, so this is a rare opportunity. The Kindle edition of Vol. 1 will be $1.99 (60% off from $4.99) in the US and 1.99 pounds (37% off from 3.14 pounds) in the UK, while Vol. 2 will be $0.99 (80% off from $4.99) in the US and 0.99 pounds (70% off from 3.25 pounds) in the UK. The paperbacks will also be 40% off ($5.99 instead of $9.99) at CreateSpace:

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