Ebook Best-Seller Prices on the Upswing, But Overall Trend Is Down
In the nearly two years Digital Book World has been measuring the average price of a best-selling ebook, the trend has been unmistakable: down.
Best-selling ebooks cost more two years ago than they do now. Two years ago, many of the best-selling ebooks were agency priced, meaning that publishers determined the price of the books and the price was usually $10 and up.
Today, no publishers price their own books and retailers have generally lowered prices to compete with each other and sell more units.
Here’s what we’re seeing:
The top average price we ever measured was nearly $12 in the fall of 2012. The lowest prices we observed were at the end of 2013 and beginning of 2014, just over $5.00.
This is how a statistician might see this chart:
Right now, the average price of a best-selling ebook is just above $8.00. I suspect we’ll see it go back down to $6.00 or so in the next month or two. The prices spiked this week because of front-list best-sellers and, mostly, because of a $22 best-selling ebook from Harvard University Press.