Tuesday, 9 February 2010
Sales Experiment, 48 days later
Thanks for the commenters and visitors to my blog. I must have hit a nerve, my hits trebled, meaning there's an interest in my little story, so I feel obliged to follow up with it (good journo that I am).
At this point, there were 52 sample downloads (who downloaded 30% of the story). Out of these, 30 converted into sales (meaning, 30 people made the decision for how much to buy the story - which includes "free").
In the meantime, two people who downloaded the story for $0.99 were in touch and told me while that is the amount they usually pay for short stories, they felt "Spoils of War" was worth more and one paid another $3.99. The other person, presumably, did pay more, too, because she felt she had "ripped me off". I told her if she wants to pay more, she can buy another download and give the other one away to a friend - everybody wins.
These 30 people divide almost equally into "free downloaders" and "paying customers" - 14 took it for free, 16 paid. To be fair, one of the free downloaders told me she has no money, and would buy it when she had money. I told her to take it for free because I really wanted her to read it. In return, I received one of her stories, which I enjoyed. (And when I told her I enjoyed it, she gave me another story, which I'm looking forward to tonight).
I assume people have been reading my post about the pricing being either $0.99, $3 or $5 and decided to mess with my numbers. By now, the pricing is all over the place - a much wider range than before.
Below is the breakdown:
$0.99 - 2 people
$1.00 - 1 person
$2.75 - 1 person
$3.00 - 5 people
$3.99 - 1 person
$4.00 - 2 people
$5.00 - 3 people
$10.00 - 1 person
Note, again, the absence of any amount in the area of $1.29-$1.99. We are talking 5,500 words of short story here. SHORT story. The amount of words is clearly stated on site.
To the person who paid $10 - want to be my sugar mommy/daddy? I think I love you, but you are a little insane. Seriously, get in touch via email with proof of purchase and I'll send you a free story. Thanks!
In total, 14 people paid $57.73 for the story - averaging $3.36 per paying customer. If I add the 14 free downloaders (so 30 readers in total), I get to $1.90 per customer. (Which is at the top end of what the market in m/m ebooks currently charges for short stories).
Once Smashwords has taken its cut, that leaves us (my co-writer Raev and me) with $43.81 in the bank, pre-tax, 48 after launch of the story.
By now, first reviews are appearing both on Smashwords itself and on Goodreads, and the reviews are very favourable. I assume that will drive further sales. In terms of marketing, I tweeted about it a couple times, I told a few people who were in touch that my story is currently free, and nothing else (I was busy editing yesterday).
More updates when I get them.