View Full Version : Preparing to publish first erotica story- pricing

03-12-2015, 04:09 PM
Hi all,

I'm preparing my first short story to put on Amazon as an ebook. The story is only 5,080 words. I've been advised by an author on Amazon, one that does very well, that I should price it at $2.99, as she thinks that because of the niche it is in it will sell (she read it too and liked it, though that almost doesn't matter if no-one is going to pay to read it!). I think this is a huge risk, and am unsure whether to take her advice. As it's my first attempt at publishing, I want to give it the best chance of selling at least SOMETHING, so I'm tempted to go cheap.

Any advice please?


03-12-2015, 04:23 PM
I don't write or read much in this genre (so feel free to ignore anything I say), but I would think $2.99 for a 5000-word story by an unknown writer wouldn't sell well, or else you will get a few bad reviews afterward from people who didn't notice it was only 5000 words and feel cheated (I've seen such reviews, "I thought this was a book; it's nothing but a short magazine story!!!!").

M. H. Lee
03-12-2015, 04:55 PM
Listen to your friend who does well at this.

Price at $2.99 if it's in any way sexy. Put in the blurb the wordcount if you're worried about that Amazon does list a page count, too. I put it in the blurb and have yet to get a complaint about length. Also, I'd recommend going exclusive with Amazon for the first three months so you get the Kindle Unlimited borrows.

My borrow to sales ratios are about 4:1 on those types of titles and I haven't noticed that a lower price leads to significantly higher sales. Some authors even report receiving more sales when they raise the price.

03-12-2015, 06:38 PM
That price feels high to me, even for niche material with a market, for a short story word count. Regardless of the story's quality, there will be people who feel ripped off and may leave negative reviews because of it. If that sort of review appears, it will affect sales.

I understand the price point being highly profitable for the author, but if it were me, I would wait until I could bundle three related stories of similar length at $2.99.

Maryn, just one opinion

03-12-2015, 07:05 PM
$2.99 will fly with an under-served fetish trope. Otherwise it is high for 5000 words.

03-12-2015, 08:44 PM
I think 2.99 is way to high for a book with only 5k words, especially from an unknown author.

03-12-2015, 11:45 PM
I used to think $2.99 was high for a short as well, but the erotica writers here set me straight. Apparently, it is very common in erotica to price 3k-4k shorts at $2.99, and is considered good business sense by the people I've heard talk about it. :) (Other genres this may not be the case.)

I second the suggestion to put the wordcount in the blurb, if you're worried. And remember that it's very, very easy to change the price, so if you price it one way and you don't like it, you can always change it!

J. Tanner
03-13-2015, 02:31 AM
One nice thing about self-publishing is you can try $2.99 for a while, then easily test $0.99 and see how they compare for you.

As noted in all the advice you've received so far, erotica tends to support the $2.99 price point better than other genres, but there's no universal truth for pricing.

(When comparing, remember that you must sell 6x units at $0.99 to equal 1 unit at $2.99 because of Amazon's wonky royalty rates.)

03-13-2015, 03:59 AM
thanks all- I think I may go with $2.99 as my friend suggested and see how that goes. I"ll definitely mention the word count in the blurb. I didn't realise the price could be easily changed. Thanks for all your advice.

03-15-2015, 02:16 AM
Please do post back here with your results...I'd be interested in seeing how it goes.

I've often joked about switching genres, but if erotica short stories sell well at 2.99, I may have to stop joking.