Author Topic: Have you noticed an audio price hike? Or, WTF is going on with whisper?  (Read 7161 times)  

Offline Mark E. Cooper

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Well have you? Whisper sync used to be $1.99 across the board for my books, and I cried and cried and cried when it first happened. Then I saw my royalties, danced for joy, and laughed and laughed and laughed.

Fast forward 4 years, and after coming off the high of a new book launch I noticed a serious downswing in audio sales (like serious, I'm talking less than 20 a day down from a high of almost 70 a day) and I figure it's Chris Fox's fault (hi Chris, waves)

But it wasn't!

Using one of those hide me thingies, I investigated my sales pages at .com to see an actual price rather than a "You're in the wrong place" notification and I find ALL except ONE book is now priced $7.49 when bought with the kindle version! So... far from crying about the price being too low, I now have to cry about it being too high.

Unless...

I see an upswing in royalties inline with the drop in sales. So, did they decide my stuff is all old hat now and take me off the cheap whisper list? Hmmm... what is your experience?

Offline Lydniz

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I just checked mine. I only have three books out, but one of them has been raised to $7.49. Ugh.

ETA: it was whispersynched at $3.49 originally, though, not $1.99.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2017, 01:40:19 AM by Lydniz »

Offline Lydniz

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At a guess I'd say Amazon are trying to funnel people into taking out membership subscriptions.

Offline readingril

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All Amazon is doing for this reader/listener/"I like a good deal on an audiobook " is dissuading me from purchasing companion audiobooks! I've noticed this trend with almost all the Whispersync titles where I've purchased the Kindle version. :(

Online AlecHutson

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My book has also been bumped up to 7.49 (from 1.99) and it has only been in audio for 6 weeks. Might be across the board.

Alec Hutson

Offline Dolphin

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I wonder if they're using variable pricing for these. That is to say, they may be changing the price that you see based on anything from your local time, to purchase history, to viewing history, to the strength of the British Pound, &c. We're used to setting our own prices and having those be a fixed, known quantity, but that's not actually how a lot of pricing works on Amazon. They didn't collect all those data for their health.

Condolences to those who're losing revenue to this. Hope it gets sorted somehow. Maybe you can get a seven-figure, audiobook-only deal like Michael Sullivan? I guess that's a thing now.

Offline GeneDoucette

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I saw this a couple of days ago and didn't realize the $7.49 price I was seeing was the sync price. Yes, it's on mine too. Also, when i went and looked at the book pages on Amazon, I noticed the display was different. for Spaceship, for instance, which has only three editions, it used to be that a link would show up, clearly displayed, for all three editions, regardless of which version I was looking at. Now, when I click into the Kindle edition (for instance) all three options show up-- Kindle, Print, Audio-- and then the box displaying the audiobook edition disappears. it's buried under the "see all 3 formats and editions" link now.

Offline Cassie Leigh

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Just checked my romance novel and it's still at $1.99 to sync.  It was never a very good seller, although in the last month it's sold about 60 copies because of a free promo.


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Offline Salvador Mercer

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Mine is still synched at $2.99 so far (US Market).
 

Offline GeneDoucette

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size might be a factor. My books priced at $7.49 are 10-11 hours.

Offline Mark E. Cooper

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size might be a factor. My books priced at $7.49 are 10-11 hours.

Mine are the same, but my boxed sets are 3 times the size and have become $7.49 as well. One 12 hour book is still $1.99. Totally random. Might be a sales thing. The fewer sales come in over time, the higher the price goes? My back list is getting on a bit now.

Dunno.

Offline This_Way_Down

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I've heard that ACX books are suffering a price hike. I haven't heard this from book through audio pubs. All of mine are through traditional audio pub, length varies, and the whispersync price is the same.

Offline Lydniz

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My books are only seven hours or so and one of them has still gone up in price.

Offline Adair Hart

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Just checked mine.

Prequel novella (2 hours) : 1.99
Book 1  (5 hours): 7.49
Book 2 (10 hours): 7.49
Book 3 (11 hours): 7.49
Box Set (26 hours): 1.99

         
Book 6 of of the the Evaran Chronicles: 80%
Book 1 of the Earthborn series: 40%
      
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Offline Amanda M. Lee

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I think it's going to be impossible to see how it plays out from a financial standpoint until we get our first royalty reports. My numbers are down a bit but I didn't move the bulk of my sales through Whispersync anyway. I'm really close to pushing that number to a solid five figures a month (finally!) so I'm anxious to see if this puts me back again.

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Offline David VanDyke

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My sales proportions have changed dramatically since the price hikes, and overall down.

My lifetime sales are about 23% AL, 43% ALOP, and 33% ALC.

My recent percentages are more like 60%, 20%, 20%. Given that AL means Audible credits and the other two some form of retail, it appears a 350%+ price hike on whispersync is hurting retail sales a lot.

Now I never liked the super-cheap whispersync add-on, but it's hard to put the genie back in the bottle now that people are used to it. It's also somewhat un-Amazon-like, in that they are usually pushing for cheaper prices rather than raising them hugely.


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Offline Mark E. Cooper

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My sales proportions have changed dramatically since the price hikes, and overall down.

My lifetime sales are about 23% AL, 43% ALOP, and 33% ALC.

My recent percentages are more like 60%, 20%, 20%. Given that AL means Audible credits and the other two some form of retail, it appears a 350%+ price hike on whispersync is hurting retail sales a lot.

Now I never liked the super-cheap whispersync add-on, but it's hard to put the genie back in the bottle now that people are used to it. It's also somewhat un-Amazon-like, in that they are usually pushing for cheaper prices rather than raising them hugely.

And they never do anything without a plan. I'm looking for the other shoe to drop.

Offline D-C

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Mm, all of mine have upped in price, including Bloomsbury/Audible pub'd (but not the Tantor ones, oddly). This definitely impacts on future sales projections and whether I commit to any more audible titles.

Offline GeneDoucette

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My sales proportions have changed dramatically since the price hikes, and overall down.

My lifetime sales are about 23% AL, 43% ALOP, and 33% ALC.

My recent percentages are more like 60%, 20%, 20%. Given that AL means Audible credits and the other two some form of retail, it appears a 350%+ price hike on whispersync is hurting retail sales a lot.

Now I never liked the super-cheap whispersync add-on, but it's hard to put the genie back in the bottle now that people are used to it. It's also somewhat un-Amazon-like, in that they are usually pushing for cheaper prices rather than raising them hugely.

Whatever changes they have going on, it crushed the tail on the Daily Deal I had in March. I'm seeing lower audio sales overall than I have more or less since my first book went live last September.

Offline CLStone

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$7 is still a better bargain on audiobooks than buying credits from Audible. It may be a little bit of sticker shock for a while, but $1.99 was practically giving the audiobooks away before.

I enjoyed the lower prices as a listener while they lasted, too, but these things are so expensive to make and when your royalties and prices are less than your ebooks, a small bump should be a little better, yeah? Not sure if I would have picked a price point so high... maybe gradually or like others said, maybe incremental for length.

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Offline GeneDoucette

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their Daily Deal books are usually $3.99-$4.99. maybe the goal here was to increase the value of those deals?

Offline Gertie Kindle 'a/k/a Margaret Lake'

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I've been noticing that some audios I wanted to buy through whispersync are anywhere from $3.49 to $7.49. I thought they were maybe trad pubbed audios. Now that I see this thread, I guess not.

Some of mine are still $1.99 but others are $7.49.

I bundled one series into three and the whispersync prices are $1.99, $1.99 and $7.49. The second and third are about the same length.

That also explains why I'm seeing more AL sales which are definitely more profitable.

So, it's wait and see as usual.


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Offline David VanDyke

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I've also had a rash of returns. I wonder if this is because people are listening and returning, or buying a whispersync and realizing they were charged a lot more than they expected.


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Offline Jeff Tanyard

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No changes on my end.  Still $1.99 to sync Buddy.  *shrug*
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Offline Gertie Kindle 'a/k/a Margaret Lake'

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I've also had a rash of returns. I wonder if this is because people are listening and returning, or buying a whispersync and realizing they were charged a lot more than they expected.

I've only had one return but that was in April. It was quite a shock after four years to see that.


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