How Do I Set the Retail Price on My Book?
When the physical characteristics of your book (such as page count, covers, binding, size, etc.) are finalized, Dog Ear Publishing will calculate a single-copy printing cost (we'll give you an Estimate far before this point however). This price is a function of trim size, binding, cover stock, colors, etc - all the "physical" traits of your book.
You then need to determine the Retail Price. The retail price should be based on your appraisal of the target audience - this includes the value your product provides to the reader, as well as what price point OTHER competitive products are selling at. The retail price should be at least 2.5 times the single-copy printing cost to allow for a reasonable margin (to cover our costs and your payments) after trade discounts are factored in. The Retail Price also helps establish the Net Sales Payment amount - the amount you, the author, make from each sale.
There is a point where we cannot afford to sell your book direct to consumers - and that price can be estimated by adding our handling charge (usually $2.00) to your Book Printing Price.
You, are of course, completely in control and may price your book at whatever level you wish. At Dog Ear Publishing, the author sets his/her book's retail price.
We'll say it again - it is recommended that this book retail price be at LEAST 2.5 times the "single-copy print cost" to allow for standard trade discounts to book stores and distributors and libraries, and leave enough "gross margin" remaining so the author will enjoy a reasonable Net Sales Payment (see How Are My Sales Credited? for more on Sales Payments). We've included a handy chart (see Single Copy Book Costs for examples) to help illustrate the print cost (this is what YOU will pay for copies of your own book) and the corresponding MINIMUM retail price. If you wish to set a HIGHER retail price, your Sales return will rise significantly.
Here's an example:
Your book costs $4.28 per unit to print (taken from our hypothetical example used in our Competitor Comparisons)
You want to get full representation in the chains and distributors, so you offer a 55% discount from RETAIL
You divide $4.28 by .45 (100 - 55% = 45%) and get $9.51 as your break-even point
To make a nice amount per sale, but to stay competitive, you price your book at $12.95
Here are some things to consider when setting your price point.
Various discounts are allowed to libraries and college bookstores (15%-20%), independent bookstores (40%) and large chains and distributors (50%-55%). You may also want to offer volume discounts for individuals who buy more than 5 or more than 10 copies of your book at one time.
From the net sale amount (the retail price less the discount given) deduct the single-copy printing cost to determine the "gross margin." The author's Net Sales Payment is the gross margin MINUS the Dog Ear Publishing handling fee (if any). Your author services rep will calculate various price-point scenarios if you wish. You can also see How Are My Sales Credited? for more information.
Dog Ear Publishing's role and responsibilities:
Dog Ear Publishing calculates the single-copy printing cost, and publicizes the retail price set by the author. Dog Ear Publishing records payments accruing to the author on each sale.
Author's role and responsibilities:
The author sets the retail price and, in so doing, establishes the Net Sales Payment