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E-books 'too pricey for 16-24 market'

Publishers need to consider lowering e-book prices if they want to increase sales to the 16-24 demographic, the author of a report about the digital spending of young people in the UK has claimed.
 
Luke Mitchell, head of insight at market analysts Voxburner, is author of the report "Buying Digital Content: Research on spending habits, needs and attitudes among UK 16-24s". He said the perception among young people is that digital books are cheaper to produce than print books so should cost the consumer less.
 
“Whatever the internal politics and business issues within publishing, young people won't care: all they want is a price that seems fair—or better than that,” he told The Bookseller. “Their message to publishers would be: 'Get this fixed'.”
 
For the report Voxburner asked 1,420 respondents in the UK aged 16-24 to fill out an online survey between 25th September and 18th October this year. Half were from the student and graduate market, found via studentbeans.com, and half were sourced from data provider Cint’s broader UK youth panel.
 
More than 62% of the respondents said they preferred print books and 70% had not spent any money on e-books during the previous month.
 
When asked how much e-books should cost, 17% of respondents said they should be as much as 75% cheaper than physical books. Another 28% thought e-books should cost half as much as print books and only 8% said the two should cost the same.
 
Mitchell said that young people do, however, like the convenience of e-books.
 
He said: “Young people are obsessed with value for money [but] their second obsession is convenience, and this is something also that publishers may be able to work on: how seamless is e-book buying on a young person's favourite device?”
 
The report suggests that publishers should look at how young people download content, because although about 85% have a smartphone, only 55% have some kind of e-reader.
 
The report also found that there is a strong interest in movie bonus content, so publishers may be able to attract young readers by offering film extras, said Mitchell.
 
Nevertheless, he warned against spending too much time on generating additional content, such as social media links. “Their top priority is always money saving,” he said.

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As a book buyer rather than book seller this resonates with me.
I have posted on here repeatedly that the price fixing publishers like Penguin really haven't seen the future and what is a fair price for ebooks.

Looking on Amazon, the Penguin fixed charge is £1 more for many of their Kindle versions compared to a physical paperback with price set by Amazon, which has to be printed, distributed and shipped to the customer. As with music downloads it should be the other way round with the Kindle price always less than the physical book price.
Don't use VAT as an excuse as with the Kindle this is minimal and the other costs massively exceed it.

A fair price for a new release paperback title as an ebook is £2.99 especially as the supermarkets and Amazon are selling the physical paperback for £3.99

Look at the Amazon Kindle sales charts. It is cheap books that sell, and those where the publisher has a coherent and fair online charging structure like Quercus. They deserve to survive in the digital age.

You don't know what you're talking about, mate.

Printing, distributing and shipping is really cheap. It's about 10% of cover price. The pricing of books has very little to do with production and logistics costs.

Explain to me how you are coming to 'a fair price'? You do realise that the low prices offered by Amazon and the supermarkets are loss leaders? You realise that if everything was cheap as chips, it wouldn't make economic sense to publish anything?

I agree with Malcy. It's customers that determine the price of books so the traditional sales model just evolves. Just downloaded Patrick Redmond's ebooks for £2.99 each. Worth every penny.

As a book buyer rather than book seller this resonates with me.
I have posted on here repeatedly that the price fixing publishers like Penguin really haven't seen the future and what is a fair price for ebooks.

Looking on Amazon, the Penguin fixed charge is £1 more for many of their Kindle versions compared to a physical paperback with price set by Amazon, which has to be printed, distributed and shipped to the customer. As with music downloads it should be the other way round with the Kindle price always less than the physical book price.
Don't use VAT as an excuse as with the Kindle this is minimal and the other costs massively exceed it.

A fair price for a new release paperback title as an ebook is £2.99 especially as the supermarkets and Amazon are selling the physical paperback for £3.99

Look at the Amazon Kindle sales charts. It is cheap books that sell, and those where the publisher has a coherent and fair online charging structure like Quercus. They deserve to survive in the digital age.

You don't know what you're talking about, mate.

Printing, distributing and shipping is really cheap. It's about 10% of cover price. The pricing of books has very little to do with production and logistics costs.

Explain to me how you are coming to 'a fair price'? You do realise that the low prices offered by Amazon and the supermarkets are loss leaders? You realise that if everything was cheap as chips, it wouldn't make economic sense to publish anything?

I agree with Malcy. It's customers that determine the price of books so the traditional sales model just evolves. Just downloaded Patrick Redmond's ebooks for £2.99 each. Worth every penny.