Should you make your book permafree?
If you have published more than one eBook and are aiming to increase your following of readers, you may be considering heavily discounting one of your books in order to entice readers into making a ‘no-brainer’ purchase decision – with the goal of gaining some of those dollars back (a repeat reader) when they go on to buy your subsequent books.
Many authors have won new reader’s hearts with their low price or zero price initial book offering, and it is a strategy that works particularly well if you have a series of books to funnel your readers through.
If you sell your ebooks through Amazon KDP, you will know the minimum price you can set your eBook to is 99 cents, because setting your book to free does not make Amazon any money. However, there are eBook titles that are always available on Amazon for free (that is, they are not participating in the KDP select program where they are able to set their books to free for 5 days in every 90 day cycle) – so how do you make a Kindle book permanently free?
Setting your Kindle book to free, permanently.
Part of Amazon’s Terms and Conditions require you to not sell your eBook for anywhere online for less than the price you have set it to on Amazon. If you do not comply with the Amazon terms, they will automatically price match your book to the lower price.
Authors use this policy to their advantage when setting their book to permanently free (or ‘permafree’). Simply set your eBook to 99 cents in KDP, then set it to free on another eBook platform (Smashwords allows you to set your book to free). Rather than waiting for Amazon’s bots to catch up with you, you can email Amazon Customer Service and alert them that this title is free elsewhere and provide them with the link. As per their own policy, they are obliged to set the same title to free on the Amazon store.
Note: use this tactic if you are confident you want this title permanently free, it is not recommended if you are experimenting with different price points as the Amazon wheels can sometimes turn slowly if you are wishing start charging for this title in the future.