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Amazon price jiggery

graybyrd

Some here (Hello, DE?) are less than thrilled with the alleged antics of behemoth book seller Amazon. I just stumbled into this damned irritating price misalignment:

I read a great book review for a Linux text. The link took me to the Amazon Canada site. Kindle edition in $CDN is 9.99. (That is $US 7.22 today)

Amazon CA redirects me to Amazon US where I'm registered. The Kindle edition of the same book from Amazon US is: $US 14.39.

That translates to $CDN 19.93 !!

For twice the price? No sale!

Ernest Bywater

Hi GB, I'll refrain from making any comment about the rest of the post.

Switch Blayde
Updated:

@graybyrd

I believe the author sets the price for each market. For some reason, probably because he screwed up, he didn't set them equally.

I'm fretting over my next novel. With my first one, I set the U.S. price and told Amazon I wanted it available for that price everywhere. Amazon did the currency conversion AND added the VAT for the EU markets. Since last year, it's up to the author to add the VAT for each market which means there's a great chance of error.

Ernest Bywater

@Switch Blayde

I believe the author sets the price for each market.


Depends if the book is being sold through Amazon direct or through the multi-seller channel system, in which case the market pricing very different.

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

@graybyrd


For twice the price? No sale!


You don't say, but I expect you did, run a Google search on the book title to see if it was available via another source than Amazon!

Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

I'm fretting over my next novel. With my first one, I set the U.S. price and told Amazon I wanted it available for that price everywhere. Amazon did the currency conversion AND added the VAT for the EU markets. Since last year, it's up to the author to add the VAT for each market which means there's a great chance of error.

Last I checked (earlier today) Amazon doesn't collect any VAT taxes. If you didn't add it to your price, then it comes out of YOUR cut.

In order to determine the proper tax to charge, Amazon redirects you to your proper region (so someone in France can't buy a book from a low-VAT country). That's what happened to you graybyrd. I'd try searching for a 3rd party Amazon seller, since they'll offer the book used, and charge anything they like.

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Switch Blayde

@Crumbly Writer

That's why I'm fretting. If I intend to sell it for the equivalent of $3.99 and screw up the VAT, I could be selling it for less.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Crumbly Writer
Updated:

@Switch Blayde


That's why I'm fretting. If I intend to sell it for the equivalent of $3.99 and screw up the VAT, I could be selling it for less.


Smashwords handles VAT the way it should be done, by having you sign in before you see the price of a book, and they add the VAT when they list the book.

Amazon is interested in sales, and by listing books without any regard for the final price, they're expecting authors to eat the taxes. If they don't, they'll often take the fall when the books don't sell as well. In short, it's a bad deal for authors.

The key with book sales, from all statistical evidence, is that pricing is essential. Ending prices with .99 denotes that a book is cheap (inexpensive). Even figures denote quality, when .98 conveys different messages. But adding a specific VAT amount screws up this type of pricing scheme.

Your best bet is to either ignore the VAT entirely, or bounce the price up a full increment (4.99EU instead of 3.99EU). Depending on the price conversion, I'll either eat the VAT or increase it, but most often I'll boost it to fit the pricing model.

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