I annoyed Steve Weddle over the weekend saying that the idea that a reader is more likely to buy and not read a .99 cent book is false. I have bought plenty of books that were higher priced and never read them. It's the luck of the draw, I said.
And I stand by that.
People buy books for a bunch of reasons: the cover looks cool, the plot sounds great, someone recommended an author to them. After they buy that book, it's up to them whether or not they read it and when they decide to read it. I don't think price point plays into that as much as other reasons.
But I will say this... a cheaper price point helps a new writer. If a book is priced inexpensively, more people are going to buy it. If more people buy it, the odds are better that more people are going to read that book. If a book is priced at 17.99 on the Kindle for a first time author, fewer people are going to be willing to try out that book and that new author. Therefore, more readers.
As far as the 99 cent price point, writers like to complain that's lowering the price of art... or something to that effect. Readers don't care. Honestly, put yourself in a reader's point of view. A casual reader. Not someone who combs the blogs and Twitter follow their favorite writers. Just someone who picks up a few books a month on a whim.
Do you think they consider that the price of "art" is being degenegrated (or whatever the argument is)?
They care they get a good yarn. A good read.
I know this because people who don't worry about following writers and just bought a Kindle come to me asking for suggestions for 99 cent authors. They love trying someone new, because it's affordable.
Cheaper sells more. And if more people buy your book, the odds are more people will read your book.
Indie booksellers are starting to adopt to this too. They are selling ebooks at inexpensive prices... the e-pub generation--it's going to help a lot of writers get a bigger audience..