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  1. #1
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    Pricing and Perceived Value of Information

    Following on from a similar thread....

    Nowdays you see many ebooks selling, for example, an ebook about google adsense. These ebook are generally sold for $50 (a guess).
    What if you saw an ebook promissing the world, as they all do, but. It cost $1000.

    Would a customer, "wow, that book must be worth it or he wouldnt have the audacity to sell it for $1000" ?

    Sure, you wouldnt sell loads of these, but you may get the odd one or two customers a month willing to stump up that sort of cash which would make it more proffitable then selling 10 ebooks at $50.

    Im not saying I condone this or am considering doing this, its just interesting to see people's oppinions on the effect of pricing etc;

    Its like seeing a pc for sale at $500 or one at $1000; to the un-savvy person, the more expensive one looks like a better pc.




  2. #2
    Non-Member fryman's Avatar
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    Sounds like a stupid idea.
    Who would pay $1000 for an ebook?

  3. #3
    One Dream. BigL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fryman
    Sounds like a stupid idea.
    Who would pay $1000 for an ebook?
    The same people who pay thousands for memberships to B2B web sites. You'd be surprised how much people are willing to shell out on the Internet.

    dalecom, The only way to find out is to either go ahead and do it, or put a poll on your web site to see if anyone would be up for it. There are things I never thought my visitors would go for, but if presented correctly you can pitch anything to anybody in the world.
    Never Ignorant Getting Goals Accomplished

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    SitePoint Guru defiance's Avatar
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    the price-quality perception do exists.

  5. #5
    SitePoint Enthusiast VeteranAndy's Avatar
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    maybe not as extreme as $1000 but if you can represent it in such a way a higher price could be negotiated well.

  6. #6
    SitePoint Evangelist tylercruz's Avatar
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    Personally I find it funny people will pay ANYTHING for an e-book, let alone $1,000. What am I missing here, seriously?
    Tyler Cruz
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    PublisherSpot.com: Professional Reviews of Ad Networks

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    My true identity MaxS's Avatar
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    I wouldn't be suprised if a bunch of people purchased the $1k ebook. For a lot of people, its natural to think the more expensive item is the better one.

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    ********* Genius Mike's Avatar
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    Ignorance and naivity don't stop when someone connects to the net

    Same goes for people who actually install the active x controls to view sites
    Mike
    It's not who I am underneath, but what I do that defines me.

  9. #9
    Jeremy Maddock WealthStream's Avatar
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    Prestige pricing does have the power to get some sales, but $1000 for an eBook is a bit excessive. It might be more reasonable if you were offering a complete course of some kind with a physical training materials, etc, but very few people would pay that much for a simple eBook.
    -- Jeremy Maddock
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    My Blog - Business, tech, and politics from a webmaster's perspective

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    My true identity MaxS's Avatar
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    I wouldn't be surpised if you packaged it nicely along with some sort of downloadable images, graphs, and a bunch of visual items, it would sell.

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    SitePoint Wizard samsm's Avatar
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    I think I'd happily buy that eBook before sending my life savings to a Nigerian prince.
    The eBook is probably a better deal than 1000 lottery tickets, too.

    Point being, people spend their money on worse things. To the right person, that $1000 eBook is only a payday loan or two away
    Using your unpaid time to add free content to SitePoint Pty Ltd's portfolio?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaxS
    I wouldn't be surpised if you packaged it nicely along with some sort of downloadable images, graphs, and a bunch of visual items, it would sell.
    I agree with Max, if you have a nice package designed with the ebook, it's worth it

  13. #13
    My true identity MaxS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smartdude
    I agree with Max, if you have a nice package designed with the ebook, it's worth it
    I don't necessarily think its worth it but I think anything nicely packaged can sell.

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    Cheers for the replies, as I said - the ebook is not something I'd do; Just wanted people's ideas on price perception. Its an interesting idea that can be applied to just about anything, but as MaxS said; its how you package it.
    Im going to be running a few tests to see if this holds true.




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    SitePoint Enthusiast VeteranAndy's Avatar
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    its pretty simple, the demand of a product depends on peoples perception of the product. If your talented enough to offer such a good service (or people think its such a good service) then people will pay. period.

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    SitePoint Wizard maartenvr's Avatar
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    Packaging and marketing is always a big thing about this. But most of all I think it is credibility in a case like this. If you sell the book for $50, the customer does not take a huge risk. But at $1000 they are taking a bit larger risk.

    So if John Doe would create a brand new website, market it right, make it look nice, promise the world and sell for a $1000, I do not believe he would do well.
    Now if a website with credivility, let's say SitePoint comes out with this book and sells it for $1000, there is a much larger chance of people buying it...
    Maarten

  17. #17
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    Psychologically speaking, the theory is that almost anything can be sold to almost anyone, if you can convince them that they need it.

    Personally, I cringe as I read those high-powered sell-at-you, not to you, pages and ads. They actually have the opposite of the desired effect on me. They make me run a mile. I think there's a cultural consideration which is often overlooked too. I am told by some American friends that the cheesy white smile and high-power selling technique works well there. Here in the UK however, it would, I suspect, be met with rather more caution. (We're so tight-fisted.)

    Could Joe Average sell an e-book for $1000? Absolutely, yes, without any doubt whatsoever. A short course on copywriting might be needed but there is always a market, no matter how absurd the market seems. (See ebay history for examples.) Would Joe Average be able to sleep at night having done so? That's another matter entirely.

  18. #18
    Unauthorized Web Theologian emmzee's Avatar
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    Another problem: If your ebook really isn't worth anything near $1000, your buyer will likely just charge-back their credit card, or cancel their Paypal payment, or stop payment on their check, etc. I doubt there'd be many legit, completed sales of such an item.

  19. #19
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    I've seen ebook versions of print books sell for a lot. For instance, there's a certain manual available for people in the IT industry. It's available in several formats, but the least expensive is the ebook at around $200.

    I don't think that' excessive for a well written manual. Some industry analyses go for $500+ and are available as ebooks. However, the problem is determining which are worth it and which aren't. Anyone can write something and save it as a PDF file. However, it's much harder to get published by a major publisher. You know before buying a book from a major publisher something about the content.

    I personally wouldn't pay $1000 for an ebook, but there aren't a lot of things I would spend $1000 on.

  20. #20
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy
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    I recently bought the ebook I think Brandon is referring to ($200). Well worth it, because of the valuable information contained within it. I didn't spend $200 on a PDF file, I spent $200 getting a lifetime's experience and knowledge from an expert in IT marketing and sales. That to me could represent 6 figure sums to my business.

    I sell ebooks on some of my web sites - some of them cost as much as $100 - some people email me telling me I'm ripping them off as 'it's only an ebook'. But they are the minority, most of my cusotmers appreciate the value of the info contained within our books.

    As for a $1000 book - I can see how that could happen if it was a very niche topic for a select market.

  21. #21
    SitePoint Zealot howardroark`'s Avatar
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    i think it's about perceived value. if you can guarantee an outstanding ROI, then you can sell anything for that amount. but an ebook? i've read many of them - my friends give them to me, as i never get interested enough to buy one myself. they have NEVER provided any information that you can't find already on the internet. but if you got lucky and discovered something that you think is worth a thousand dollars, maybe you had best keep it to yourself and make yourself rich!

  22. #22
    SitePoint Evangelist
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    That price perception thing does exist.

    However, unlike selling tangible items, with ebooks and most intangible digital downloads, your chargeback rate grows larger with the price you charge - obviously. Selling something that is grossly over-priced, just begs for huge return rates, possibly enough to negate all the other sales. And 'no refund' policies are a joke because the CC's always side with the customer.

    It's true many people believe the higher the price the better the quality, but their expectations also increase proportionally. If I paid $1,000 for a damn book, I better walk away LOVING every word in it, or I'd probably be very disappointed.

    And $1,000 is such an absurdly arbitrary price for an ebook, it just creates a mockery of itself. Only the dumbest of the dumb, would even find it possibly rewarding to buy an ebook for so much money.

    If you had an actual publisher that people have heard of behind your book, and is wasn't an ebook, it was say, hardcover (yeah that adds value), and clearly professionally packaged, it's possible at least people would think you were serious. But otherwise, you'd be a joke.

  23. #23
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy
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    I think one of the problems is that ebooks have a poor reputation. There are literally tens of thousands of ebooks that contain nothing more than re-hashes of forum posts. But you could say the same for a lot of 'real' books - for example, the php v1 and 2 books on Sitepoint contain nothing you couldn't find for free on forums and free tutorial sites (and the php manual) - but you are paying your money to have a php expert sift through all that info and arrange the cream of it in one convienient place for you.

    Of course that doesn't justify charging stupid money for it - but assuming an ebook contains highly valuable information and has been reviewed and condoned by industry experts, I cannot see why you could not charge huge sums for it, especially if it was targeted to a selective audience and certainly if the info contained within the book was worth considerable $$$ to your business.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by fryman
    Sounds like a stupid idea.
    Who would pay $1000 for an ebook?
    I doubt you can sell that price in IT sectors. But in Financial sectors yes indeed I saw that kind of price and even more and indeed I know some people having bought them.

  25. #25
    fad (n): a craze; interest... Fahd's Avatar
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    I think its too high, simply because someone with $1000 to drop on an ebook probably has sufficient investments and/or other capital gains and the education/smarts to know what is and isn't; and will not fall for it. Though I wouldn't be surprised if you made something like 1 sale for every million targeted visitor or so.

    Personally, I wouldn't read one of these ebooks, even if you paid me to do it.


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