The CITE, a blog published by the National Association of College Stores, takes a look at the intersection of education and technology, highlighting issues that range from course materials to learning delivery to the student experience. Comments, discussion, feedback, and ideas are welcome.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Onlyindie.com Turning Heads

Onlyindie.com, an online e-bookseller, has been in operation just a few months, yet its business model is turning heads in the publishing industry. The privately owned company calls itself the world’s first dynamically priced e-book store.   

Onlyindie actually gives away the first 15 downloads of the title. Each e-book downloaded after that increases in penny increments until it reaches a maximum price of $7.98, where it remains until 24 hours pass without a download. At that point, the company uses an algorithm that over a period of time lowers the price back to zero again.

Writers receive 50% of the sale price on books priced up to $1.99. That increases to 75% for books priced $2 to $7.98. Although authors are permitted to set their price limit lower than $7.98, they cannot increase it. Authors are paid via Paypal with no minimums and no waiting for the check.

The web site got a big boost when Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban agreed to have his book, How to Win, sold using Onlyindie’s model, even besting the price-busting Amazon for some time. The bookhowever, is no longer on the web site.

As of July 13, 2012, Onlyindie.com had 20 free e-books available and 31 at varying prices below $7.98. The e-book categories were typical for the trends this year, including some vampire tales, adult fiction, advice and how-to, science fiction and fantasy, and short stories.

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