Will Books Get Even Cheaper in 2010?

In Discussion by Edward Nawotka

By Edward Nawotka

e-book and old booksToday’s lead story discusses how the remainder book market continues to be robust, despite a relatively depressed global economy. It’s only reasonable that people would search for bargains when the money is tight. It’s also one of the reasons that Amazon, Wal-Mart and others started a brief price war in November, one that saw the price of bestsellers drop below $9 a copy — and these are hot, new, in-demand hardcovers. What’s more, with many e-books being priced at $9.99, the argument could be made that customers are becoming accustomed to getting new books at remainder prices.”

The American Booksellers Association and some e-retailers have called this deep discounting “predatory pricing.” Others have suggested that continued deep discounting is conditioning customers to buying books on the cheap.

The question is: Will the deep discounting trend for books and e-books continue into 2010? How much lower can prices go? And what are the long term effects of discounting on both publishers and booksellers?

Let us know what you think in the comments below or via Twitter using hashtag #ppbonus.

About the Author

Edward Nawotka

Edward Nawotka is the Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. A former foreign correspondent, he has covered the book business since 2000, serving as daily news editor for Publishers Weekly and columnist for Bloomberg News.