Those who have published with Lightning Source or Ingram Spark should have received an email notifying of cost increase in printing and in handling fee as of February 8. We can change the prices of our books, though, to adjust for this increase. If the price shows on the back cover (perhaps in the bar code?), for a limited time there’s no need to upload a new cover and pay that $40 cost—hurray! This is a good time to re-evaluate the list prices and discount percentages of our books.
Instead of raising the list price of Cherry Blossoms in Twilight to make up for the increased Lightning Source cost, I took advantage of this freebie moment (its price is in the bar code) to finally lower the list price from $12.95 to $9.95. This book, after all, is about ten years old. But, I also lowered the discount rate for book buyers from standard 55% to only 40%. My compensation per sale will be only 9 cents less. Most of my sales these days are for e-books through Kindle Direct, with some print copies sold mainly through Amazon (not book stores), so the 40% discount should not be an issue. What remains to be seen is whether Amazon will now notice this book is through LSI and not their CreateSpace and punish me by showing Cherry Blossoms is not in stock. That’s another reason I resisted changing the price for years. I decided not to change anything for my latest publication, Battlefield Doc: Memoir of a Korean War Combat Medic (Nov 2015).
Lightning Source and Ingram Spark have publisher compensation calculators on their websites, so you can fiddle with your book list price and discount percentage to see what makes sense for you before submitting a change. For now, the calculators will figure compensation for both current pricing and the new pricing, so you can see the difference. These companies process pricing structure changes once a month with the following upcoming cut-off dates:
January 26 – for February start
February 22 – for March start
After February 22, if your book price is showing on the back cover or in the bar code, you will have to pay, as usual, to upload a new cover to make pricing changes. It can be the same cover, just with new price, or choose to have no price showing in the bar code.
See my website Resource page for more information about using Lightning Source/Ingram Spark.