Numbers For August: Sales & Revenue Rise Again

Regular readers will know that I post my monthly numbers in terms of sales and dollars.

Today, I have August’s numbers for you. If you have an aversion to sales talk or wallet peeking, look away now.

I have just returned from vacation, and before I get stuck into the numbers, I would like to thank all my guest posters who kept things ticking over in my absence with some fine articles.

So, to the numbers.

In short, as you can see, August was my best month to date.

May: 153

June: 78

July: 253

August: 392

I had no new release last month but I was boosted by the continuing strong performance of Let’s Get Digital.

A combination of excellent Amazon reviews (43 reviews with an average of 4.9 on Amazon US alone), superb reviews from influential blogs (such as Big Al’s Books and Pals and Pixel of Ink), and innumerable mentions on Twitter and fellow writer’s blogs led to unexpectedly strong numbers which only began dipping towards the end of the month.

Even though it cost over $1000 to publish, that money was made back a mere 35 days after release. From now on, it’s all profit.

In fact, the only title not in profit is Transfection, which still lags behind the rest. However, overall, my entire self-publishing enterprise is in profit, due to unexpected extra revenue this month.

May: $70

June: $35

July: $425

August: $870

The huge increase in July was down to the release of my first title at $2.99, accessing the more lucrative 70% royalty rate.

It was only released towards the end of that month, and August’s figures benefit from a lot of the new release buzz.

However, one unexpected source of revenue was the free PDF version of Let’s Get Digital. It pulled in $146.50 in PayPal donations from readers – roughly a fifth of my overall revenue – for which I am both surprised and grateful.

As for more conventional sales channels, here is the breakdown for August.

Amazon US: 280

Amazon UK: 94

Amazon DE: 2

Smashwords.com: 13

Smashwords Partners: 3

The stand-out here is that UK sales are growing at an even faster rate than US sales. However, that’s just when you look at the month as a whole.

Looking at my daily figures, I can see that there was a big drop off in US sales towards the end of the month, while the UK kept growing.

And in fact, looking at the first half of September, I can see that pattern continue. US sales are in the doldrums (relatively speaking), while the UK is holding on. In fact, they have nearly reached parity, which is a complete surprise.

Overall, I’m extremely pleased with August’s performance. $870 is a fantastic amount of money to bring in for only my fourth month. On top of that, the UK goes from strength to strength. I still can’t get any traction on the Smashwords partner sites, but with the reporting delays on those sales, I have no real idea how I am doing.

The tone of this sales report would have been a lot bouncier had I written it at the start of September but, the fact is, sales have tanked this month. The UK hasn’t dropped quite as much as the US where numbers have simply collapsed.

I have no real idea of the cause just yet, or even if there is one other than the fact that I have been on vacation for two weeks with no internet access. And to be honest, my primary focus is on getting my next title out, hopefully in October.

On the other hand, all that revenue is money in the bank (or at least it will be in a couple of months), and all those sales are new readers I have reached. No matter how bad numbers drop this month, that can’t be taken away.

So, instead of running around with a big promo gun for the rest of the month, trying to pull my numbers out of the fire, I’m just going to let things keep ticking over at a low level on their own and focus on writing.

When I get A Storm Hits Valparaíso up, then it will be worth devoting time to promotion. Until then, it’s back to wrestling the beast over the finish line.

I only got to this point because of everyone who helped promote and review Let’s Get Digital, and for that I am truly grateful. It must have nearly 150 reviews and ratings from the last 7 weeks across all the sites.

I got home from my vacation today – which I hope to write about soon – and I have a mountain of emails to deal with. If you are waiting for something from me, I ask for your continued patience while I clear the backlog.

It was weird being completely offline for two weeks. Bear with me while I adapt to the culture shock of working again.

Anything happen while I was gone?