using payhip

Payhip social media buttonWe recently held a great chat on Facebook for authors on how to get the most out of Payhip, a sales platform that pays authors an astonishing 95% commission.

Here’s a summary of the discussion:

Advantages:

  • You can then integrate with your mailing list if you choose.
  • Higher royalties than most other sites – 95%, minus Paypal transaction fees.
  • Pays right away – if you need to raise money really quickly (for a charity event, or because of unexpected bills), you can use a sale or ask people to buy your books with PayHip to get the royalties quickly
  • Works with Paypal and Stripe, and easy to link
  • Not having to worry about VAT, as PayHip handles that.
  • PayHip manages downloads for you
  • Easy to update book files – just delete the old file and put in your new one with updated back matter, new links.
  • PayHip allows you to set the price as a minimum or pay what you want pricing, which allows purchasers to pay more for the product if they want to.
  • Easy way to give away freebies and get people on your newsletter if you want.
  • Coupons are great. You can set them up with passwords, share them in groups, have them apply to only a few books or your whole store.
  • There’s also social share, which I’m going to be using for the first time on a new release. Essentially, if people share the link to you book on Twitter or Facebook, they get a discount.
  • You offer any format – .pdf, .mobi, .epub.
  • Very easy to set up.
  • Using an author newsletter to advertise the Payhip site works well.
  • Payhip’s analytics are good too.
  • Payhip gives the option of adding a watermark to the files.
  • Good for readers who choose not to deal with Amazon, B&N or other sites, or who live in places where Amazon doesn’t sell your books.
  • Gaining more independence from the whims of retailers. So if Amazon cuts royalties in half, or deletes your account because you were targeted by spammers, then you tell your readers and ask them to buy directly from you.
  • Payhip Buy Buttons available for your website.
  • BookFunnel now integrates with PayHip (and other direct sales platforms), so that when people buy your books, they’ll also get an email from BookFunnel to make it easy to get it on their preferred reading device.

Disadvantages:

  • Needing a business PayPal to protect your privacy. Buyers will see your Paypal account name, so if you use a pseudonym and don’t want your Paypal name shown, get a business Paypal account first.
  • Every single transaction comes through separately, so on sales days it can be a lot to weed through and process.
  • Some of the built-in stuff that is supposed to make is easy isn’t possible to use on a free wordpress.com site. They don’t support frames or script.
  • Not enough authors are using Payhip yet and advertising on FB, etc so that readers become familiar with this new platform.
  • The site doesn’t have a good search feature to find books.
  • Site documentation is often unclear; sometimes readers download the wrong format and are unaware they can still get the correct one.
  • Payhip does *not* create books in the various formats for you – you have to do that first outside of the site.
  • It doesn’t let you set multiple currencies, so international readers will know what they are paying
  • Since it’s not a site that’s used that frequently by readers looking for books, you really have to push the links to get people to the site.
  • No DRM, so your books could be pirated (true of many sites)
  • Lack of sales. You’re not going to make money using it.

Tips:

  • You need your cover image, blurb, and book files to upload.
  • You will need to connect to either PayPal or Stripe or both. Business PayPal if you don’t want people to have your real name, so that’s important to know!
  • No matter what, each transaction is via an email address.
  • Consider adding a special tracking code to books sold via Payhip to help track potential piracy. Payhip also offers watermarking.

Dale Cameron wrote a great review of the platform here.

Payhip Experts/Sources: