The pay-per-use pricing model for e-books and audiobooks has proven to be very popular with libraries all over the world. Unlike traditional ownership-driven digital models, where the content is paid for up-front in full and then loaned to patrons over time, pay-per-use has no up-front costs at all. Instead, libraries can offer an extended range of titles, and are only charged when a title is downloaded. Bibliotheca and 3M Cloud Library have just announced at Book Expo American that they are now offering this option to libraries.
The pay-per-use model will sit alongside the up-front payment model within the Cloud Library, allowing libraries to mix and match how they wish to purchase content. For example, if a title purchased using the pay-per-use model gains popularity, it can then be purchased outright, allowing libraries to try and test stock at their will. Additionally, libraries are able to provide a monthly cap on their pay-per-use title stock to ensure that their collection budget is suitably managed.
This new model will be available to all Cloud Library customers later this year. Currently bibliotheca is establishing a pilot group of leading libraries to help test the new model.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and Verge.