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 CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.