Thank you - I have to think about removing one or the other, but each shows in different searches too so I'm not sure. I might leave them both there - I guess it's like having two ads instead of one, except for the lower sales ranking. The Mobi sold better even before the discount on the DTP book disappeared.
In the long run, Amazon will try to optimize the price relative to demand. In general most "Long Tail" independent titles have a pretty nominal "demand" so the price elasticity is pretty low.
The sad fact is, assuming they find the optimal discount which derives overall maximum revenue, the lower the return to the publisher is as a percent of net selling price, which raises some basic equity questions. 35% of a list price at a $10.00 is $3.50 regardless of discount or not; but if Amazon's receipts are without discount, your share of the revenue is 35%, whereas if the selling price is $8.00, your share is higher -- more like 43%. Aside from basic equity questions (which don't really seem to be a consideration here), it is possible that Amazon can optimize their income relative to demand, while not (quite) optimizing yours. A revenue share that was an (equitable?) direct percentage would at least see that the publisher interests were aligned with Amazon's.
At the end of the day, the only thing that will meaningfully change this is when other ebook reader platforms start creating a more competitive market for publishers and that access to distribution (in terms of ability to DRM if desired and download via whispernet or other delivery) can be offered through other venues and for other (market leading) platforms.
Amazon gets big "getting it" credit in creating an ecosystem. Let's hope they don't fall victim to the Mike Spindler syndrome "I have a word processor and spreadsheet, what do I want to spend $60M on a developer program for?"
Now it seems to be changing on a daily basis: I've lost the discount on one of the discounted titles, retained it on the other. I don't suppose many people are checking the prices of these titles on a daily basis, but if anyone is, it must puzzle the heck out of him or her. What does it say about a product whose prices changes every day?
I acknowledge Amazon's right to sell our books at whatever price point they desire, as long as they pay authors the agreed upon percentage based on the established list prices. I just find it frustrating that they don't send alerts when prices are RAISED. They certainly have contact information for publishers; why aren't they using it?
We establish list prices, and subsequently selling prices, based upon what we perceive as their pricing structure. Then they go and change it by removing discounts. We're already forced to continually visit the DTP accounting area because they removed the detail information about sales. Now we have to continually visit the book pages to see if they've changed the selling prices.
How about it Amazon? You have plenty of computers and knowledgeable programmers. Why can't you send a simple email when making changes that cause a price to increase?