Why all the bundling? Request to Logos/Faithlife staff

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Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife) | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 8 2017 10:02 AM

One more thought:

There are some difficulties in offering individual volumes on pre-pub that are also part of a larger collection. If an individual volume gets funded before the entire collection, there is no way for us to give just the individual volume to someone who ordered the larger collection because their order is still a pre-pub order (and hasn't been processed or charged).

If I had pre-ordered the larger collection, I would (understandably) be upset that I had to wait to get the individual book. Moreover, if that larger collection never got enough orders to get funded, I'd have to go back and order the individual volume at full price.

This particular problem is unique to the pre-pub program. While I can imagine scenarios to solve this problem, our current system does not allow us to implement them.

To some degree, this particular problem will be solved as we offer more books on pre-order.

Manager, Bible Study Products Department

Posts 4823
doc | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 8 2017 11:48 AM

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):

One more thought:

There are some difficulties in offering individual volumes on pre-pub that are also part of a larger collection. If an individual volume gets funded before the entire collection, there is no way for us to give just the individual volume to someone who ordered the larger collection because their order is still a pre-pub order (and hasn't been processed or charged).

If I had pre-ordered the larger collection, I would (understandably) be upset that I had to wait to get the individual book. Moreover, if that larger collection never got enough orders to get funded, I'd have to go back and order the individual volume at full price.

This particular problem is unique to the pre-pub program. While I can imagine scenarios to solve this problem, our current system does not allow us to implement them.

Ben customers don't need why we can't do this answer from FL all of the time, we need what we can do now to make the user experience better and not promises of what we will do next week and then when next week arrives sorry we didn't do that other things moved to the top of the pile.  FL need to let their yes be yes or stop saying they will do things they can't deliver. And what you can do now is look into what larger bundles can be broken up, and get back to communicating with customers via both the forum and the blogs when such collections are broken up for individual sales - not every collection will be able to be broken up right now - but surely there are some that you can do something about now.

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):
To some degree, this particular problem will be solved as we offer more books on pre-order.

And look at how that is working out currently, in another forum post you have announced there are too many titles on pre-pub and so they are not getting traction and you are going to remove them unless customers can do the work for you and get enough support to move these titles into production, giving customers 1 months notice to do what FL has failed to do over a lot longer period of time.

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Disciple of Christ (doc):

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):
To some degree, this particular problem will be solved as we offer more books on pre-order.

And look at how that is working out currently, in another forum post you have announced there are too many titles on pre-pub and so they are not getting traction and you are going to remove them unless customers can do the work for you and get enough support to move these titles into production, giving customers 1 months notice to do what FL has failed to do over a lot longer period of time.

Just to be clear, I'm referring to pre-order as opposed to pre-pub. As we identify books for pre-order and produce them up front, we'll be able to sell the books as a collection and as individual titles as it will eliminate the problem I described above.

Manager, Bible Study Products Department

Posts 2675
Mattillo | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 9 2017 6:09 AM

Thank you for responding Ben. You commented on the CS resource I posted but any thoughts on the other three? I understand that bundling can help push resources and make them cheaper. My hope is that you break these bundles up when possible for those of us who don't want all of these books.  Maybe you could post a date on these bundles as to when you expect them to dissolve?  Thank you for listening

Posts 21
Nicholas Hatch | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Mar 12 2017 7:57 PM

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):

  1. It makes a lot of sense to ensure that resources that are part of Mobile Ed courses are always available as standalone products. I'll have the team do a review and make sure that is the case.

Ben,

Just my 2cents worth:  Perhaps it would be helpful to bundle the books associated with Mobile Ed courses WITH the course.  If I purchase a course on Matthew's Gospel, it would be great if I knew that with one click I was getting the lectures, required readings, and all other needed course materials with "one stop shopping" so to speak.  

Just a thought that might be worth consideration. 

As a side note, sometimes I personally would be willing to pay a couple dollars more for an individual volume to avoid spending a giant chunk on a bundle I don't need - especially right now when cash is tight, and there are some titles I want/need for schoolwork.  You may find that you are able to charge a marginally higher amound for some titles in an unbundled form even if you offer it at a theoretically cheaper price when bundled with other works.  

Posts 2656
Doc B | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Mar 12 2017 8:27 PM

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):
In other cases, it is because we can offer the best deal on a book as part of a bundle. For example, there may be a book that sells standalone for $50 but that we can bundle with 5 other books for $100.

This kind of reasoning is the root problem. Maybe it's a Common-Core thing. Every way I analyze it, $100 is not a better deal than $50, especially by your own admission that,

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):
we have a bunch of second-tier backlist content that wouldn't really make a whole lot of progress on pre-pub if they were all individual titles
...the rest of the bundle is worthless.

Put me in with the others who WILL NOT buy anything I don't want just to get one I do. You (FL) are losing money on me, along with others, who don't have access to individual titles that we would buy except for the bundling.

My thanks to the various MVPs. Without them Logos would have died early. They were the only real help available.

Faithlife Corp. owes the MVPs free resources for life.

Posts 136
Willie | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 14 2017 2:08 PM

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):

I realize that not everyone always wants all 5 books and that, consequently, it isn't actually a good deal for them. We're actually revisting the strategy here. You will likely see some changes over the next few months.

Ben,

This is encouraging news.  I purchased Runge’s HDNT (3 volume set) a couple of years ago and am now ready to purchase his HDOT (3 volume).  Unfortunately, it is no longer available as a separate purchase and is part of several expensive bundles of which I have no interest in buying.  I only need the HDOT by itself. 

Since the HDOT and HDNT 3 volume sets have already previously been available separately and are Lexham products, it seems like it would be easy to separate them from the current bundles.  This issue has been discussed in a separate thread as well (https://community.logos.com/forums/p/127518/886384.aspx).

Thank you

Posts 2675
Mattillo | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 15 2017 6:13 AM

Any thoughts on breaking up these below bundles?  If not now, when?  Thank you

What Does the Bible Really Teach about Homosexuality? by Kevin DeYoung which is found in https://www.logos.com/product/55583/crossway-christian-life-collection

The Second Coming: Signs of Christ’s Return and the End of the Age by John MacArthur found in https://www.logos.com/product/55576/crossway-theology-collection-2

Bibliotheca Sacra 2015 journal articles found in https://www.logos.com/product/54391/master-journal-bundle-21  

Select Works of Sean & Josh McDowell: https://www.logos.com/product/50147/

Posts 60
Rustamania | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 15 2017 8:00 AM

Doc B:

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):
In other cases, it is because we can offer the best deal on a book as part of a bundle. For example, there may be a book that sells standalone for $50 but that we can bundle with 5 other books for $100.

This kind of reasoning is the root problem. Maybe it's a Common-Core thing. Every way I analyze it, $100 is not a better deal than $50, especially by your own admission that,

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):
we have a bunch of second-tier backlist content that wouldn't really make a whole lot of progress on pre-pub if they were all individual titles
...the rest of the bundle is worthless.

Put me in with the others who WILL NOT buy anything I don't want just to get one I do. You (FL) are losing money on me, along with others, who don't have access to individual titles that we would buy except for the bundling.

Agree with this so much.  I can justify 20 bucks, can't justify, 100, 200 or more.  I have had to turn to Amazon many times because of this logic.  I guess it pays off for Faithlife in the end?  It seems though that it would eventually lead people away.  

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PetahChristian | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 17 2017 12:48 PM

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):
It makes a lot of sense to ensure that resources that are part of Mobile Ed courses are always available as standalone products. I'll have the team do a review and make sure that is the case.

PD101 links to Comfort from Romans, which is only available in a bundle. Can that resource please become a standalone product? Thanks!

Posts 828
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Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife) | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 17 2017 1:14 PM

PetahChristian:

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):
It makes a lot of sense to ensure that resources that are part of Mobile Ed courses are always available as standalone products. I'll have the team do a review and make sure that is the case.

PD101 links to Comfort from Romans, which is only available in a bundle. Can that resource please become a standalone product? Thanks!

Thanks for pointing that out. I'll get it in the queue to be split out.

Manager, Bible Study Products Department

Posts 2675
Mattillo | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 17 2017 1:22 PM
Mattillo:

Any thoughts on breaking up these below bundles?  If not now, when?  Thank you

What Does the Bible Really Teach about Homosexuality? by Kevin DeYoung which is found in https://www.logos.com/product/55583/crossway-christian-life-collection

The Second Coming: Signs of Christ’s Return and the End of the Age by John MacArthur found in https://www.logos.com/product/55576/crossway-theology-collection-2

Bibliotheca Sacra 2015 journal articles found in https://www.logos.com/product/54391/master-journal-bundle-21  

Select Works of Sean & Josh McDowell: https://www.logos.com/product/50147/

Ben what about these?
Posts 828
LogosEmployee
Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife) | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 17 2017 1:23 PM

Mattillo:
Mattillo:

Any thoughts on breaking up these below bundles?  If not now, when?  Thank you

What Does the Bible Really Teach about Homosexuality? by Kevin DeYoung which is found in https://www.logos.com/product/55583/crossway-christian-life-collection

The Second Coming: Signs of Christ’s Return and the End of the Age by John MacArthur found in https://www.logos.com/product/55576/crossway-theology-collection-2

Bibliotheca Sacra 2015 journal articles found in https://www.logos.com/product/54391/master-journal-bundle-21  

Select Works of Sean & Josh McDowell: https://www.logos.com/product/50147/

Ben what about these?

Yes, definitely (sorry I missed this earlier).

Manager, Bible Study Products Department

Posts 2675
Mattillo | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 17 2017 1:50 PM

Thank you Ben. Hopefully those can be at some point

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PetahChristian | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 17 2017 2:16 PM

We apparently can't buy OT355's EBCREV06 resource separately, as there is an "Only sold as part of the collection" icon.

However, that commentary volume is the most-linked resource for the course, at 49x. What are we supposed to do when we have pre-ordered the course, but can't afford to buy a whole commentary set to get access to a single critical volume?

Can the publisher please relax that restriction?

Posts 5133
Dan Francis | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 17 2017 2:45 PM

PetahChristian:
Can the publisher please relax that restriction?

I have yet to ever see Faithlife do this, but I suppose stranger things have happened.. Worse case scenario you could buy the kindle edition of the Isaiah commentary from the EBCR for $11.89... or the whole volume in Kindle for $22.93, so Zondervan is apparently not opposed to singular sales or even partial book sales, this should be available for sale if it is part of a course. Is it just often referenced or required?

-dan

Posts 2563
SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 24 2017 5:13 PM

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):

  • There are a number of reasons why we bundle books.
    1. In some cases (C.S. Lewis is the best example) it is a publisher stipulation.
    2. In other cases, it is because it belongs to a set and makes the most sense to offer them as a bundle.
    3. In other cases, it is because we can offer the best deal on a book as part of a bundle. For example, there may be a book that sells standalone for $50 but that we can bundle with 5 other books for $100. I realize that not everyone always wants all 5 books and that, consequently, it isn't actually a good deal for them. We're actually revisting the strategy here. You will likely see some changes over the next few months.
    4. In some cases, we have a bunch of second-tier backlist content that wouldn't really make a whole lot of progress on pre-pub if they were all individual titles. In this case, we bundle them all together as a sort of 'grab bag' for people interested.
  • There are times where we have broken up a pre-pub collection into individual volumes to see if we can gather a bit more support and get it into production. We could probably do this more. Again, we will be reevaluating this over the coming months.

Back in the first great Pre-Pub purge, a lot of bundles of specifically Catholic stuff were wiped out because they couldn't get any traction... because they were mixing vastly different types of theology and types of theologians. Some died because you had one or two very popular and saleable works (e.g., Ralph McInerny's Ethica Thomistica) mixed in with lots of stuff that was... vastly more expensive and far less saleable.

I hope the revisiting doesn't leave out Verbum.

Posts 164
Daniel Radke | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 25 2017 7:43 AM

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):

Mattillo:
Mattillo:

Any thoughts on breaking up these below bundles?  If not now, when?  Thank you

What Does the Bible Really Teach about Homosexuality? by Kevin DeYoung which is found in https://www.logos.com/product/55583/crossway-christian-life-collection

The Second Coming: Signs of Christ’s Return and the End of the Age by John MacArthur found in https://www.logos.com/product/55576/crossway-theology-collection-2

Bibliotheca Sacra 2015 journal articles found in https://www.logos.com/product/54391/master-journal-bundle-21  

Select Works of Sean & Josh McDowell: https://www.logos.com/product/50147/

Ben what about these?

Yes, definitely (sorry I missed this earlier).

How about unbundling all of the Crossway titles? I do not have a list of all the ones I have wanted to purchase over the last couple years for a seminary class, but did not because they were part of a large bundle. One recent example is Gregg Allison's Sojourners and Strangers: The Doctrine of the Church which is only a part of this larger bundle: https://www.logos.com/product/55576/crossway-theology-collection-2

Thank for your consideration, Faithlife!

eChristianResources.com - Connecting Christians With Quality Evangelical Resources Available For FREE On The Internet (including links to free Logos/Vyrso resources!)

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PetahChristian | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 3 2017 9:33 AM

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):

PetahChristian:

Ben Amundgaard (Faithlife):
It makes a lot of sense to ensure that resources that are part of Mobile Ed courses are always available as standalone products. I'll have the team do a review and make sure that is the case.

PD101 links to Comfort from Romans, which is only available in a bundle. Can that resource please become a standalone product? Thanks!

Thanks for pointing that out. I'll get it in the queue to be split out.

Did it make it into the queue, and is waiting for someone to get to it? Just trying to stay on top of outstanding issues, so they don't fall off my radar.

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PetahChristian | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 3 2017 9:38 AM

PetahChristian:

We apparently can't buy OT355's EBCREV06 resource separately, as there is an "Only sold as part of the collection" icon.

However, that commentary volume is the most-linked resource for the course, at 49x. What are we supposed to do when we have pre-ordered the course, but can't afford to buy a whole commentary set to get access to a single critical volume?

Can the publisher please relax that restriction?

Can anything be done about this? Is it FL's policy to ensure that Mobile Ed course resources are sold separately?

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