I found this month's review of comic sales to be fascinating. I wondered what effect on sales would come from so many titles raising their price to $3.99. My thoughts were that the comics on the edge, the lower sellers, would suffer because readers would have less money to spend. Let's face it, my $12 now can only buy me 3 issues instead of 4.
As usual, ICv2 does a great job of breaking down the September 2009 sales. Here is the link:
One thing they noted was that some books with the $3.99 cover price dropped a bit precipitously from month to month. In other words, people are less likely to continue to buy more expensive comics unless the story really grabs them. One thing that is evident is that Blackest Night is of high quality as the mini-series, the GL books, and related mini-series like Blackest Night:Superman all sold very very well.
Personally I have always been concerned about the effect of this price increase on some of my favorite books. Will pricier more popular titles mean less people buying Supergirl or R.E.B.E.L.S. ? Let's crunch the numbers.
Supergirl #45 sold 32,240 units down from the 33, 819 units Supergirl #44 sold. That means sales were down 5%.
Now Supergirl #44 was a part of Codename:Patriot and so may have brought in more readers. But Supergirl #45 was part of the crossover Hunt For Reactron. So to see numbers drop a bit is sort of discouraging.
32,240 marks the lowest sales for Supergirl since the Gates/Igle revival. Sales have always hovered closer to 33K. I am not going to quibble over slight ripples in sales since I think the title is still very healthy. But in looking at all the sales, Action Comics and Superman sales are both around 36K. I wonder if Superman fans have reached their limit for the 'Year Without Superman'.
That said, the solicits for issues #47 and #48 seems much more Supergirl-centric and less a part of the New Krypton aftermath. I will be interested to see how sales look there.
As semi-discouraged as I was with sales of the main title, I was encouraged by the sales of Supergirl Annual #1. This issue had a lot of things going for it. First off, it had this unbelievably powerful Renato Guedes cover. This might be my last chance to say how much I loved this cover.
It also was the 'first' Linda Lang story.
And it also had 'The Origin of Superwoman', a character that got a lot of publicity and a story that sold very well.
Still, an annual is an 'extra issue' on readers' pull lists.
I was pretty impressed to see that Supergirl Annual #1 sold 28,862. I wonder if some Supergirl fans were simply torn between buying with the Annual or #45.
I really enjoyed the Annual thinking it was a strong issue and a good hook for new readers. It will be interesting to see next month's sales report to see if the main title rebounds or improves.
Unfortunately, despite unbelievable coverage by DC in all areas, R.E.B.E.L.S. still seems to be sliding.
The book has been promoted on all the big sites, mentioned by Dan Didio in lots of places, and is a fun book. It just can't find it's footing.
R.E.B.E.L.S. #8 sold only 11347 units. This is down slightly from the issue before.
I can't wait to see the sales for R.E.B.E.L.S. #10, the Blackest Night tie-in linked to the Indigo ring giveaway. Does anyone think it will triple the books sales that month? Quadruple it?
Overall, I think sales numbers for Supergirl remain stable. I wonder what direction the sales will go once the New Krypton/Reactron issues slow down. My hope is Supergirl #50 will draw in the curious and increase the reader base.