When to sell books yourself, and when not to

Here’s a topic that came up recently with a client: when to sell your book yourself and when to have someone order directly from your publisher.

If you buy books from your publisher for $10 each and your retail price is $20, that gives you a $10 profit, right?

Well, sometimes. If you’re selling the book directly to your reader, then you’ve made $10. But what if you’re selling the book to a retail store and the retailer gets a 55% discount? You will receive $9 for each book that you’ve paid $10 for wholesale. You’re $1 in the hole from the start.

Here’s the lesson: Have the retailer buy their books directly from your publisher, if you’re printing with a print-on-demand publisher or from your distributor. You’ll still make money on the book and keep your personal stock for direct sales at full retail price.

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