Support for Indie Authors discussion

103 views
Marketing Tactics > Getting your Amazon KDP Paperback into bookstores

Comments Showing 1-41 of 41 (41 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Lightfoot | 25 comments I've had a few people contact me and ask if they can buy a paperback copy of my book from a local bookshop. I therefore contacted some and asked what I need to do for them to stock it. In the UK, the first step is to get your book's ISBN added to the Nielsen database. I contacted Nielsen and they confirmed they have no record of my book, even though it's been published for 6 months. They advised me to register for their Title Editor and add it, but that seems to be for publishers and states 'If you're an author, your publisher should provide us with your ISBN.'

My question is, do Amazon actually do that? or is it up to Amazon KDP authors to contact Nielsen themselves?


White Diamond Editing (wwwgoodreadscomwhitediamondedits) | 22 comments Hi Matthew,

Things like this are down to the author and are the things that need to be done when publishing a book. Amazon are merely the sellers (even if using KDP it is still only a sales platform). The admin of the book (ISBN, registering with Neilsen, doing legal deposits) are the author's responsibility as you have taken on the role of publisher as well as the author.

Hope that helps.

Jacqui


message 3: by Leah (new)

Leah Reise | 350 comments Hi, Matthew. You either go through an ISBN company that creates and issues them, or you can do what I did and have KDP Amazon issue one for free. The only thing with KDP is you can only sell your books with them, I believe. If you want to go the other route and sell your books on various platforms, I think you have to purchase an ISBN. There’s many companies online that do that. Some make you pay extra to custom an ISBN you can use on all platforms. At first I bought one for $20 online through an ISBN company but realized I could use it on a few platforms but not KDP Amazon. As I’m only publishing with Amazon right now, I had Amazon issue me a free one.


message 4: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Lightfoot | 25 comments Leah wrote: "Hi, Matthew. You either go through an ISBN company that creates and issues them, or you can do what I did and have KDP Amazon issue one for free. The only thing with KDP is you can only sell your b..."

Is that right Leah? I understood you didnt have to sell the paperback solely through via Amazon when using their ISBN. Might be wrong but I'm sure I've read that somewhere on here or similar forum.


message 5: by Leah (new)

Leah Reise | 350 comments I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure the rules on KDP said you can only use it on KDP. It’s probably best to read the rules directly through them. I’ll go back and take another look.


message 6: by Leah (new)

Leah Reise | 350 comments I just copy and pasted the following from KDP Amazon:
“This free ISBN can only be used on KDP for distribution to Amazon and its distributors. It cannot be used with another publisher or self-publishing service.”


message 7: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Lightfoot | 25 comments Ah Ok, I think thats different though. I'm not talking about another publisher, I'm talking about individual stores. Having read it, I think the Extended Distribution option makes the ISBN visible to wholesalers and libraries. However, its not clear whether that extends beyond US , so I've emailed to ask them the question.


message 8: by Leah (new)

Leah Reise | 350 comments Oh! I forgot to mention that I think you can sell them at bookstores though, because you have to buy the author copies through Amazon anyway.


message 9: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Lightfoot | 25 comments Leah wrote: "Oh! I forgot to mention that I think you can sell them at bookstores though, because you have to buy the author copies through Amazon anyway."

Yeah that works for small independent stores who will take one or two on sale or return, but for chain stores like Waterstone's they need it visible to their wholesalers, and the first step in UK is getting the ISBN on Nielsen.


message 10: by Leah (new)

Leah Reise | 350 comments I’ve sold my first book of my trilogy in a chain bookstore with the free KDP ISBN. The ISBN and the barcode is printed on the book cover. Is that what you mean by visible?


message 11: by Leah (new)

Leah Reise | 350 comments Though I do have my book on extended distribution.


message 12: by Kaylee (new)

Kaylee Dolat | 91 comments Here’s what I’m doing: selling kindle version through KDP and paperback through Ingram Spark. Ingram works with big brick stores and kdp will give me enough revenue off kind,e sales to pay for my ISBN with Ingram.


message 13: by Gail (new)

Gail Meath (goodreadscomgail_meath) | 190 comments While we're on the subject, and please forgive me if I'm not knowledgeable on this, I was under the impression to sell through a major book store, like Barnes & Noble, you need to find a wholesale distributor/manufacturer and sign a contract with them. Then, they will distribute to B&N or other stores for a cost. Amazon is not a distributor. Is this correct?


message 14: by Leah (new)

Leah Reise | 350 comments I was able to sell my books with Copperfield’s Bookstore, but now that I think about it, that was when it was Createspace Amazon.


message 15: by B.A. (new)

B.A. A. Mealer | 821 comments If you are publishing only on Amazon, you can use their numbers. It will not be put in bookstores or libraries at this time.

If you want to publish with other bookstores, have your books in libraries, then yes, you need and ISBN...one for each type of book your are publishing...hardback, paperback, mobi, Epub, and audio. You can not use the same ISBN for all of the formats, each need its own ISBN.

You can use whatever publishing company they have in the UK that is like Ingram-Spark. I also use Draft2Digital as it's easy and they do libraries. You can also use Smashwords if you can get your book through the meat-grinder. (I have a low frustration level and I gave up on Smashwords.)

You can also put your book on B&N, Kobo, ibooks, google playstore, etc without a distributor, but....you need to realize that this means you are doing it all...the updates, the changes, the ads, etc. for each store. I'm not sure about you, but I don't have that type of time. It's easier to use Ingram or D2D or Smashwords.

Yes, you can buy copies of your book and place them in independent stores using the AMZ numbers, but you can't get it in the bigger stores or most of the libraries. The ISBN is the accepted number for bookstores and they won't even consider Amazon. Oh, there is a new player in the market, Walmart. You can put your book on there in epub format.

Hope that helps.


message 16: by Jay (new)

Jay Greenstein (jaygreenstein) | 222 comments What most people aren't aware of is that bookstores don't simply accept books because they're offered. They have to be convinced that your book in one of their shelf pockets will make more money for them than someone else's. After all, any pocket that carries a book that's not selling is wasted space and lost income. And convincing them to give space to someone they never heard of, who self published the book, instead of someone who has a following isn't easy.

Remember, if the reader brings it back because they didn't like it—which happens far more often with a self-pub—they lose reputation with that reader, and make no money. So most will say no.

A given local store may say yes, but remember, a book stays on the shelves only for a month or two before it's replaced. And that applies to your work, too. And that doesn't account for your having to pay for the printing, and eat the leftovers.

That being said, if you have an ISBN and a distributor, people may be able to order it in the bookstore, though some stores won't because of the problem of how to handle returns.

Sorry my news wasn't better.


message 17: by Leah (new)

Leah Reise | 350 comments Actually Jay, every bookstore I’ve been to is different. That is true about many and most bookstores I’m sure, but many bookstores like to support their local authors, even if that means putting their books on the shelf for just a week. 😉


message 18: by Heather (new)

Heather (heatherswriting) | 17 comments Matthew wrote: "Leah wrote: "Hi, Matthew. You either go through an ISBN company that creates and issues them, or you can do what I did and have KDP Amazon issue one for free. The only thing with KDP is you can onl..."

If you get your own ISBN you can sell your book elsewhere. There is an option on KDP that, for a better profit margin, you can only sell through them and an ISBN is part of the deal.


message 19: by Heather (new)

Heather (heatherswriting) | 17 comments Jay wrote: "What most people aren't aware of is that bookstores don't simply accept books because they're offered. They have to be convinced that your book in one of their shelf pockets will make more money fo..."

No, keep it honest. We can't thrive in a business if we don't know the negatives.


message 20: by Leah (new)

Leah Reise | 350 comments Heather, I’m pretty sure you and I just said the exact same thing 🙃.


message 21: by Gail (new)

Gail Meath (goodreadscomgail_meath) | 190 comments Just a quick thank you to all above posts. You have been very, very helpful. Have a wonderful day - or night, depending upon where you are:)


message 22: by Heather (new)

Heather (heatherswriting) | 17 comments Leah wrote: "Heather, I’m pretty sure you and I just said the exact same thing 🙃."

Yup.


message 23: by Brian (new)

Brian Keller | 13 comments You can sell your book through other distributors if you're using KDP. However, if you've opted to use KDP *Select* then you've granted Amazon exclusive distribution rights in exchange for a higher royalty for yourself. If you wish to offer your book through other venues simply "opt out" of the Select option once the contract has expired (I think it can be done after 90 days, but might be sooner).


message 24: by B.A. (new)

B.A. A. Mealer | 821 comments Brian brought up a good point. If you are in Select, you need to opt out if you want your book on stores. There are advantages to Select but the disadvantage is the restrictions. You can't do a hardcover, send it to B&N or other places. Meanwhile you are in the lending library and can get paid for pages read.

If you want in book stores, you need to realize there is a risk since most stores only keep books on the shelf for a few weeks or a couple of months at most even if you're a top seller. That is the reason for print on demand. You can get that through Ingram or Draft2Digital or Smashwords for all the bigger named stores. It depends on what you want from your career. I don't like how Amazon changes the rules without notifying you, so yes, I use them, but they are just one of many for me as I went covering all the big stores. I do get sales from the other stores, just not as many as Amazon. My goal this year is to up my sales in Kobo, which is the Canadian Amazon/B&N


message 25: by Gail (new)

Gail Meath (goodreadscomgail_meath) | 190 comments I was under the impression that e-books on KDP Select - Amazon has exclusive rights...but paperbacks are not exclusive?


message 26: by Tomas, Wandering dreamer (new)

Tomas Grizzly | 670 comments Mod
Gail wrote: "I was under the impression that e-books on KDP Select - Amazon has exclusive rights...but paperbacks are not exclusive?"

KDP Select is available for both e-books and print books. Not sure if the offer exists for audio as well. Anyway, you can choose on a format-by-format basis. You can go exclusive on all formats, just some, or none at all.

As said above, the period is around 3 months (not sure if it's 90 days or based on the day of the month)


message 27: by Gail (new)

Gail Meath (goodreadscomgail_meath) | 190 comments Huh, I didn't know that about paperbacks. It is 90 days from date of signing up for it. Thanks!


message 28: by Justin (new)

Justin (justinbienvenue) | 779 comments I remember one of my friends who has no idea on how the book industry works wanted to buy my books so she's at a bookstore in another state and says to me that they don't have my books..I literally face palmed when she told me this. Not only is it hard for us as authors to get our books in bookstores but some people just think our books appear in all bookstores naturally.

I think there are ways to get your books in stores and I'm not talking about local small bookstores but like what all of us are talking about which would be an Amazon or Barnes & Noble. They really need to be sold that your book is worthy or their store and they need evidence of this. If you're a best seller it's probably way easier I would imagine.


message 29: by B.A. (new)

B.A. A. Mealer | 821 comments If you are with Select, you are not allowed to sell your book, paperback or e-book anywhere but Amazon.

If you are wide, the person who wanted to buy your book can order it. B&N might not carry it in stock but will order it for the person if you have enabled POD with them. D2D will do that or IS. For the smaller stores, I'm not sure what they would do If they don't use Ingram.


message 30: by J.D. (new)

J.D. Cunegan (jdcunegan) | 239 comments My local B&N told me they won't stock my book because, since they're POD, if they don't sell, B&N has nowhere to send the unsold copies. However, there are two locally-owned stores that do carry my books because I have a good relationship with the owners and because they have shelves that prominently display local writers.


message 31: by Wanjiru (new)

Wanjiru Warama (wanjiruwarama) | 193 comments B.A. wrote: "If you are with Select, you are not allowed to sell your book, paperback or e-book anywhere but Amazon.

If you are wide, the person who wanted to buy your book can order it. B&N might not carry i..."


That's true. Last year, three people told me they bought my book at B&N. And the year before, I had a signing there and they ordered the books I signed. But I guess they do this if an author has his or her own imprint and the imprint owns the ISBN.


Indie Author Book Reviews | 5 comments My friend has a bookshop that carries only indie authors. Folks are amazed that there is such a thing.


message 33: by E.M. (new)

E.M. Jeanmougin | 29 comments I got my local bookstore to carry my book by taking a few copies to the store and asking if he would carry it. Independently owned bookstores will often do this for you if you are a local author. Obviously you'll have to provide your own copies, so there is an element of risk. This also applies to doing book signings (if no one shows up, you're stuck with whatever copies you provided).

With that being said, you can buy Author Copies of your book at a significantly reduced price from Amazon and they print to order. So you don't have to buy dozens of copies of your book, just a few. If they sell, you can always buy more.

I'm guessing it'd be much harder to get a chain store to carry my book but honestly I've never tried. We don't have a B&N where I live.

Good luck!


message 34: by E.M. (new)

E.M. Jeanmougin | 29 comments B.A. wrote: "If you are with Select, you are not allowed to sell your book, paperback or e-book anywhere but Amazon.

If you are wide, the person who wanted to buy your book can order it. B&N might not carry i..."


You absolutely CAN sell the paperback version of your book wherever you want, even if you are opted into Select. KDP Select only grants Amazon exclusive rights to the digital format of your book. You can still order physical copies and sell them, either by hand or via your own website.


message 35: by Gail (last edited Jan 29, 2020 03:08PM) (new)

Gail Meath (goodreadscomgail_meath) | 190 comments Thank you, E.M. I thought so! But it isn't easy to get a paperback on B&N, etc. I gave up. I put my last book, not on Kindle Select yet, on Smashwords and I love that site. Once my select is done (90 days) with the others, I will do the same.

Indie....like you said, didn't know there was such a bookstore. Can you tell me/us more? It sounds interesting!


Indie Author Book Reviews | 5 comments It is probably best if you message me. I don’t want to self promote or add a link. I help her with public relations and events as well as other things.


message 37: by Deborah (new)

Deborah Lagarde (deb_lagarde) | 78 comments Gail wrote: "Thank you, E.M. I thought so! But it isn't easy to get a paperback on B&N, etc. I gave up. I put my last book, not on Kindle Select yet, on Smashwords and I love that site. Once my select is done (..."

That's why I went with Lulu's GlobalReach program. Amazon, Kobo, Google Play, Smashwords, B&N, and others as well. Worth the cost esp. with deep discount. Being 67, I don't have the patience or time to format for all of these different platforms and deal with what I am sure will be various formatting errors on top of countless re-edits on typos, etc.


message 38: by Gail (new)

Gail Meath (goodreadscomgail_meath) | 190 comments Thanks, Deborah. Just to let you know, I put my book on Smashwords and it includes all of the above plus others and libraries. And it didn't cost anything to post my book. And I feel your pain with the formatting, etc.:)


message 39: by Deborah (new)

Deborah Lagarde (deb_lagarde) | 78 comments Gail wrote: "Thanks, Deborah. Just to let you know, I put my book on Smashwords and it includes all of the above plus others and libraries. And it didn't cost anything to post my book. And I feel your pain with..."

Believe me Gail I wanted to do it all for free, but (since my trilogy was mostly published in the late 90s except for the last book in the trilogy) I just wanted to "get it over with" and let Lulu (as they advertise) "do the heavy lifting". The trilogy combined is also almost 700 pages! Any future novels (and I am working on one now) will be formatted by myself for the various platforms. Amazon first, but also Smashwords (my Toshiba laptop has a platform called "Toshiba Book Place" and they use Smashwords), Google Play, Kobo and others. (Not sure about B&N...do they still make Nooks?)


message 40: by Gail (new)

Gail Meath (goodreadscomgail_meath) | 190 comments Yes they do! It was my mom's favorite and I was surprised they were still around too. You've been busy! All the best, Deborah.


message 41: by Deborah (new)

Deborah Lagarde (deb_lagarde) | 78 comments Gail wrote: "Yes they do! It was my mom's favorite and I was surprised they were still around too. You've been busy! All the best, Deborah."

I know this is late but thanks for the "all the best" (for some reason goodreads newsletter were put into spam folder!)


back to top