What should an author do to get in the best position to sell lots of books?

Get a book publisher with wide distribution capability is choice one.

If self-published, get a distributor who can sell into the marketplace.

If with a hybrid publisher, make sure they have access to full distribution channels. 

The key here:  

a.       Have account access to a retailer so they can order the book, if they desire. For instance, if your book is not listed with Ingram, the nation’s largest book wholesaler, many bookstores won’t be able to order your book.  

b.      It is one thing for stores to order your books, hoping to sell them to consumers. Example: Barnes and noble orders 600 hundred copies for its shelves in 200 stores. It’s another thing for stores responding to demand that you generate. Example: someone hears you on a radio show. They go to a local store. That store may not have the book on hand, in stock, but it can order it for you.  

So, who are the key players for selling printed books?  

·         Barnes and Noble is the largest bookstore chain by far.

·         A distant second is Books-a-Million.

·         There are some prominent indie bookstores with multiple locations, such as: Tattered Cover and

·         Powell’s Bookstore

·         Amazon

·         Indiebound.org  

To consult a directory of indie bookstores, please see: https://www.bookweb.org/  

To consulta directory of libraries, see: https://librarytechnology.org/libraries/uspublic/, https://libguides.ala.org/mailing-lists, https://publiclibraries.com/state/, and https://librarytechnology.org/libraries/ 

For online retailers and the sale of e-books, look at:  

·         Amazon

·         Kobo

·         Barnes and Noble Nook

·         Apple Books

·         Google Play Books

·         ebooks.com 

·         Indiebound.org

·         Scrbd

·         Smashwords

Big Box stores: that sell books include:  

·         Walmart

·         Costco

·         Target  

There are also specialty shops such as gift shops, supermarkets, drugstores, etc.

Airport Bookstores are covered by Hudson Books.  

However, the book market is much bigger than all of the above. You can speak and sell books. You can arrange for bulk sales to organizations, schools, and businesses. You can sell books via social media and through your blog, podcast, YouTube channel, and web site. You can create affiliates to sell your book. You can go grassroots and mail postcards or handout fliers, take out ads, or bundle your book with other people’s products and books. 

There are also rich markets overseas, both in English-spoken areas such as UK, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada, as well as nations that can translate the rights to your book in other languages.  

The key to sales is to constantly do something to generate a sale and to have proper distribution sales in place to create discovery or to fulfill an order. That begins with how you get published and with whom. Good luck!


Please Contact Me For Help

Brian Feinblum, the founder of this award-winning blog, can be reached at [email protected] He is available to help authors promote their story, sell their book, and grow their brand. He has 30 years of experience in successfully helping thousands of authors in all genres.


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About Brian Feinblum

Brian Feinblum should be followed on Twitter @theprexpert. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2022. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester with his wife, two kids, and Ferris, a black lab rescue dog. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s The Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by BookBaby  http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2021 and 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. It was also named by WinningWriters.com as a “best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America, and had spoken at ASJA, IBPA, Sarah Lawrence College, Nonfiction Writers Association, Cape Cod Writers Association, Willamette (Portland) Writers Association, and Connecticut Authors and Publishers Association. His letters-to-the-editor have been published in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, New York Post, NY Daily News, Newsday,The Journal News (Westchester) and The Washington Post.  . He has been featured in The Sun Sentinel and Miami Herald. For more information, please consult: linkedin.com/in/brianfeinblum.