Retailer Discount Strategies

When setting your Retail pricing, there are three things to consider;

  • your actual book price
  • the print cost (determined by number of pages, paper quality and book size)
  • and the retailer discount (what the various “middle men” take)

This short blog post will investigate how retailer discount can effect your book.

As you may have noted already, the higher the retailer discount (i.e. the more the retailer takes), the lower your royalties will be.

At Tellwell we offer three strategies for setting your discount as shown below

Maximize My Royalties

For this strategy we will set the discount on each channel we distribute to, to the lowest amount allowed (for print books this is generally 30-35%).

This means you will be offering online retailers the least amount and getting paid the most royalty per book sold.

For the vast majority of online retailers this is acceptable and they will list your book, but some will not, notably Chapters/Indigo who have recently stopped listing books on their website at this discount point.

Maximize My Distribution

If you would like your book listed on Chapters/Indigo website you should select this option. We will set your royalties 5-10% higher than minimum to provide more incentive for retailers to offer your book.

Note: We provide no guarantees that Chapters or any other online retailer will list your book. Listing books is entirely up to each individual company.

Enroll In Book Returns Program

To have your book stocked in a physical book store, you either need to

  • make your book returnable (book store can destroy unsold copies) and increase your discount to 55%
  • or deal with bookstores yourself on a consignment basis.

We strongly recommend the consignment option paired with selecting one of the first two distribution strategies above. However a few authors do enroll in the book returns program. There is an additional cost for doing this and your royalties will be held until you exit the program (to cover liability for unsold stock). Your Project Manager will contact you if you select this.

Author: Alan Hunter

I'm the Lead Developer at Tellwell.

Leave a Reply