Distribution is the process of fulfilling orders.
In other words, receiving orders, raising invoices, packing, shipping, receiving payments and calculating royalties.
For most publications, the majority of sales are made through either Amazon or from local sales.
We will discuss the distribution options with you and explain all of the possibilities.
Books on Amazon are normally printed by Amazon’s own printers.
The books are printed in the US, UK and Europe and can normally be printed and despatched within 1 working day.
Amazon act as a retailer and they charge 40% of the cover price as a commission
They also charge for the cost of printing the book.
For special books that Amazon can’t print such as hardbacks or art books, we make them available on Amazon in the UK either through The Great British Bookshop or on our own Amazon Seller account
2. Short-run printed books
Most Authors choose to print a small stock of books for themselves and for local sales.
It is not economical to print one book at a time because of the delivery and admin charges.
On the other hand, you don’t want to print too many books that might not sell.
We recommend ordering only what is required plus a small additional stock.
Once a book is set up with a printer, the turnaround time from order to delivery is about 2 weeks.
We work with a number of printers depending on the type of book and the territory (where the books are going to be sold).
Some printers can accelerate the printing process by paying for an express service.
ThePrintManager manages the printing for you and resolves any issues that might arise.
3. Bookshop orders via wholesalers (e.g. Gardners and Bertrams)
Most Bookshops, including Waterstones, place their orders through a wholesaler such as Gardners or Bertrams.
You can register ThePrintManager as the distributor for your books.
Any orders from Bookshops will be sent to ThePrintManager for fulfilment.
There are two options for fulfilling Bookshop orders…
a. ThePrintManager can fulfil the order from our distribution facility – in which case you need to supply us with a small stock of books.
b. ThePrintManager can send the order with paperwork to the author for fulfilment.
You should be aware that there is usually little or no profit when selling single copies of books to wholesalers
However, we recommend fulfilling orders to bookshops as it is good practice and can result in further sales.
4. Orders to USA, Canada and Australia
If you anticipate having to ship books to the USA or Australia, we can publish your book on Lightning Source.
The setup costs are around £100 but we can then print and ship books locally to the USA, Canada and Australia which is usually much cheaper than shipping from the UK.
For normal Online Sales, it is usually best to use the Amazon option.
5. Kindle Books on Amazon
When Amazon sell a Kindle eBook, they pay a 70% Royalty if they have exclusive eBook rights.
If Amazon do not have exclusive eBook rights, the royalty payment is only 35%.
The amount paid will vary from country to country.
Unlike printed books, which are not subject to VAT, Amazon are required to charge VAT on eBooks at the local rate. Where this happens the VAT is deducted from the sale price before the royalty is calculated.
We can help you to set up a personal Amazon Kindle account which will allow easy monitoring of eBook sales.
Or, if you prefer, you can register your eBook with ThePrintManager Kindle account in whch case we provide sales figures at the end of each quarter.
6. Royalty Payments
Managing the distribution of books is a complex business.
If ThePrintManager manages the distribution for you, we calculate your sales and royalty figures at the end of each quarter and pay any amount due within two weeks.