So now your book has been ghostwritten. It's finished. Or maybe you or you wrote a book yourself but are new to the industry. Either way, if you are self-publishing it and want it in bookstores, this article is for you. Picture books and books for young children are different and some nonfiction and literary fiction, but other than that, the following information applies to most book genres.
You can market and sell books without having them in brick-and-mortar stores. Your books don’t need to be in bookstores for successful sale numbers. Not at all. In many ways, there is no benefit to having your book on a store shelf when you consider most print books are sold online by Amazon. You can make high sales without having your books on store shelves. Many successful self-published authors do not sell their books in stores. It is unnecessary, and this is certainly not a recommendation to go that direction, especially since you have to deal with the cost and hassle of returns of unsold products and you do not get the high royalties you get from online distributors. Most self-published authors don’t put their books in brick-and-mortar stores. Most shouldn’t. There’s little reason to bother with it, if any.
When a print book sells on Amazon you get 60%, no brick-and-mortar bookstore will give you that. You’ll get closer to half of that from them. Plus, with physical bookstores, you have the cost of returns for unsold books. These are not books someone buys and returns. They are books that were never purchased. You must pay the bookstore retail price for all of those, plus what they paid in shipping costs. Most people that sell self-publish books in stores get those books printed in China to reduce the high production costs, which is something else to deal with. So, getting into bookstores is not a decision to rush into. It is not necessarily a benefit at all. Again, many self-published authors skip bookshelves for good reasons. You need to look at the pros and cons before you decide to go after that coveted shelf space. I urge you.
But if you have some passion or some reason to believe it is beneficial to have your self-published book in stores, you need to learn some marketing and relationship-building techniques regarding bookstores. I cover that in my blog post, Book Stores and Self-Published Authors Part II.
Cornelia Amiri Ghostwriter