Promoting Your Physical Book to Bookshops

Be Businesslike

Promoting Your Physical Book to Bookshops

As  self-publishing grows and so does the quality of the books being produced more bookshops are opening their doors to dealing with self-pubbed authors but the relationships between authors and bookshops is still fraught with tension.

Now it is not the quality of the books being offered to bookshops causing tension but the quality of the business or more to the point, the nonbusiness like approach of authors.

Bookshops are approached by authors who promote their book and then don’t see to know what to do after that.

Here are some quick tips to help you make your approach professional;

1/ Set the discount you will offer

–  for SOR (sale or return) usually around 40% to 45%

– for firm sale – no return, usually 45% to 50%

1a/ Set SOR standards – 90 days from invoice prior to return or use publishing date

– what conditions must the book be in for you to accept SOR or make it become Firm Sale

2/ Set your minimum number of books to order – if the store is interstate who will pay freight

3/ Set delivery and freight standards (days to delivery) and costs

4/ Set invoice payment standards (and have an invoice system set up)

4a/ State stock remains your property until payment is received

5/ Have set standards for re-ordering or notification of return “aged stock” or damaged on receipt stock.

– Make this easy through set templates on your website

– Don’t make it emails as this requires time and effort


Have all your term and conditions thought through and set out on a document they can sign and keep. You are setting up a business relationship and it should be treated as such,





2 Responses

  1. This couldn’t have come at a better time when I’m just about to facilitate an inquiry workshop! The more I learn about inquiry, I realize it is so much about mies;nt&#8230d.a way of seeing the world. Sometimes it gets so tricky to explain! Just as you say, inquiry just can’t be timetabled. If it is, the point has often been missed. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  2. Michelle Hessing

    Hi Sandra Wigzell… can you contact me. I think we have a connection from your bear shop days (ThreadBear designs). Would like to speak to you about my business which is a publishing partner for self authors.
    My contact number is 0407002852
    Cheers. Michelle Hessing
    Accentia Design

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