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How to get your indie book into stores

Think you can’t get your indie book into stores?

Several gift shops in national parks, nature reserves, information centers, and tourist destinations plus a popular independent bookstore sell Australian indie author Sandra Bennett’s children’s books.

And she’s the one who made it happen.

Sandra, the author of two picture books and two chapter books, is proof that once you know the rules of the game, you can get your book into independent gift shops and bookstores.

Before making store sales a priority, most of the Aussie author’s book sales were coming from her website, word of mouth marketing, and school visits. Now, Sandra’s selling out at stores and getting repeat orders from the retailers, who enjoy providing an indie product that customers love.

How Sandra got her indie book into stores

What’s her secret?

It starts with a quality product. Then she’s selective about the stores she offers her books to.

“My advice is to think about your particular niche and research places where you think your books will be a good fit,” Sandra says. “I have walked into some gift shops thinking they would be ideal, then looked around to see what they are selling and decided not even to ask. I could see they would not be interested in carrying them as there are either no other children’s books in the store or books only specifically targeted to a particular region.”

But she’s got one more important tip, too: “Never give up. You will be surprised by who will say yes, particularly if your books are good quality. The manager at one tourist destination said my books ‘sell themselves,’  ” she says.

Want to get your indie book into stores?

If you’d like to enjoy Bennett’s success in Australia — if you’d like to see your books on shelves in independent bookstores and gift shops — then you’ll be interested in the video replay of a free webinar I hosted on November 9.

In this replay video, my guests Amy Collins and Daniel Hall teach you How Indie Authors and Publishers Can Sell Tons of Books to Independent Book Stores, Gift Shops, and Specialty Retailers.” (The replay video is available for just a few days, so watch it soon.)

Amy is president of New Shelves Books, one of the best-known book sales and marketing agencies in the U.S. She is a trusted expert, speaker, and recommended sales consultant for some of the largest book and library retailers and wholesalers in the publishing industry. In the past 20 years, Amy and her team have sold more than 40 million books into the bookstore, library, and chain store markets for small and mid-sized publishers.

Daniel is an author, speaker, consultant, and coach who has created the popular “Real Fast” training programs designed to help authors, speakers, coaches, consultants, and entrepreneurs effectively grow their businesses faster.

Free training takeaways

In the video, Amy and Daniel teach you what Sandra and others have done to enjoy success with retailers, including:

  • What kinds of books independent book and gift stores want to see (coloring books, anyone?)
  • What they’re buying – and when
  • How stores get the books they want (and how to make sure one of them is yours!)
  • How to determine if your book is a good fit for any given store
  • Why you should be looking past bookstores to other indie retailers
  • The specific questions you must ask yourself before approaching stores
  • What to write in your first email so the book buyer opens that store’s door wide for you (and escorts you through it)
  • How to turn “No” into “Yes”

indie book into storesIf you’ve dreamed of seeing your self-published book in stores, watch the replay for How Indie Authors and Publishers Can Sell Tons of Books to Independent Book Stores, Gift Shops, and Specialty Retailers now.

Big thanks to Sandra for sharing her success story with us! She’s an inspiration and excellent role model.

Do you have questions about getting your book into independent bookstores and gift shops? Share them here. 

Subscribe to the free Build Book Buzz newsletter and get the free special report, “Top 5 Free Book Promotion Resources,” immediately!

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    1. Thanks, Rita. Unfortunately, bookstores don’t like to buy from Amazon, their biggest competitor. Some wholesalers will, though.


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