Saturday, April 20, 2024

How to Sell Books on Amazon in 2024

The Amazon we know today is a platform where we can sell almost anything. However, it was not always the same. Jeff Bezos started Amazon as an online bookstore on July 16, 1995. Even today, there are sellers who are generating money by selling books on Amazon. In fact, you can also sell books on Amazon in 2024 without investing a lot of money. You can begin selling old books that you no longer need. This is what we will learn in this guide. So, let’s head right to it!

  1. What Books Can You Sell on Amazon?
  2. What Books Sell Best on Amazon?
  3. How Much Can You Earn Selling Books on Amazon?
  4. How to Find Books to Sell on Amazon?
  5. Steps to List and Sell Books on Amazon
  6. What Fees are Involved in Selling Books on Amazon?
  7. Tips for Selling Books on Amazon
  8. Wrapping Up

What Books Can You Sell on Amazon?

You can sell any books of your choice on Amazon. It can be e-books, paperback, hardcover, collectibles, or comics. You can sell books on Amazon written by other authors or you can write and self-publish through Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP).

However, there are a few types of books you cannot sell on Amazon, as follows:

  1. Books in Bad Condition: Amazon does not allow sellers to sell advanced reader copies (ARCs) books, especially those with missing pages or unreadable content.
  2. Books with Offensive Content: Amazon prohibits books that contain content related to terrorism, pornography, or other offensive content.
  3. Books with Infringing/Illegal Content: Amazon does not allow publishing companion books related to copyrighted works outside the US unless you have written permission from the copyright holder. This restriction applies to various types of books, such as study guides and summaries.

Regarding the condition of books, the below points will help you clarify the condition of books Amazon supports:

  1. New – Proper cover and protective wrapping.
  2. Used (Almost New) – Negligible cosmetic defects without notes/highlighting. The dust cover is intact and can have remainder marks.
  3. Used (Very Good) – Minimal cosmetic defects. The dust cover may be missing and can have remainder marks.
  4. Used (Good) – All pages and cover are intact, but pages have a few notes/highlighting. Can have the labels of “From the library of”. It may be missing dust covers, shrink wrap, or a boxed set case.
  5. Used (Acceptable) – All pages and cover are intact, but pages have a few notes/highlighting or spots of minor water damage or unreadable text. It may be missing dust covers, shrink wrap, or a boxed set case.

Therefore, you have to keep in mind the above book conditions when planning to sell books on Amazon.

Amazon also allows you to sell collectible books. These are the books that have features that increase their value to collectors, like a book signed by the author. However, you have to make sure that collectible books don’t follow ordinary book conditions. The below points will help you clarify the acceptable conditions for collectible books:

  1. Collectible (Almost New) – Intact cover, all pages, and dust jacket (if applicable). It has no prominent flaws/nicks.
  2. Collectible (Very Good) – Intact cover and pages and no notes/highlighting. It has no creasing sign on the spine. The dust jacket shows chipping/rubbing signs.
  3. Collectible (Good) – Intact cover, pages, and dust jacket. Signs of wear on the spine. Commonly, “good” condition books are not considered under the collectible grade.
  4. Collectible (Acceptable) – Prominent wear in the readable copy and missing dust jacket. Mostly, “acceptable” condition books are also not considered under the collectible grade.

In short, Amazon does allow you to sell any books of your choice, but you have to ensure that you adhere to Amazon policies.

Note: If you are planning to sell self-published eBooks, then read our guide on how to sell self-publish eBooks for free in 2024.

What Books Sell Best on Amazon?

Not all books can attract buyers. If you want to make money by selling books on Amazon, you have to list books that can actually sell. Below are some common types of books that sell best on Amazon:

  1. Textbooks: Textbooks are the ever-green book category that can sell on Amazon, even old editions. They are high in demand during fall and spring. However, some publishers “brand gate” their books to avoid third-party sellers from selling them. So, make sure you are allowed to sell the targeted textbooks before listing them on your seller account.
  2. Comic Books: You can also sell comic books on Amazon. It is seen that graphic novels and single issues sell well on Amazon.
  3. Niche Books: Books with low print runs or being part of a larger collection can sell well on Amazon due to low competition. For instance, you can purchase Dungeons & Dragons books from eBay and then resell them on Amazon.
  4. Non-fiction: Non-fiction books are believed to sell better than fiction books on Amazon. In fact, non-fiction books lose their value more slowly than fiction books.
  5. Collectibles: Any collectible book, like a signed book, first edition book, and similar others, can give you profitable sales on Amazon.

In short, do your thorough research on what books sell best on Amazon and then proceed further accordingly. To facilitate your book hunting on Amazon, you can use VOC AI to have a deeper analysis of buyer sentiment, competitors, existing reviews, and much more.

This way, you can make better decisions and increase your chances of succeeding in selling books on Amazon.

How Much Can You Earn Selling Books on Amazon?

Now that you know what books to sell, the next question you must be wondering is how much you can earn selling books on Amazon.

Well, the answer depends on how much sales you actually make. If you choose FBA, then you have to sell books faster to avoid hefty storage fees.

From the bigger picture, there are sellers who only make a few bucks by selling books on Amazon because they work on them only during their spare time. In contrast, there are sellers that turn thousands of dollars selling books. For example, raikenprofit_official (TikTok username) made a whopping $8,000/month selling books on Amazon.

Besides that, there are authors who sell their own books through Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) and earn 35%-70% in royalties. The royalty percentage depends on certain conditions.

How to Find Books to Sell on Amazon?

One of the crucial and tedious things in becoming a bookseller on Amazon is finding books. To help ease this hassle, below are a few recommended ways to find books to sell on Amazon:

  1. Look for Books in Your House: If you have a collection of books in your house, you can list them on Amazon.
  2. Garage Sales and Thrift Stores: Visit garage sales and thrift stores to find profitable books to sell. For that, you should use the Amazon scanning app to know the estimated profit margin you can resell those books.
  3. Liquidation Pallets: Liquidation pallets allow you to bid and buy book boxes. However, this approach requires luck because you never know what books you will find in the box.
  4. Facebook Marketplace: You can explore the Facebook marketplace to search and purchase profitable books.
  5. Clearance Sales: You can visit local bookstores and other shops and look for books at discounted rates.

All the above ways can help you find books to sell on Amazon. Alternatively, you can write a book on your own and self-publish it through Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP).

Steps to List and Sell Books on Amazon

Follow the below step-by-step process to list and sell books on Amazon:

Step 1. Create an Amazon Seller Account

The first step is to create an Amazon seller account. For that, go to the Amazon website and complete the registration process.

You can check out our detailed guide on how to create amazon seller account.

Step 2. Choose Between FBM and FBA

Decide how you want to fulfill the orders placed by customers. You can either choose Fulfillment by Merchant (FBM) or Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA).

In FBM, you have to manage the storage, packing, and shipping of products yourself. In FBA, Amazon handles all those tasks for you, including storage in their fulfillment centers, packing, and shipping to customers. However, FBA comes with some other fees as well. You can use our FBA calculator to get an idea of the overall cost.

Step 3. Choose Between Individual or Professional Account

Amazon allows sellers to create either Individual or Professional accounts. If you are targeting to sell over 40 books per month on Amazon, then the Professional account ($39.99/month) is recommended. In contrast, if you are targeting below 40 units per month, then you can opt for an Individual account ($0.99 per unit sold).

Step 4. List Books

Once your seller account is operational, you should begin listing the books. If you are selling on Amazon for the first time, then it is important you know that you cannot create multiple listings of the same thing. For instance, if another seller is selling the same book, you cannot create another listing. What you have to do is add your product to the same listing.

Go to Amazon Seller Central > Inventory > Add a Product. You will see the below page.

Enter the book title, ASIN, or ISBN in the search box. ISBN is mostly written on the back of the book.

In contrast, you can find ASIN from the URL of the listing or under the Product Details.

Once you have found the correct listing, tap “Sell this product” and complete the required details, such as pricing, book condition, etc.

Step 5. Set Up Shipping Plan

For FBA, you have to print FNSKU labels and cover the original barcodes with them. This helps Amazon distinguish books from different sellers.

That’s it! This way, you have successfully listed the books on your Amazon seller account. Now, you have to work on your marketing strategies and listing optimization to increase your rankings and sales.

What Fees are Involved in Selling Books on Amazon?

There are multiple cost elements involved in selling books on Amazon. The first one is obviously purchasing the books to resell. After that, the main fees involved in selling books on Amazon include:

  1. Subscription fee (for professional seller) = $39.99/month
  2. Per unit fee (for individual seller) = $0.99 per unit sold
  3. Referral fee = 15% or higher
  4. Closing fee = $1.8 per item
  5. Fulfillment Fees (if using FBA) = Depends on size and weight of the books
  6. Shipping Costs (if using FBM) = Variable
  7. Advertising Costs (Optional) = Variable

In short, it is necessary to carefully consider these fees and factor them into your pricing strategy when planning to see books on Amazon.

Tips for Selling Books on Amazon

Until now, you have learned how to sell books on Amazon. So, let’s now quickly shed light on a few practices that can maximize your chances of running a profitable book-selling business on Amazon:

  1. Choose the Right Books Categories: As mentioned earlier, not all book categories sell well on Amazon. Try to sell books on Amazon that belong to the textbook, comic, niche, non-fiction, or collectibles category.
  2. Keep Customers Satisfied: Always try to reply to customers promptly. Also, remain honest about the book’s condition.
  3. Evaluate the Book’s BSR: Best Sellers Rank (BSR) is an effective way to know how quickly a book will sell. Look for books with lower numbers because it increases the chances of selling faster. You can get details about BSR in the Product Details section.

Selling books on Amazon requires both time and a strategic mindset. Therefore, it’s essential to continuously optimize your listings, pricing, and marketing efforts to stay competitive in the marketplace.

Wrapping Up

Amazon is a perfect marketplace to sell books. All it requires is finding the best books to sell and then strategically listing/marketing them to grow the business. As evident from the above discussion, you can generate significant profit selling books on Amazon. Therefore, follow the above steps and tips on how to sell books on Amazon and set up your business right away.