General Interest

Locked Does anyone sell any books here?

I think the concept is great: make a book, sell it and get a check. But what is thr reality? Does anyone actually sell anything amnd what are some success storie, if any? There are best sellers as per bookstore classification. How many does a best seller sell on Blurb? Just curious about the reality.

Posted by
dchurch
Sep 26, 2007 1:07am PDT
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dchurch
 

I have sold a number of books to family and friends and ordered them in bulk myself (12 on one occasion), but  have not sold any on line as far as I can see. I have heard of others on the forums who have done their own marketing and sales as well.

Dale

Posted by
dwags
Sep 26, 2007 12:19pm PDT
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dwags
 

Over the past 2-3 years, I think I have sold nearly a hundred.  I’ve also sent it to two periodicals and gotten reviews, and have it for sale in two independent shops.  However, for the book stores, I have had to make arrangements to consign the books, since Blurb won’t offer traditional wholesale to retailers.  I wish they would. 

Greg 

Posted by
gregorama
Dec 19, 2009 12:03am PDT
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gregorama
 

I have sold over 100 of this years book from the BUB Mortorcycle Land Speed Trials, but I know what my market is. I shoot the event every year and my only market is the people that attended that event. I have not tried to build a book that would be of general interest. I believe that Blurb is the perfect format for what I do. I have made the book with over 40 different covers so that each participant gets the same book but with themselves on the cover. I could not do this anywhere else.

I would love to create a photography book with for the general public with what I believe are my best images but I realize that that market is huge and my chances at getting into that market in a big way are virtually nil. But in the event market I have hit a home run. There are only about 400 people at this event but my penetration has gotten better every year and some people even buy last years book so that they will have a complete set as time passes. The event promoters really like the fact that there is an annual record of their event and I have been contacted by other promoters about the feasability of doing a book for their events.

I think it would be tough to promote a photo book of interest to the general public anywhere, not just on Blurb, as I have done a couple of those thru traditional publishers for narrow interest groups, but I could not be happier with the results and the format that Blurb has provided.

This years book became available November 15th and has sold around 125 copies and I expect around another 35 dopies by yearend. I can’t make a living doing it this way but it has been a nice addition to what I do.

Scooter

Posted by
Grubb
Dec 19, 2009 8:32am PDT
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Grubb
 

I’ve sold only three direct from the Blurb bookstore so far, but all three of those have been by word of mouth rather than casual browsing.  I have sold 30+ personally.  I do anticipate selling more — slowly — over time as word of mouth spreads, though, as it hasn’t been 2 months yet.  I think impulse sales are few and far between, it needs time and marketing to push the sales through.

Posted by
manxbull
Dec 20, 2009 8:21am PDT
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manxbull
 

I too have sold a few books. I had ordered in bulk and then sold them online from my own website. It does take a lot of online promoting and at first, I was sending all the people to Blurb but get more sales when I sell and ship them myself. I think it might be because customers are confused with the way the blurb site is. After all, it is aimed for people to create books and I have had feedback saying that the pricing is wrong – they are hitting the book-pricing tab for authors. When I run out of books, I direct the links back to blurb while I wait for more to be printed and shipped to me. I think it is hard to sell a self-published book but with effort and promotion, it can be done.

I have put together some information that helped me with my online promotion and hope that it can help others http://www.squidoo.com/How-To-Sell-A-Self-Published-Book-For-Free

Posted by
wyrm
Dec 28, 2009 1:43am PDT
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wyrm
 

Karen,

thankyou for sharing your experiences of marketing your book with us, there is so much valuable information in your link. It is now in My Favourites and I’ll be back to it in the New Year as I consider relaunching one of my Galapagos books in a smaller (cheaper) format..

Thankyou again!

…..Tony

Posted by
tfrankland
Dec 28, 2009 4:09am PDT
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tfrankland
 

Five books and no sales. Still tweaking the marketing. I do have a web site that averages 1000 hits a month that directs people to Blurb, but it looks like early retirement not going to happen.

It’s a lot of fun though and there is nothing like a book. 

 

 

Posted by
dmkilbride
Dec 29, 2009 7:28pm PDT
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dmkilbride
 

I have sold some and it seems that the sales get regular now. However Blurb kills the tiny profit by sending out cheques instead of integrating PAYPAL as promised already 2 years ago.  I retained € 2.67 in the bank account from a payout of € 20.17.

Posted by
editionh
Jan 8, 2010 4:01am PDT
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editionh
 

I have sold 62 copies of my only book (which was published at the end of May 2009). 16 of those were sold directly off the Blurb site and the others were sold via my organization’s site. The Blurb sales model is far from ideal, but it is sufficient. I am looking into another method to get my book out to a larger audience.

The $5.00 Blurb take on each month’s sales is very steep in my opinion, but it is what it is.

The books are good quality and those who have given me feedback love the cover, binding, pages…the overall quality of the construction.

Posted by
dilbert1965
Jan 18, 2010 6:07pm PDT
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dilbert1965
 

Hi Tony,

I am so glad that you found some useful information on my site http://www.squidoo.com/How-To-Sell-A-Self-Published-Book-For-Free

Good luck with your book sales!

Posted by
wyrm
Mar 7, 2010 2:04am PDT
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wyrm
 

I have sold a few on Blurb but being based in the uk several people aren`t willing to pay the shipping costs so i mostly advertise on facebook but i am looking into getting my own site sorted as soon as i can get someone to sort it out for me.

I also contacted my local library and got my book for sale and stock in there which i was delighted with.

 

Overall i am pleased with blurb i have just finished my second poetry book and it was shipped really fast and the quality was excellent, i even showed it to a publisher i know and he was surprised at the end result as his british company quoted me £60 for a preview copy!!!

My only complaint is the sales that i do have(profit) i don`t see how this can`t go straight into my paypal account when i sell one, instead of waiting for months…

But apart from this i will continue to use blurb they are a top-class company…

Posted by
stevenpape
Mar 10, 2010 2:01pm PDT
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stevenpape
 

So far no sales to the general public for me-just one sale to a family relative. Does anyone know how long a book has be up before sales start? Mine has been around for 10 months and I have around 12 people a day looking at it. I think the difference between an online environment and retail store environment is that in a store like borders is that the consumer can hold the book in his or her hand. Online the consumer is looking at hundreds of thumbnail images. I have had relatives look at my book online and one complaint they have is that even in large view they cannot read the text for the preview of the first 15 pages. I have used the blurb widget for facebook and this has improved the number of views. I will keep my fingers crossed. Not putting a down payment on my rolls royce or mansion in the country just yet.

Posted by
FlyfishG
Jul 7, 2010 8:06pm PDT
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FlyfishG
 

Hi Flyfish,

it seems you have a nice book out there:). I would enable full preview, to have the same situation as in a real bookstore. Unfortunately  the full screen view is same size as the normal view. So that feature does not make sense. If I remember right it was different some time ago. One could read the book in full screen view. 

I believe you need to advertise your book quite a bit to generate decent traffic —> sales. The bookstore on blurb is passive, it does nothing. It is up to the author to drive traffic to the store.

Posted by
editionh
Jul 9, 2010 1:23am PDT
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editionh
 

Thanks for the advice. The only way I can promote the book is the facebook widget since I do not have my own website. At any rate views are improving. I just wonder how many people shop here for a birthday present or christmas present instead of a walk in bookstore. I bet this site would do better with lower overall prices. A walk in bookstore usually has cheaper and sometimes a lot cheaper prices especially if a book is on sale. My wife usually waits for large full size cookbooks to go on sale for $5.00 at Borders and they are perfectly good books.

Posted by
FlyfishG
Jul 10, 2010 12:29am PDT
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FlyfishG
 

I’m a first-time book creator/publisher & I’m trying to find out if anyone has (other) tips on getting people to buy my book(s). My book is a combination collection of my photography and digital art works, that I’ve done over the past five years.

Posted by
artNimages
Jul 28, 2010 2:43pm PDT
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artNimages
 

I think like anything in life you have to market your product, in this case a book. You have to let people know about it and make them want to buy it. Just by creating a great book on here doesn’t mean flocks of people will automatically come to buy it.

Posted by
DrewberryMI
Aug 5, 2010 1:41am PDT
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DrewberryMI