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Chris A. Baird | June 17, 2020
Are there writers who sell directly to readers and cut out middlemen like Amazon?

You can find a lot of online sites where you can be sell directlly to readers. Learn more about the different platforms and whether or not selling on your own website is feasible.

Various Platforms

Today's question has three answers. The third answer is going to tell you how to make the most profits when you are directly selling to readers.

So let's get into it. The question that was asked to me was, can you sell directly to readers? It's a very good question because we want to sell where we can make the biggest profit.

If we're selling direct to our readers, we're going to be making as much money as possible. So, the percentage we're going to make is going to be incredibly high. Close to 100% in profit.

It makes it very clear that selling direct to our readers may be a strategic choice. But there are many things we're going to need to consider.

Check out my free Self-Publishing Secrets Checklist if you would like to improve yourself when self-publishing. So, let's get right on into it.

When I first started, I started on Amazon. I published Kindle books and then I moved into paper books and audiobooks. But then somebody had told me that by selling direct or by even selling on a site like Fiverr, you could do pretty well.

Check out this related article: How To Convert Your Amazon Book To Audio Book?

So, I tried selling books on Fiverr as well and did make some sales there. But not as much as I would have liked to make. But the profits, of course, would be a lot higher.

Since the percentage you have to pay is much lower on those sites or if you sell directly off your own website. So I decide not to keep going on that process.

I moved off Fiverr and I continued moving on to other platforms like Ingram Spark and Lulu. I also tried Smashwords along with some other options I have explored over the years.

But in terms of selling direct from my own website, that is not something that I have done. I have used lead magnets on my website to bring new readers.

Also to find new people who would be interested in my books. Those who have been incredibly successful but not directly selling from my website.

Gain That Trust

Let's get into the exact answers to today's question. So the first is, yes, you can sell directly from your site. But you almost always are going to need to already have a following.

The ability to find random people who are going to come onto your website and be willing to pay you to do that. That is going to pay you for your books directly. And then which format are they going to read?

This becomes very complicated and confusing based upon, are they reading Kindle books? Are they looking for paper books? Or if they would like to read a PDF or maybe ePub format?

Check out this related article: Which Kind Of Books Or Genres Are More Successful When Self-Published?

So, there are different formats you are going to need available. You are going to need to understand what they would like to read. Also, do they really trust you?

That's the reason why you almost already need to have a following. You'll need to already have that trust aspect in place to get them to purchase off of your website.

The second thing is that a site like Amazon already has trust there. They know they can get their money back if they are not happy with what they purchased.

Also, their visitors already have their credit cards registered to their accounts. They are ready to buy. There is no question about a person who is visiting real customers or people who are looking.

I mean, of course, they already got accounts, maybe they have Amazon Prime. And they see that it's in a format they are familiar with and they have the trust there.

The final thing is they can, with a single click, purchase your book. Now, the downside of Amazon is the highest royalties you can get anywhere. It will get you at 70% on Amazon.

So that sounds like within 30% that Amazon itself is keeping to market these books. You have to have your books registered in Amazon's KDP Select. So that you can run Amazon ads against it which gives them even more money.

They make money by helping you sell your books through them. They make money on all of the different fronts there. So, that's another aspect to consider.

Not All Readers Are Alike

But if you are running and selling your books on your own website, then you are also going to need a payment gateway. That also will cost you money every single month. It depends upon what format they are using and the payment gateways.

I've seen several ways of doing it like SendOwl is the one that I personally use. There is also a SAM card and Thrive card. There are a lot of different options for keeping track of these sorts of things.

You could even use a site like ClickBank to sell your books. I have seen people attempt to do that. I have never heard of anybody making a lot of money off of this particular process.

Unless you are already a celebrity, in which case no matter where you sell your book, you are going to be seeing sales go through. Now, let's get on to the secret answer for the day. And that is the trick to maximizing your profit on sales.

You have to sell your book everywhere and in all formats. This is something that I have commented on an awful lot that way. Too many people simply assume that "oh, I'm sure my readers would only want to read my books in paperback or maybe only Kindle or maybe they only want audiobooks".

Completely forgetting that you have different types of readers. Some readers would rather avoid Amazon. Some people really don't like Amazon at all.

Check out this related article: Do You Think It's Still Worth Doing Amazon KDP As A Business?

They would prefer to buy it in a PDF of your website and know that your money is going directly to support it. And maybe you're giving some of your money away to help different causes. That can be another motivation to get them to buy it off your website.

So, my argument would be, test everything out. Put your book into as many formats as possible. Then, let the market tell you what they want.

If you find that some methods are wasting your time, well then you can quit with those methods. Just like what I did with Fiverr, it's a perfect example.

What have you found? Have you found ways to sell your books directly to your customers? Do you find certain ways better than others?

Go ahead and leave your comments below. I would love to interact with you there. Also, check out my other blogs and videos, you'll see more answers to your questions about self-publishing.

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