Publishers Should Sell Directly

Should publishers sell directly? Many arguments are floating around about the benefits and drawbacks. Some drawbacks are that huge retailers such as Amazon have such a large share of the market, that publishers can’t hope to reach nearly enough consumers through direct channels. Others argue that this line of thinking will keep the cycle with Amazon going, since there won’t be other channels for consumers to try.

Personally I like the idea of selling directly. Calvin Reid wrote about more strategies and benefits on Publisher’s Weekly. One successful publisher is Logos Bible Software, who over the years has built a loyal customer base of about 100,000 (they have 1 million total customers and sell ~27,000 e-books). Consumer behavior is tracked and the store offers many different types of bundles, allowing them to select different tiers. There are also pre-order discounts, but according to Publisher’s Weekly,

he also emphasized that most of these pricing strategies depend on a direct selling relationship to the consumer. Logos sells direct completely, he said, allowing it to avoid showrooming and gaining the ability to “control access, give better customer service and adjust your margin and pricing.”

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