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1,039 Views 15 Replies Last post: Nov 26, 2017 6:54 PM by DEMN RSS
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Level 0 54 posts since
Sep 10, 2015
Currently Being Moderated

Nov 8, 2017 9:30 PM

AbeBooks is undercutting my POD Amazon/Ingram price -- can I stop them?

An outfit called AbeBooks is listed on the OCLC World Cat Website as a POD seller of my novel, which they are offering for $11.07. The full price on Amazon and Ingram is $18.99 (Barnes and Noble reflects the Ingram price). I get a royalty from Ingram (not much) when a library or bookstore orders my book through them. AbeBooks lists the seller as "Pbshop" in Wood Dale, IL. Can anyone tell me how they are able to do this? I have never heard of them or from them. They say they are selling "new" copies of my book. How are they fulfilling orders? Who's printing them for them? Amazon? Ingram? If not, are they ripping me off and how can I stop them?

Level 5 5,223 posts since
Jan 17, 2010
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1. Nov 8, 2017 11:01 PM in response to: AptosAuthor
Re: AbeBooks is undercutting my POD Amazon/Ingram price -- can I stop them?

AbeBooks is a online retailer, just like Amazon or B&N.

 

When you publish a book and make it available, anyone can offer it for sale, and they can offer it for any price they choose. That's the nature of a free-market economy. The only thing you can do about it is remove the book from sale completely. No matter what price they charge, you'll get the revenue/royalty for whatever channel from which they obtain the book.

 

As to where they get copies, either from Ingram (the largest book distributor in the US and where most US booksellers get stock) or Amazon.

 

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Level 5 5,223 posts since
Jan 17, 2010
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3. Nov 9, 2017 7:38 AM in response to: AptosAuthor
Re: AbeBooks is undercutting my POD Amazon/Ingram price -- can I stop them?

You said you have it through Ingram as well, right? So they probably get it from Ingram (if they get an order). I would imagine Abe has an Ingram account, since they're an established bookseller. So they'd get the wholesale discount from Ingram that you've set for that book.

Level 5 6,034 posts since
Mar 10, 2012
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4. Nov 9, 2017 8:05 AM in response to: AptosAuthor
Re: AbeBooks is undercutting my POD Amazon/Ingram price -- can I stop them?

Why would you want to stop them? No matter what price a retailer sells for you recieve royalties (or revenue at ingram) based on your suggested retail price. If they wish to sell cheap at a lower profit or even a loss it has no end effect on you.

 

As to how they can do this from a business perspective it is possible they purchased stock copies (though unlikely) and want to discount them just to clear out stock space (amazon.ca does this occasionally which allows me to my personal copies from them at a better price than buying and shipping from CS). It is more likely that they have additional shipping and handling charges that are inplace to offset the apparent loss on the product so that they can offer the book itself cheaper yet still profit on the sale.

Level 5 6,034 posts since
Mar 10, 2012
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7. Nov 9, 2017 10:55 AM in response to: AptosAuthor
Re: AbeBooks is undercutting my POD Amazon/Ingram price -- can I stop them?

Ingram will not give a deeper discount than you have authorized them to. If a retailer is selling below thier effective cost then either they are taking a loss or they are making up for it with additional fees such as shipping and handling.

 

Ingram will sell the title at the set wholesale price (which is suggested retail minus the wholesale discount), they then hold back the production cost and pass on the remainder as revenue.

Level 5 6,034 posts since
Mar 10, 2012
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9. Nov 9, 2017 12:25 PM in response to: AptosAuthor
Re: AbeBooks is undercutting my POD Amazon/Ingram price -- can I stop them?

Who knows but if the lower price attracts sales your cut remains the same so here's hoping they sell thousands.

Level 4 2,555 posts since
Jul 2, 2011
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11. Nov 9, 2017 2:10 PM in response to: AptosAuthor
Re: AbeBooks is undercutting my POD Amazon/Ingram price -- can I stop them?

It's the shipping.

 

It might seem they are taking a small loss, but when you add in shipping (that they charge for but probably don't pay for), they make a few bucks from each sale.

Level 4 2,523 posts since
Feb 7, 2015
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12. Nov 9, 2017 5:26 PM in response to: AptosAuthor
Re: AbeBooks is undercutting my POD Amazon/Ingram price -- can I stop them?

Or they lose money on every sale, but they make it up on volume.

Level 1 69 posts since
Sep 19, 2017
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14. Nov 21, 2017 9:39 AM in response to: AptosAuthor
Re: AbeBooks is undercutting my POD Amazon/Ingram price -- can I stop them?

As others have pointed out, you still get the same royalty.  They may make up for it with shipping charges, or may be selling intentionally as a loss just to build up a reputation of satisfield customers.  New Amazon Marketplace sellers will sometimes do this to get a lot of happy customers quickly.

Another possibility is that you've been generously mailing out Advance Review Copies.  These are not allowed to be sold on Amazon (but sometimes are.)  I don't know what Abebokks' policy is.

You will also find that not only will some sellers offer your book below cost, but sooner or later will offer your book at outrageous prices, like $49.99 or more.  Why goes on is something I don't understand.

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