Can I Work With Wholesalers if I Use KDP to Print my Book?

Question: “I published my book on KDP…. can I work with wholesalers so I can sell my book to bookstores and libraries?”

The Answer: Maybe.

Here is the full story: If you have purchased your ISBNs from your country’s ISBN/Books in Print bureau (in the US, it is Bowker) then YOU own the ISBN and YOU are the publisher of record.  (To reach Bowker in the US, go to www.myidentifiers.com) Here's more info on why you need your own ISBN.

At that point, you name your publisher company and upload your book with YOUR ISBN to KDP and you are DISTRIBUTING your book through KDP.  You can ALSO distribute your book at IngramSpark (read more about that and why you need both KDP AND IngramSpark).

Because YOU are the publisher of record, you are able to apply to wholesalers and sell your book to wholesalers and retailers with NO exceptions or problems.

IF you have chosen to use a KDP ISBN then THEY are the publisher of record. (Yes, even if they put YOUR publisher name as an imprint on Amazon.)  If that is how you choose to proceed, you are PUBLISHING your book with KDP and THEY own your ISBN and THEY are the publisher.  You may get the money, you get the credit, but THEY OWN YOUR ISBN.

Because of this, you are NOT able to apply to or sell your book to wholesalers and retailers because you do not own the rights. KDP does.

Yes, you can sell your book on consignment to the local store down the street, but not much more than that.  Please read this before you make your decision.

If you have already published with a KDP ISBN, then you can make your book available through KDP’s “Extended Distribution”.  This is allowing KDP to list your book on THEIR INGRAMSPARK account.  Your book is able to be ordered by bookstores and libraries BUT….

They most likely won’t for these reasons:

  • Your book will be non-returnable
  • Your book will not have a full discount
  • Your book is be published by their biggest competitor