Amazon Printing Cost Increase
If you have print books on Amazon.com, you have probably already received an email explaining that printing costs are going up on June 20th at 12:00 AM UTC (June 19th at 8:00 PM EDT). I received the email May 23rd.
The letter explains that, depending on the current price of your books, and if you do nothing, your royalties will either decrease or could become zero.
The choices of action include:
- Running a one-time bulk list price update on all of your live paperback or hardcover list prices to increase your prices so they will continue to earn the same royalty
- Visit the price tab for each of your live print books and make changes individually
Here is a link to frequently asked questions with printing cost tables at the bottom of the list of questions:
Printing cost = “fixed cost” plus (“per page cost” x “page count”)
In the Amazon.com market (the U.S.):
From my reading of the tables it appears that for a paperback that is no larger than 6”x9”, has 110 – 828 pages, and black ink, the only price increase is the fixed cost (going from $0.85 to $1.00 per book), with the per page cost remaining the same. So, basically a $0.15 increase in printing cost.
I chose to use the one-time bulk list price update. It didn’t show me what the new prices would be immediately. That could take “several weeks,” they said. My thought was that I could look at prices individually after the update had taken effect. Thirty minutes later, I got an email with the updated prices. All my paperbacks were priced low. The increase was $0.25 for each of them, so apparently there was a $0.19 increase for printing costs and a $0.06 increase to keep the royalty the same. I’m not sure I understand that.
For comparison with IngramSpark printing costs, I used a 6”x9” paperback with black ink, cream paper, and 300 pages. IngramSpark’s cost was $5.48. Amazon cost was $4.60.
I would add the following to choices of action:
- Order any supply of books you will need for in-person events in the near future before the cost goes up.
- Consider using the coming increase in costs in your marketing, encouraging readers to buy before the prices goes up.
Okay, for discussion today, let’s share our knowledge and advice.
Questions for discussion:
- Do you have any questions you would like to post for the discussion today?
- What additional information would be helpful in making a decision on new prices?
- What advice would you give?
- What do you plan to do?