Many moons ago, I sent the following message to a Friend Of ComicList, Donna Barr:
Donna, this ties into the demise of Cold Cut Distribution in the sense that publishers, retailers and readers need to made aware of all the means to deliver or receive comics and other published goods. If you’d like to put together something, no matter how long or brief, that would give people more options, I’d be glad to present it on my site.
She recently responded with the following advice for small publishers:
All small publishers are on the Amazon.com/advantage program (and if you’re not, WHY not?).
You know how easy it is to send wholesale books to Amazon at the Kentucky warehouse. And to ask for larger restocks. Their customer support and immediate payment system are excellent.
But – since Amazon wants a 55% discount, and the books have to (as in my example) go ALL the way from the Seattle area to Kentucky and then back to, let’s say, a customer in Tacoma, the carbon footprint and the shipping costs end up being doubled, and the customer and the publisher both pay it.
To get a better discount for customers, you set up an Amazon Marketplace account and you knock off a few bucks for a discount that gives you more money and the customer a better discount. It also allows you to send the books directly.
So far, I’ve been trying to talk Amazon into a retailer’s system, but they’re not their yet. Wouldn’t it be great if a retailer could pop on board and get a 45% discount?
You can do that either through Advantage or Marketplace. Set a wholesale discount for the retailer.
Want to know how to do this? Go to Amazon.com and follow their instructions. They’re very clear.
No, it’s not perfect, but it’s a nice loophole. I find that when I use a system to do something it was never meant to do, and it begins to work, the site is redesigned to make it work. Get on board and see where we can push this.
We may be able to get Amazon for Retailers yet – and then all those distributors you have to bill, or that want ridiculous discount, or that insist they never got your shipments – can fade fade fade away…
(This is) just my backdoor fixit for a problem that needs to be dealt with. It’s not perfect — but if enough of us keep doing it, maybe Amazon will get the idea.
It’s worked before.
(If somebody else has improvements or even better ideas, PLEASE share).