View Full Version : Agents Sales in terms of $

11-06-2007, 08:14 PM
How would a author be able to tell what type of sales a book has? I am interested in learning how well a particular book did in monetary value. How can I find this information?

11-06-2007, 11:20 PM
From what I've read in various places, it is extremely difficult to know. Sorry, I know this isn't what you wanted to hear.

11-06-2007, 11:26 PM
I understand. Publishers marketplace seems to be about as good as it gets for info on sales. Thanks for your feedback!

11-25-2007, 06:15 AM
I thought you wanted to know how many copies have sold. That information is very hard to get. Sorry for misunderstanding.

11-25-2007, 11:56 PM
I'm not sure if this will help, but you can get sales information for a book for the past year by calling Ingram at

(615) 213-6803

The system prompts you to enter an ISBN and after that you can get detailed information. You could try contacting Ingram to see whether they have information for past years. Their URL is http://www.ingrambook.com/. Iím not sure how much this helps, but it will give you some sales information, hopefully.

Cathy C
11-26-2007, 12:19 AM
Cheaper way to get the same info is to call their toll-free number:

(800)937-8000, dial Extension 4, then enter 36803. It'll take you straight to the Automated Stock Number system. :)

Oh, and after you've entered in the title's ISBN, select option 3. That will give you the most data, including warehousing and historic ordering.

If you're looking for sales for a particular book, check for that book on Publisher's Marketplace search. It will tell you who bought it and what range it was sold for and by what lit agent. The advance (what it sold for) is usually pretty close to what they expect the book to sell for.

I've never heard of this feature, molly. I just went through the Publisher's Marketplace site and couldn't find anywhere to do this search. I'd love to see what they have listed for our books. Where do you find the book title search (or is it an ISBN search?) Thanks!

11-26-2007, 12:25 AM
Important to note there is no single, publicly accessible source for the total sales figures for a specific title. Figures reported in Publisher's Marketplace are not necessarily accurate.

Ingram is a wholesaler, so its figures don't include shipments to or sales of the big box stores (Walmart, Costco), or any other market that gets its books from another source.

Depending on the publisher, the author of a book may have very accurate numbers (in advance of royalty statements) from the major markets, which publishers track. Some houses share these numbers with the author, and some don't.

Royalty statements provide the author with figures of earnings through the reporting period, though "how well" a book actually did is difficult to determine until several reporting periods (a couple of years) have passed. And, even then, if the author's backlist continues to rack up sales, the book will continue to earn throughout a lifetime that can, with luck, last a decade or longer.

Linda Adams
11-26-2007, 12:27 AM
But even ISBN is a deceptive number. I remember Miss Snark talking about it, and she said that a hardback has a different ISBN than its paperback version or audio version.