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View Full Version : POD Books listed as Out of Stock



Chumplet
12-01-2007, 07:46 PM
What gives? Isn't POD supposed to be always in stock? My novel has been 'Temporarily Out of Stock' on Amazon.ca for over a month. Which sucks because it had appeared on a Bestselling list for Most Gifted in the Contemporary Romance Category.

I know it is seen a a good thing when a book is 'sold out', but I think it hurts further sales when they don't restock, especially just before Christmas. I'm getting emails from potential buyers and I'm redirecting them to Amazon.com, but I'm sure several customers just don't bother to hit 'Buy' at all.

I poked around and noticed that lots of books from small presses are also out of stock. I asked my publisher what gives and she didn't have an answer for me. She said their books are distributed by Lightning Source, so I sent an email to Lightning Source and they never answered.

Does anyone have any insight as to why this is happening?

veinglory
12-02-2007, 01:09 AM
Amazon is a distributor. They still need to have a copy in stock to promise to send it to the customer within their usual deliver times. I am down to 'last four copies'. Which is good news and bad -- no idea how many they had ;)

So long as your publisher is still listing it as in print they should still allow orders and restock when they get them? Is see they say: "Order now and we'll deliver when available. We'll e-mail you with an estimated delivery date as soon as we have more information. Your credit card will not be charged until we ship the item."

I can see why they wouldn't automatically restock small press POD until they see a few orders.

citymouse
12-02-2007, 03:19 AM
Sandra, your book is available on the US site. Unavailable On Amz CA and available in the Uk, however, it's farmed out in the UK to other sellers.

It may be that Canadian customers are expected to order through the US site--don't know.

I'd contact Amz CS and ask.

C

Chumplet
12-12-2007, 08:22 AM
Thanks Citymouse. I looked all over the Amazon.ca site and can't find a contact email.

Veinglory, I sure hope they restock your book when the last four are sold!

In the meantime, I'm redirecting potential customers to the U.S. site. They have no trouble shipping to Canada, although it may be a bit more expensive.

citymouse
12-13-2007, 04:40 AM
Sandra I just spoke with a friend who worked for five years a an Amz cs rep. He said your POD company arranges for your book to be listed. (I should have thought of that!)
Anyway, Amz doesn't work with authors unless they are using Amz's Advantage Program and even that is limited.
That's all I could find out without turning the world upside down.
C


Thanks Citymouse. I looked all over the Amazon.ca site and can't find a contact email.

Veinglory, I sure hope they restock your book when the last four are sold!

In the meantime, I'm redirecting potential customers to the U.S. site. They have no trouble shipping to Canada, although it may be a bit more expensive.

Chumplet
12-13-2007, 04:47 AM
You're a peach, Citymouse! I suppose the POD company for my publisher, Wild Rose Press, is Lightning Source, but they never responded to my query. Oh, well, must keep trying.

citymouse
12-13-2007, 04:22 PM
Thanks, Sweetie! I'll nose around some but without Wild Rose Press pushing Amz-CA there's not much you can do. My friend said that out of the US shipments are usually stalled until a crate can be filled at the fulfillments centers. Apparently these these shipments are bundled as one cost. I couldn't find out how individual books are then priced. I guess it's some stupid secret. LOL!
Because Amz ships so much getting books out doesn't take too long.

Have you thought of putting your book in E-book format and selling it through your website? I'm guessing you have a non-exclusive contract that would let you sell that way. All you would need is the formatted book and a PayPal account. The advantage is many readers, especially living in the Asia-Pacific part of the world, simply can't afford the shipping costs plus the book costs. Thus they turn to E-books. Give it some thought.

Best,
C


You're a peach, Citymouse! I suppose the POD company for my publisher, Wild Rose Press, is Lightning Source, but they never responded to my query. Oh, well, must keep trying.

flashgordon
12-14-2007, 12:37 AM
Here is the deal. Lightning Source is a printer that your publisher used. Lightning Source has a direct line to Amazon and Ingram, thus they are one of the POD printers preferred by most. Your publisher, when they submitted your book to Lightning designated not only the discount, but also whether they wanted Lightning to list your book in Amazon US and Amazon UK. If they only chose the domestic option, then it will not be listed in the UK or CA Amazons (or will be listed, but noted as "out of stock"). You can still get your book into those Amazons, but you need to sign up for specific Advantage agreements with each of those Amazons (I know, stupid, but the various Amazons don't talk to each other yet).

Your book is never actually at Amazon. It is at Lightning Source, which just drop ships your book with Amazon labels. Lightning Source will not respond to your emails. You need to talk with your publisher - they need to fix their metainformation with Lightning.

Chumplet
12-14-2007, 01:02 AM
It was in stock on Amazon.ca when it first went into print. After a bunch of people ordered it, then it was out of stock. So I'm thinking everything is in place, except for the fact that it sold out and hasn't been replenished. I'll talk to the publisher again.

The book is also in e-format and is being sold through the publisher and Fictionwise and various other vendors.

I was on the fence, sitting between curious and concerned. You have all been very helpful and I appreciate your input. I'm not going to get myself all in a tizzy over this, since I have to think about my next book coming out in July (with a different publisher), and then I have bigger plans for the next one after that. Yanno, getting an agent and all that stuff...

But it's an interesting topic, ain't it?

James D. Macdonald
12-14-2007, 10:33 PM
Why not sign up for an Amazon Associate account while you're at it? That way, if a book sells through your link, you get a couple of extra pennies, but more important, you get to see on a day-by-day basis how many people are clicking through on your link....

Chumplet
12-15-2007, 04:00 AM
Very interesting. Thanks, Uncle Jimmy.