3 Ways to Boost Your Book’s Consignment Sales

Congratulations, you’ve signed a consignment deal! All your hard work has paid off, and your book is on the shelf at a local bookstore. So why aren’t the crowds flooding in to buy it yet? 

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When it comes to selling your self-published book on consignment, we’ve got some good news and some bad news. The bad news is, it’s not quite time to kick off your work boots, as there’s still more to be done. 

The good news is that this stage of book sales is where you start to reap your rewards and get dedicated readers. 

You’ll finally be out from behind that desk, and so will your book. You’ll learn the best marketing channels for your brand and see buyers and potential buyers come out of the woodworks. 

Ready to make more money selling your book on consignment? Refine your author brand, prioritize valuable networking, and seek out the counsel of an agent. Here’s how to get started.

1. Keep Your Author Brand Consistent

Your brand is the public’s perception of you as an author, your writing, and your mission. In a nutshell, it’s the “public expression of your calling.

Your brand is communicated through things like your writing voice and the visuals you use on your site, social media and your books.

As an author, you may not think it’s important to create and maintain a brand. After all, you’re not a business, you’re just a writer selling books, right?

Unfortunately, this mindset can be causing you to miss out on a lot of opportunities. A solid brand could be your kick start to building a following and selling those books you have on consignment. 

Not only does defining your brand help readers develop a trusting relationship with you and your work, but it attracts other essential people in the industry such as endorsers, companies you might like to work with, and agents. 

Once you get the basics of your author brand down, you’ll notice a flow developing where the brand is easier to make consistent as you yourself get to know it better. 

The best part? The more authentic your brand is, the easier it will be for you and your audience to understand. 

To create a brand, start by doing a bit of research. Seek out authors who you’ve been drawn to, and take note of the way they communicate their personality and purpose. 

What colors and fonts do they use, and what do these design choices say to you? What does their “voice” say about their personality and work? What helps you get to know them?

Here are a few more steps to take before solidifying your own brand:

  • Identify your audience. Who is your ideal reader? What do they like in a book? Where do they look for new books online? How does your book scratch their itch?
  • Check the voice of your author website and social media platforms for consistency. 
  • Know what makes you stand out from other authors, and think up creative ways to communicate it across your site, social platforms and other marketing assets.
  • Create a “look” and apply it everywhere. Put together a color palette, some fonts, email templates, and other ways to visually communicate your personality. 

Just like that, you have an author brand, and a way to develop authentic connection with people who might otherwise have remained strangers. 

2. Hire a Literary Agent

If you’re looking for a long-term investment to help this book and your future books sell more copies, you might want to add a literary agent to your budget. 

An experienced literary agent can support you through every stage of selling your book, with things such as:

  • Guiding you through the publishing process 
  • Helping negotiate better book deals
  • Coordinating your marketing and publicity
  • Finding you the perfect editor

Hiring a literary agent can help you make more money selling your book on consignment by first evaluating your contract and making any adjustments. Perhaps you overlooked an opportunity or settled for a smaller profit percentage — they’ll catch that for you!

An agent can also help with the marketing and publicity process, which comes as a relief to many self-published authors who haven’t had much experience in that department. And an agent can help you coordinate a big book launch to help get eyes on your books right off the bat. 

The right agent can help you communicate the brand you created and gain visibility in a sea of authors through speaking gigs, signings, book release parties, and more.  

To find the right literary agent for you, you’ll want to do a bit of research. See who represents authors you admire or if anyone you know has a recommendation. 

The ideal agent will have a few crucial qualities:

  • Your personalities jive. If you’re detail oriented, you’ll want someone who communicates to you as they go. If you’re more of the “hands off” type, you’ll want someone who puts their head down, gets to work and lets you know when the job is done. 
  • Familiarity with your genre. You need someone who has a thorough knowledge of your genre so they have various connections in the field already and can help you properly target readers. 
  • They fit your budget. Generally, literary agents take around 15% of your commission. Make sure you can pay them without breaking your own bank. 

Once you find a good fit, you’ll be shocked by the progress in your book consignment sales, and the things you’ll learn along the way. 

3. Make Personal Connections

Do you remember the first time you met an author you loved?  The excitement, the connection, and buying their book without a second thought. 

In order to create genuine connections with readers and other people who can help you boost your consignment sales, it’s important to get out from behind the screen every once in a while to create face-to-face connections. 

There are a few different ways to go about this:

  • Host book signings where your book is sold. You’ll want to book these out a few months in advance so you can be sure to get on the schedule and have plenty of time to promote. 
  • Join a writers group. Although the other authors may not be your target audience, they can still help you develop connections or share tips on how they’ve boosted their own consignment sales. 
  • Vend at and attend events relevant to your brand and genre. Grab a booth at some of your favorite events and share your story with interested passerby. Make your booth interactive and eye-catching to help draw people in.

When you make the effort to make face to face connections you’ll not only build a network of dedicated readers and supporters, but you might just notice your inspiration reigniting. 

Tackle these three things first, and you have a solid structure for increasing consignment sales for this book and any book you choose to write in the future. 

Whether you’re making more money on consignment sales or not, it’s always a priority of self-published authors to stay on a budget. Save on printing your next book by using our print services »

Adam user

President & CEO,
Steuben Press

Adam Ellis has worked in the book industry since 2002, when he was first exposed to the wonderful world of Self Publishing. Over the years he has worked with thousands of authors and helped to produce, print and publish countless books.

If i was a rainbow

I can't say enough about everyone at Steuben Press and their help in bringing If I Was A Rainbow to life. Their dedication and artistic insights have helped me realize a life long dream.

– Timothy Imbriaco, Colorado

Learn more about If I Was a Rainbow and purchase your very own copy at www.ifiwasarainbow.com