Why is it so difficult to get into a bookshop?

We are often asked about bookshops and the likelihood of being able to get stocked by them.


Bookshops have their own stocking system. They will only stock the books that are in high demand. They do this because they only have a few hundred spaces to give to newer books; stocking a book they cannot see any reception or demand for, is a very risky business move.


There is sometimes an exception with local authors and bookshops. Shops will be more inclined to stock a local author, to show support. This is usually a result of a signing held there, a publicist emailing the shop or the author going into their local shop themselves.


Any other bookshop will usually be hesitant to stock a book unless it:


  • Has already sold well
  • Is in the book charts
  • Has been asked about by customers in the store – meaning there is a demand for it in that particular store.


If you are struggling to get your book into a bookshop, it’s likely because your book is not yet falling into the category of one of the above.


So, what can we/you do about getting your book into a bookshop? The idea is to create the demand only then will the shops be interested; this can be done by:


  • Sending books to reviewers
  • Social media posts – banners and videos
  • A giveaway on social media
  • A free e-book giveaway on amazon – this means you won’t be selling much but your book may go into the charts.
  • Approaching local news and radio to get some interest
  • Encouraging family and friends to buy the book from the shops and amazon to generate a better place in the charts – also ask them to leave a review once they have read it.
  • Speaking to book clubs



The above will hopefully generate sales or interest which will, in turn, make your book more appealing to bookshops.

21 Jan 2020