Amazon owns CreateSpace, the print-on-demand solution that allows indie authors to produce print editions of their work and then seamlessly integrate them into Amazon’s online bookstore. CreateSpace started out as an independent company before being bought by the online retailer some time ago, and as such, CS has kept its own online bookstore in operation all this time. But that’s about to change.
Authors who’ve published through CS have probably noticed that they had two sets of royalties for their books. One was the amount they would earn for sales on Amazon, while the significantly higher amount was what they would earn for books sold through CreateSpace’s original bookstore.
You might be thinking, “What? I could have been directing customers to another store that would have given me higher royalties?”
A few business-minded authors made the CS opportunity their go-to outlet, while typically other authors have relied on Amazon. After all, it’s not only the world’s largest book retailer, but it’s also the world’s largest online retailer period. Why try to send potential readers to a site they’ve never heard of when you can piggyback off the traffic of people shopping for toilet paper and floor lamps?
CS has been wide open about the terms of this closure, and what it will mean for authors who are accustomed to those higher royalties:
“Today, paperback sales through Amazon.com and Amazon Europe earn a 60% royalty. To help with this transition, for six months starting November 1, 2017, you will earn an average royalty rate calculated across all sales of your title through both the CreateSpace eStore, Amazon.com and Amazon Europe over the last year. For example, if half of your paperback sales for a title were through the CreateSpace eStore, which earned an 80% royalty rate, and the other half were through Amazon sales channels (Amazon.com and Amazon Europe), which earned a 60% royalty rate, your new royalty rate for sales of that title through Amazon sales channels during this six-month period will be 70%.
“After April 30, 2018, the standard Amazon 60% rate will apply to all sales for paperbacks. Also, if your title didn’t have any sales through the CreateSpace eStore in the last year, your royalty rate for Amazon sales will continue to be 60%.”
This news will also affect any customers who produced other forms of consumable media through CreateSpace, such as DVDs or music discs. To read their full statement, click here.