It is simple to figure out eBook royalties because there are no “manufacturing” costs. But the formula for calculating your royalty for a paperback book printed by Amazon KDP Print is another matter. That’s because we have two mouths to feed:
- The printer, in this case Amazon KDP.
- The retailer—online and brick and mortar—adds their mark-up or selling commission.
The retailer’s commission is relatively easy to figure out because it hasn’t changed much over the years. It is typically 40% for the retailer and in fact that is Amazon’s share when you use KDP Print.
(As an aside, you give up an additional 20% when or if you make your book available for expanded distribution, which for KDP Print is handled by Ingram. Meaning, you receive 40% of your book’s retail selling price less the cost to manufacture it.)
That leaves manufacturing (printing) costs as the great unknown. In this post I’ll share the three ways to calculate KDP Print manufacturing costs.
I’ll also include an example of what happens if Amazon decides to sell your book for less than your suggested retail price.