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Top 10 Book Distribution Channels

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  • September 12, 2023
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  • 6 min read


Book distribution channels have undergone a remarkable transformation in recent years, influenced by the surge in self-publishing and the digital revolution. As an author, the key to success lies in crafting a compelling story and strategically choosing the right distribution channels. In this article, we’ll explore the top 10 book distribution channels, ranging from traditional outlets to modern online platforms, guiding you through the labyrinth of options.


Ingram doesn’t just send books to a few places. They’re like the travel experts for books, sending them to more than 39,000 stores worldwide. So, if you go to a bookstore in your town, there’s a good chance that some of the books there were sent by Ingram. They’re like the behind-the-scenes champions making sure books reach readers everywhere!

Baker & Taylor

Baker & Taylor is another big company that works with libraries, schools, and book labels. They deal with many book titles for both the people who make books and those who want to buy them. They have a wide network and play a big role in getting books to places like libraries and schools.


Gardners is a significant company that sells books, eBooks, music, and movies to stores worldwide. They’re extreme in the U.K. and Germany. They are a big player in providing content to different stores in different countries.


CNPeReading focuses on selling books in China, one of the fastest-growing markets. They work with major online retailers in China and supply content to many East Asian libraries.


Audible is the biggest company in the world for making and selling digital audiobooks. They also have radio shows, TV programs, and podcasts. They dominate the market for people who love to listen to books instead of reading them.


Kobo, owned by a Japanese company called Rakuten, sells digital books. They’re the top ebook store in Canada and India. They are a significant player in digital books, providing reading options to millions of people.


OverDrive is a big company that helps distribute digital content (like ebooks) to libraries and schools in many countries. They’re key in ensuring people can access digital books from their local libraries and schools.


Voxa is a mobile app in Romania that lets people read ebooks and listen to audiobooks in English and Romanian. They provide a way for people in Romania to enjoy books on their phones.


Empik is Poland’s most significant book retailer, capturing a large portion of book sales. They’re also big in selling digital content. They are a significant source of books for people in Poland, both physical and digital.


Scribd is a popular subscription service that lets you read many books for a monthly fee. They have over a million active subscribers. They’re a go-to place for people who love to read many books without buying each one individually.

Traditional Vs. Modern Book Distribution Channels

When authors want to share their books, they have to decide how to do it. There are two main ways: old-fashioned (traditional) and new (modern). Each has good things and challenges, depending on what the author wants and what readers like.

Brick-and-Mortar Bookstores:

Imagine walking into a real, physical bookstore. It’s like entering a magical world where books are right before you. These stores give authors a unique feeling of being real and substantial. Authors can meet readers, sign books, and make friends with fans.

But there are downsides. Bookstores have limited space, so not all books can be there. It’s tough for new authors to get noticed, and there are rules to follow. Plus, getting books printed and shipped can be hard for starting authors.

Online Retailers:

Now, think about big online shops like Amazon or Book Writing Founders. These places have changed how books get to people. Authors can reach readers from all over the world because these online stores are huge. People love the convenience of buying books online.

But here’s the challenge: there are so many books online that it’s easy to get lost in the crowd. Authors have to figure out how to make their book stand out. This means understanding how online searches and ads work. Building a presence on social media, having a website, and teaming up with others becomes important.

Future Trends in Book Distribution: Emerging Technologies and Their Impact

In the world of books, exciting changes are coming! Imagine a world where technology transforms how books reach readers. This is the future of book distribution, and some remarkable technologies are leading the way.

Ebooks and Audiobooks:

Say hello to electronic books (ebooks) and audiobooks. Instead of carrying a heavy book, people can read or listen on their gadgets. It’s like having a library in your pocket!

Augmented Reality (AR):

Have you ever wished the characters in a book could come to life? With AR, they almost can! This tech adds a digital layer to the real world, making stories more interactive. Imagine seeing illustrations pop out of the pages!

Blockchain for Publishing:

You’ve heard of blockchain for money, but it’s also making waves in publishing. This tech ensures secure and transparent transactions, making it easier for authors to get their fair share.

Print-On-Demand (POD):

No more substantial print runs! POD lets books be printed one at a time. It’s like magic – a book appears whenever someone wants it. This reduces waste and saves trees!

What Are the Differences Between Book Publishing Services and Book Distribution Channels?

Book publishing services encompass the entire process of bringing a book to market, including editing, cover design, and formatting. On the other hand, distribution channels focus on how the finished book reaches readers.

What Are EBook Publishing Advantages?

eBook publishing offers advantages such as lower production costs, global accessibility, and reaching a wide audience quickly. Additionally, eBooks provide interactive features like hyperlinks and multimedia elements.

What Are the Publishing Workflow Steps?

The publishing workflow Steps involve manuscript preparation, editing, design, formatting, printing (for physical books), distribution, marketing, and sales. Each step is crucial for a successful book launch.

Key Characteristics and Profound Details

Distribution Channel Unique Features Additional Remarks
Ingram Global distribution to over 39,000 stores Predominant in getting books to bookstores worldwide
Baker & Taylor Focus on libraries, schools, and book labels Integral in educational and institutional book distribution
Gardners Distributes books, eBooks, music, movies internationally Strong presence in the UK and Germany
CNPeReading Specializes in the Chinese market Important for authors targeting East Asian readers
Audible Leader in digital audiobooks, radio shows, TV programs Dominant in the audiobook market
Kobo Digital books seller, strong in Canada and India Owned by Japanese company Rakuten
OverDrive Distributes digital content to libraries and schools globally Facilitates access to ebooks in educational institutions


Finding the best distribution channel to get your books out to readers can be tricky. Authors must think carefully about whether to go with traditional or digital bookstores. It’s essential to consider each option’s advantages and disadvantages before deciding. By picking the right book distribution channel and understanding how these companies work, authors can ensure their stories get into the hands of people excited to read them.

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