Bank over Rank | Should I Try to Sell my Book Direct? | Direct Book Sales for Indie Authors

Today we are talking about direct sales for indie authors. This is for indie authors because we own all the rights to our books and can sell them wherever we want. If you have a traditional deal and have carved out some rights or formats to keep for yourself then you can look into direct sales in those formats. Check your contracts.

What is selling directly to readers?
It’s what it sounds like. There is no middleman or intermediary. You personally handle the transaction if this is a purchase at a book fair or other in-person events. Or your website or online storefront processes the transaction. No Amazon or Barnes & Noble or any other company in between you and the customer. Yes, there is some e-commerce platform that will take a fee off of transactions, but most likely you are still coming out ahead of the royalty you would get from a sale through a retailer. Also, because it is a direct sale you know who bought the book. You can send a thank you message, you can ask for a review, and you can ask them to sign up for your newsletter (Ideally, pick 1 of those things to say, not all. Don’t be annoying.)

What is bank over rank?
I first heard this phrase attributed to Erin Wright of Wide for the Win so I will credit her and if she got it from someone else I will update the credit in the description below. So bank over rank is this idea that it is better for me as the author to have money in the bank (immediately and a higher cut) than to always optimize around the ever-evolving and updating ABSR. Amazon Best-Seller Rank.

Why do rankings even matter?
We know why money matters. But why do rankings matter? This can be a means of discovery for authors. If your book is in the top books in its category people can find it that way. But, it is a moving target. And if you are so focused on selling direct that you have pretty much no ranking then it’s a self-fulfilling issue that all your sales will be direct.

And yes, even if someone purchases directly they CAN still leave a review on a retailer’s website. It just won’t be a verified review.

How to sell direct?: your website and any e-commerce plugin, Shopify, PayHip, or Bookfunnel. There are so many options out there and new ones popping up every day, so pick what works for you now. You can always upgrade or switch later.

Handling the orders?
Ebook and audiobook – direct download. Easy. Should be able to limit the number of times someone downloads it. Also, you can provide directions on how to use/access the file. Some people aren’t as savvy as others.

For print books, I try to send them out within a week of the order coming in, whichever day is easiest. I also use the Media Mail shipping rate to save big on shipping costs. I do have link for below that you can use to save on setting up your account and using Media Mail.

Okay, so that was a very high-level primer on bank over rank and selling directly to readers. Are you interested in this option or is it too much of a hassle to think about right now? I didn’t add this until 2019, so 4 years after I started self-publishing. I didn’t know what I didn’t know and I’m glad I had time to grow organically instead of trying to do everything at once.

Wide for the Win FB Group:

Join this channel to get access to perks:

Music from:​ E.R.F.

How You Can Support This Channel and My Work:
👍Like, Subscribe, and Comment on this video!
✉️Subscribe to my monthly newsletter:
➕Follow me on my other channels: FB | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads
☕️Buy Me A Coffee:
📚Check out my books and purchase them or request them at your library: or

Author Your Ambition Merch on Etsy:

Need help with your book?
📞You can actually do 1-on-1 coaching with me, learn more about the services available here:

Need help with your author business?
📈 You can book time with me to go over your author business and overcome your current roadblocks:

DISCLAIMER: Links included in this description might be affiliate links. If you purchase a product or service with the links that I provide I may receive a small commission. There is no additional charge to you, but it can help me continue to create and put out more content. Thank you for supporting my channel so I can continue to provide you with free content each week!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s