Firstly let me just apologize for the on and off “In Stock” and “Temporarily Out of Stock” messages appearing on the Blog Blazers listing on Amazon. What’s happening is that we’re trying to work with Amazon’s JIT (Just in Time) inventory system and experiencing some difficulties as illustrated in the screenshot below:
Basically the way it works for first time and self-published authors is that Amazon doesn’t want to order too many books ahead of time and be stuck with a larger than necessary inventory on hand. Nor can we blame them. From what I understand, most self published books end up selling less than 200 copies, and 60% of these sales are to friends and family. That’s pretty dismal. Of course that’s not always the case, there’s lots of examples of very successful self-published authors. The biggest I know of is Robert Kiyosaki who started his book series of Rich Dad Poor Dad as self-published. Another great example is Peter Bowerman with his book like The Well-Fed Self-Publisher.
In any case, Amazon is looking out for itself, and that’s perfectly understandable. Selling books is a business, and they do it well. So what happened with our book is that Amazon initially ordered a small number of books. Now before I continue, something to be aware of is that Amazon will only accept books they ordered if they come with a purchase order (barcoded). You cannot just ship books to Amazon to add to their inventory when you want to, you have to wait for them to order books. Makes sense.
Anyways, a lesser known trick is that they will often accept more books than requested as long as they’re part of the same purchase order and as long as the surplus is reasonable (don’t try to ship 1000 books when they ask for 20). However knowing that Blog Blazers is going to is selling well, we decided to ship some extra books with each PO (Purchase Order). On average so far, we’re shipping 2-3 times as many as they request per purchase order (sometimes more).
Getting back to our story, within a day of being released, the Blog Blazers inventory on Amazon was sold out. And it’s no wonder, the initial order was too small. Which means the status of Blog Blazers on Amazon fell to “Temporarily Out of Stock”. The next day, another PO came out, we did the same. And on it’s been continuing since…
So if you see the book Blog Blazers on Amazon with a status of “Temporarily Out of Stock” don’t worry, this is because Amazon is still trying to figure out how many books they need to have on hand to meet the number of books sold (JIT – Just in Time). And it definitely isn’t helping that the sales of Blog Blazers are increasing on a daily basis as more and more bloggers are posting about it every day!
I guess of all the problems I could have, this is the best one to have. But still…