People have asked me about royalties at Amazon. Here are the numbers:

Price and Royalties for a Print Book


I input the price (US$9.95) and it automatically calculates the price in pounds/Euros and shows me my expected royalty (what I get). I enter $9.95 (US dollars) and it shows me the price in pounds (someone in London will pay 6.12) and euro (what someone in Germany will pay 7.69 euro). At the right, it shows me the royalty in the various Amazon stores: I get $3.82 if the book is sold at; $5.81 if it’s sold via CreateSpace and $1.83 if it’s sold in bookstores.  Below that are my royalties from the UK and Europe.

Price and Royalties for a Digital Book

Here is the same for the digital book (the ebook):


I enter the price ($3.99) and it shows me the price for other countries, along with the royalty (70%) and the amount that I get. If I set the price at $10 or higher, I get 35% royalty. Yes, Amazon is nudging authors to set lower prices so it can attract more buyers (and kill bookstores). 70% of $9.99 is $6.99. If I sell the book at $10.05, then I get$3.51.

For example, the ebook is $3.99 in the USA. I get 70%. Amazon charges a delivery fee, which is based on the kilobyte size of the book. The book is 2.8MB (mobi format), so they charge me an additional US$0.21. In the end, I get $2.65 for each ebook sold in the USA. In Mexico, the book is sold for 52.90 pesos, of which I get $36.06 pesos. All of those sales are converted to US dollars and Amazon pays that into my bank account.

However, it’s not that much money. You make very little money on non-fiction books. I might sell a few thousand. Maybe. That’s quite good for non-fiction.

One good thing about Amazon is the worldwide distribution: Europe, India, Japan, Australia, and Latin America. The only places where people can’t buy from Amazon are several countries in the Middle East and mainland China. Next week, I’ll talk with people in China about this.