Children’s books businesses publish children’s books, bringing illustrated stories to print. For businesses that have captivating books, the industry offers plenty of opportunity. Children’s book sales surpassed those of adult books in 2014, selling more than 2.7 billion books that year.

Additionally, business owners who start this type of business are in good company. Not only do many people have successful children’s book businesses today, but one of the most successful children’s authors in modern history began by self-publishing her work. Beatrix Potter funded the first runs of both Peter Rabbit and The Tailor of Gloucester. The two stories are popular even to this day.

What are the costs involved in opening a children’s book business?

The costs involved with publishing a children’s book are significant yet manageable. According to Lee Johnson, business owners on a budget can go from a story to having 3,000 copies of a finished book for $5,400. Hiring a more skilled illustrator or incorporating more edits may bring that total up to $8,000 or $10,000.

Of these, illustration costs can vary the most. Some illustrators may charge anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000, or even more. Higher-priced illustrators may include layout designing in their services.

Any of these steps that business owners can do themselves greatly reduces the total cost of publishing a children’s book. For this reason, many business owners do their own illustrations and layout design. They may also rely on school teachers or librarians, who are familiar with curriculum requirements and grade reading levels, for assistance with certain steps.

Business owners should only do these steps if they’re truly capable of producing professional quality work. Sacrificing the quality of a book’s text, illustrations or layout will greatly hinder sales in the future.

What are the ongoing expenses for a children’s book business?

After a book is published, the ongoing expenses associated with the title include any marketing costs and storage costs. Of course, businesses must also fund the publication of additional titles.

Who is the target market?

Counterintuitively, kids are not the target market for children’s books. Instead, it’s parents, schools, and libraries — as they’re who actually purchase books. Children’s author Kate Klise says that schools and libraries are especially profitable customers as they purchase in bulk.

How does a children’s book business make money?

A children’s book business makes money by selling copies of books. Books may be sold individually at retail prices or in bulk at wholesale prices.

How much can you charge customers?

The School Library Journal reports that children’s books usually retail for between $6.49 and $17.85 per copy. Hardcovers command the highest prices, with mass-market paperbacks getting the lowest prices. Trade paperbacks are in the middle.

How much profit can a children’s book business make?

With a successful title, a children’s book business can bring in six-figure revenues. For example, Augie and the Green Knight raised $384,410 on starter before publication.

How can you make your business more profitable?

Business owners have multiple ways to earn additional revenue. Selling ebooks is becoming increasingly common. Alternatively, business owners can speak at schools and businesses, and offer teaching workshops to other aspiring business owners.

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