On-Demand Printing – What Is It And Why Should You Use It

On-Demand Printing – What Is It And Why Should You Use It

Story BookIn the early days book printing was something associated only with authors/writers and their book publishers. Previously, new authors used to take a lot of risk by printing hundreds, if not thousands of copies of their new books because that was the way it was done. They would go on a printing sprint, get thousands of copies of their books, find a place to store that huge inventory, and then start selling them off. This kind of printing is called Vanity Publishing.

The idea did seem pretty nice at that time, provided that you had a great investor who is willing to take that kind of risk, or believes that your book is really great and definitely deserves a shot.

Old Printed BooksThe issue with that kind of printing, authors would usually have to absorb a loss if their books didn’t sell out. And if that wasn’t enough, the process of Vanity Publishing was kind of hard because if the publisher was not impressed by your book, they probably would not publish it. This would force you to either find some other way to get published through the same publisher (which means taking some inferior routes) or you would have to find a new publisher or a large publishing house where you would have to receive a couple of rejection letters before getting your book published.

And to top that off, even after your book is accepted for publishing, it would take another year to ACTUALLY get it published and supplied in stores for sale.

And that’s where the Print On Demand industry was formed.

The printing is the same, and in fact, it actually costs more per book to Print on Demand. Yes, that is correct, I said more. You immediately think WHY would I pay MORE?

The major difference here is that you will print only the amount needed, no more, no less. On the surface, this might seem like a loss to you (and most of the authors), but if you consider the amount that you’ll save overtime, it is huge. Less upfront cost. If the book sells fast you ramp up and print more in larger quantities. If not, the loss is smaller and you’re not stuck with a storage unit full of “How to sell Uncle Joe a dress in 5 easy steps”.

The process of Print on Demand is pretty simple.

You choose your printer (hopefully us) and send your book to them. You then can print the amount of books equivalent to the amount of orders received (of course), and in most cases, the printer will ship it directly to the customer. No waiting 365 days to get your book published, nor getting disappointed with the rejection letters by publishers.

This is why you have started seeing a lot of books being published in the recent years. The Print on Demand industry has created a completely new era if you might say for the authors, and instead of the authors requesting the publishers to publish their book, now the publishers are trying to convince the authors why they should choose them over others.

Having a quick turnaround time with Print on Demand, you are also saving a lot of time from an author’s perspective.

Book Publishing Book PrintingIts Not Always Sunshine and Rainbows

Yes, that’s right. Print on Demand is not all about sunshine and rainbows. There are some things that you will not be able to achieve with it.

For instance, if your book gets successful and you start receiving a lot of orders, you should consider offset printing. That will save you a lot of money in a high quantity scenario rather than continuing with POD. In fact, if your book is successful, you should consider partnering up with a famous publisher to make it more successful.

Another drawback of POD is that it won’t be a suitable option if you want to get something unusual printed. For example, if you want to get a pop-up book printed, Print on Demand should already get crossed off your list.

Lastly, as I mentioned earlier, POD does cost more per book, but it definitely does save you a lot of money by not having to pay for the space for inventory, shipping costs, dealing with distributors, etc.

So, what do you think – Is Print on Demand a boon, or a curse for authors?