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Selling your cookbooks wholesale through retailers, manufacturers, and other partners is a great way to widen your distribution network. There are several different areas you can look for potential wholesalers, depending on the content of your cookbook.
When possible, try to focus on places that your book meshes well with. This will provide more value for the companies you are wholesaling through and make them more likely to listen to your pitch.
General retailers, both online and offline, are companies that sell a wide variety of goods, usually including ingredients, equipment, products, and books. They are a great place to try to wholesale your books. Some examples of larger general retailers are For The Gourmet, Dean & Deluca, Williams Sonoma, and Sur La Table.
Many delis and local general stores also carry books. These local retailers are often open to supporting local authors and are often easier to get into. Explore your local area and see what types of stores you can find in your area whose products would complement your cookbook.
There are also many smaller retailers around, especially in individual niches, and these can be a good place to start your wholesaling. Our books are sold through several modernist-centric sites such as Cedarlane Culinary, Modernist Pantry, and Creamright. Look around your niche and see if you can find any specialized retailers where your book might be a great fit.
Similar to the general and niche-specific retailers, equipment manufacturers are often great places to wholesale your books. Many people buying equipment are also looking for detailed directions on how to use it. If your book has recipes or directions focused around their equipment, you can offer it as a great add-on to their equipment.
We have bundled our sous vide books with sous vide manufacturers, our whipping siphon book with whipping siphon resellers, and our modernist introduction book to a company reselling modernist ingredients. These are all great ways to bundle your cookbook and provide value both to the manufacturer and their customers.
It can be very hard to get into large bookstores but there are many local and regional stores that might be interested in carrying your book. Finding these types of stores in your area and approaching their owners can open up many opportunities. Some restaurants or delis also have a decent book selection. These more local stores are often very open to working with local authors.
Stands at local farmers markets often carry books from local authors to supplement their income. If your cookbook complements the offerings of a stand, they might be willing to sell your book alongside the rest of their products.
If your book is really focused around artisanal or farm food you can look into selling them at your own booth but it is usually more efficient to work with an existing partner.
Many bloggers are looking to add streams of revenue to their blogs and selling your books can be a great source of income for them. Make sure your book complements the writing of the blog before approaching them. Many bloggers do prefer to work through affiliate relationships instead of wholesaling. This makes it so they don't have to manage any book inventory.
If your cookbook is focused around a specific type of ingredient, including specific produce or meat, you can often team up with a seller of that ingredient. For example, if your book makes a lot of use of onions, you can look into working with the National Onion Association to sell your books. Both of you will benefit from the association and it will help educate consumers on how to get the most out of their products.