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6 Online Book Store Success Stories [2023]

6 Online Book Store Success Stories [2023]
Start An Online Book Store

Bookselling is the commercial trading of out-of-print books or collectibles. If you are an avid reader or just love selling online, opening an online book store in the age of Amazon and massive retail stores can be a rewarding and fun business. You can sell books on sites like eBay, Abebooks and other high-traffic bookstores.

You can write and self-publish your own books, and sell to fans directly, or resell books by different publishers. Alternatively, you can venture into the vintage, rare or out-of-print books.

To start a bookselling business follow these basic steps:

  • Find a niche and create an inventory
  • Develop a book brand
  • Source the books you plan to sell
  • Launch and market your online store

To compete effectively, differentiate your bookselling brand and be hyper-focused. Focus on delivering a curated experience so you build a community of book lovers.

Here are some real life success stories of starting a online book store:

1. Conundrum Publishing ($240K/year)

Nick Thacker (from Colorado, USA) started Conundrum Publishing over 6 years ago.

$20K / month
1 founders / 2 employees
Colorado, USA

Case Study

My name is Nick Thacker, and I’m a full-time author of thriller and action-adventure novels. I write in the same genres as Dan Brown, Clive Cussler, James Rollins, and Lee Child, and my main series is about a Yellowstone park ranger named Harvey Bennett. Most of my readers are 45 years old and up, about 50/50 men/women, and the vast majority of my sales come from Amazon (either directly or through Kindle Unlimited, where I’m paid based on pages read).

I started writing back in 2011, but it was never something I thought I could do full-time. I was working a 9-5 job and I eventually realized I was making more by writing than I was at the day job, so I quit. Today, I’m pulling in about $10,000 a month on the low-end, and up to $20,000 during a heavy promotion or launch period.


2. Mouse Book Club ($120K/year)

David Dewane (from Chicago, Illinois, USA) started Mouse Book Club about 6 years ago.

$10K / month
4 founders / 0 employees
Chicago, Illinois, USA

Case Study

My name is David Dewane and I’m the co-founder and president of the Mouse Book Club. We make phone-sized physical books you carry around with you so that you have a decent alternative to reading your phone.

So far, we have mailed over 40,000 books to 60+ countries and all 50 states. We’ve done about $170,000 in sales in the first two years.


Learn more about starting an online book store:

Where to start?

-> How much does it cost to start an online book store?
-> Pros and cons of an online book store

Need inspiration?

-> Examples of established online book store

Other resources

4. Finn and Remy, LLC ($24K/year)

Jane Du (from Dallas, Texas, USA) started Finn and Remy, LLC almost 6 years ago.

$2K / month
1 founders / 0 employees
Dallas, Texas, USA

Case Study

I am Jane, an artist and an author. I am mom to two boys, Finnegan (3.5) and Remington (1.5), who are the inspiration behind the cute hedgehog characters in my books and a lot of my art. I (until very recently, used to) live in Dallas with one husband, two boys, three dogs, and five chickens.

I also make inspirational art prints and cute T’s for adults and kids alike.


5. DragonTree Publishing ($2.4K/year)

Sheila Crosby (from El Paso, Spain) started DragonTree Publishing about 11 years ago.

$200 / month
1 founders / 0 employees
El Paso, Spain

Case Study

I’m a Brit who came to live on the Spanish island of La Palma who self publishes books about the island. My guide book to the astronomical observatory here has done so well that I’m now working on the 3rd edition to include the newest telescopes and discoveries. I followed that with an anthology of children’s stories set on the island and I have more books planned.

It's an unusual combination, but it works for me. I don't have all that much money but I have a great quality of life.


Pat Walls,  Founder of Starter Story
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