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We have become involved in somewhat of a political movement in protesting recent actions taken by Amazon.com. It has to do with print-on-demand (“POD”) books, which are books printed a single copy at a time. Many independent authors use POD services to sell their books through Amazon. When a copy of the book is purchased, the POD company prints it and usually ships it directly to the customer. It’s a very smooth transaction. And it provides a reliable marketplace for independent authors.

But very recently, Amazon began contacting authors who use POD to inform them that they would have to use Amazon’s own print-on-demand company, Booksurge, for their book printing. Amazon is responsible for over half the market for POD books. An author who wants to sell as many copies as possible needs to use Amazon. So in one swift move, Amazon essentially took over the print-on-demand industry. Where once there were many options, now there is only one.

To make matters worse, the Booksurge service is known for poor quality. Even if Booksurge has fixed its problems, authors should still be free to do business with companies with whom they already have established relationships. Authors will incur considerable expense in switching POD companies; authors will now be paying Amazon a high percentage of their sales, in addition to charging them for the printing. These additional expenses will be passed onto the consumer in the form of higher book prices.

It is clear that Amazon.com is now just a corporate machine; far, far removed from the little online book seller that started a revolution. We’re advising people not to do business with Amazon.

We have also been maintaining a blog on this subject, http://www.AmazonBookSurge.com, that we invite you to check out.

As far as how this relates to marketing, how about this:

Never make massive changes to your business overnight that are going to negatively affect a great number of your customers.

Seems pretty obvious. Especially on the Web, where it is not hard to research the opinions of others. For instance, try performing the following search in Google: Amazon.com customer complaints

If you need some help with your online marketing, search engine optimization, or pay per click management, contact Work Media at 888-299-4837 or email Info@WorkMedia.net.