How Many Books Should I Get Printed?

If you are looking into book printing as you are thinking of self publishing your own book there are many questions that may spring to mind. One of the most asked questions is “How many books should I get printed?” There are many aspects that can affect this decision.

We have detailed our top five considerations when you are looking for a self publishing book printer.

What Are Your Personal Goals When You Are Considering Self Publishing?

If you are considering book printing to get a few copies of a book to hand out to family and friends you will obviously be considering a much lower publication run than if you are attempting to market and sell your book to a wider audience.

If the book is industry specific, you may well have a database of contacts that you will be selling or sending your book to. If your book is a piece of fictional or autobiographical writing you may be hoping to market the book but not yet have a database of key customers.

Consider your personal goals when you are looking at numbers – if you are marketing to a wider audience you may want to set a shorter print run and then top up your stocks if you find the book is selling well.

Do You Have A Marketing Plan In Place?

Having a marketing plan in place is a good idea before you place your order with a self publishing book printer. 

Consider your target market. Where can you engage them? How will you engage them? Set sales or stock targets against the information being clear to draw out a timeline. You may want to consider attending events that are relevant to the topic of your book in order to garner interest prior to publication.

Ask a trusted friend or relative to sense check your marketing plan looking for areas that need work or making suggestions as to other marketing activities that you can undertake.

Do You Have A Budget For Your Book Printing?

It is important to consider your budget when you are ordering your books. One of the major benefits of self publishing is that you can take advantage of shorter print runs meaning you can order a smaller amount of books to start with and reinvest any profit you have made in your next print run, lowering the risk and the initial outlay.

Will You Be Taking Pre-Orders?

If there is already an appetite for your book and you haven’t even done a print run, you may want to take pre-orders again minimising the risk of investment.

Don’t forget if you have taken pre-orders that it is always best to order a more copies than the total amount of pre-orders. This will give you some growth room for any other marketing activities you undertake and means you will have copies of your book in stock for people who haven’t pre-ordered.

What If I Am Unsure About My Final Numbers?

If you don’t feel confident about your final numbers consult an expert. If you have a friend or relative that has experience of self-publishing they will be a helpful resource for your book printing numbers and to provide advice upon marketing activities and design.

If you don’t have a friend or relative to help you will find that a self publishing book printer will be able to help and advise you on suitable print run amounts as they will have knowledge from previous projects they have completed.


We are an all round UK book manufacturing and printing service. We work closely with publishers, self publishers and authors. We have a state of the art factory, complemented by our sales and marketing office in Westoning, Bedfordshire. We have invested in the very latest digital and litho printing technology, to integrate with a fully equipped craftsman bindery.  The conclusion of which means we are offering both softback and hardback books, to a very high standard of quality.

Order your book printing online or contact our team for more information.