Amazon KDP is a popular selling site for self-published books.
The platform launched in 2007 at the same time as the first Amazon Kindle device. It’s a fantastic way for authors to get their work out there without having to worry about publishers fees.
If you’re not an author, you can still make money through KPD by selling low- to no-content books, like coloring books, journals, blank notebooks etc.
A lot of people have started to do this recently as a side hustle, and I think that it’s absolutely worth it – as far as side hustles go, it’s a bit of work up front and then passive income, so long as you’re actually selling.
But how does the money work? When will you start to see some rewards for your labor and how much do you have to be making?
It can be a little difficult to understand, but luckily through this article, I will explain the ins and outs of the KPD payment process and the general time frame.
You need to bear in mind that there is a minimum threshold for royalties that you have to surpass before you can start to get paid.
This mostly affects sellers who have set up either a wire transfer or check payments to receive your money.
What Will You Get Paid
Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing offers a 60% royalty rate on their paperback books sold through their market place. This means that your royalty will be 60% of whatever your list price is.
However, before you see the money, they also need to deduct the printing cost from your total, which completely depends on your page count, ink type, and the particular marketplace that your book was ordered from.
So, for example, let’s say that your list price was $15. If you were selling a black ink, 333-page paperback book on the US Marketplace, the equation for what you would end up getting paid would look like this:
(0.60 x $15) – $4.85 = $4.15
You would end up keeping $4.15 of your sale (see also ‘How To Make Your Book An International Bestseller‘).
Now, this might not sound like a lot, and it isn’t, but it is the price that you have to pay for the convenience of self-publishing through KDP.
It’s also a very similar figure to what you would see if you went through a traditional figure for one book sale. Over time, these small numbers start to add up, and you can still end up making a decent amount of profit.
Expanded Distribution Channels
If you have expanded distribution enabled, then you will receive 40% royalties on the listed price of the books sold, minus the printing cost.
So, for the same 333 page book but sold on the Expanded Distribution channels, the equation would look like this:
(0.40 x $15) – 4.85 = $1.15
You would have to sell a lot more units through the expanded distribution channels in order to start turning over a decent profit, but again, it’s not impossible.
When Do I Get Paid
Once you have accrued or surpassed the minimum threshold for payment, you will get paid about 60 days after the end of the month in which the sale was reported. This is upped to about 90 days for expanded distribution.
If that sounds a little confusing, don’t worry.
What this means is that if you managed to pass the threshold in January, you would receive payment for that at the end of March.
If you passed the threshold in February, you would see your money at the end of April, and so on, so forth.
Although this is the time that they authorize payment, the actual timing for the funds to show up in your account varies depending on the method you’ve chosen to be paid via.
For example, if you have chosen to be paid via direct deposit, then the payment can take 1-5 business days to show up on your bank statement from the actual payment date.
So the payment for January sales will be authorized at the end of March, but you might not see the money until the beginning of April.
If your bank account is located in India, it can actually take 7-10 business days past the payment date before it will show in your bank account.
If you want to be paid via a wire transfer, these can take 5-10 days from the payment date.
However, if you see in your payment report that the money should have been paid but you don’t see it, Amazon recommends that you get in contact with your financial institute for verification.
If you are expecting a check in the mail, then these delivery times can vary greatly depending on your location. After the payment date, it can take up to 30 days for the check to actually reach you.
You should allow for this much time to pass before you report that the check is lost, and just double check that the address on your account is actually correct before you request checks.
What If I Don’t Meet The Threshold
If you don’t manage to meet the minimum threshold for payment, then don’t worry, you won’t lose that money. KPD will keep a running total and you will be issued your full amount once you reach the threshold.
Kindle Direct Publishing (see also ‘How To Submit Your Book To A Publisher‘) is great for self-published authors looking to get their book out there.
Even though it can be frustrating to have to wait so long to get paid, once you’re meeting the threshold every month, you’ll have a secure, passive income that might flourish into a real solid amount of money, or at least a nice little monthly allowance.