The Amazon Buy Button. It isn’t something we really think about, whether as a customer or as a seller (author / publisher).
On May 9, 2017, Amazon rolled out a new policy regarding the way in which it promotes listings in the Amazon Buy Button on a book’s homepage. This can severely hurt publishers and authors.
Essentially, third-party vendors can “win” the coveted “Amazon Buy Button” on products and when a product is purchased, it comes from them (not Amazon.)
This question is: Are these vendors who now own the Amazon Buy Button actually selling “new” books? And If so, where did they get them?
“New” is defined by Amazon as: “A brand-new, unused, unopened item in its original packaging, with all original packaging materials included. Original protective wrapping, if any, is intact. Original manufacturer’s warranty, if any, still applies, with warranty details included in the listing comments.”
I would imagine that some of the third-party sellers are actual bookstores using a distribution source such as Ingram Distribution. When they purchase a book, whether prior to obtaining the buy button or after a sale, they do, indeed have “new” books.
However, the question does remain, is Amazon doing enough to protect the integrity of the Author? After all, if a customers does not receive the product they expected, they don’t always contact Amazon or the third-party — they leave a very negative and low ranking review on the author/publisher book page.
Check your book listing Amazon Buy Button.
If your listing shows like the image below then you are find — your Buy Button has not been commandeered.
But if another vendor controls the Amazon Buy Button on your book, and is touting the sale as a “new” book, then purchase it. And when you receive your book, if it is not new (spine crushed, damaged or slightly worn) then post your findings on your social media using the hashtag #IBPSAmazonBuyButton
Read the full post from IBPA, as well as their other article “Amazon Buy Button Policy Change Hurts Publishers and Authors.”
See more from IBPA Twitter about the Amazon Buy Button