Guest Posts
Your Position: Home - Packaging & Printing - Are Children's Books Profitable?

Are Children's Books Profitable?

There’s one burning question when you start the journey toward indie-publishing children’s books: will it be profitable?

It depends.

Yes. I am earning a six-figure income with my children’s publishing program and after eight years, I have published 60+ books. It’s my career and passion.

No. If you only want to publish one book, um, it’s hard, if not impossible to be profitable.

A One-Off Children’s Book is Difficult

Some people approach this question casually, coming to the genre of children’s books thinking it’s easy because, after all, it’s only for kids. Oh, you won’t be profitable.

A one-off book is incredibly hard to pull off because there are so many ways it can go wrong: poorly written story, poor illustrations, poor layout and design, poor launch strategy, poor understanding of your audience of teachers, parents, and kids. Did you notice the repetition of the word, “poor”? It is used deliberately to emphasize that children’s books aren’t going to earn a profit unless it’s approached respectfully and with great thought and effort.

Let’s go through some elements of a successful children’s picture book to see what’s needed.

WRITING. Children’s picture books are usually 32-pages and can be written for ages 0-12. It’s important to know the target age range so the writing will be appropriate. One important consideration is word count.

  • Preschool, ages 0-5. Word count is zero to 500 words, and shorter is better.

  • K-2nd, ages 5-8. Word count is zero to 600 words, and shorter is better.

  • 3rd - 5th, ages 7-12. Word count is zero to 1000 words, and shorter is better.

In those few words you must tell a compelling story with a beginning, middle, and end which introduces a larger-than-life character. Seldom will a beloved pet—no matter how wonderful they are/were—become a good picture book character.

The story must read aloud easily. One mistake is to think that a children’s book must be poetry, because seldom does the poetry work. If you don’t know what “an iambic pentameter line” means, you shouldn’t be writing poetry. Instead, the story must contain language appropriate to the story that is easy or even fun for adults to read and reread. Learn more about writing a children’s picture book here.

ART. Children’s picture books are illustrated, which means there’s an image or piece of art on every page. If you aren’t an artist, don’t even attempt it! Don’t ask your neighbor or your niece or any family member to attempt it, because they aren’t professional artists either. Don’t shortcut this and grab art from an online market such as Fiverr.com, because the art is mediocre, at best.

The bane of self-published children’s books—and this directly affects profitability—is mediocre digital art.

If you attempt publishing a children’s books, you need an appreciation for great art and the ability to recognize art that tells a story well. While digital art is often cheaper to acquire, in the hands of a mediocre artist, it has a distinctive look that cheapens a children’s book. Look for great art, whether it’s digital or not. Be prepared to pay a reasonable fee (there’s a balance between paying too little and too much!) for art, and you’ll increase your chances of profitability. Read this for more on contacting an illustrator.

Additional resources:
4 Reasons Your Business Needs A Custom Business Card Design
5 Benefits of Choosing Corrugated Packaging
5 Must-Have Features in a Kids Publication
Cell Culture Plates
Glass Bottles Market
Important Questions You Should Ask About Your Business Cards — Absolute Creative Print
Where to Get Cheap or Free Kids Books

How to Become Profitable With a Children’s Book

There are clear paths to profitability for children’s books, and the Indie Kids Books blog is devoted to discussing options for becoming profitable with children’s books.

Here’s some posts to get you started. For each, there’s a short synopsis and a link to Read More.

What will you publish?

8 Types of Indie-Publishers

Respecting Your Copyright

Building a Lucrative Career

A 5-Year Publishing Plan

Printing Overseas v POD

Marketing to Schools

Marketing Self Published Children’s Books

Grassroots Marketing

Do Children’s Books License Rights?

Questions or Comments? Glad to discuss!

Leave a comment

Alright, so "How to Start a Business: For Kids!" by Lilly Talavera totally rocks! I'm giving it a solid 5 stars because it's just awesome for kiddos wanting to dip their toes into the world of business.

First off, the writing is spot-on. It's like the author knows exactly how to talk to kids without making their heads spin. Super engaging and fun – my kid didn't want to put it down.

What I love most is how it breaks down the whole business thing. It's not some boring lecture; it's more like a cool story that teaches important stuff about how money and businesses work. Supply and demand, hard work, determination – it's all in there, but it's not snooze-inducing. The book's like a little guide to turning on the business lightbulb in a kid's head. It encourages thinking, being creative, and making decisions – real-life skills that go beyond the lemonade stand.

Plus, it's not just about making money; it's about being smart with it. Teaching kids about their financial future? Heck yeah! That's the kind of wisdom I wish I had when I was little.

All in all, if you've got a kiddo curious about business, this book is gold. It's not just informative; it's fun, relatable, and sets kids on a path to being money-savvy little geniuses. A big high-five to Lilly Talavera for creating such an awesome resource!

Are Children's Books Profitable?

How to Start a Business: For Kids! (For Kids: Series): Talavera, Lilly: 9798686337077: Amazon.com: Books

Additional resources:
When was food packaging first used?
The Evolution of Food Packaging - A Timeline
Everything You Need to Know About Custom Banner Printing
What is signage in printing?
Corrugated fiberboard
How to Save Money with Custom Size Boxes
How do you read a picture book for kids?


* 0 of 2000 characters used

All Comments (0)
Related Articles
Get in Touch