Frequently Asked Questions

Royalties and Earnings

How do I get paid by ACX when my audiobook sells through ACX’s retail partners?

ACX pays US users monthly by check or direct deposit, and UK-based users are paid monthly via electronic payments in local currency (GBP).

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Can you explain the royalty payment on exclusive versus non-exclusive deals?

Royalties of 40% will be paid if you choose exclusive distribution exclusively through ACX, which today gets your audiobook listed on Audible, Amazon, and iTunes—the three main retailers of audiobooks in the world. If you choose non-exclusive distribution, you can sell your audiobook wherever else you’d like, and you will be paid 25%.

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How many units can I expect my audiobook will sell?

Just like in the print book world, this can vary widely. Some audiobooks don’t sell many units, but happily, most sell hundreds or thousands. Some even sell tens of thousands. And the rare breakout bestseller can drive hundreds of thousands of audiobook sales.

Sales tip: We want to help you boost those sales. So ACX offers comprehensive, hands-on marketing tools and advice in the Promote Yourself section. It’s focused on audiobooks and full of specific steps to take online—with social media tips and more. Click here to check it out.

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How much will my audiobook sell for in stores?

Each retailer of your audiobook independently prices your product and determines such price in their sole discretion. While not always the case, the regular price on Audible.com for the product is generally priced based on its length, as follows:

  • under 1 hour: under $7
  • 1 – 3 hours: $7 - $10
  • 3 – 5 hours: $10 - $20
  • 5 – 10 hours: $15 - $25
  • 10 – 20 hours: $20 - $30
  • over 20 hours: $25 - 35

To be clear, although the above represents general guidelines as retailer of audiobooks sold on Audible.com, Audible retains the sole discretion to set the price of the audiobooks it sells. Additionally, on Audible.com, consumers can buy your audiobook "a la carte" for the above price, but many Audible customers are AudibleListener members who can purchase the audiobook with an Audible "credit" which they get as part of their Audible membership. These credits are generally for about $15 per month. For more about AudibleListener membership, please check out the Audible.com store. Yes, AudibleListener members end up paying less per audiobook, but they are voracious audiobook consumers who tend to purchase over 17 audiobooks per year from Audible.com. This is much higher than other audiobook customers, who generally purchase just one or two books per year. Please note that we do not, and cannot, control how iTunes prices your audiobook in their store. However, no matter how they price it, you will be paid the same amount as you are for Audible "a la carte" sales (i.e. a percentage of Audible’s "a la carte" price).

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How are ACX royalties calculated?

Each sale of an audiobook you create through ACX falls under one of three different categories: AL, ALC, and ALOP. Your monthly royalty report will break out sales in all three categories.

  • AL = This is a member sale in which an AudibleListener purchased your audiobook using a membership credit.
  • ALOP = This is a member sale in which an AudibleListener purchased your audiobook with a credit card. We pay you the royalty based on the net sale of that transaction.
  • ALC = This is an a la carte purchase made by a nonmember.

We pay you the royalty based on the net sale of that transaction. The percentage of royalties you earn on each sale will be calculated based on the contract you entered with ACX at the beginning of an audiobook's production. For more information, please review the Royalty Payment Terms and Procedures.

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What is the allocation (AL) factor?

Audible members can buy an audiobook for a fixed price for as long as they remain members. The calculation of royalties for member sales weights payments based on an audiobook's list price. Audible takes the list price and multiplies it by the royalty rate and then by something called the Allocation Factor, which is the quotient of actual total member revenue divided by the aggregate regular price for member-selected titles in a given accounting period.

Historically, this generally means that the royalty payment for a member sale tends to be about one-half of the royalty payment for the regular price of the books sold. So, for example, the sale of a book to a member with a regular price of $30 and a royalty rate of 40%, multiplied by the Allocation Factor, would yield about $6.00. The Allocation Factor allows us to share all the revenue generated by members in a fair manner: for a given royalty rate, a book with a $30 regular price earns twice the royalty as a book with a regular $15 price.

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Can I change my contract to non-exclusive?

Changing the distribution rights to your audiobook depends on the payment option you have chosen. If the audiobook was completed as a pay-for-production deal, the distribution rights can be changed from exclusive to non-exclusive after it has been live in the store for one year. If this audiobook is in a royalty share deal, then the agreement can not be changed. For more information, please reference section 12.a. of the Book Posting Agreement

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Are there other ways of increasing my earnings?

Yes! Through our $50 Bounty Payment program, ACX will pay you an extra $50 every time your book is the first download by a new AudibleListener® on Audible. Or, if you have entered into a Royalty Share contract, both you and your producer will each earn $25. That’s above and beyond your royalties! As you can imagine, these $50 payments could quickly outpace your royalties.

And check out the comprehensive, hands-on marketing tools and advice we offer in the Promote Yourself section and the ACX Blog. Both are full of specific steps to take online, with social media tips and more.

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Can I earn a bounty more than once?

Under ACX's bounty program, you will earn a $50 bounty payment each time your book is the first purchase of a new AudibleListener.

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