How Many Copies To Print

Comics can be unpredictable. You never know what’s going to be a huge hit and what isn’t, so it’s very hard to determine the exact number of copies you’ll need for your book. Here are some quick tips to help you decide.

  • On average, single issue comics on Kickstarter get under 100 backers. This number varies of course from project to project and depending on the type of project you’re running. Graphic novels, collected editions and webcomics tend to get more support since they’re larger, more complete stories and they’ve had time to gather a pre-existing fan base. That takes me to my next point…

  • Know the size of your audience. Your number of Facebook likes, Twitter followers, e-mail list subscribers, etc… all factor into how many backers you should expect for your project. The team from ComixLaunch built a great tool for calculating your expected audience on Kickstarter. I encourage you to check it out!

  • When deciding the number of copies to print, make sure to consider the type of printer you’re going with. If you don’t know the difference, I explain the two main printing types in detail in the previous section. To summarize, offset printing has a high setup costs but very low additional costs per book whereas digital printing has lower setup costs but higher per unit costs. Adding more copies to your order costs less if you are using an offset printer.

  • If you’re producing a comic series, generally issue 1 will be the highest selling and the numbers will drop off as issues go on. You can also make sales on leftover copies of issue 1 when selling later issues. Tons of creators bundle old issues together in kickstarters for their newest issue. All this means you’ll want to have more copies of your first issues handy to sell later.