a disassembled digital camera

What is print-on-demand?

Print-on-demand (POD) technology has changed the face of the book distribution ecosystem in the past fifteen years. As the price of POD printing has decreased, the benefits for customers have increased. Now, for instance, a book may be printed locally around the world, making it easier for global customers to source a book quickly and more cost-effectively. Retailers and wholesalers like it because it reduces their overhead costs and transit times. Not only does it mean that they don’t have to store and track inventory around the world, but they are also able to cut back on the costly cycle of orders and returns by printing a book only when a reader or library orders it. Instead of making an educated guess about demand and hoping that a print copy will be at the “right place at the right time” for a customer, POD technology can be a tool to help your publisher and its partners quickly and reliably deliver a book to a reader when they need it and where they need it. That said, POD technology is not ideal for heavily illustrated or specially sized books.

—AUPresses Faculty Outreach Committee