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Selling books is the latest cool thing in retailing! Whether you are 're an existing retailer adding books to your merchandise mix or a new bookseller just getting started, we’ve put together this information page to help you find your way around.


If you're new to book purchasing, or if books are only a small part of the products you carry, you may need a bit of an orientation to the Canadian book supply chain.


Distributors are the companies that manage the order fulfilment fulfillment to retailers and other buyers like wholesalers and libraries. Some publishers distribute their own products, but most small or mid-sized publishers work with a distributor to manage this part of the business, and distribution rights are exclusive to the contracted distributor in Canada.



Wholesalers also fulfil fulfill orders to retailers. They purchase books from the exclusive Canadian distributor and resell to retailers. Typically, their terms of trade will be less favourable, but this source may be useful when popular books may be are out of stock at the distributor, or when a wholesaler may be able to ship to you more quickly.


You can browse CataList catalogues and use the search features to find information without logging in, if . If you just want to get a general sense of what’s available or coming soon , or if you want to do some initial research, this is a great place to start.

If you are 're interested in getting greater access to the full title list and retailer tools, like supplier availability details, interiors and samples, advanced reading copy requests, and order creation, you’ll want to sign up for an account. The best news? Accounts are free!

All you need to do is go to bncccatalist and request an account.


You’ll need to provide your name and email address, the name of your store, and a link to your website, if available. We do need to validate that you are a book retailer, so please provide as much information as you can, and we’ll set up your access within the next business day.


The CataList system facilitates information distribution on new and active titles in the supply chain, and allows retailers to create orders — but the actual placement and fulfilment fulfillment of orders happens directly between you as a retail buyer and your sales reps or distribution partners.


If you are 're planning to create orders in CataList, you MUST contact each distributor you wish to order from, to set up an account which will determine the terms for your purchases, and determine how orders will be submitted.


On the title detail page, there is a Supply Detail box with the distributor's details in the left sidebar. If the distributor provided us with the current price and availability status, we will 'll display them in the Stock Availability section.


Once you have created an order, you should ensure that all titles on the order are going to the same distributor.

If you are 're working with a sales representative, confirm with your rep how they prefer to receive orders from you, and whether you need to also submit orders directly to the distributor. You do have the ability to submit orders to reps within the CataList system, but you should ensure the rep is expecting to receive orders from you using that method.

If you are 're working with a point of sale (POS) system, you may also want to export your order from CataList and import it into your POS to save manual data entry time. If you’ll be placing a lot of orders, you may wish to set up EDI ordering through your POS, which allows you to send orders electronically to suppliers — and for suppliers to acknowledge receipt of your orders, along with confirmations on product availability and current pricing.

If you are 're using WordStock, you can export from CataList directly into the WordStock POS system. Find out how.


titleWhat price is shown in CataList? Is this the price I pay?

The price listed in CataList is the price for consumers, and it is typically 's typically the same price that’s printed directly on the book. Retailers will usually have a discount percentage applied against this price. You’ll need to check the terms and conditions of your account with the specific distributor or wholesaler to determine your price.

You can also check the Stock Availability section in CataList for discount code information. Note that some titles, particularly those in the professional or higher education market, may have lower percentages (that is, a “short discount”) applied.


  • CIBA — The Canadian Independent Booksellers Association

  • RCC — The Retail Council of Canada

  • The Canadian Book Market — Get annual data on book sales and consumer book purchasing behaviour in this paid report.

  • BookNet Research — Get industry research reports, many of which are available for free!

  • BookNet Blog — Browse our blog to find recent data about book buyers, discover how to leverage the power of BookNet Canada’s tools and services in your operations, and read interviews with booksellers about a wide range of topics of interest.

  • Tech Forum — Looking for a deeper dive into bookselling topics? Review past presentations and panel discussions from Canada’s book supply chain conference, and sign up to hear about upcoming sessions.