Distribution of books into retail shops is difficult for self-published authors in South Africa. Distributors and retailers both require a major slice of the price of the book to cover their costs. After they take their cut, the author is left with a nominal profit, if anything.

Self-Publish SA recommends direct selling for self-publishing. There are different options (see Marketing and Publicity below).

For certain books, it may be important that a few copies are available at local bookstores, or at least that they reflect on the computer systems and can be ordered. But authors will need to undertake this work themselves.