Comic Book / Comics

How Profitable Are Comic Book Stores?

Comic book stores have been around since the early 1900s, and in recent years, they have seen a resurgence in popularity. With the rise of superhero movies and TV shows, more people are getting interested in comic books and graphic novels.

But how profitable are comic book stores? Let’s take a closer look.

What Are Comic Book Stores?

Comic book stores are retail establishments that specialize in selling comic books, graphic novels, manga, and related merchandise. Some stores also sell board games, action figures, and other collectibles. Most comic book stores carry a wide variety of titles from both major publishers like Marvel and DC as well as independent publishers.

How Do Comic Book Stores Make Money?

Comic book stores make money by purchasing comics at a wholesale price from publishers or distributors and selling them at a markup to customers. The markup varies depending on the store’s overhead costs such as rent, utilities, employee salaries, and other expenses. Some comic book stores also make money by hosting events like signings or gaming tournaments.

Challenges Faced by Comic Book Stores

While there is a growing interest in comics, running a successful comic book store can be challenging. One of the biggest challenges is competition from online retailers like Amazon or Comixology. Online retailers often offer lower prices and free shipping which can be hard for brick-and-mortar stores to compete with.

Another challenge is the changing landscape of comics publishing. Many publishers now offer digital versions of their comics which can be downloaded directly to devices like tablets or smartphones. This shift has led some readers to abandon print comics altogether which can hurt sales for physical stores.

Are Comic Book Stores Profitable?

The profitability of comic book stores varies widely depending on factors such as location, size, inventory selection, and management practices. Small mom-and-pop shops with low overhead costs may be able to turn a profit, while larger stores in high-rent areas may struggle to break even.

According to a survey conducted by the industry group ComicsPRO, the average comic book store has gross sales of around $200,000 per year. However, this figure can vary widely depending on the store’s location and size.


In conclusion, comic book stores can be profitable if managed correctly. However, they face challenges such as competition from online retailers and changes in publishing practices. As long as there is a demand for comics and related merchandise, there will be a place for physical comic book stores in the retail landscape.