My Follett Book Fair Experience

Hi, friends! I’ve just wrapped up our Follett book fair, and I wanted to share my experience with you!

cases of books at Follett Book Fair

To check out all of the official information about Follett book fairs, click here.

Show Me the Money

We’ve got to know how much money the book fair will raise for our school library, right?

Follett Book Fair rewards chart

How does this compare to Scholastic?

Scholastic Book Fair rewards chart

For Scholastic book fairs with sales of $2500 or above (less sales tax), you can receive 25% of the sales in cash or 50% in Scholastic dollars, or a split between the two.

So, if your fair sales are $10,000, you would earn $2500 cash if it’s a Scholastic book fair and $2000 cash if it’s a Follett Book Fair.

My results? We sold about $6000 in our Spring 2018 Scholastic book fair and earned $1500 in cash rewards for our school library. With the same number of students, we sold about $5000 in our Spring 2019 Follett book fair and earned $1000 in cash rewards for our school library.

We use our book fair money to fund author visits and other special programs, so I typically choose the cash rewards option.

What About the Books?

One thing I loved about the Follett book fair is that none of the books had toys attached. Parents, teachers, and I all appreciated this. There were no posters and no toys. Just books.

One problem that I had was that about half of the books sent to us were hardback books. Our families are 99% more likely to purchase paperback books. I didn’t realize that I needed to communicate that to my Follett representative. I think that the decreased selection of paperback books impacted sales for our book fair.

Follett book fair case with books

We also didn’t receive any board books for our pre-K families. Again, I probably could have asked for that from my Follett representative, but I didn’t know that I needed to. (That’s why I’m writing this blog post for you–so that YOU will know to ASK!)

School Supplies

The school supplies for the Follett book fair came in two sturdy wire racks. The least expensive item was the 79 cent bookmark, in large, sturdy cardstock.

school supplies for sale at Follett Book Fair

There were lots of scented items which were very popular at our school. We sold out of the scented kneaded erasers and sold lots of smencils and scented gel pens. *I may even have bought a donut pen to use at my librarian desk–it has sprinkles!*

Teacher Discounts

All of our teachers and volunteers received a 20% discount at the Follett Book Fair. We all appreciated that! For our Fall 2018 Scholastic Book Fair, teachers received a $5 Scholastic gift card to spend at the book fair.

In addition to the discount, my volunteers were able to partake of the baskets of snacks I made available in our work area.

granola bars, apples, oranges, and water bottles for book fair volunteers


Because Follett currently (as of Spring 2019) does not have a network of local warehouses, they deliver the replacement stock at the start of your book fair. We received 42 boxes, in addition to the full cases.

I had room on tables behind my cases, so I organized the boxes there. Our Scholastic table signs (bought from the Scholastic catalog and used constantly in our library) came in handy. The Follett boxes are labeled with the case that they re-stock, in small print on the label.

Follett book fair box on table

It’s not pretty, but it worked for us.

Shopping Bags

Sometimes, it’s the small things, right? We all loved the bright teal shopping bags for the Follett Book Fair! I bought the bag holder myself from Amazon (affiliate link) and it has made life at the busy cash register so much easier!

Follett book fairs shopping bags

Drop Ship Option

With the Follett Clover cash register, you can take payment for an item that is not in stock, and Follett ships it to the school (free) in the next 3 to 5 days. There are always titles that we run out of, and this was a user-friendly way to get those books into the hands of our students!

What was your experience?

If you’ve hosted a Follett book fair, I’d love to hear about your experience. Leave a comment below, or share in our Learning Librarians Facebook group.

Planning a Scholastic book fair this spring? You can read my 30 book fair tips for Scholastic book fairs here.

Happy reading!

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    1. I was excited to try Follett and was disappointed. They were not able to deliver it on the scheduled date and wanted to deliver it two days into the dates of the bookfair. So I came in on a Sunday for eight hours to meet the driver, help with the delivery and set it up. Then they were two days late picking it up and it sat in my library taking up a lot of floor space. I still have not received information about how to redeem the profits for books and my fair was in mid November. I did not put out the toys, bookmarks, pens etc. and the kids survived. I found the book selection to be similar to Scholastic. Two good differences from Scholastic: The POS register kept track of stock and set replacements automatically and parents could purchase gift certificates which helped with students carrying money and keeping track of it. I’m going to schedule with Scholastic for fall of 2019.

      1. Scholastic offers an eWallet option. Parents/grandparents can set up an account with a ceiling amount that students can spend. This also offers a way to keep students from carrying and keeping up with cash.

      2. I had a follett fair last year and was disappointed, but thought maybe I was just being a creature of habit so I tried them again. I am currently hosting one and yet again i am completely disappointed! Next year I will be going all scholastic!

    2. I’ve seen nothing but fails on Follett Fairs lately. They’ve cancelled four fairs That I know of that were supposed to happen next week. Thank God for Scholastic! From what I understand they’re providing the fairs for the schools. It’s short notice too! I’d totes with the idea of using them but I don’t want to end up a #follettfail

    3. I LOVE Follett for book fairs, but of course they have gone out of business. I am trying to avoid going back to Scholastic but am not sure of other options. What have you found if anything?

    4. Follett was recently purchased by Literati – so I am excited to try them next school year. I’m fed up with Scholastic. I have had nothing but problems – scanner not working (beyond just not being plugged in and powered up), dirty or creased books, teacher $5 certificates not working… etc. – and my rep always says that I need to call the hotline. In my opinion, they are out of touch with what it’s actually like for some schools. The emails that I needed to print out and ‘keep handy’ were all sent 2 months ago and when you’re ringing up a sale, you don’t want to look for that email. I want to be able to talk to the rep and ask for assistance and they get what I need – not me wait on the phone for a customer service rep to pick up. And the books are so badly bound they fall apart after one use, it seems. One student brought me a book back that just fell right apart. So, disappointing! I won’t be going back with Scholastic. Fingers crossed that Literati is better!

    5. I have been doing Scholastic Book Fairs at our school for about 10 years.

      *Set up is actually easy and manageable with a few volunteers, usually 90 minutes or less. We always have about 6 of the rolling cases, plus 6-7 additional tables of books.
      *I have had the same rep most of the 10 years and I love that. She is a native English speaker and very easy to communicate. Sometimes our sale gets really busy so I shoot her a quick email about what we ran out of and she’ll order a restock for me.
      *Content is a pro and a con – I find that Scholastic routinely has the new releases that kids want (Wimpy Kid, DogMan, CatKid, Wings of Fire, etc.), but it also means that sometimes that content falls flat when it appears at every sale.
      *Now that you can upload your sales totals vs entering manually I find the checking out of Scholastic Sales to be very quick and easy.
      *The Rewards and opportunities to increase your rewards (like have a guessing jar, principal emails and a second sale) are in part what keeps us returning to Scholastic again and again evey year

      *I do feel that the registers can be unpredictable. The modems have been the same for quite some time and are susceptible to dropping signal right in the middle of an intense rush of shoppers right after school. I have not had issues with the scanners, but sometimes the cash drawer doesn’t open on queue and twice in our tenure we had to have a replacement modem sent to us in the middle of our sale.
      *As mentioned above, sometimes the content gets repetitive, but this seems to be true with most sales
      *They encourage you to reach out to them during your Fair when you have issues or questions, but for anyone that has ever run a sale that can be really hard to do in the heat of the sale. I am lucky though – as I said before – we have had the same rep for quite some time so we know each other well and reach out for help from her instead of calling the 1-800 rep lines

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