The greatest aspect of e-books is that anyone can create one. If you’ve written a book you can make it available for all without going through the long process of finding an agent or publisher. Most online e-book publishing services are incredibly affordable and easy to use. The question is which should you be using?
Kobo Writing Life
Kobo has an immense online store containing over 4 million different e-books which are available in 190 countries in 68 different languages. The publishing tool is user friendly and has a guided process for the uploading and conversion of documents. There are quite decent loyalties for authors – 70% on titles retailing for $2.99 or more – and Kobo is partnered with the American Booksellers Association so that your title can be made available in thousands of independent online bookstores.
Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing
KDP is possibly the best known publishing platform and enables authors to publish e-books solely for Kindle, which is by far the most popular e-book reader available. This interface is also very er friendly and has a great, friendly set up process. Advantages of using KDP include allowing the use of your book in Amazon’s Kindle library where Prime customers can borrow books for free. This is a great way to earn some reviews and gain more exposure.
Smashwords will distribute your book to a number of online retailers with the exception of Amazon. It is one of the largest distributors of independent e-books in the world and offers royalties as high as 85% in some cases. They also offer a free marketing guide to help you promote your e-book which is invaluable.
Blurb is more focused on printed books, but offers authors the chance to create an e-book which can then be sold in their own online bookstore and Apple’s iBookstore. The major downside, despite the wide distribution, is that there is a one off $9.99 publishing fee for all titles.
This is a more comprehensive service. BookBaby will distribute to all major e-book stockists and give you 100% of the royalties, the caveat being that there is a $249 charge for this ‘premium package’. Great if you anticipate high sales, but not so much if you’re a new, unknown author. There is promotion and marketing advice included in this service though which can be very helpful.