Self-publishing is not only about Kindle ebooks
When it comes time to publish an ebook, Amazon KDP is always the first choice for authors and publishers. It is relatively easy, and the Kindle Store is the biggest ebook seller on the planet.
However, while some independent authors might believe that publishing on Smashwords is not worth the extra effort, there are some very good reasons to publish on there that are worth noting.
Sure, it takes a bit of work to get through the greater control of the auto-vetter and then wait for the ebook to be reviewed and approved for premium distribution, but the benefits in the long term are numerous for Smashwords authors.
1. Much wider distribution channels
Once approved for Premium distribution, your Smashwords ebooks will be available on Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple, Page Foundry, Baker & Taylor, Blio, txtr, Library Direct, Baker-Taylor, Axis360, OverDrive, and Scribd.
Sure, you probably won’t sell a bundle of ebooks, except perhaps with Apple iBooks and B&N, but the exposure from each retailer will boost your title’s exposure and SEO. (Search Engine Optimisation)
2. Search engine exposure
While on SEO, you will have a link on your publisher’s dashboard for every ebook, with a list of SEO entries for each title and author gained simply by publishing your ebook. Again, more exposure which is good book marketing for indie authors.
3. Access to your ebooks to distribute
Have you ever wanted to send a copy of your ebook to a book blogger, beta reader or reviewer?
It’s a pain when they ask for a special format such as mobi, epub or pdf. If you are published on Smashwords, this is very easy, because you can download copies of your Smashwords book in any one of eight different file formats, or book formats, at any time.
All you need to do is log in to your Smashwords account, go to your Dashboard, and click on the book title.
This will take you to your Store page. The download links are in a box on the right-hand side. If I didn’t sell one single ebook on Smashwords, this feature alone would make book publishing there well worthwhile.
Another feature I like is Coupons. If you are doing an email promotion, for instance, you can give potential buyers a discount code to use to get your ebook at a cheaper price. You can also use coupons on social media to give your ebook a kick along.
The last hidden feature on your Dashboard is ‘Affiliate Settings’. I can’t say that I have used this, but why not encourage affiliate marketers to sell your ebook? With the number of affiliate marketers around, it might be worth a try.
So, there you have it. Even if you don’t sell a single copy via Smashwords, there are some very useful reasons to make sure that your ebook is published there.
Mark Coker and Smashwords have supported indie authors for a very long time. Smashwords is now the largest distributor of ebooks to libraries and does help to sell more books on its other channels. Because of this fact, it is always worth considering publishing on Smashwords.
More reading: Draft2Digital, Smashwords or Amazon KDP Select?