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The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

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The landscape of ebook publishing is as vibrant and dynamic as ever. Authors today have a plethora of platforms at their fingertips, each offering unique advantages and catering to different needs. But with so many options, navigating the terrain can be overwhelming. Fear not, fellow bookpreneurs! This curated list of the top 15 platforms to sell ebooks in 2024 will be your compass to success.

Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks

1. Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP):

As the industry giant, KDP offers unparalleled reach and visibility for authors, making it one of the essential platforms to sell ebooks worldwide.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

To sell your ebooks on Amazon platform, the world’s largest online retailer, follow these steps:

  1. Sign up for Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP): Create an account on KDP, Amazon’s platform for self-publishing.
  2. Access Bookshelf and Add New Title: After signing in, go to your Bookshelf and click “Add New Title” to begin publishing your book.
  3. Follow the Process: KDP will guide you through the process, which should take around 10 minutes. Upload your ebook in Kindle format. If you only have a PDF or Word file, Amazon can convert it for you.
  4. Reach a Massive Audience: Amazon’s vast user base provides a huge potential readership for your ebook, making it a key platform for reaching a large audience.

However, there are some drawbacks:

  • Lower Earnings per Sale: Amazon takes a significant portion of your earnings from each sale, so you won’t make as much money per sale compared to other platforms.

Pricing Details:

  • Free Listing: It’s free to list your books on Amazon through KDP.
  • Sales Commission: You’ll pay a sales commission per sale, and you can choose between a 35% royalty or a 70% royalty, depending on the price of your book.

In simpler terms, while it’s easy and free to get your ebook on Amazon, be aware that they take a larger cut of your earnings compared to some other platforms.

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2. Apple Books

With a vast user base and an audience that spans across Apple’s devices, Apple Books offers a lucrative platform for authors. Explore the author-friendly features and marketing opportunities that make Apple Books a compelling choice.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

If you want to sell your ebooks to mobile users, Apple Books is a must. It’s the primary source for iPhone and Apple device readers.

Getting Started:

  1. Create an iTunes Connect Account: Sign up for an iTunes Connect account to publish directly on Apple Books.
  2. Publish in EPUB Format: Use iTunes Producer (for Mac) or Publishing Portal (for Windows) to publish your books in EPUB format. If your ebook is in Word, you can convert it to EPUB using Pages.
  3. No Hidden Fees: Apple Books offers a generous 70% royalty to authors, regardless of your book’s price. There are no hidden fees, and you can even offer free books without any restrictions. Plus, no third-party ads!
  4. Simple Publishing Process: The publishing process is easy, guiding you through each step. Once done, your ebook will be available to a vast new market of potential readers.

Pricing Details:

  • Free Listing: There’s no cost to list your ebooks on Apple Books.
  • Revenue Cut: While Apple takes a percentage of your revenue, you earn a solid 70% in royalties for each sale.

In simpler terms, selling on Apple Books is free, and you get to keep 70% of your earnings per sale. It’s a straightforward way to reach a large audience, especially if your target readers use iPhones or other Apple devices.

3. Kobo

Kobo is a Canadian company known for offering a wide range of ebooks, audiobooks, and ebook readers. It’s one of the most popular platforms worldwide to sell ebooks with over 5 million titles to choose from. They have their own app, available on Google Play and the App Store, allowing readers to enjoy books anywhere. The unique feature is that readers can switch between devices seamlessly without losing their reading progress.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

For authors, Kobo provides a platform called Kobo Writing Life. Here’s how it works:

  1. Simple Publishing Process: Authors can easily publish their own texts and reach a broad audience. The process involves creating an account, publishing the ebook, and investing some time in marketing efforts.
  2. Quick Inclusion in Catalogue: Once published, the ebook gets added to the catalogue list within 72 hours.

Pricing Details:

  • Original Texts: Authors earn either 70% or 45% of the list price. Books priced above $2.99 may have higher rates, and the 45% rate applies to texts priced below that.
  • Public Domain Texts: For books in the public domain, authors can expect 20% of the list price.

Currency Options:

  • Kobo Writing Life accepts various currencies, including US dollars, Canadian dollars, British pounds, euros, Japanese yen, Australian dollars, New Zealand dollars, and Hong Kong dollars.
  • Individuals using other currencies receive their billing in US dollars.

In simpler terms, Kobo Writing Life offers a straightforward way for authors to publish their work and earn a percentage of the book’s list price, with flexibility in currency options.

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4. Smashwords

Smashwords is an American platform for selling ebooks. It is a place where authors and publishers worldwide can easily publish and distribute their ebooks. Using a self-service system, independent creators can convert their files and sell them online.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

There are two ways to sell:

  1. Smashwords Bookstore: Authors can sell directly through the Smashwords bookstore, earning 80% of the retail price.
  2. Global Distribution Channels: Alternatively, ebooks can be distributed globally through channels like Apple Books, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, and more. In this case, authors earn up to 60% of the retail price.

In simpler terms, Smashwords offers authors flexibility by allowing them to sell through their own bookstore or distribute widely, with different earning percentages for each option.

5. Draft2Digital

Draft2Digital and Smashwords, two similar companies in the independent ebooks distribution industry, have decided to join forces and merge. What does this mean for authors? Well, if you’re already an author with either platform, you don’t need to do anything extra because the systems will automatically integrate under the Draft2Digital domain.

Now, what’s in it for authors with this merger? They gain broader access to the market as they can now use the Smashwords store to sell their ebooks. Authors also get access to marketing tools from the Smashwords website, including the use of Smashwords Coupons.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

Pricing Details:

  1. No Upfront Fees: Draft2Digital doesn’t charge authors for services like formatting, distribution, or sales tracking upfront.
  2. Payment After Sales: Authors only settle the bill after they make sales.
  3. Earnings Percentage: After deducting the necessary fees, authors receive approximately 60% of the list price of their ebooks.

In simpler terms, the merger of Draft2Digital and Smashwords brings convenience for authors, allowing them to access a wider market. Plus, with Draft2Digital, authors don’t pay any fees upfront; they settle the bill after making sales and receive around 60% of the ebook’s list price.

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6. Sellfy

Sellfy is a fantastic online platform to sell ebooks and more. With Sellfy, you can easily create your own digital store to sell ebooks and print-on-demand merchandise.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

Getting Started:

  1. User-Friendly Setup: Sellfy is very beginner-friendly, making it ideal for new authors who want to self-publish. Setting up your online store takes just a few clicks.
  2. Customization: Once your store is set up, you can personalize its appearance, add products, and set up payment options. Sellfy allows you to sell various items, from ebooks to subscriptions and print-on-demand merchandise.
  3. Marketing Tools: Sellfy provides tools like Facebook and Twitter tracking pixels for monitoring paid ad campaigns. You can also use Sellfy analytics or integrate Google Analytics for in-depth store performance tracking. It even offers built-in email marketing features.
  4. Security Features: Sellfy helps protect your products and customers. You can use features like limited downloads to prevent unauthorized sharing of your ebooks. Secure payments are enabled through PayPal or Stripe.
  5. No Transaction Fees: Sellfy stands out by allowing you to sell your digital products with 0% transaction fees, making it an excellent choice for solo entrepreneurs and emerging authors.

Pricing Details:

  • Starting from $19/month: Sellfy offers paid plans with various features, starting at $19 per month.

In simpler terms, Sellfy is easy-to-use platform where you can create your digital store to sell ebooks and more. It provides marketing tools, security features, and unique perks like 0% transaction fees, making it a great choice for individuals and aspiring authors.

7. Podia

Podia is an all-in-one platform designed for selling digital products like ebooks. It’s a great for entrepreneurs wanting an easy way to start their digital product business.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

Key Features:

  1. Ecommerce Store: Podia allows you to effortlessly set up your own online store, offering flexibility in selling various digital products such as ebooks, templates, audio files, and more.
  2. Built-In Features: Podia includes features for webinars and online courses, making it a versatile platform for different types of digital content.
  3. Marketing Tools: The platform comes with built-in marketing features, allowing you to manage email campaigns, messaging, embeds, and even affiliate programs all in one place.
  4. Easy Customization: Designing and customizing your online store is made simple with Podia’s selection of optimized templates.

Pricing Details:

  • Podia Mover Plan: Starts at $33/month and includes the creation of unlimited webinars, courses, and downloadable products.
  • Free Plan: Podia offers a free plan allowing you to sell one product with 8% transaction fees. This plan includes Podia’s website builder, community, and email marketing.
  • 14-Day Free Trial: You can try out Podia with a 14-day free trial to explore its features before committing to a paid plan.

In simpler terms, Podia is one of the user-friendly platforms to sell ebooks. Here entrepreneurs can easily set up an online store to sell various digital products, with options for webinars and courses. There are different pricing plans, including a free option with some limitations, and a free trial is available for testing the platform.

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8. SendOwl

SendOwl is also an all-in-one platform made for creators to easily sell and deliver digital products, such as ebooks. It supports various digital items like photography, memberships, tickets, and more.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

Key Features:

  1. Ebook Store: SendOwl lets you set up your own ebook store with features designed to make selling and delivering digital products straightforward.
  2. Product Variety: The platform supports the sale of various digital products, giving creators flexibility in what they offer.
  3. Security Features: SendOwl includes codes and license key features to prevent content duplication, ensuring the protection of your work.
  4. Drip Feature: There’s a Drip feature that enables you to release your ebook chapter by chapter, serving as a marketing strategy to build anticipation and potentially increase sales.

Pricing Details:

  • Starts from $15/month: SendOwl offers pricing starting from $15 per month for up to 30 products.
  • 30-Day Free Trial: You can try SendOwl with a 30-day free trial to explore its features before committing to a paid plan.

In simpler terms, SendOwl is a user-friendly platform designed for creators, especially self-published authors, to sell and deliver digital products like ebooks. It comes with features for content protection and marketing, and you can start with a 30-day free trial before choosing a paid plan.

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9. Google Play

Google Play is like a digital mall for Android users where they can get games, apps, and, yes, even books! It’s a great place to sell your ebooks, especially to reach a wide international mobile audience.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

How It Works:

  1. No Exclusive Rights: Google allows you to list your books on the Play store without requiring exclusive rights. This means you can sell your books on Google Play as well as other retailers.
  2. Partner Center: Use the Partner Center to choose the countries you want to sell in, set your book prices, and more.
  3. Google Takes Care of the Rest: Once your book is listed, Google handles hosting, sales, and distribution. Readers can easily find and read your book through the Google Play Store or Google Books using the app or a web browser.

Pricing Details:

  • No Upfront Costs: It’s free to list your books on Google Play.
  • Revenue Share: Google takes a share of the revenue from each sale you make. The exact share depends on the sale price.

In simpler terms, Google Play is a digital place where Android users go for apps, games, and books. You can sell your ebooks there without any upfront costs, and Google takes a share of the money from each sale, which varies based on the book’s price. It’s a great way to reach a broad mobile audience.

10. Audible (Audiobooks only)

Audible is Amazon’s popular audiobook service, and it’s a fantastic platform for selling your ebooks in audio format.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

How It Works:

  1. Narration: To sell your ebooks as audiobooks on Audible, you need to have them narrated. You can hire a professional narrator or do it yourself to save money. If you choose to do it yourself, you’ll need some equipment like a good microphone and possibly soundproofing.
  2. Distribution Channel: Use a service like ACX (Audiobook Creation Exchange) to list your audiobook on Audible. ACX guides you through the process, including narration if necessary, and distributes your audiobook to Audible, Amazon, and iTunes.
  3. Royalties: You can earn royalties of up to 40% from the sales of your audiobook.

Benefits:

  • New Market Opportunity: Turning your ebook into an audiobook opens up a new market of people who prefer listening to books.
  • Higher Profit Margins: Audiobooks generally have a higher average selling price, often between $20-$30, resulting in higher profit margins for authors.

Pricing Details:

  • Pay for Production Program: If you want full control and are willing to pay for audiobook production, you can explore the Pay for Production program. Costs depend on the audiobook’s length, and you retain full royalties.
  • Self-Production: You can produce the audio yourself and upload the files to ACX for free. In this case, you receive monthly royalty payments of up to 40%.

In simpler terms, Audible is a great platform to sell your ebooks as audiobooks. You can choose to pay for production and retain full control, or you can produce the audio yourself for free, earning royalties from your audiobook sales. It’s a fantastic way to tap into a new audience and potentially increase your profits.

11. Barnes & Noble (NOOK)

Barnes & Noble is an online bookstore offering over a million ebooks, and users can read them through the specialized NOOK app on their electronic devices.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

With Barnes & Noble Press, even new writers can publish and sell their ebooks or paper versions to millions of readers. The process involves setting up an account and sending files, which is not very time-consuming. Authors can expect to start making a profit within 72 hours of uploading their text.

Cost and Profit:

  • 70% of Retail Price: Authors receive 70 percent of the retail price for each sale.
  • Profit Calculator: NOOK’s website provides a tool to calculate the potential profit an author may achieve through their publishing efforts.

In simpler terms, Barnes & Noble makes it easy for writers, even beginners, to publish and sell their ebooks. Authors earn 70% of the retail price for each sale, and there’s a tool on the NOOK website to estimate their potential profits. It’s a user-friendly platform to reach millions of readers.

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12. Shopify

Shopify is a highly popular online selling solution that lets you create big online stores. Whether you’re selling digital products like ebooks or physical items, Shopify has you covered.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

Key Features:

  1. Visual Editor: Shopify provides a visual editor to easily create and customize your online store. It’s user-friendly and allows for flexible selling options.
  2. Marketing Tools: Alongside store creation, Shopify offers useful marketing tools to help you start and grow your ecommerce business.
  3. All-in-One Solution: Shopify is an all-in-one solution, meaning it not only helps manage your online store but also supports large-scale marketing campaigns. It’s suitable for individuals or businesses planning to sell a variety of digital or physical products, with the flexibility to scale up as the business grows.

Pricing Details:

  • Free Trial: You can try Shopify free for 3 days.
  • Initial Discount: Pay only $1/month for the first 3 months.
  • Plans Start from $39/month: After the initial period, plans start from $39/month. You can save 25% with an annual subscription.

In simpler terms, Shopify is a popular platform for creating and customizing online stores, whether you’re selling digital or physical products. It’s an all-in-one solution with user-friendly features and flexible selling options. The pricing starts with a trial period and a discounted initial rate before moving to regular plans.

13. Payhip

Payhip is a website where you can sell digital stuff, like ebooks.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

Pricing Details:

  • Free Sales Page: You can create a sales page on Payhip for free.
  • Sales Tools: Payhip provides tools like discount coupons, share buttons, an affiliate program, and flexible pricing options to help you sell your digital products.
  • Transaction Fee: Payhip charges a simple 5% fee on all the sales you make.

In simpler terms, it’s free to set up your sales page on Payhip, and when you sell something, they take a small 5% cut. This makes it straightforward for you to start selling your digital products, including ebooks.

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14. IngramSpark

Ingram specializes in top-quality print-on-demand services but also helps independent authors self-publish ebooks globally. They distribute ebooks to major sellers like Amazon, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, and more. Authors can use IngramSpark, Ingram’s self-publishing platform, to self-publish their ebooks.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

File Requirements: All you need is an EPUB file for your book’s interior and a high-resolution JPG image for the cover, similar to what’s required for most ebook platforms.

Available Formats:

  • Ebook
  • Print

Royalty Payout:

  • Authors receive a 40% royalty payout.

Global Reach:

  • Distribution is available in the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand.

Plans and Features:

  • IngramSpark offers different plans, each with its own perks and features. You can find more details here.

In simpler terms, Ingram helps authors globally publish and distribute ebooks through their platform IngramSpark. Authors get a 40% royalty payout, and IngramSpark offers different plans with various features to choose from. It’s a straightforward way for authors to make their ebooks available across major online platforms.

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15. PayLoadz

PayLoadz provides useful tools for hosting and selling ebooks online. With PayLoadz you get features like an encrypted download page, shareable buttons, the option to list your ebooks in eBay auctions, and an affiliate program.

The Top 15 Platforms to Sell Ebooks You Need to Explore in 2024

Pricing Details:

  • Monthly Cost: Using PayLoadz costs $19.95 per month.
  • Transaction Fee: Additionally, there’s a fee of 2.9% to 4.9% on each sale you make.

In simpler terms, PayLoadz offers tools to sell your ebooks online for a monthly fee of $19.95, and they charge a small fee on each sale. It’s a straightforward way to manage and sell your digital products.

Wrapping up: Best Platforms to Sell ebooks

In this compilation of best platforms to sell ebooks, we’ve highlighted some of the most popular services, each presenting unique benefits for authors. However, it’s crucial to recognize that these platforms vary in functionalities and options, and each comes with its set of pros and cons. Before making the ultimate selection of a service, authors should conduct a thorough analysis of the market. Understanding the nuanced differences can empower authors to make an informed decision tailored to their specific needs and goals. The dynamic landscape of ebook publishing encourages a thoughtful exploration of these platforms, ensuring that the chosen service aligns seamlessly with an author’s vision for success in the digital realm.

FAQs on platforms to sell ebooks

Q1: What percentage of royalties do authors typically receive?

Authors typically receive royalties ranging from 35% to 70%, depending on the platform and pricing strategy.

Q2. Should you choose to sell your ebooks directly (platforms) or through a marketplace?

Determining whether to sell ebooks directly from your website or via marketplaces hinges on your objectives. Opting for direct sales grants you full profit retention and brand-building capabilities. On the other hand, marketplaces offer a broader audience. Striking a balance, such as selling directly to your existing audience and using marketplaces for outreach, is often recommended.

Q3: Can I publish my ebook on multiple platforms simultaneously?

Yes, many platforms allow authors to sell and publish their ebooks on multiple platforms simultaneously, expanding their reach.

Ebook platforms implement various measures, such as digital rights management (DRM), to protect authors’ copyrights.

Q5: What genres of ebooks tend to sell the best?

Popular ebook categories include romance, crime and mystery, religious and inspirational (for fiction), and business and self-help (for non-fiction). Success in any category depends on well-crafted, professionally designed content rather than the genre itself.

Q6: What is the ideal length for ebooks?

Ebook length varies by genre, with full-length fiction novels typically ranging from 80,000 to 100,000 words and non-fiction books from 50,000 to 75,000 words. Short stories can be considerably shorter. On average, ebooks have 250 to 300 words per page. Therefore, a 50,000-word ebook would be around 182 pages, and a 100,000-word ebook would be around 364 pages.

Q7. What platform is best for design-focused ebooks?

Apple Books prioritizes aesthetics and offers a premium feel for visually appealing ebooks.

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